General Motors India has announced it will begin to export the Chevrolet Beat minicar to South Africa starting in 2015. The move comes after a downturn in the Indian automotive market as GM looks to improve capacity utilization at its plants in the region, which manufactured a little more than a quarter of the cars they were capable of in 2013.
The Beat, sold in North America and other markets as the Spark, is produced at GM India’s Talegaon plant and will be exported to Chile in the first quarter of 2015, followed by its arrival in African markets. Vice President of Sales, Service and Marketing, Rajesh Singh, also said the car would be exported to more markets in the future.
GM decided to ramp up production at its Talegaon and Halol facilities in India after poor sales in the region caused the plants to run under capacity in 2013, producing just 28 percent of the 238,000 units they are capable of. GM India President Arvind Saxena said at the time that “the exports will create more employment opportunities within GM India and the supplier community while helping improve capacity utilization at the Talegaon plant.”