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Will wait for govt to make safety norms mandatory: Maruti chief

Carmaker all set for highest ever sales at 11.48 lakh in calendar 2014.

By: ENS Economic Bureau | December 25, 2014 1:41:59 am

Maruti India chairman RC Bhargava on Wednesday rebutted any possibility of the company adding additional safety features such as air bags and ABS across all car variants on its own.

He stressed that it was the government’s job to set safety norms, Bhargava said, “Car business is a highly competitive business and a company cannot put extra expense in putting up features which are not put in by others. It is the government’s job to fix the standards,” said Bhargava, adding that MSIL will comply with any norms laid down by the government.

All set for its highest ever sales numbers in a year at 11.48 lakh in calendar 2014, with a growth of 13 per cent over the previous year, Bhargava said that the company’s market share has now grown to 44.8 per cent. The previous highest sales was in 2010 when MSIL sold 10.6 lakh vehicles.

Bhargava further said that the company will wait for Rajya Sabha to clear the amendments to the Companies Act before they go for minority shareholders’ approval on Suzuki Motor Corporation’s (SMC) decision to directly invest in the upcoming Gujarat plant.

He, however, exuded confidence in getting the decision approved. “I am not facing any resistance from anybody but if I have to go for voting, I should be clear under what rule should we go for it. I think that we would have got three-fourth of the majority and not just two-third,” said Bhargava. He said that the timing of the vote is not related to the implementation of the project and it is related to signing of the “contract manufacturing agreement with the Gujarat subsidiary” which can be signed anytime before the production starts.

Bhargava also pointed out that if the government makes it mandatory to have airbags and ABS in all cars, the move will impact the sales of entry level cars more than others as customers in that segment are more price sensitive.

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