GUJARAT, India – UK-based Morris Garages (MG) acquired General Motor’s Halol plant in Gujarat in September, invested more than $307 million in acquisition, part of which will be pumped into refurbishing a 170-acre plant.
MG Motor India is a wholly-owned subsidiary of SAIC Motor, China’s largest automaker by sales.
The Halol plant would initially produce 80,000 to 85,000 units annually for the first five years in phase 1 with option of doubling plant capacity depending on demand.
It will launch its first model likely to be a premier SUV in 2019. SAIC will finalize the product in the next few months.
The MG product range currently includes the hatchback MG3 and MG GS SUV in the European market.
MG designs and engineers products at its global design center in Birmingham and will manufacture in India align with Indian driving conditions, regulations and emissions norms.
It has already hired 70 people and will likely recruit 1,500 people in the next 2-3 years.
Earlier this year, SAIC Motor signed a term sheet to evaluate buying the Halol plant from GM, the struggling automaker exited in May after failing to achieve sizeable sales in India. Despite initial denials SAIC Motor continued to negotiate for possible acquisition of GM’s Gujarat plant.
The MG brand, originated as an iconic British racing sports brand in 1924, has evolved into a modern-day innovative brand through the last 93 years.
SAIC Motor sells over 6.5 million vehicles annually in China and the global markets.