Mahindra to launch pick-up in U.S. by year end

MUMBAI Wed May 19, 2010 3:00pm IST

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MUMBAI (Reuters) - Mahindra & Mahindra, India's largest utility vehicles and tractor maker, said on Wednesday it would launch its compact diesel pick-up truck in the United States by the end of the year.

The launch, which will be a year behind schedule, was delayed because of changes needed to conform with U.S. regulations following extensive road tests in America.

"We wanted to give the best product to the American consumer and thereby wanted to be absolutely sure on parameters before its launch," President Pawan Goenka said in a statement.

Mahindra, which has built the pick-up on the platform of its flagship Scorpio sport utility vehicle, expects to get U.S. Environmental Protection Agency certification by July and production should start in mid-September.

The trucks would arrive in U.S. showrooms by late December, the company said.

By 0732 GMT, shares in Mahindra, worth $7.1 billion, were trading down 2 percent at 548.60 rupees in a weak Mumbai market, but have gained 3.6 percent this year while the main index is down 4.6 percent.

In 2009, the stock had nearly quadrupled, beating an 81 percent jump in the index.

(Reporting by Janaki Krishnan; Editing by Ranjit Gangadharan)

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