Steps up hiring of design, electrical and mech engineers
NEW DELHI: Maruti Suzuki India appears to be serious about designing cars from scratch in India by the turn of the decade.
Which is why, the country’s largest car maker has stepped on the accelerator for hiring engineers in disciplines such as design, electrical and mechanical engineering. Its ultimate goal seems to be to convert the Indian operations into Suzuki’s global design centre for small cars.
A company spokesperson confirmed that between April and July, as many as 170 engineers have been hired, taking the total strength to 570. By 2010, this number would touch 1,000.
The spurt in hiring of engineers assumes significance since Maruti has traditionally worked with only about 300 engineers and only with the recent launch of ‘Swift’ and then SX4 and DZire did it engage in even collaborative R&D with engineers stationed in Japan.
It has often been accused of merely importing technology from the parent company, Suzuki Motor Co, without investing either time or funds in conducting local research and development.
For the Swift and the DZire, 30 Indian engineers worked on designing the vehicles to suit India-specific needs such as a raised suspension for improved ground clearance but even then, the vehicle was conceived and built almost entirely at the Suzuki headquarters.
But if Maruti’s ambitious designs come true, it would be ready for a “full model change” or building a car from scratch in India by 2010-11.
In the next few years, Maruti expects a rapid flow of new models including the ‘A-Star’, ‘Splash’ and in the medium term, the D-segment car ‘Kizashi’.
The company is also stepping up work in alternate fuel segments like LPG —- it has already launched WagonR Duo and Omni fitted with LPG kits.
Maruti has an aggressive plan for model launches in the next few years. This will require plenty of design and development work for which we have to step up capability,” the spokesperson said.
Maruti has already applied for land to the Haryana government to set up a state-of-the-art R&D centre.
7 months ago