It was in 2010 that Mahindra & Mahindra bought a 75% stake in the struggling South Korean brand, SsangYong Motor
Amid the ongoing COVID-19 crisis and alarmingly relaxed lockdown protocols, Mahindra & Mahindra has shared its plans to seek a new investor to sell off the struggling subsidiary, SsangYong Motor. Mahindra bought a 75% stake in SsangYong back in 2010 and now, the Indian automaker does not wish to invest in the South Korean brand any further. In fact, Mahindra & Mahindra plans to discontinue all its loss-generating ventures (such as California-based EV brand, GenZe) considering the present state of affairs.
Pawan Goenka, Managing Director of Mahindra & Mahindra, stated that SsangYong is in need of a new investor while sharing the group’s sales performance in the last quarter of FY2020. The Indian company has already reported an overall loss of Rs 1955 crore ($258 million) in the ending fiscal year. Hence, the best move is to shift focus away from ventures returning exorbitant losses.
Anish Shah, Deputy Managing Director of Mahindra & Mahindra, commented that if a new investor comes into the picture taking the group’s portion of investment down, “they may even buy our (Mahindra’s) stake”. In order to cut costs and focus on capital expenditure throughout the COVID-19 situation, Mahindra plans a major restructuring strategy. Anish Shah added that the company would be reviewing all its businesses at loss in the coming months or roughly a year’s time.
At present, the Indian market has two Mahindra models based on SsangYong products: XUV300 and Alturas G4. While the former subcompact crossover is a substantially reengineered and redesigned avatar of the SsangYong Tivoli sold in global markets, the latter mid-size SUV is a prime example of badge engineering. Either product has been updated to BS6 emission norms with little-to-no differences from their BS4 counterparts.
The 2020MY Mahindra XUV300 comes at a starting price of Rs 8.30 lakh ex-showroom and is easily one of the best choices in India’s evolving “compact SUV” market. It is available in both petrol and diesel formats with class-leading performance figures. An even-more-powerful Sportz version (petrol) is in the works.
Coming to the bigger Mahindra Alturas G4, the 7-seater mildly undercuts the starting prices of its primary rivals, Toyota Fortuner and Ford Endeavour at Rs 28.69 lakh ex-showroom. It comes with the same diesel-automatic powertrain as its BS4 format. Sales remain much lower than the competition, especially when compared to the Toyota Fortuner (2021MY facelift has already debuted globally).