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Help Ford plans second plant in India, Gujarat on radar
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With the Indian car market booming, Ford is planning to set up a second plant and has approached the Gujarat government for land.

According to sources, Ford which has announced eight new models for India by 2015, has been suggested a site near Sanand, where Tata Motors also has its factory for Nano, by Gujarat state government officials.

Ford has been riding high after the success of its Figo hatchback and wants to ramp up quickly to drive in new models and keep the momentum going. "Representatives from financial organizations that represent Ford have visited senior Gujarat government officials, though nothing has been finalized as yet," a source added.

Ford would be the third major auto company to enter Gujarat after General Motors and Tata Motors. Sources said the company is keen to begin the project soon. "They have indicated huge investment plans and if everything goes well, they could be coming in within two to three months to finalize things."

A spokesperson for Ford said, "We have announced aggressive growth plans with our eight new products. We have nothing else to say or add at this time." Ford currently has its factory near Chennai that has a peak capacity of around 2 lakh units.

A source said the company also wants to "de-risk" its business by moving out of the Chennai region, which is facing labour union problems. "It will also get locational advantage by moving out of the southern region. A plant in the West will help the company cater to markets faster and more efficiently."

Gujarat looks to be a safe bet for the company, considering the government's efforts to promote the state as a new automobile hub. Also, the entry of Tata Motors and GM has brought in component vendors in big numbers, which is a positive factor for Ford.
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