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2011 Toyota Etios India Production Begins

The Japanese carmaker has announced that production of the Toyota Etios has started at a plant near Bangalore. The factory is operated by the Kirloskar Group-Toyota Kirloskar Motor(TKM) joint venture and has a production capacity of about 80,000 units a year. The car, which was developed specifically with Indian customers in mind, is the most affordable Toyota model in India with a base price of INR496,000 (USD10,980).

With its annual sales target of 70,000 units, the Etios should account for almost half of the total sales target of 145,000 units which Toyota has set for India. The car is currently only available as a sedan, powered by an all-new 1.5-liter 16-valve DOHC engine with 89 hp at 5600 rpm and 132 Nm at 3000 rpm. A smaller 1.2l engine is also being considered as a good choice for the model.

A five-speed manual is the only transmission option available right now. The company plans to extend the Etios family by introducing the Liva five-door hatchback in April 2011. The model comes as standard with integrated audio controls, Electronic Power Steering (EPS) with tilt function, SRS airbags and Anti-Lock Breaking System (ABS) with EBD.

Toyota is building the car with around 70 percent local components and is planning to increase the figure to 90 percent by 2013. In order to achieve that, the Japanese maker intends to locally-produce the engine from the fourth quarter of 2012, and the transmission from early 2013. The Etios should also be exported to other emerging markets such as China, Brazil and Thailand in the future.
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About the author: Mihnea Radu
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Mihnea's favorite cars have already been built, the so-called modern classics from the '80s and '90s. He also loves local car culture from all over the world, so don't be surprised to see him getting excited about weird Japanese imports, low-rider VWs out of Germany, replicas from Russia or LS swaps down in Florida.
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