ISTANBUL Feb 10 Turkish automaker Tofas
is working on two new passenger car projects for
domestic and export markets which are expected to be on the
market by the end of 2015, its chief executive said.
Tofas, in which Italy's Fiat and Turkish
conglomerate Koc Holding each own 38 percent, is also
working on a feasibility study on exporting its light commercial
vehicle Doblo to North America at the end of 2014.
"We are working on a technical study of two passenger car
projects," Tofas CEO Kamil Basaran told reporters on Friday in
comments embargoed until Sunday.
"I can confirm one is a sedan car in the B segment. At the
same time, we are working on a second car project. Hopefully we
can make a statement before July and give detailed numbers for
Tofas will own the patent rights for both cars which are
expected to be sold under the Fiat brand, he said.
Turkey's automotive sector, the heart of its export
industry, is trying to diversify its export markets as a sharp
slowdown in key markets in Europe limits its growth prospects.
"Tofas has completed its study for plant and research and
development for Doblo exports to North America. We are planning
to export the Doblo at the end of 2014. We can expect 20,000
units once we start," Basaran said.
Tofas is targeting total sales of 270,000 vehicles, 160,000
of them for export, and planning to invest 130 million euros in
products, plants and R&D this year, he said.
The company expects a flat domestic market this year
compared with 2012 with 750,000 vehicles and a 13-15 percent
market share, said Fiat Turkey Brand Director Okan Bas said.
(Editing by Daren Butler and Robert Birsel)