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Suzuki to shelve plans for large car - Nikkei

Suzuki Motor Corp Chief Executive Officer Osamu Suzuki speaks during an interview in Hamamatsu, central Japan in this September 19, 2008 file photo. Friday. REUTERS/Yuriko Nakao

TOKYO (Reuters) - Suzuki Motor Corp will shelve a plan to launch large-sized cars in 2010 and delay the start of overseas factories amid a sharp deterioration in the global auto market, the Nikkei business daily reported on Monday.

Suzuki and other automakers are under growing pressure to cut output and scrap capital investment plans as auto demand worldwide, including in India where Suzuki commands around half the market, declines sharply.

Suzuki had planned to introduce a big car based on “Kizashi” concept model that would have had an engine of up to 3.6 litres, in a bid to attract customers looking to upgrade from smaller vehicles.

In an interview with Reuters in September, Suzuki CEO Osamu Suzuki had flagged the likelihood for the project’s cancellation, saying it made little sense to launch a car into a shrinking segment of the market.

The Nikkei said the firm also plans to postpone plants in Thailand and Russia in 2010.

Suzuki officials were not immediately available for comment.

Shares of Suzuki rose 3.4 percent to 1,270 yen, underperforming a 4.3 percent gain in the Tokyo stock exchange’s transport equipment subindex.