Ford to produce India small car from early 2010

Ford Motor Co president and chief executive officer Alan Mulally (L) and Ford Motor India Co president and managing director Michael Boneham pose with Ford's 'Figo' car during its launch ceremony in New Delhi September 23, 2009. REUTERS/B Mathur

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - Ford Motor Co F.N will launch production of its Figo small car in India in early 2010, it said in a statement on Wednesday.

The car was showcased at a news conference in the Indian capital.

Ford has invested $500 million at a plant in southern Indian city of Chennai and has said the plant was gearing up for production of a small car.

India’s domestic auto market is relatively small, especially considering a population of more than 1.1 billion, with about 1.5 million passenger vehicles being sold last year and small cars account of nearly two-thirds of annual unit sales.

Reporting by Devidutta Tripathy