Jaguar to launch sports car F-Type next year

Speaking at the New York auto show, Jaguar Cars global brand director Adrian Hallmark said, “F-Type will mark the British marque's re-entry into a segment that it has been absent from for too long.”

Tata Motors-owned Jaguar said it will re-enter the sports segment with its 'F-Type' super car by the middle of next year that will be offered in a range of variants with different petrol engines.
 
“We showed the C-X16 concept in September 2011 and the reaction to it has been so positive that we've accelerated our development of an all-new Jaguar sports car. That car will be called the F-Type and it will be unveiled in production form later this year,” Jaguar Cars global brand director Adrian Hallmark said in a statement.
 
Speaking at the New York auto show, he said F-Type will mark the British marque's re-entry into a segment that it has been absent from for too long.
 
“Full F-Type technical and range details will be announced later in 2012. It will go on sale in mid-2013,” the company said.
 
The company will produce the new vehicle at its Castle Bromwich plant in the UK, it added.
 
Elaborating about the new product, Jaguar said the F-Type will be an all-aluminium convertible and a two-seater car.
 
“A range of petrol engines will be available, including a new powerplant family, and all will deliver stunning sports car performance... The core appeal of Jaguar's cars is their sporting heart and that heart will beat stronger than ever before in the F-Type,” it added.
 
The F-Type will join the existing range of cars -– the XF saloon and Sportbrake, XJ saloon and XK convertible.
 
On Jaguar's re-entry into the sports car segment, Jaguar director of design Ian Callum said: “The C-type, D-type and E-type Jaguars were all sports cars that held true to principle in their era, and the F-TYPE will hold true to that same principle in its time, a time that is soon to arrive.”
 
Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) had earlier announced to roll out 40 new products in the next 4-5 years.
 
Last month, JLR had raised 500 million pound (over Rs4,000 crore) through issue of bonds.
 
Earlier, the company had said in an investor update at Tata Motors website said that it is expected to increase its planned 1.5 billion pound investment in this fiscal on new products and ramping up capacities.
 
In April 2011, JLR had said it will invest 1.5 billion pound every year for the next five years, mainly on product development as it looks to catch up with global luxury car makers and position itself as a top premium brand.
 
Besides, JLR will invest 3.5 billion yuan (over Rs2,800 crore) in its recently-announced joint venture with Chery Automobile in China to commence local assembly there.
 
The company is currently investing 355 million pound in an engine plant in the UK. It is also planning to set up an engine manufacturing facility in India.

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Low inflation provides room for policy rate cut: Gokarn

The central bank has raised rates 13 times between March 2010 and October 2011 in bid to rein in inflation

Ahead of its annual monetary policy, the Reserve Bank of India said cutting policy rate to promote investment depends upon moderation in inflation and fiscal consolidation.

"We need to have low inflation, we need to have rising investment ratio, we need to have strong fiscal consolidation and this in turn provides space for monetary policy to actually support investment ..." RBI deputy governor Subir Gokarn said at a summit.

RBI is scheduled to announce annual monetary policy for 2012-13 on 17 April 2012. There is widespread expectation that the central bank may cut policy rate later this month to prop up growth and investment.

RBI has been following tight monetary policy stance since beginning of 2010 following spike in prices of commodity. The central bank has raised rates 13 times between March 2010 and October 2011 in bid to rein in inflation. Inflation rose to 6.95% in February, 2012 from 6.55% in January.

Since October 2011, the repo or the short-term lending rate of the RBI stands at 8.5%. Repo rate is the signalling rate. Other policy rates like reverse repo and bank rate adjust automatically with change in the repo rate.

Last month, RBI slashed CRR (cash reserve ratio), the percentage of deposits that banks have to keep with the RBI, from 5.5% to 4.75%. With this, the central bank had infused Rs48,000 crore into the economy.

This was the second reduction in the CRR since the 24 January 2012 policy announcement, when it had slashed CRR by 50 basis points releasing Rs32,000 crore into the system. Amid tight liquidity condition, bankers are expecting further cut in the CRR by the RBI.

 "My personal stance is that cut CRR. Everything else follows. Lending rate will come down eventually. I would expect 75 basis point cut in CRR," SBI chairman Pratip Chaudhuri had said after the pre-monetary policy consultation of Indian Banks' Association (IBA) with the RBI.
 
"We saw last year that growth was not very substantial. We have seen the overall interest rate scenario reigning high. So, perhaps some policy measures are required to ensure growth is also catered to without compromising on inflation," MD Mallya, IBA chairman and CMD of Bank of Baroda said. Mallya said overall liquidity is likely to improve after government spending starts.

About asset quality, Mallya had said things would improve for better as economy started picking up.

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Vested interests from developed economies stalling big projects in India

The letter to the Prime Minister said "There is a need for evolving a strong mechanism to check the vested interests of these developed countries to derail the economy of the developing countries like India”

Indian miners' body Federation of Indian Mineral Industries (FIMI) fears that vested interests in the US and Western Europe are stalling big projects like POSCO's  $12 billion steel mill and Vedanta's $1.7 billion plans and has sought prime minister Manmohan Singh's intervention in the matter.

FIMI secretary general RK Sharma told PTI that “There is a concerted move by vested interests in US and Western Europe for stalling economic development in India and we have sent a letter to PM on these issues.”

The letter to the Prime Minister said "There is a need for evolving a strong mechanism to check the vested interests of these developed countries to derail the economy of the developing countries like India.”

Mentioning a latest report by international environmental NGO Greenpeace FIMI said that it is easier to stop an industry before it begins. Vested interests have percolated extensively in this country particularly in Odisha.

He added: “I have every apprehension that denial of environment clearance to Niyamgiri Bauxite Mining Project in Odisha and withdrawal of environmental clearance by National Green Tribunal was such an effort by US and Western countries.”
 
The letter said that “Since countries like us who are having natural resources will be able to set up the mineral-based industries at very competitive prices compared to what these developed countries manufacture, the developed countries put all sorts of impediments through local NGOs and provoking people against these mineral based industries in developing countries.”

 It added that the Prime Minister himself had talked about vested interests involvement in creating a problem in Kudankulam Atomic Power Project.

It added: “Once you (Prime Minister) made public statement, everything came out in the open: NGOs were booked and the whole movement fizzled out.”

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