Mahindra Postpones US Launch

Buyers looking for inexpensive diesel-powered pickups need wait a little longer: the U.S. debut of Mahindra & Mahindra’s compact truck range has been delayed.

The Indian company, which already markets its compact tractors in the U.S, hoped to bring its compact SUVs and pickups stateside by spring 2009.; Instead, Global Vehicles LLC, Mahindra’s U.S. distributor, hopes to receive vehicles in the fourth quarter of 2009.
Although the delay is attributed to a number of factors, Mahindra needs to further validate the trucks before their sale in the U.S.; Powering the vehicles is a small four-cylinder diesel engine that has not yet been EPA tested or approved.; Though Mahindra expects the engine to pass certification without problem, the company plans to test 25 prototypes across the U.S. for durability purposes.
The delay also allows Mahindra’s sales organization to regroup and refocus.; Although nearly 324 dealers have bought into a franchise, few if any have constructed individual showrooms for the trucks.; While those dealers have extra time to build their stores, Mahindra will scout for approximately another 120, preferably in the western U.S.
Source: Automotive News