delica

Mitsubishi Motors has announced that will be investing US$600 million to build a new assembly plant in Indonesia. The spend will also involve the development of a new vehicle for the market, according to a report by Reuters.

The new plant, which will be located at an industrial park east of Jakarta, will have an annual production capacity of 160,000 vehicles, with the possibility of expanding this to 240,000 units in the future.

Production is set to begin in the first half of 2017, the company’s chief executive officer Osamu Masuko told the news agency. The plant will build two commercial vehicles as well as a new eight-seater MPV. Around US$250 million of the company’s US$600 million investment will be assigned for the development of the new vehicle.

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No mention was made as to the model that will be developed, but speculation is that it will be a lower-segment MPV competing with the likes of the Toyota Avanza and Honda Mobilio. The company launched the fifth-gen Delica D:5 in CBU form last week at the ongoing IIMS 2014 in Jakarta, but the new development is unlikely to be along those lines.

The automaker is planning to build 80,000 units of the new MPV annually, and export 20,000 to countries around the region, including Thailand and the Philippines, the report adds.

The company currently has a production plant in the country, but that one builds commercial vehicles, and is looking at the introduction of the new factory to expand its market share in the republic from eight percent currently to around 13%. The new facility will make Indonesia the automaker’s second largest ASEAN production base after Thailand.