DC eyes high-street design, low volumes

DC eyes high-street design, low volumes
Indian automobile design pioneer Dilip Chhabria-led DC Design on Saturday announced plans to emerge as a niche, low-volume automobile designer and manufacturer, transitioning from the role of designing and modifying one-off cars.

Addressing reporters in Bangalore on Monday, Chhabria, who is also DC Design’s Chairman and Managing Director said, “Our idea is to become a niche, low-volume car manufacturer and occupy that part of the market which OEMs (original equipment manufacturers) have not paid much attention to, either due to lack of skills or due to the high investments involved, considering they are mass market players.”

DC Design has been in the car modification business for over two decades. For the first time, the company will be getting into the full-fledged car manufacturing space, rolling out ‘Avanti’, touted as India’s first supercar. “We have been working on the Avanti for over five years. We plan to launch it by December this year,” Chhabria said.

The car, which will be made at the company’s Pune facility, will be sold at about Rs 25 lakh, making it one of the cheapest supercars on the market.

“We aspire to sell around 1,000 Avanti units in the first year and take that number to 2,000 by the second year,” he said, adding that following the Avanti, DC Design is contemplating rolling out a small two-seater sportscar and an SUV. Chhabria said that about five years from now, the company would look at manufacturing 10,000 cars in three or four variants.

Presently, DC Designs is involved in the delivery of 24 standard programmes, comprising building exclusive interiors and exteriors, and other customised modifications for popular cars and buses in the country. “We have products in the price range of Rs 1 lakh to Rs 4 crore within our standard programmes,” Chhabria said, adding that the company hopes to add more programmes in the future.

Accordingly, DC Design has opened several outlets in major cities to sell its products. “By July this year, we would have opened 12 showrooms and plan to take it to 19 by December,” Chhabria said.

He inaugurated the company’s first showroom in Bangalore on Saturday, which was opened in joint venture with Emvee DreamzDrive.

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