I won't mind a chinese company acquiring Ambassador, says Tutu Dhawan

The Company has been transparent in sharing updates about the worsening conditions at its Uttarpara Plant which include very low productivity, critical shortage of funds.

ET Spotlight
The Ambassador, the brand icon of the license Raj will stop rolling out of the Uttarpara plant in West Bengal. The plant was producing a little less than 150 vehicles, a number that was hardly enough to make it commercially feasible.

In a notice to stock exchanges, the Hindustan Motors said: “The Company has declared suspension of work at its Uttarpara Plant with effect from 6.00 AM of May 24, 2014. The Company has been transparent in sharing updates about the worsening conditions at its Uttarpara Plant which include very low productivity, growing indiscipline, critical shortage of funds, lack of demand for its core product the Ambassador and large accumulation of liabilities,” the statement said.

“Given the present circumstances it has no alternative but to declare a suspension of work at its Uttarpara Plant till further notice. The suspension of work will enable the Company in restricting mounting liabilities and restructure its organisation and finances and bring in a situation conducive to reopening of the plant,” it added.

ET Auto spoke to Tutu Dhawan, a well-known name in the world of automobile racing, rallying, organising rallies, and a winner at several rallies around the world.


On the earliest memory of Ambassador

I was born and brought up in this car. It was a perfect family car those days, then It became the car of powerful and dignitaries. As years went by, the Ambassador was armoured and bullet proof and became synonymous with the ministers and high ranked officials in the country. Ambassador was also truly a multi-purpose family car. My best memory of Ambassador goes back to 1980s, when I used to participate in the Himalayan Rally driving an Ambassador.

What went wrong with the car and company? Is the future bleak for the Ambassador?

I would not like to comment on what went wrong. But I am sad that this iconic brand ‘Ambassador’ is going to die. I would wish that Ambassador name should be retained like many other international brands. For example Mini , BMW acquired it and now the product is doing great. They have retained the basic structure and look of the vehicle but have installed all the latest features and technology which has made this iconic brand go on.

I would expect the similar to happen with the iconic Ambassador. I don’t mind even a Chinese company acquiring it, and it is not necessary that Ambassador should exist in the same form of vehicle. The required changes can always be made to suit the time but the Ambassador should not die.
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