Caption: An Indian government owned Ambassador car is parked beside a
road in Kolkata, india. The company began making the Ambassador in 1948,
modeling it after the British Morris Oxford III. Last year only 2,214
of the vehicles were sold, reflecting a steep decline from production
levels in the 1980s around 24,000 vehicles a year.
Yahoo, May 31, 2014
India’s oldest car factory has abruptly suspended production of the hulking Ambassador sedan that has a nearly seven-decade history as the car of the Indian elite.
It was unclear how long manufacturing will be on hold, but Kolkata-based Hindustan Motors said Monday it hopes to resume making the so-called “Amby” after a period of restructuring and clearing of its debts.
The heavy car’s large size and poor gas mileage have driven customers to cheaper competitors from abroad. About 80 percent of cars sold in India today are small cars that can maneuver in crowded cities and that cater to a rising middle class eager for wheels without costs.