The iconic Indian car brand, Hindustan Motors has temporarily closed its production facility at Uttarpara, West Bengal. Since 1957, this facility has been producing Ambassador. HM Ambassador is based on UK’s Morris Oxford II and has been the traditional automotive love for almost 6 decades. However, its out-dated looks have somewhat separated it from the current sedans. Earlier during the 60s and 70s, HM Ambassador was considered as a symbol of luxury and honor but the arrival of cars like Premier Padmini (Fiat 1100) and Maruti 800 hampered its sales in the Indian car market. Till late 90s, HM Ambassador was a proud choice of government employees and politicians in India but later on it was dethroned by cars like Maruti Esteem and Tata Safari.
In past 60 years, Ambassador has received several changes. Since early 90, Isuzu the quintessential engine maker has been powering the Ambassador cars. It were the Isuzu power-trains that enabled this car to compete with vehicles like Maruti 800 and Premier Padmini. The production of Ambassador was at its heights during the 80s and the car maker used to produce 24,000 cars yearly which later-on declined to just 6000 units annually in 2000. Currently, Ambassador manufacturing facility in WB produces mere 5 cars a day and is undergoing huge losses and debts. Disappointed with the failure, the car maker has temporarily stopped the manufacturing of this car at its facility until it decides the future of Ambassador.
In mid 2004, Hindustan Motors introduced a contemporary version of the Ambassador with design inspired from Mini Cooper; the version was named ‘Avigo’. The Avigo was cosmetically much adorable compared to its predecessor and its front was highlighted by a unique grille, a fresh bonnet and angular headlights. Moreover, its rear looked much alike the initial Landmaster Series. Even the interiors were gracefully improved with light brown leather upholstery, central instrumentation cluster and a center console that hosted Air-conditioning, Power steering and Power windows. The Avigo was phased out by the car maker in 2010.
Last year, the car maker Ambassadorbut this too could not bring the fruitful results for the car maker. The company is going through a tough phase at present and to pay the debts it earlier tried to sell its Chennai manufacturing facility to Mitsubishi Motors for Rs. 150 crores. Unfortunately, the deal could not