Suzuki Motor Corp. (7269)’s Pakistan unit, the nation’s biggest automobile assembler, plans to introduce a new small car this year as it projects the highest profit in six years, helped by the weaker yen.
The model will compete with other cars equipped with engines sized 1 liter and below, said Abdul Hamid Bhombal, chief financial officer of Pak Suzuki Motor Co. (PSMC), in an interview in Karachi yesterday, without giving details. Bhombal estimates profit to rise from last year, when net income rose 23 percent to a five-year high of 978 million rupees ($10 million).
The new car targets buyers opting for cheaper, second-hand imports such as Toyota Motor Corp.’s Vitz. Pakistan’s car sales fell by a quarter to 73,502 units in the eight months ending February, according to Pakistan Automotive Manufacturers Association.
Pak Suzuki’s shares rose 0.9 percent to 99.10 rupees at 2:19 p.m. in Karachi, compared with a 0.6 percent drop in the benchmark KSE-100 Index. The shares have gained 13 percent this year, against a 5 percent increase in the KSE100 Index.
The yen, which reached a postwar high of 75.35 to the dollar in 2011, traded at 94.06 per dollar as of 9:53 a.m. in Tokyo.
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