Hindustan Motors

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Hindustan motor limited
Public company (BSE500500)
Industry Automotive
Founded 1942
Headquarters Kolkata India
Key people
Uttam Bose, (MD)
Products Automobiles
Automotive parts
Revenue INR 7.79 billion (2011)
Website www.hindmotor.com

Hindustan Motors is an Indian automotive manufacturer based in Kolkata, West Bengal, India. It is part of the Birla Technical Services industrial group. The company was the largest car manufacturer in India before the rise of Maruti Udyog.

It was the producer of the Ambassador motorcar, once a mainstream car India, based on 1956 Morris Oxford series III and was in production for over 7 decades starting from 1957 till 2014. Production of the Ambassador ceased on 24 May 2014.[1]

One of the original three car manufacturers in India, founded in 1942 by Mr. B. M. Birla,[2] it was a leader in car sales until the 1980s, when the industry was opened up from protection. All through its history, the company has depended on government patronage for its sales and for survival by eliminating competition. Manoj Jha was the Managing Director and R. Yeshwanth. Manoj Jha stepped down from the post on 21 February 2012.[3] It began in Port Okha near Gujarat; in 1948, it moved to West Bengal. The place is now called Hindmotor.


Hindustan Motors Limited (HML), India's pioneering automobile manufacturing company. It was established just before Indian independence, in 1942 by Mr. B. M. Birla of the industrialist Birla family. Commencing operations in a small assembly plant in Port Okha near Gujarat, the manufacturing facilities later moved to Uttarpara, West Bengal in 1948, where it began the production of the Ambassador. The HM-Mitsubishi Motors Plant is in Tiruvallur near Chennai.

General Motors joint venture[edit]

Hindustan and General Motors have had several tie-ups in the post independence era to produce Bedford Trucks, Vauxhall Motors (1980 to 1990), Allison Transmissions and off-road equipment. In 1994, GM and Hindustan (C K Birla) formed a 50-50 joint venture, General Motors India to make Opel Astra cars which turned out to a disaster mainly due to the reputation Hindustan Motors has in India. The production of Astra was wound up within a few years. GM bought out the Halol, Gujarat, plant from Hindustan in 1999.[4]

On 21 February 2012, Mr. Manoj Jha, the Managing Director stepped down from his post. The decision was unanimously accepted by the board of directors.[5]

Earthmoving Equipment Division (HMEED)[edit]

Hindustan motors used to make earthmovers, initially in collaboration with Terex, USA and Fermac UK; and from 1984 with Caterpillar Inc. at the HMEED plants in Thiruvallur, near Chennai and Pondicherry. It was sold to Caterpillar in 2000 and HM quit the earthmover business. HML continue to be a joint venture partner with Caterpillar in Hindustan Power Plus, which manufactures diesel engines and generator sets.

Hindustan Tractors[edit]

The company began in 1959 as Tractors and Bulldozers Private Ltd and imported tractors. Manufacturing of tractors began in 1963, in collaboration Motokov-Praha (Zetor) of Czechoslovakia, and was known as Hindustan Tractors & Bulldozers Ltd.[6] In 1967, it became Hindustan Tractors Ltd. The tractors were based on the Zetor tractor design and sold under the Hindustan brand. In 1978, the Gujarat, Indian government formed Gujarat Tractors from the ailing company. In 1999, Mahindra Tractors purchased 60% of the company, and in 2001, completed purchasing the rest of the company, renaming it Mahindra Gujarat Tractors Ltd.[7]

Isuzu Joint Venture[edit]

Hindustan formed a collaboration with Isuzu to manufacture engines and transmission for the Contessa in late 1980s at Pithampur near Indore, Madhya Pradesh. Initially the joint venture made a 4-cylinder G180Z 1.8L petrol engines and 5-speed transmissions. Later, a 2.0L Isuzu diesel engine was added to the production line to power the Contessa and the Ambassador. The technical collaboration lasted from 1983 to 1993. The Indore plant has since expanded to manufacture engines for a number of other manufacturers like Opel and Mahindra.

HML also assembled and sold a small number of Isuzu F series - JCS trucks in India in the early-mid 1980s. These trucks came from the factory with a fully built metal cabin which was not common with Tata and Ashok Leyland trucks at the time. They were well known for their reliability and fuel consumption, but were discontinued mainly due to falling sales poor service facilities and since HML could not sell them for an affordable price.[8]

Mitsubishi Joint Venture[edit]

Hindustan has a joint venture with Mitsubishi that started 1998. The plant is located in Thiruvallur, Tamil Nadu and mainly makes outdated models wound up by Mitsubishi elsewhere.

Discontinued Models[edit]

Current Models[edit]


Hindustan Models[edit]

Current models[edit]

Discontinued models[edit]



External links[edit]