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Nov. 24, 2010, 7:33 a.m. EST

Volvo Introduces XC60 in India

By Nikhil Gulati

NEW DELHI -- The Indian unit of Swedish luxury car maker Volvo Car Corp. Wednesday introduced the XC60 sport utility vehicle, priced at 3.95 million rupees ($86433), to compete with bigger rivals BMW (FRA:DE:BMW) AG and Audi AG, in this rapidly growing automobile market.

"We have got healthy pre-bookings for the XC60," Paul de Voijs , managing director of Volvo Auto India, said. "We have booked more than what one of our competitors has sold so far in the year."

The XC60 will help Volvo strengthen its position in the Indian luxury automobile market where it trails BMW, Audi and Land Rover. The SUV will compete with Land Rover's Freelander II, BMW's X3, Audi's Q5 and Mitsubishi Motor Corp.'s Montero.

India Real Time India Embraces the SUV

Volvo Auto India said it is importing the XC60 as a completely built unit from a factory in Ghent, Belgium.

Volvo, owned by China's Geely Automobile Holdings (HKG:HK:175) Ltd., also imports and sells its sedan S80 and its SUV XC90 in India.

The company didn't elaborate on its sales target for the XC60 in the country.

But Mr. de Voijs said: "We have to import more cars (than initially planned) to meet demand."

Write to Nikhil Gulati at nikhil.gulati@dowjones.com

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