KARACHI – Pakistan’s second-largest motorcycle manufacturer United Motors is gearing up to launch an 800cc car and 1000cc pickup truck next year with a collaboration with a Chinese automobile company.

“The company will use Chinese technology and market its vehicles under the brand name of United. The local assembly of these vehicles will begin in the first half of 2018,” United Motors General Manager Muhammad Afzal said.

The auto-market is abuzz with reports that United is introducing Mehran and Ravi lookalikes with minor design variations to avoid copyright litigation and the launch will be followed by the suspected discontinuation of Pak-Suzuki’s iconic Suzuki Mehran in 2019.

“Our car and pickup are not the copy of Suzuki brands. Our vehicles are totally different and loaded with various attractive features and safety standards,” declared Muhammad Afzal.

As for the pricing, he said the company intends to keep it “very affordable”. The official, however, did not give any details about the company’s investment in the greenfield project, level of localisation, plant capacity and monthly production number.

It is believed that Pak Suzuki would discontinue Mehran and introduce the next-generation 660cc Alto in March 2019 which will have a price tag of Rs850,000-900,000 (approx) for the basic variant, though an official announcement in this regard is awaited.