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Isuzu to use GM engines in new pick-up truck made in India: Nikkei

TOKYO (Reuters) - Japanese truck maker Isuzu Motors Ltd <7202.T> will use diesel engines made by General Motors Co in its new pick-up truck made in India to cut costs and lessen the burden of technology development, the Nikkei daily reported on Sunday.

Isuzu plans to supply some 100,000 engines made at GM's factory based in India. The engines are produced with use of Isuzu technology. The move will allow Isuzu, which plans to start making the low-cost truck in 2016, to make it affordable to customers in India and Africa, the Nikkei report said.

The cooperation will further strengthen ties between the two companies. GM is eager to tap Isuzu's strength in Southeast Asian markets and its diesel technology, while Isuzu wants to share the burden of developing technologies.

The largest U.S. automaker first took a stake in Isuzu in 1971 and at one point owned as much as 49 percent of the Japanese truck maker before selling the holding down. In 2006, GM sold its remaining 7.9 percent stake for $300 million.

The companies, which worked together on trucks such as the GM Chevrolet Colorado mid-size pickup, sold as the i-Series by Isuzu, still cooperate in some areas. They jointly developed the updated Isuzu D-Max in 2011 and collaborate in sales in Latin America and South Africa.

In May, shares in Isuzu climbed some 20 percent after the automaker posted a record net profit of 96.5 billion yen ($946 million) for the year ended March 31, thanks to brisk overseas sales.

(Reporting by Antoni Slodkowski; Editing by Paul Tait)

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