Things were going so well for Mahindra: Americans were ready for the pickups they'd been promising, the Environmental Protection Agency gave the company's diesels the green light, and Mahindra's U.S. importer, Global Vehicles, had put together a nationwide network of dealers to sell the trucks.
Then things went south -- but not, as Georgia's Global Vehicles was expecting, Deep South.
Yesterday, in a very brief post to its U.S. website, Mahindra said it had dropped Global as its American importer. Tensions between the two companies had been on the rise since Global sued Mahindra for not getting its pickups certified for the U.S. market quickly enough. Now, Mahindra's U.S. launch is left in limbo and 350+ dealers are left in the lurch.
This raises the possibility of a second lawsuit from Global, which has spent countless hours and $35 million in prepping for Mahindra's stateside arrival. A spokesman for the importer says that "such attempted termination is invalid under applicable laws of the United States and the State of Georgia, something which Mahindra continues to disregard." We're not lawyers -- well, most of us aren't -- but if Mahindra wants to roll onto U.S. lots anytime soon, it could be Global's way or the highway, figuratively speaking.