Ashok Leyland launches two new CV ranges
By Our Corporate Bureau | 01 Oct 2002
New Delhi: The commercial vehicle major Ashok Leyland (ALL), the Hinduja group flagship company, will launch two new ranges of medium and heavy commercial vehicles (CV) by 2002-end in an aggressive bid to expand its product portfolio. The launch of the new ranges the W series and the Ecomet range is seen as a move on the part of Ashok Leyland to strengthen its hold on the CV industry.
Ashok Leyland managing director R Seshasayee says: "Innovation and product development have always been very important at ALL. While the W series will be available in the 16, 25 and 25-tonne capacity, the Ecomet range will be in the 7, 9, 11 and 25-tonne capacity. We will also be launching a range of super luxury buses and a tractor-trailor with tipping equipment for use in road construction projects.
"As a part of our constant effort towards product enhancement, upgraded gearboxes will progressively be introduced in all products manufactured by our company. These gearboxes are made with technology from Germany's ZF and have a longer life span."
The first range, which will hit the market by the end of this month, will come fitted with the W Series engine on the Japanese Hino platform. The W Series will be available in 16, 25 and 35-tonne capacity and will deliver 125, 160 and 180 horsepower respectively.
The second range, Ecomet, which is an improved version of the successful Comet range of trucks, will be available in the market by 2002-end. Ecomet is powered by a four-cylinder naturally aspirated WO4D Bharat Stage I engine and will be available in the light and intermediate category 7, 9, 11 and 15-tonne capacity.
ALL is also going to unveil a new tractor-trailer, which is based on its existing 3516 model. This tractor will be equipped with tipping equipment and will be used for purposes like road construction.
In addition, ALL also plans to launch super luxury buses, which have been produced as a part of a three-way joint venture between ALL, TVS Sundaram and Spain's Irizar. While the first of these buses have been issued on a trial basis in Coimbatore and Chennai as standard hi-tech buses, the company will soon introduce the modern rear engine Limo RE bus.
This will be followed by another range called Rhythm. The company expects to sell about 150 such buses annually. ALL's current capacity utilisation is expected to rise from 66 per cent last fiscal to 74 per cent this fiscal. It is also looking to increase its exports by 20 per cent to Rs 240 crore from Rs 200 crore exports of the last fiscal.
ALL is the second largest manufacturer of commercial vehicles in India. It was established in 1948 and since then has been a major presence in the Indian commercial vehicle industry. The company, which is among the leading exporters of commercial vehicles in India, became the first automobile manufacturer in India to receive ISO 9001 certification followed by the more comprehensive ISO 14001 on all its manufacturing units in 2002. ALL vehicles have established a reputation for their ruggedness, reliability, superior performance and durability.