Daimler’s truck plant near Chennai goes on stream
19 Apr 2012
Daimler India Commercial Vehicles, a unit of Germany's Daimler AG, on Wednesday announced the official launch its truck-making facility at Oragadam near the Tamil Nadu capital of Chennai. It will manufacture BharatBenz trucks and all commercial vehicles there.
In March, Daimler, which owns the Mercedes Benz brand, announced plans to launch as many as 17 truck models over the next 20 months, focusing mainly on the high-volume 7-49 tonne market. These will be built at the company's new 400-acre facility at Oragadam. Daimler has said expects to announce three new truck models in the third quarter of this year.
The trucks will be made under a new brand called BharatBenz, underlining its Indian credentials. Daimler also expects to export the trucks to SAARC countries, Africa, and West Asia.
''We have invested Rs4,400 crore in the Indian facility, we are here for the long haul. We are excited about the opportunity … and we have been working on a strategy for about seven years now,'' Marc Llistosella, chief executive and managing director of DICV, said at an earlier preview of the company's products in Hyderabad.
The strategy to shake up India's trucking market hinges on fuel efficiency and lower total cost of ownership, along with in-house financing and insurance.
''If you compare with competition, our products are going to offer double-digit percentage benefit in fuel efficiency. The cost of the vehicle, too, is going to be comparatively less. It will not take three or four years for our customers to see returns from our products. It should not take more than six to 12 months,''said Aydogan Cakmaz, vice-president, product engineering, DICV.