Daimler India Commercial
Vehicles Pvt. Ltd. (DICV), a 100pc wholly owned subsidiary of Daimler AG,
Stuttgart, Germany, has announced the inauguration of its new bus manufacturing
facility in Oragadam. The company also unveiled a new range of products – BharatBenz
and Mercedes-Benz buses as well as a new range of new BharatBenz high-power
engine trucks and BharatBenz heavy duty tractors.
The new state-of-the-art bus
manufacturing plant, constructed within the existing premises of DICV spread
across an area of 27.91 acres, will manufacture and assemble buses under two
brands: Mercedes-Benz and BharatBenz. With an investment of Rs 425 Cr, the bus
plant is set up for an initial capacity of 1,500 units which can be further
expanded to 4,000 units subsequently.
Dr. Wolfgang Bernhard, member
of the Board of Management responsible for Daimler Trucks and Buses; Hartmut
Schick, Head of Daimler Buses; Marc Llistosella, Head of Daimler Trucks Asia;
Markus Villinger, Managing Director Daimler Buses India; Erich Nesselhauf,
Managing Director and CEO, Daimler India Commercial Vehicles and Mark Nodder,
Chairman and CEO, Wrightbus were present at the ceremony in Oragadam.
Dr. Bernhard noted that,
"We have become firmly established in the Indian market with our
BharatBenz brand, despite only operating in the market since 2012. We continue
to strengthen our presence in the Indian commercial vehicle market with new
products, now also including buses. In doing so, we are opening a new chapter
of growth.” He added, "This investment represents the ongoing pursuit of
our strategy of targeted expansion for our global market presence.”
With the opening of the bus
plant DICV is expanding its business and becomes a full-fledged CV manufacturer
in the Indian market. It will adopt a two-fold strategy with BharatBenz and
Mercedes-Benz buses that will cater to the Indian customer. BharatBenz buses
manufactured at the Oragadam plant will be front-engine for short distance
travel targeting school, staff and tourist transportation. The premium segment
will be addressed with Mercedes-Benz rear-engine buses for inter-city
transportation. The new plant will manufacture buses with gross vehicle weight
of 9, 16 and above 16 ton range.
Hartmut Schick, Head of
Daimler Buses, specified, “We see enormous potential for growth in the Indian
market. For example, we expect the volume of the Indian market for buses
weighing over eight tons to more than double by the year 2020. Our two-brand
strategy allows us to offer our customers in the region the right products and
services for them."
Also, it is for the first time
in the Indian mining segment that a locally manufactured truck enters the deep
mining segment. The BharatBenz 3143 will be a natural progression towards high
powered, cost efficient mining trucks that will bridge the gap in the industry
that currently offers premium trucks and trucks that are underpowered.
Developed on the existing Daimler Heavy Duty Truck platform with a 4-axle
configuration, it is the most powerful local truck with 430 HP and uses the OM
457 Mercedes-Benz engine. In India, this engine will set the technological
benchmark. The BharatBenz 3143 would be available in two variants 19.5Cu.M rock
body and 32Cu.M coal carrier. The truck is capable of operating in challenging
terrains, is crafted for Indian usage patterns and can efficiently operate in
deep mining conditions, making it an unbeatable value proposition.
Completing the high power
portfolio, is the BharatBenz 4940TT that is best suited for transporting
heavy-lift project cargo in areas of construction and infrastructure projects
that include turbines, heat exchangers, windmill propellers and various
industrial equipments. This model will be launched in the market later this
“Since start of production, we
have already over 20,000 trucks on Indian roads. This is a reinforcement of the
customers’ acceptance of our products. India has a lot of natural resources
like coal, iron and other minerals. We expect the Indian tipper industry to
grow substantially by 2020. The 3143 will be a game changer in the deep mining
segment targeting the most demanding application with a local product,” said
“Opening another production
facility and introducing a second wave of products in such a short time is
another testimony for the strength of our Indian operations. And in combination
with our worldwide FUSO network, this makes the recipe for sustainable growth
at Daimler Trucks Asia,” said Marc.
“The growth in the industry
will position India as the second largest bus market with high strategic
relevance for Daimler Buses. The new bus plant will create 1,300 job
opportunities in the state, 300 for DICV and additional 1,000 at Wrightbus
International. I would like to thank our highly motivated staff for completing
the project in record time”, said Markus Villinger, Managing Director of
Daimler Buses India.
After the inauguration of the bus facility, the DICV plant
is the only Daimler Trucks plant worldwide to produce trucks, buses and engines
for three brands - Mercedes-Benz, BharatBenz and FUSO - under one roof. The bus
chassis are rolled out from the same assembly line as that of BharatBenz
trucks, as they are technologically similar to the medium-duty BharatBenz trucks.
This showcases once more the flexibility of DICV’s assembly lines.
By now, DICV has more than 80 dealerships that cover 85pc of
the Indian market. The buses will be served by the existing dealership network.
Daimler Financial Services will also extend attractive financial packages for
the bus business.
Under the umbrella of Daimler Trucks Asia, DICV and MFTBC
(Mitsubishi Fuso Truck and Bus Corporation) have combined their strength to tap
into further sales potential. While DICV focuses on the Indian market and
countries such as Nepal, that are related to the Indian market conditions,
MFTBC will service the rising demand in the Asian and African regions with its
existing portfolio of FUSO trucks from its plant in Kawasaki and the FUSO
trucks produced in Oragadam. With Trinidad and Tobago, DICV has now launched 12
export markets like Indonesia, Kenya, Nepal and Tanzania to name a few. With a
clear view on the growth potential in South America, DICV is in preparations to
establish its presence in this region and will continuously add further markets
to expand its reach. The bus chassis as well as the heavy duty mining trucks
will continue to expand DICVs export business.
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