Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Daimler trucks to compete with Tata Motors & Ashok Leyland, launch at Auto Expo 2012



German company Daimler trucks are all set to enter the booming Commercial Vehicle market of India with a growth of nearly 14-16% unlike the lower growth of Indian Passenger car market.

The launch of new trucks which have already been lined up will be showcased at Upcoming Auto Expo 2012 and is set to compete with current major brands of India - Tata Motors & Ashok Leyland and will be launched under the brand name Bharat Benz in India. It plans to have a complete range of trucks from 6 tonnes to 49 tonnes for India and will roll out the first product by June-August 2012.

"Starting from the middle of next year, the company is likely to launch literally one new product or a variant every month until the end of 2013," a company official said, requesting anonymity. To be made locally at its Chennai unit, the company plans to price the vehicles competitively with a premium of just 5-10% over Tata Motors, the official added.

A spokesperson of Daimler India's commercial vehicles unit declined to comment on the pricing, only saying: "Our trucks will target the volume segment and deliver good value for money." Analysts said Daimler's multiple launches and aggressive pricing could pose a stiff challenge to industry leaders Tata Motors and Ashok Leyland."

The pricing strategy and the fact that they have renamed their trucks Bharat Benz show that they are serious about India. But this would call for excellent execution capability, and if they can deliver, they can pose a threat to Tata Motors and Ashok Leyland by 2014," said Mahantesh Sabarad, an auto analyst with Fortune Broking.

In the past five years, the Indian truck market has been growing at a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7%. In 2010, the light, medium and heavy truck segment posted sales of 3,00,000 units. Industry experts expect growth to sustain at 7-8% CAGR in the next five years, by when Daimler is targeting at least 7-8% market share.

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