Industry

Leyland to boost exports with left-hand drive LCVs

Nitin Seth.

Nitin Seth.   | Photo Credit: Bijoy Ghosh

To invest ₹400 cr. on premium product in new platform

Commercial vehicle maker Ashok Leyland, the flagship company of the Hinduja group, will be entering the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), Russia and Ukraine with left-hand driven vehicles soon to pep up exports revenue, said a top official.

“Currently, we are doing exports of 5% and we plan to increase it to 15%,” said Nitin Seth, president, LCV Ashok Leyland. “Very soon, we will be entering Russia, GCC and Ukraine with left-hand driven trucks. These trucks will be displayed at the forthcoming Dealers Global Conference.”

In the export market, Ashok Leyland would compete with auto majors such as Toyota’s Hino, Isuzu and Mitsubishi’s Canter. All these players control about 90% of market share. Besides, Ashok Leyland would be investing about ₹400 crore for developing a premium and highly contemporary product on a new platform, which would also come out in electric version.

“We have started to spend now. The delivery will happen in 18-20 months. Till then, we will be rolling out new variants of existing Light Commercial Vehicle (LCV) products such as DOST, MiTR and PARTNER. This year too, we will be rolling out three new variants on the existing platform,” he said.

2,00,000th LCV

Mr. Seth said that Ashok Leyland had achieved a major milestone by rolling out the 2,00,000th LCV ‘DOST’ from its Hosur Plant, which was achieved in three years time. The roll-out of the next 1,00,000 units would be much faster, he said.

Last year, the company grew by 38% even as the industry posted a 28% growth. This fiscal, the firm hopes the industry to post 12-13% due to factors such as hardened interest rates, fuel price hike and monsoon. “We hope to do better than the industry,” he said.

Asked how they were able to post 38% growth, he said: “The roll-out of new variants such as DOST+, PARTNER and MiTR during 2017-18 triggered our sales volume from 3,000 per month to 5,400 per month,” he said.

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Printable version | Mar 30, 2020 8:03:57 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/business/Industry/leyland-to-boost-exports-with-left-hand-drive-lcvs/article23436604.ece

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