‘We are ready with BS VI engine technology licensed from Peugeot Citroën Moteurs.’
With India moving to BS VI by 2020, automakers will be looking to upgrade engines. Prabhakar Kadapa, MD & CEO of Avtec Ltd, tells Kiran Bajad the company can produce 1997cc diesel and 1200cc petrol engines that meet Euro 6 norms.
With India leapfrogging to BS VI emission norms by the year 2020, automakers will be looking to upgrade their engine technology. Prabhakar Kadapa, MD & CEO of Avtec Ltd, tells Kiran Bajad that the company is licensed to manufacture Peugeot Citroën Moteurs’ Euro 6-compatible 1997cc diesel and 1200cc petrol engines which have been showcased at the Auto Expo 2016.
What are the highlights of Avtec’s display at the Auto Expo?
The special highlight at the Avtec stand is the two BS VI-compatible engines. We are ready with the kind of technology that is required to make these engines. We have partnered and tied up with Peugeot Citroën Moteurs and are licensed by them to these engines in India. As India wants to move to BS VI emission norms, we will able to offer these products here or any other market which requires this technology.
The first motor is a turbocharged, sub-2-litre, 4-cylinder, Euro 6 diesel engine with good speed and torque combinations and suitable for SUVs and LCVs where the torque requirement is more than a passenger car to achieve higher speed. It can deliver 133 kW (174bhp) of power at 3750rpm, and 400Nm of torque at 2000rpm. The second unit is a 1.2-litre, 3-cylinder, Euro 6 petrol engine (pictured above); this turbocharged engine is renowned in its class for fuel efficiency and can develop 96 kW (128bhp) at 5500rpm, and 230Nm at 1750rpm.
We have also displayed a 4.3-litre Euro 4 engine specially designed for off-road applications with high torque. It can be upgraded for Euro V and VI.
On the transmission front, we have showcased a manual gearbox for passenger cars with 16Kgm of torque. We already contract manufacture this unit for one of our customers and have a manufacturing capacity of 300,000 per annum. We have also displayed a gearbox for SUV application along with a transfer case along with several components such as housing, gear and engine parts what we manufacture in our plants. We also export these components in a big way.
Are these two Euro 6-compatible engines ready to manufacture products in India?
Both these engines are in use in Europe today and their performance is proven there. With a lead time of one year, we can convert them into a manufacturing product. We understand Euro 6 technology and our plants are sophisticated with flexible machining centres and special purpose machines to handle all requirements. However, we will have to do some upgradation in terms of testing protocol but we are capable of delivering what is required. We also foresee potential to export these engines to some Asian countries.
Have you made any India-specific changes in these engines to suit local conditions?
These are well suited engines for India. They will only have to have their ECU software tweaked to an application. Every vehicle has its own characteristic and we have to match that. That fine-tuning work has to be done, which is why we are saying one year’s lead time will be enough for us to get them ready before the BS VI legislation kicks in.
What level of localisation are you targeting for manufacturing these BS VI-compatible engines in India?
To become cost competitive, at least 80-85 percent localisation is needed within the first two years of manufacture. We are capable of this and have done this in the past, even achieving 85 percent localization in the first year itself. I hope we will able to do it with these.
Do you also export engines?
No, at present we do not export engines. Our customers (in India) export gearboxes which are in production-ready vehicles shipped from India. We basically export components because export of aggregate is more cumbersome than exporting components.
How is Avtec faring currently and what is the company’s near-term focus?
We operate in various business divisions under the Avtec umbrella. One is the automotive business unit with two factories – one in Pithampur and the other in Hosur. The second business unit is manufacturing off-highway and supply of gearboxes for dump trucks, material handling equipment, fork lift and wheeler loaders. Recently we have entered into the axle business and displayed them at the Excon exhibition in Bangalore. We have also entered into manufacture of gearboxes for the Metro in association with a renowned global player; we have received some contracts and will start supply by the end of this year.
The third business is exclusively components and there are aggregates but there are customers who want only components and there is lot of opportunity to export components. At present, we export to the US and Europe and want to accelerate growth in the export business. We have a subsidiary in Switzerland which is into design and prototype development company; this is one area where we are poised for expansion. We have also entered the defence business but this is at a very nascent stage right now. There is a huge requirement for gearboxes for refurbishing tanks. As part of ‘Make-In-India’, we want to be the defence arm for the group.
How much do exports contribute to Avtec’s revenues?
We are currently export about 12 percent of our revenue and are targeting 20 percent in next 3-4 years. We used to operate from India but now have appointed people in key markets like the US and Europe to increase our export business. We are working through warehouses and supply as per the customer’s requirements. We have been working on several RFQs and customers have shown a lot of interest in our products.
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