The mid-month issue has rolled out of press and it incorporates an Indo-German Industry Special. Of the many countries India has trade relations with, Germany occupies a special place. The European country is India’s biggest trade partner from the continent, and the fifth largest globally. A big part of the trade takes place in the automotive sector.
The German Big Three of the global luxury car industry have assembly/production base in India as do the German biggies in the auto component space. Germany is also a key market for component exports from India.
Which is why we have an exclusive interview with Helmut Ernst, senior vice-president of ZF Aftermarket. This division ensures that ZF's systems expertise is carried forward consistently into the aftermarket. With integrated solutions and the comprehensive ZF product portfolio, it ensures the performance and efficiency of vehicles throughout their entire lifecycle. ZF Aftermarket is bullish on the Indian market – to find out why, find out what Helmut Ernst has to say.
Continental is already well entrenched in India and the German component and technology major is readying itself for new business which will come its way when BS VI emission norms kick in from April 2020. We also speak to Klaus Hau, head – Sensors & Actuators Business Unit, Continental, who reveals that the company plans to set up new application centres closer to its customers across India.
In a similar manner, Daimler Buses India, which has recorded 80 percent YoY growth in 2017, is confident about further growth in the Indian commercial vehicle market. The company, which recently introduced the premium Super High Deck coach, is targeting a 30 percent market share of the premium coach segment in the country. We speak to Thomas Fricke, MD, Daimler Buses India.
A big buyer of Daimler CVs in India is logistics player DHL. The company’s India arm, which employs a good number of BharatBenz trucks, has introduced DHL SmarTrucking. This new business vertical aims to build a 10,000-strong, IoT-enabled and temperature-controlled, fully owned CV fleet in India while also upskilling drivers and deploying a driver-relay model aimed at reducing driver fatigue.
Yet another German player investing in the Make In India story is the diversified technology Freudenberg Group, which is setting up a new manufacturing plant in Chennai to produce sealing and vibration control products. And as Goerg Graf, CEO, Freudenberg Regional Corporate Centre India, says, the company is looking forward to new BS VI-driven business.
The past fortnight witnessed much action on the electric vehicle and mobility front. And fittingly it all happened on World Environment Day, June 5. Both Mahindra Electric and Tata Motors have inked an MoU each with the Maharashtra state government as they look to accelerate their EV business.
The big news though was the launch of the much-awaited electric scooter from Bangalore-based start-up Ather Energy. The company, which has already installed 30 AtherGrid EV charging stations in Bangalore, surprised industry by launching not one, but two products – the Ather 340 and 450. With a multi-pronged approach, the company hopes to achieve success in its home city, and then expand further. Atover Rs 100,000 each, its first set of scooters are not cheap and it will take consumers to see value in the tech-laden, smart scooters to shell out the moolah.
iCAT or the International Centre for Automotive Technology in Manesar, NCR, the nodal test agency which falls under the National Automotive Testing and R&D Infrastructure Project (NATRiP), has expanded its facilities to now include a passive safety lab. Our first-hand report, accompanied by an interview with iCAT director Dinesh Tyagi, reveals the big leap India’s vehicle and component testing infrastructure is taking and how the unit is readying itself to be a complete end-to-end vehicle testing solutions provider.
There's plenty of other exciting content in this issue too. Do you, for instance, know that Indian motorists are most keen on driverless cars? We reveal the findings of the latest Ipsos global research survey of 21,000 adults across 28 countries.
Or that Daimler's DigitalLife Day in Bangalore was the biggest yet such event worldwide for the company?
We've also got the most comprehensive report on vehicle sales in May 2018 across the passenger vehicle, commercial vehicle and two-wheeler segments.
Add to all this, a cracker of a News section, starting with Bajaj Auto gearing up to launch its Qute quadricycle in the Indian market.
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