MAN Trucks plans to make In­dia global sourc­ing and ex­port hub:

The Pune-based MAN Trucks In­dia Pvt. Ltd. is a fully owned sub­sidiary of MAN Truck & Bus AG, Ger­many. The prod­ucts man­u­fac­tured in its plant at Pitham­pur, Mad­hya Pradesh, in­clude tip­pers for off-road and con­struc­tion, haulage for reg­u­lar and over di­men­sio

Auto components India - - CONTENTS - Jo­erg Mommertz

Q: What is the re­sponse to your prod­ucts from the In­dian mar­ket and your fu­ture prospects?

Mommertz:

We are look­ing at In­dia as a dy­namic mar­ket. It is very much sus­tain­able. We see huge po­ten­tial with the Make in In­dia pro­gramme. Of late, maybe be­cause of the new re­forms, it is go­ing through a volatile phase. But it will make a come-back very soon. We should never con­sider the short-term slack­ness, as the mar­ket promises longterm green shoots. GST will have very good in­flu­ence on the truck mar­ket and the up­com­ing ve­hi­cles will have bet­ter engine per­for­mance due to other reg­u­la­tions. Rus­sia was even worse than this, but we man­aged to come up.

Q: You might have learnt many things from the Rus­sian mar­ket. How do you in­tent to im­ple­ment them in In­dia?

Mommertz:

We have a flex­i­ble prod­uct line and sales and af­ter-sales ser­vice will be given ut­most im­por­tance. Though the mar­ket is dull now, the cus­tomers will main­tain the existing fleet and they will look for­ward mainly for af­ter sales ser­vice. We should be very quick to re­spond when the mar­ket re­cov­ers. For that we should have ef­fi­cient sup­plier man­age­ment skills.

Q: You have a flex­i­ble prod­uct line. How many prod­ucts do you have now, and how many are in the pipe­line for launch?

Mommertz:

We have more than 125 vari­ants as of now cov­er­ing all the mar­ket seg­ments. We still want to pen­e­trate into the min­ing and heavy duty trucks.

Q: What kind of min­ing and deep min­ing prod­ucts are you look­ing at?

Mommertz:

It is too early to dis­close. We are study­ing the mar­ket and mak­ing as­sess­ments as it is dif­fi­cult to change once the prod­uct is de­signed.

Q: What is your cur­rent level of lo­cal­i­sa­tion, your sup­plier strength and ex­port plan from In­dia?

Mommertz:

Our cur­rent lo­cal­i­sa­tion level is 82%. We are try­ing to in­crease it. In or­der to com­pete in the mar­ket it is nec­es­sary to play the lo­cal to lo­cal strat­egy. Con­cur­rently we are in need of qual­ity sup­pli­ers. We or­gan­ised a con­fer­ence where more than 100 ven­dors par­tic­i­pated. We dis­cussed our needs and qual­ity stan­dards with them. We give full fo­cus on qual­ity. One of our im­por­tant strate­gies is to ex­port from In­dia. We want to use In­dia more for global sourc­ing.

Q: What are the plans to in­crease ex­ports of your trucks from In­dia?

Mommertz:

The prod­uct dif­fer­ence be­tween ex­port and the do­mes­tic mar­ket should be well de­fined. Cur­rently we have 40% ex­ports from In­dia. It will be 50% by 2020. Now we fo­cus on 3 core mar­kets for ex­ports from In­dia: Africa, Mid­dle East, and Uzbek­istan. We take care of the SAARC coun­tries and Cen­tral Asia also. The 50% ex­port is fore­seen tar­get­ing coun­tries like Philip­pines, Thai­land and In­done­sia.

Q: What is your plant ca­pac­ity, any ex­pan­sion plan?

Mommertz:

We have ca­pac­ity for 10,000 units. As of now we do not have any plan to ex­pand the ca­pac­ity. We fo­cus on vol­umes and prof­itabil­ity. We have cer­tain bench­marks within and do not want to jux­ta­pose our­selves with the fel­low play­ers. We prom­ise cus­tomers qual­ity, re­li­a­bil­ity and guar­an­tee su­pe­rior ser­vice.

Q: Volk­swa­gen is es­tab­lished in In­dia. Be­ing part of the VW Group what are the strengths you have?

Mommertz:

We have col­leagues from VW and we syn­er­gise things. We are think­ing about achiev­ing com­mon­al­ity in the sup­pli­ers and other re­sources. But it is too early to com­ment on it.

Q: What do you use, EGR or SCR, to meet the new norms?

Mommertz:

We feel for our trucks SCR is more suit­able and gives bet­ter fuel ef­fi­ciency. In the In­dian mar­ket, sul­phur con­tent in the fuel is high. Hence EGR is not the best in our point of view as we have ex­pe­ri­ence us­ing EGR as well.

Q: What are your plans for the next 2-3 years?

Mommertz:

We have air con­di­tion­ing tech­nol­ogy for trucks and telem­at­ics is also in place. The tech­nol­ogy is ready and when­ever the mar­ket de­mands we can im­me­di­ately re­spond with our prod­ucts. We are al­ready in touch with the air­con­di­tion­ing sup­pli­ers. For telem­at­ics we have to work on so­lu­tions which match with the In­dian mar­ket needs. We do not want to launch the so­phis­ti­cated telem­at­ics as that is not the need of the mar­ket. We can crop things and launch the same in the In­dian mar­ket.

Q: What are the other tech­nolo­gies you are work­ing on now?

Mommertz:

We also work on au­to­matic dis­tance con­trol and au­to­matic cruise con­trol. But let’s wait and watch the In­dian mar­ket and go for the fu­ture tech­nolo­gies.

Q: What is your light weight­ing con­cept and R&D fo­cus?

We want to bring down the to­tal cost of own­er­ship. We fo­cus on light weight­ing the trucks. This would in­crease the pay­load ca­pac­ity and make cus­tomer happy. This also would give fuel ef­fi­ciency. The tech­nolo­gies we work on will help re­duce the main­te­nance costs, give long life and bet­ter per­for­mance. Driver com­fort is ren­dered with our tech­nolo­gies but the own­ers are not giv­ing much im­por­tance to the same, though the com­fort of the driv­ers en­sures bet­ter safety.

Q: Af­ter­mar­ket plays a ma­jor role. What is your tar­get?

Mommertz:

We have to in­crease the num­ber of touch points and deal­er­ships to pro­mote af­ter­mar­ket sales in a big way. We have 64 out­lets and we are con­stantly try­ing to in­crease them. Our qual­ity and re­li­a­bil­ity bars are raised in such a way that the cus­tomers would never want early ser­vic­ing.

Q: Share some light on your train­ing cen­tre.

Mommertz:

We have a train­ing cen­tre in which the me­chan­ics have to un­dergo train­ing to achieve our level of qual­ity. We also pro­vide cus­tomer train­ing and driver train­ing at our Pitham­pur fa­cil­ity. Though driver skills are ap­pli­ca­ble for fuel ef­fi­ciency, our tech­nol­ogy it­self en­sures high fuel econ­omy to our trucks.

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