Ashok Leyland: A Nation’s Moving Force
FOR OVER SIX DECADES, Ashok Leyland has been in the business of moving people and goods and is one of India’s largest commercial vehicle manufacturers. Pioneers in the design and development of defence transport solutions, Ashok Leyland is the largest supplier of logistics vehicles to the Indian Army with close to 70,000 ‘Stallion’ vehicles in use.
A Relationship of Substance
The seeds for this relationship of substance with the Indian Army were sown in the 1970s, with the supply of 1,000 numbers of the company’s ‘Hippo’, a vehicle specially configured for the Army. In 1994, the hugely successful ‘Stallion’ platform was inducted followed by the inking of a transfer of technology agreement with Ordnance Factories Board for the co-production of the ‘Stallion’ 4x4 at Vehicle Factory, Jabalpur.
The ‘Stallion’ platform was first developed as a 4x4 vehicle for various applications such as general service roles, troop carriers, water bowsers, fuel bowsers, light recovery vehicles that have been tested and proven in the most demanding of operating conditions: in altitudes of over 5,500 metres and in the deserts of Rajasthan and in temperatures of -35 degrees Celsius to +50 degrees Celsius.
The company’s expanding portfolio of Defence vehicles feature the Light Recovery Vehicle for the Indian Army/DGBR, the 5 KL Water Bowser with twin stainless steel insulated walls water tanks mounted on the Stallion for carrying potable water for the jawans at extreme temperatures, the Truck Fire Fighting 4x2, gun towing vehicle Topchi 4x4, Mobile Refrigerated Containers and Fuel Dispensers.
A new platform – the ‘Super Stallion’ has been introduced to answer the high mobility requirements of the Indian Army. The ‘Super Stallion’ in 8x8 and 6x6 configurations as a High Mobility Vehicle (HMV) is the new flagship vehicle. Engineered to perform with high mobility and power in arduous desert terrains, this vehicle can be offered for a variety of applications for towing Field Artillery, for mounting guns, for mounting electronic warfare equipment and as missile carriers with different transmission and driveline configurations. The HMV 8x8 is, at present, proving its worth by undergoing trials with the Army.
The ‘Stallion’ in a 6x6 configuration with a new engine and auto transmission is on offer to operate in demanding, mountainous terrains. This vehicle can be deployed as Troop Carriers, Water and Fuel Bowsers, Light Recovery Vehicles and as the base vehicle to mount communication equipment and command control posts.
Both the 4x4 and 6x6 versions have been supplied to various international customers including the Honduras Army, an American organisation for operation in Iraq and Afghanistan and more recently to Thailand and South Africa.
Ashok Leyland Defence Systems
Ashok Leyland Defence Systems is a focused defence sector joint venture company that will be engaged in the manufacture of a range of specialised tactical and armoured vehicles to meet the emerging needs of India’s armed forces. The product range will offer state-ofthe-art performance while achieving high levels of local content and cost competitiveness.
Ashok Leyland Defence has already offered vehicle platforms for Mine Protected Vehicles (MPVs), FATs, Multi-Barrel Rocket Launchers (MBRLs) and other special applications and will soon have in its portfolio armored vehicles with military payloads ranging from 1.5 to 20 tonnes. ALDS will also have products on the ‘Colt’ platform that will feature, among others, Light Spe- cialist Vehicles (LSVs). With superior protection, improved agility and enhanced performance, this new range of vehicles will further the capabilities of Indian defence.
With production operations in Sengadu, near Chennai, Ashok Leyland Defence has a team of defence professionals bringing domain expertise to their tasks. It leverages Ashok Leyland’s experience of over four decades in defence logistics as well as draws strength from its relationship with some of the world’s best exponents of tactical and armoured vehicles like
France, pioneers in the design and development of light armoured vehicles, to jointly develop light tactical vehicles. The company also has a MoU with
Defense, Panhard General Krauss-Maffei Wegmann (KMW) GmbH,
Germany, to jointly develop advanced defence systems for the Indian defence establishment as well as other defence forces worldwide.
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Light tactical and armoured vehicle on the COLT platform
The Super Stallion 8x8 - engineered to perform with high mobility and power in arduous desert terrains