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Tata Motors launches India's first CNG-powered truck in the M&HCV segment.

Posted by Priya Singh On 07-Sep-2022 06:09 AM

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  • Tata Motors has introduced five CNG-powered trucks, including an industry first in the M&HCV market, along with a slew of innovative technologies such as ADAS, collision warning system, lane departure warning system, and driver monitoring system. In addition, the company introduced new models in the I&LCV truck market.


    Tata Motors leads the domestic CV market with a 43% market share. This is a positive improvement that aligns with management's comments about launching 15+ products to compensate for a slight drop in market share during Q1FY23. For better safety, these vehicles include modern safety systems such as ADAS, warning systems, ESC, and DMS. It will have a fleet edge, which is a digital interface for fleet management and a networked system. A cyclical resurgence in the CV area, a revised product slate, and new technology-heavy features all bode well for the company.

    Tata Motors unveiled the country's first CNG truck in the medium and heavy commercial (M&HCV) vehicle market, with nodes ranging from 28 to 19 tonnes.

    Currently, most truck manufacturers, including Tata Motors, only provide CNG in the compact and light commercial vehicle sectors. In addition, the company unveiled a fleet of seven trucks in the intermediary and light commercial vehicle (I&LCV) sector, designed for a variety of uses.

    In addition, as part of its net zero emission ambitions, Tata Motors is working on a variety of alternative fuel solutions, including liquefied natural gas (LNG), hydrogen, and bio-CNG, according to Girish Wagh, executive director of Tata Motors.

    "We are conducting a continual TCO (total cost of operation) analysis for various ranges, whether they are 500, 1,000, or 2,000 kilometres. We should be ready with both LNG and CNG depending on the application," Wagh said. Because of its density, LNG makes sense as a long-term fuel. He claims that the CNG powertrain is easily adaptable to LNG and that Tata Motors is actively working on it.

    Tata Motors has introduced CNG-powered M&HCV trucks at a time when the pricing disparity between diesel and CNG, which was as high as 40% until a year ago, has now dropped to 20%. Even at the current price, CNG remains a viable option for operators. "The country's transition to zero-emission CVs will take place through natural gas. As a result, we want to be prepared across the board," Wagh explained.

    Tata Motors is seeking to generate strong differentiation and reclaim some market share it has lost in recent months with the debut of new modern trucks that offer a slew of technologies, including the new-age Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS).

    Tata Motors' share of the commercial vehicle market declined to 42.5 per cent at the end of the June quarter of the current fiscal year, down from 45 per cent at the end of FY22. The decline in the M&HCV segment was more pronounced, falling to 54.6 per cent in Q1 of FY23 from 58.2 per cent at the end of FY22.

    "We want to grow profitably," Wagh remarked of the market share loss. The company intends to achieve the goal through a combination of actions, including the introduction of a product line that adds more value to the customer and offers value-added services via digital solutions such as the "Fleet Edge," which tracks vehicle and driver behaviour and improves fuel efficiency. All of this, combined with a retail-focused approach that involves developing a pull-based approach for products and services rather than the typical push approach, will help the company grow financially, according to Wagh. These new launches come at a time when India's commercial vehicle market is reviving following a two-year slump, thanks to improved economic activity and an increase in infrastructure and road construction projects.

    According to ICRA Research, the Indian commercial vehicle (CV) industry will expand by 12-15 per cent in FY23. This will be on the strength of the industry's 112 per cent increase in dispatches in Q1 of FY23, although from a low base last year.

    "This year, as an industry, we are also on a development path," Wagh remarked. All signs, whether freight rates, fleet utilization, or economic activity, are favourable, and the industry will increase by double digits, he noted. Tata Motors (used on construction sites) seeks to meet the multi-application needs of the rapidly developing logistics and infrastructure industries with the introduction of modern I&LCV trucks and tippers. This will address demand in urban clusters and steep areas in particular.

    According to the firm, the new trucks address the growing need for safer transportation with an ADAS, which includes a collision prevention system, lane departure warning, electronic stability control, driver alerts, and tyre pressure monitoring.

    They also offer cleaner mobility solutions through a broader range of alternative fuel powertrains. These M&HCV and I&LCV trucks, which are available in many fully built body options of load bodies, tippers, tankers, bulkers, and trailers, cater to a wide range of goods movement and applications across diverse sectors, including agriculture, cement, iron & steel, container, vehicle carrier, petroleum, chemical, water tankers, LPG, FMCG, white goods, perishables, construction, mining, and municipal applications, according to the company.

    The CNG vehicles are driven by a 5.7-litre SGI engine with a peak power of 180hp and torque of 650Nm, have a modular construction, and have a range of up to 1,000 miles, according to the company.

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