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Our commitment as a manufacturer is to provide effective solutions

Our commitment as a manufacturer is to provide effective solutions

The integration of alternative fuels in construction vehicles needs to be a mutually beneficial arrangement for all stakeholders involved, states JALAJ GUPTA, Business Head- Commercial Vehicles, Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd.

Which are the products you have introduced at Excon 2023?

At the exhibition, we have showcased a total of nine products, with the introduction of three new additions to our lineup. The inaugural product is our BSV or CEV range designed for construction equipment, prominently featuring our flagship items—the versatile backhoe loader and the efficient grader. Our commitment to staying ahead of industry trends is evident, as demonstrated during the smooth migration from BSIII to BSIV, and we are poised to be prepared well in advance for the potential BS5 or CEV5 standards, with a target readiness date set for April 2024.

In response to the significant economic focus on infrastructure development, including roads, ports, and housing, we have enhanced our offerings in the tipper segment. This segment now constitutes 30% of the heavy commercial vehicle industry, and we have implemented numerous improvements in our new tipper model, the BLAZO X m-DURA heavy-duty tippers in 28T and 35T GVW.

Our versatile haulage tractor platform, renowned for its success in overseas markets, particularly in Africa for sugarcane haulage, takes a prominent place in our display. Here, we showcase a compact crane mounted on the haulage tractor platform, presenting a myriad of potential applications. This marks our third launch at Mahindra, and our commitment remains to display only those products intended for launch within the next twelve to 18 months. This philosophy aligns with our approach to events like Excon, ensuring that everything exhibited in our stall is either recently launched or scheduled for launch in the near future.

What technology features, including IoT and AI, do these products incorporate?

One of the biggest game changer that we have brought in the construction equipment is our telematics 'iMAXX'. A major breakthrough in the construction equipment sector, iMAXX was initially integrated into trucks around six years ago. Since 2020, every Mahindra Truck and Bus leaving our manufacturing plants has been outfitted with the Mahindra iMAXX telematics device. An illustrative example of its impact is evident in approximately 50 instances within the first eight months of iMAXX installation, where drivers on the Bangalore to Tumkur route received calls from a centralized call center alerting them to potential malfunctions in their trucks. These drivers were efficiently directed to the nearest service station for prompt rectification, highlighting the proactive capabilities of iMAXX. Notably, many of our customers in the truck and bus segment successfully manage their fleets using iMAXX.

In the construction equipment domain, iMAXX emerges as a potent tool. Given the rising costs of construction equipment coupled with stable rental prices, it becomes imperative for customers to curtail operating costs while ensuring maximum machine uptime and productivity. iMAXX proves to be invaluable for construction equipment owners in efficiently managing operating costs and optimizing productivity. Despite these advantages, there is a noticeable hesitancy among construction equipment customers to embrace upgrades and fully exploit the potential benefits of iMAXX.

Where does Mahindra stand in terms of fuel efficiency?

We've launched the CEV range featuring a robust 3.5 litre turbocharged engine. Notably, we've enhanced the torque, with our 74 hp engine experiencing a remarkable 16% increase. Our commitment to excellence extends to achieving best-in-class fuel efficiency with this engine. Looking ahead, we are gearing up to introduce the industry's highest productivity guarantee for our machines.

Have you launched any alternative fuel vehicles?

The integration of alternative fuels in construction vehicles needs to be a mutually beneficial arrangement for all stakeholders involved, including customers, manufacturers, suppliers, financiers, and machine renters. Sustainability goes beyond simply adopting alternative fuels; its success hinges on creating a scenario where everyone benefits and the necessary ecosystem is established. The introduction of alternative fuels into construction equipment is an inevitable progression that will occur when these conditions align.

When can we expect alternate fuel construction vehicles from Mahindra?

We are a self-reliant ('Atmanirbhar') company, with in-house research and development capabilities. We produce our own engines and machinery, positioning us to seamlessly integrate any technology into our products once the ecosystem is ready. The transition to alternative fuels will only occur when it proves advantageous for all stakeholders. Our commitment as a manufacturer is to provide effective solutions to customers while ensuring profitability. It is essential that our customers derive value from the products they acquire from us. Until the total cost of ownership for alternative fuel vehicles, whether in construction equipment, trucks, or buses, surpasses and outperforms diesel-operated vehicles, a spontaneous migration will not take place. Within our extensive product portfolio, we already offer an electric tipper and an LNG tractor trailer, demonstrating our commitment to diverse and sustainable solutions.

 




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