|Founded||February 17, 2011|
|Parent||Daimler India Commercial Vehicles Pvt. Ltd.|
BharatBenz is a truck marque of Daimler India Commercial Vehicles Pvt. Ltd. (DICV), itself a wholly owned subsidiary of the German Daimler AG. The “Bharat” part of the brand name means “India” in various Indian languages.
In 2008, Daimler AG planned to enter the Indian market in a joint venture with Hero MotoCorp to build medium and heavy commercial vehicles. A joint venture named Daimler Hero Commercial Vehicles (DHCV) was formed under Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) in July 2008 with 60% holding of Daimler AG and 40% holding of Hero Group. Marc Llistosella was identified as CEO for the company while Amit Chaturvedi as co-CEO.
Daimler AG and Hero Group announced to dissolve the Daimler Hero Commercial Vehicles Ltd. joint venture on April 15, 2009 because of an economic downturn in India. Hero group decided to focus on core operation and return the 40% stake in DHCV joint venture to Daimler AG. With 100% stake Daimler AG renamed DHCV as Daimler India Commercial Vehicles (DICV).
The launch of the BharatBenz brand was announced on February 17, 2011 at Chennai by Daimler AG Chairman Dieter Zetsche and the first BharatBenz truck was unveiled on January 4, 2012 at the Delhi Auto Expo. The decision to launch the brand was prompted by Daimler's determination to compete in the fast-growing Indian truck market against existing Indian brands such as Ashok Leyland, Tata Motors and Indian ventures of other leading global truck manufacturers including Mahindra Navistar and Volvo Eicher. The entire proposed truck line-up in the 6 to 49-tonne range was unveiled on March 2, 2012.
The BharatBenz heavy-duty trucks are built on the Mercedes-Benz Axor platform, and the light and medium-duty trucks on the Fuso Canter and Fuso Fighter series. The entire product line meets BSIII standards (comparable to EURO III). All BharatBenz (17 models) trucks are slated to be up to 9% more expensive but be 10% more fuel efficient than the competition. The light-duty trucks produced in Chennai are also available in selected export markets of Africa and Asia, but there under Fuso brand.
DICV set up a manufacturing plant for the BharatBenz trucks in Oragadam, near Chennai in Tamil Nadu at an investment of over €700 million (44 billion). Its biggest investment outside Europe. Construction area for plant is 400 acres, out of which 47 acres are dedicated to 3-lane 1.55 kilometer test track. Test track include a bump track, pothole testing and articulation sections, a water trough, an inspection ramp and a control tower. Localization rate for BharatBenz truck is 85% Initial production capacity at the plant is 36000 units per year for 2012 and will be expanded to 70,000 units per year by start of 2013 with additional investment of 3.5 billion. Series production started in June 2012 with the 2523R truck; sales began in September 2012.
Currently BharatBenz has 1.400 employees including both Indian and German staff. Localization rate for BharatBenz truck is 85% with more than 450 local suppliers out of which 41 per cent are based in Tamil Nadu and 44 per cent are in rest of the country, with an aim to exceed 90%.
Daimler has test driven its trucks a distance of 4.5 million km in various conditions at its test track in Oragadam.
Research & Development facility
DICV set up a research and development facility at Oragadam manufacturing plant with initial investment of 12 billion.
- Setting up exclusive showrooms at 110 locations by end of 2014.
- Plan to manufacture buses under same brand name.
- In-house financing wing for customers.
- Production of the Actros trucks will shift to Oragadam, Chennai facility from sister company Mercedes-Benz’s plant in Chakan, Pune.<ref name="BL"trucks will shift to Oragadam, Chennai facility from sister company Mercedes-Benz’s plan
- Daimler News
- The Hindu-BharatBenz trucks from Daimler by mid-2012
- Economic Times - Daimler-Hero JV to start in 2010, make 70,000 trucks
- Daimler News - The Indo-German joint venture Daimler Hero Commercial Vehicles (DHCV)
- Money Control News- Hero pulls out of Rs 4400cr Daimler JV
- Daimler News - Repositioning of the Daimler Hero Commercial Vehicles Ltd. joint venture in India
- Hindustan Times - Hero exits truck J-V with Daimler, citing slowdown
- BharatBenz News - Daimler Reveals Its First Truck "Made in India"
- Daimler News - Daimler Unveils BharatBenz – An Exclusive Brand for its Trucks in India
- ZigWheels - BharatBenz reveals 'Made in India' truck
- AutoCarIndia - BharatBenz's 17 new products
- BharatBenz News - Daimler India Commercial Vehicles unveils Test Track at Oragadam, near Chennai
- Financial Express - DICV to roll out BharatBenz trucks by Q3 2012
- "Right on schedule: First series-produced BharatBenz truck rolls off the assembly line". Daimler AG. 21 June 2012. Retrieved 25 June 2012.
- Business Line - Daimler India working on new range of buses to take on Tata Motors, Ashok Leyland
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