|Founded||September 7, 1948|
|Headquarters||Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India|
|Products||Automobiles, engines, commercial vehicles|
|Revenue||₹213.32 billion (US$3.3 billion) (2016)|
|₹12.23 billion (US$190 million) (2016)|
Number of employees
Founded in 1948, it is the 2nd largest commercial vehicle manufacturer in India, 4th largest manufacturer of buses in the world and 12th largest manufacturer of trucks globally. Operating nine plants, Ashok Leyland also makes spare parts and engines for industrial and marine applications. It sold around 1,40,000 vehicles (M&HCV + LCV) in FY 2016. It is the second largest commercial vehicle company in India in the medium and heavy commercial vehicle (M&HCV) segment, with a market share of 32.1% (FY 2016). With passenger transportation options ranging from 10 seaters to 74 seaters (M&HCV = LCV), Ashok Leyland is a market leader in the bus segment. The company claims to carry more than 70 million passengers a day, more people than the entire Indian rail network. In the trucks segment Ashok Leyland primarily concentrates on the 16 to 25-ton range. However, Ashok Leyland has a presence in the entire truck range, from 7.5 to 49 tons.
Ashok Leyland's UK subsidiary Optare has shut down its bus factory in Blackburn, Lancashire. This subsidiary's traditional home in Leeds has also been vacated in favour of a purpose built plant at Sherburn-in-Elmet.
- 1 History
- 2 Quality
- 3 CSR
- 4 Products
- 5 Subsidiary ventures
- 6 International Operations & Exports
- 7 Technology
- 8 Financials
- 9 Exports
- 10 Facilities
- 11 Products
- 12 See also
- 13 References
- 14 External links
Ashok Motors was founded in 1948 by Raghunandan Saran, an Indian freedom fighter from Punjab. After Independence, he was persuaded by India's first Prime Minister Nehru to invest in a modern industrial venture. Ashok Motors was incorporated in 1948 as a company to assemble and manufacture Austin cars from England, and the company was named after the founder's only son, Ashok Saran. The company had its headquarters in Rajaji Saalai, Chennai (then Madras) with the plant in Ennore, a small fishing hamlet in the North of Chennai. The company was engaged in the assembly and distribution of Austin A40 passenger cars in India.
Raghunandan Saran died in an air crash. He had previously been negotiating with Leyland Motors of England for assembly of commercial vehicles as he envisioned commercial vehicle were more in need at that time than were passenger cars. The company later under Madras State Government and other shareholders finalised for an investment and technology partner, and thus Leyland Motors joined in 1954 with equity participation, changing the name of the company to Ashok Leyland. Ashok Leyland then started manufacturing commercial vehicles. Under Leyland's management with British expatriate and Indian executives the company grew in strength to become one of India's foremost commercial vehicle manufacturers.
The collaboration ended sometime in 1975 but the holding of British Leyland, now a major British Auto Conglomerate as a result of several mergers, agreed to assist in technology, which continued until the 1980s. After 1975, changes in management structures saw the company launch various advanced vehicles and pioneering innovations in the Indian market, with many of these models continuing to this day with numerous upgrades over the years.
Under Iveco and Hinduja partnership
In 1987, the overseas holding by Land Rover Leyland International Holdings Limited (LRLIH) was taken over by a joint venture between the Hinduja Group, the Non-Resident Indian transnational group and IVECO, part of the Fiat Group. Ashok Leyland's long-term plan to become a global player by benchmarking global standards of technology and quality was soon firmed up. Access to international technology and a US$200 million investment programme created a state-of-the-art manufacturing base to roll out international class products.
In 2007, the Hinduja Group also bought out IVECO's indirect stake in Ashok Leyland. The promoter shareholding now stands at 51%. Today the company is the flagship of the Hinduja Group, a British-based and Indian originated trans-national conglomerate after Hindujas bought Iveco's remaining ownership stakes.
Ashok Leyland was awarded the prestigious 2016 Deming Prize for its Pantnagar manufacturing facility. The CV manufacturer’s Pantnagar plant became the first truck and bus plant in the world and the only CV manufacturer outside of Japan to win the Deming Prize. The plant manufactures the Dost small CV and Partner LCV, a varied range of buses, trucks and defence & special vehicles. The manufacturing capacity of the plant is 150,000 units per annum.
In the journey towards global standards of quality, Ashok Leyland reached a major milestone in 1993 when it became the first in India's automobile history to obtain the ISO 9002 certification. The more comprehensive ISO 9001 certification came in 1994, QS 9000 in 1998 and ISO 14001 certification for all vehicle manufacturing units in 2002. In 2006, Ashok Leyland became the first automobile company in India to receive the TS16949 Corporate Certification.
In 2016, Ashok Leyland initiated the ‘Road to School’ programme for 4,108 students at 36 government schools in remote locations of India. The objective of this programme was to reduce absenteeism and drop-outs from these schools due to lack of infrastructure and adequate teaching support. The initiative was carried out with the support of in-house volunteers and regular teachers in the 36 schools. The programme also included remedial support to improve learning levels of differently abled children in these schools, an activity which was implemented by personnel from Learning Link Foundation, a Delhi-based NGO, in collaboration with Ashok Leyland. The other activities under this initiative included science fairs, maths competitions, sports competitions, field trips, social awareness activities, and health check-ups for all the students. As a result of this programme, around 67 students who dropped were brought back in the district of Anchetty.
Trucks and buses
Early products included the Leyland Comet bus which was a passenger body built on a truck chassis sold in large numbers to many operators in India. By 1963, the Comet was operated by every state transport undertaking in India, and over 8,000 were in service. It was soon joined in production by a version of the Leyland Tiger.
In 1968, production of the Leyland Titan ceased in Britain, but was restarted by Ashok Leyland in India. The Titan PD3 chassis was modified, and a five-speed heavy duty constant-mesh gearbox was used together with the Ashok Leyland version of the O.680 engine. The Ashok Leyland Titan was very successful and continued in production for many years.
During the early 80s Ashok Leyland entered into a collaboration with Japanese company Hino Motors from whom technology for the H-series engines was sourced. Many indigenous versions of the H-series engine were developed with 4 and 6 cylinders, and also conforming to BS2, BS3 & BS4 emission standards in India. These engines proved to be extremely popular with the customers primarily for their excellent fuel efficiency. Most current models of Ashok Leyland come with H-series engines.
In the late 1980s Iveco investment and partnership resulted in Ashok Leyland launching the 'Cargo' range of trucks based on European Ford Cargo trucks. The Cargo entered production in 1994, at Ashok Leyland's new plant in Hosur, southeast of Bengaluru. These vehicles used Iveco engines and for the first time had factory-fitted cabs. Though the Cargo trucks are no longer in production and the use of Iveco engine was discontinued, the cab continues to be used on the Ecomet range of trucks as well as for several of Ashok Leyland's military vehicles.
The Cargo was originally introduced in 7 and 9 long tons (7,100 and 9,100 kg) versions; later, heavier-duty models from 15 to 26 long tons (15,200 to 26,400 kg) were progressively introduced.
Ashok Leyland announced the sale of vehicles on the new U-Truck platform in November 2010 with the rolling out of the first set of 10 models of tippers and tractor trailers in the 16 to 49-tonne segment. Another 15 models were set to enter the market in the following 12 months.
The Dost is a 1.25 ton light commercial vehicle (LCV) that is the first product to be launched by the Indian-Japanese commercial vehicle joint venture Ashok Leyland Nissan Vehicles. Dost is powered by a 58 hp high-torque, 3-cylinder, turbo-charged common rail diesel engine and has a payload capacity of 1.25 tonnes. It is available in both BS3 and BS4 versions. The bodywork and some of the underpinnings relate to Nissan's C22 Vanette of the 1980s; this is most visible in the door design. The LCV is produced in Ashok Leyland's Hosur plant in Tamil Nadu. The LCV is available in three versions with the top-end version featuring air-conditioning, power steering, dual-colour beige-gray trim and fabric seats. With the launch of Dost Ashok Leyland has now entered the Light Commercial Vehicle segment in India
Boss is an intermediate commercial vehicle launched by Ashok Leyland. It is available in the range of 8T to 14T. It is available with two engine options 120IL (LE) and 130CRS (LX) engines, and this is the first time such an engine has been offered in this range of trucks. The LX variant is available with air conditioning and Leymatic AMT, which are again industry firsts.
STiLE is a multi-purpose vehicle which was manufactured by Ashok Leyland. The vehicle was unveiled during the 2012 Auto Expo and was launched in July 2013. STiLE was marketed as a "multi-purpose vehicle" for use as a hotel shuttle, taxi, ambulance, and panel van, and in courier service. In May 2015, Ashok Leyland stopped production due to low demand.
In June 2009 the company expanded into the fastest growing construction equipment segment, with a 50:50 joint venture with John Deere. It was floated as a separate entity under the name of Leyland – Deere Limited.
Ashok Leyland Defence Systems
Ashok Leyland Defence Systems (ALDS) is a newly floated company by the Hinduja Group. Ashok Leyland, the flagship company of Hinduja group, holds 26 percent in the newly formed Ashok Leyland Defence Systems (ALDS). The company has a mandate to design and develop defence logistics and tactical vehicles, defence communication and other systems. Ashok Leyland is the largest supplier of logistics vehicles to the Indian Army. It has supplied over 60,000 of its Stallion vehicles which form the Army's logistics backbone.
International Operations & Exports
Overview of Exports
Exports of commercial vehicles contribute to a seven percent share of Ashok Leyland’s total revenues. The company plans to increase this share to 30-35% in the next five years.
Key market presence
The company has a strong market presence in SAARC countries like Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Nepal, and in the Middle East countries where it exports 3600-4000 units a year. The company has an assembly unit, mainly for buses, in Ras Al Khaimah in UAE to cater to the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) member states. This unit currently assembles 4000 units, which the company plans to increase to 6000 units.
Exports to countries
Ashok Leyland exports medium and heavy commercial vehicles to the Gulf Cooperation Council(GCC) Member States like Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and UAE, Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) countries like Azerbaijan, Armenia, Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Russia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Ukraine, East And West Africa, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Nepal. In 2016, the company announced its intentions for increasing its global footprint by planning to export one out of every three vehicles produced in India over the next 4–5 years and to set up assembly factories in Bangladesh, West Africa and East Africa over the next 2–3 years, in order to derisk cyclical market in India.
Lanka Ashok Leyland
Lanka Ashok Leyland (LAL) in Sri Lanka was formed in 1982 and started its operations in 1983 as a joint venture between Lanka Leyland Ltd (a wholly owned company of the Government of Sri Lanka) and Ashok Leyland Ltd India. LAL imports commercial vehicles in both knock down kits and fully built, and carries out assembly operations, repair and service, and body building on chassis.
In October 2006, Ashok Leyland bought a large stake in the Czech-based Avia, later renaming as Avia Ashok Leyland Motors s.r.o., to gain entry into the competitive European market. However, the prolonged recession in Europe forced them to shut down the Czech operations in 2013.
In 2010 Ashok Leyland acquired a 26% stake in the British bus manufacturer Optare, a company based on the premises of a former British Leyland subsidiary C.H. Roe. In December 2011 Ashok Leyland increased its stake in Optare to 75.1%.
The history of the company has been punctuated by a number of technological innovations, which have since become industry norms. It was the first to introduce multi-axled trucks, full air brakes and a host of innovations like the rear engine and articulated buses in India. In 1997, the company launched the country's first CNG bus, and in 2002 developed the first hybrid electric vehicle.
Ashok Leyland was already producing low-emission vehicles. Back in 1980s and 90s, Ashok Leyland with various Tamil Nadu Transport Corporation, notably Cholan Roadways Corporation based in Trichripally, experimented with low pollutant emission based on the CNG technology. In 2002 it developed the first hybrid electric vehicle. Ashok Leyland has also launched a mobile emission clinic that operates on highways and at entry points to New Delhi. The clinic checks vehicles for emission levels, recommends remedies and offers tips on maintenance and care. This work will help generate valuable data and garner insight that will guide further development.
Ashok Leyland has also developed hythane engines in association with the Australian company Eden Energy. Ashok Leyland successfully developed a 6-cylinder, 6-litre (370 cu in) 92 kW (123 hp) BS-4 engine which uses hythane (H-CNG,) which is a blend of natural gas and around 20% of hydrogen. Hydrogen helps improve the efficiency of the engine but the CNG aspect makes sure that emissions are at a controlled level. A 4-cylinder 4-litre (240 cu in) 63 kW (84 hp) engine is also being developed for H-CNG blend in a joint R&D program with MNRE (Ministry of New and Renewable Energy) and Indian Oil Corporation.
The CNG concept is now in full swing, with more than 5,500 of the technology's vehicles running around Delhi. The company is also already discussing the wide-scale use of hythane engines with the Indian government. Hythane engines may be expected in the near future.
Plugin Hybrid Bus
In the Auto Expo 2010 at Delhi, Ashok Leyland launched India’s first plug-in CNG hybrid bus, HYBUS. The hybrid bus offered 20-30% fuel saving over conventional buses powered by internal combustion engine, and were more eco-friendly than regular CNG buses, as a result of its hybrid technology that combined conventional CNG engine with electric propulsion system. The propulsion system was powered by lithium-ion battery.
The other useful features of the bus included ultra-low entry at 390mm with kneeling option, noise-free rear engine, front and rear air suspensions and retractable ramp for wheel-chair entry. Some innovative pedestrian safety concepts were also introduced in the bus, like the sound and light alerts while the bus moves, a camera-assisted reversing aid for the driver and night time highlighters near the tail lights.
Non-plugin Hybrid Bus
At the Delhi Auto Expo 2016, Ashok Leyland introduced an advanced non-plugin version of HYBUS. It is claimed to be India’s first non-plugin series hybrid bus. The bus uses ultra-capacitors to store energy, a feature that improves power density and fuel efficiency, because energy is stored electrostatically and does not involve chemical reactions. The ultra-capacitors are claimed to be 4-5 times more durable than conventional lithium-ion batteries.
HYBUS is powered by an H-Series 6-cylinder diesel (BS IV compliant) engine that is not used to drive the vehicle ahead, but to charge the ultra-capacitors that powers the 150 kW electric motor. Automatic start-stop is used to decrease the overall engine idling time. The bus can restart using the stored energy when the engine is off. The fuel-efficiency of the engine thus increases and NVH (Noise-vibration-harshness) levels decrease.
The buses and trucks are set to feature a new electronic shift-by-wire transmission technology as well as electronic-controlled engine management for greater fuel efficiency. Ashok Leyland focuses on improving fuel efficiency without affecting automotive power, and the vehicles will have a 5% improvement on fuel efficiency. Ashok Leyland is also developing electric batteries and bio-fuel modes.
In 2016, the company launched the country’s first indigenously produced fully electric bus, called Circuit. The bus is a zero-emission vehicle that can run 120 km on a single charge, and has an alert system that can signal if the bus is low on power. The bus will be introduced under the National Electric Mobility Plan with an aim of 20% penetration of electric or hybrid vehicles by 2020.
Euro 6 Truck
AT the Delhi Auto Expo 2016, the company showcased its first indigenously produced Euro 6 truck 4940. The truck is powered by the company’s flagship range of engine, Neptune, which is an 8l engine that produces 400 hp and 1600Nm of torque. The truck is designed to meet Euro 6 norms.
In 2017, the company showcased iEGR (intelligent Exhaust Gas Recirculation) technology for its trucks and buses to meet BS-IV emission standards. The technology also promises other advantages like better fuel efficiency than BS-III trucks, and power transmission up to 400 HP.
Ashok Leyland announced iBUS in the beginning of 2008, as part of the future for the country's increasingly traffic-clogged major cities. Its Rs 60-lakh iBus is a feature-filled, low-floor concept bus for the metros revealed during the Auto Expo 2008 in India. This low-floored iBus will have the first of its kind features, including anti-lock braking system, electronic engine management and passenger infotainment. The executive class has an airline like ambiance with wide LCD screens, reading lights, audio speakers and, for the first time, Internet on the move. A GPS system enables vehicle tracking and display of dynamic route information on LCD screens, which can also support infotainment packages including live data and news. The bus will probably be equipped with an engine from the new Neptune family, which Ashok Leyland also introduced at this exhibition, which is ready for the BS4/Euro 4 emission regulations and can be upgraded to Euro 5. The ibus of Ashok leyland have hybrid technology
The company has maintained its profitable track record for 60 years. The annual revenue of the company was USD 3.2 billion in 2016-17. Selling 140,457 light, medium, heavy vehicles in 2016-17, Ashok Leyland was one of India's largest exporters of medium and heavy duty trucks. It is also one of the largest private sector employers in India, with about 12,000 employees working in 9 factories and offices spread across the globe.
In 2013-14, the company posted a very modest profit after tax of Rs. 290million which was made possible after the selling of real estate and other surplus land and related assets. The company did not declare any dividends for the financial year 2013-14, which is also a first in its 60-year history.
The company has increased its rated capacity to 105,000 vehicles per annum. Further investment plans include putting up two new plants - one in Uttarakhand in North India and a bus body building unit in middle-east Asia are fast afoot. It already has a sizeable presence in African countries like Nigeria, Ghana, Egypt and South Africa.
On 11 June 2012, Ashok Leyland supplied 100 Falcon buses to Ghana for $7.6 million (about Rs 420 million).
- Ennore, Tamil Nadu in North Chennai (estb. 1948) – trucks, buses, engines, axles etc.
- Hosur, Tamil Nadu in Krishnagiri District (estb. 1980) – three adjacent plants (Hosur-1, Hosur-2, CPPS) for trucks, special vehicles and power units
- Alwar, Rajasthan (estb. 1982) – bus manufacturing unit
- Bhandara, Maharashtra (estb. 1982) – gearbox unit
- Pantnagar, Uttarakhand (etsb. 2010) – 75,000 annual capacity greenfield unit for new generation platforms and cabs
- Sengadu Village, Kanchipuram District in Tamil Nadu (etsb. 2008) – technical and production facility for Ashok Leyland Defence Systems; another separate technical center for Nissan Ashok Leyland vehicles
- Ras Al Khaimah, UAE [estb. 2011] – bus manufacturing facility – joint venture between Ashok Leyland and Ras Al Khaimah Investment Authority (RAKIA) in UAE
Ashok Leyland's Technical Centre, at Vellivoyalchavadi (VVC) in the outskirts of North Chennai near Minjur, is a state-of-the-art product development facility, that apart from modern test tracks and component test labs, also houses India's one and only six poster testing equipment.
Former manufacturing units
- 11m Feslf
- 12 Fe
- 12m Feslf
- Cheetah Staff
- Electric Bus
- Janbus LHD
- Janbus Midi
- Lynx Smart Staff
- Lynx Smart School
- Lynx Smart Staff AC
- Lynx Strong Staff
- Lynx Strong School
- RESLf LHD
- Sunshine Staff
- Viking School
- Viking Staff
- Sunshine & Mitr
- 1618 T/C
- 3118T 8x4
- 3118T 8x2
- U 2516
- Captain 2518
- Captain 2523 SR
- Captain 2523 HR
- Captain 3123
- Captain 4019 tip trailer
- Captain 4923 tip trailer
- 2518 H4/4C
- U 2518 R / 1
- 3118 twin steering
- 3118 LA
- U 3118 LA
- U 3718
- U 3518
- U 4019
- Captain 2518
- Captain 3118
- Captain 3718
- Captain 3723
- Captain 4019
- Captain 4923
- Ecomet 1012
- Ecomet 1212
- Ecomet 1214
- Ecomet 1212 Tipper
- Ecomet 1012 Tipper
- A1 Boss 913
- A1 Boss 1113
- A1 Boss 1213
- A1 Boss 1413
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- "History: We cut our teeth on cars". Ashok Leyland. Archived from the original on 14 October 2001.
- "Products: Cargo". Ashok Leyland. Archived from the original on 20 November 2001.
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- "Ashok Leyland introduces the user-friendly Dost". Moneylife.in. Retrieved 29 May 2012.
- "Ashok Leyland DOST' rolled out". Financialexpress.com. 29 March 2011. Archived from the original on 29 October 2013. Retrieved 29 May 2012.
- Ashok Leyland Dost unveiled Archived 20 July 2011 at the Wayback Machine.
- "Ashok Leyland-Nissan JV unveil first LCV model- Dost, targets below 3 tonne market". Articles.economictimes.indiatimes.com. 29 March 2011. Retrieved 29 May 2012.
- "Ashok Leyland introduces STiLE". Business Standard. Retrieved Aug 2015. Check date values in:
- "Ashok Leyland discontinues STiLE". NDTV. Retrieved Aug 2015. Check date values in:
- "STiLE features". Ashok Leyland website. Retrieved Aug 2015. Check date values in:
- "STiLE variants". Ashok Leyland website. Retrieved Aug 2015. Check date values in:
- "Leyland, John Deere complete JV formalities". Chennai, India: Hindu.com. 15 July 2009. Retrieved 29 May 2012.
-  , Ashok Leyland Defence Systems
- Ashok Leyland largest supplier of logistics vehicles to Indian Army. Over 60,000 Stallions."Archived copy". Archived from the original on 13 July 2011. Retrieved 2011-03-11.
- Welcome to Lanka Ashok Leyland. Lal.lk. Retrieved on 16 July 2013.
- "Rs 60 lakh iBus from Ashok Leyland". Hindustantimes.com. 9 January 2008. Retrieved 29 May 2012.
- "Ashok Leyland supplies 100 buses to Ghana for $7.6 million". 11 June 2012.
- "Ashok Leyland bags first overseas order for vestibule buses". The Times Of India. 6 June 2012.
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