Ashok Leyland to enter Russia, gears up with BS VI vehicles

Ashok Leyland says that having developed both right-hand drive and left-hand drive vehicles, the firm will enter the Russian market in the next 12 months and has identified a local assembler/franchisee.

By: | Updated: November 5, 2019 7:21 AM

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As part of its derisking strategy and to become one of the top 10 players in the global consumer vehicle market, Hinduja group flagship Ashok Leyland has identified newer markets, including Russia, Indonesia and Malaysia, for expansion. Having developed both right-hand drive and left-hand drive vehicles, the firm will enter the Russian market in the next 12 months and has identified a local assembler/franchisee, said Dheeraj Hinduja, chairman, Ashok Leyland. Dheeraj Hinduja, who was in Chennai to showcase the readiness of its BS VI transition, said, “The company will be introducing new light commercial vehicles under modular platform to not only increase its coverage of the 600,000 units per annum segment from the current 30% to 65% in the near future but also to achieve its global expansion in a big way.”

Addressing mediapersons, Hinduja said: “Given the cyclical market conditions in India and to become one of the top 10 global player in the near future, we have decided to expand our footprint globally and accordingly, identified Russia as the prime one. Given the tax benefits in the local markets, we found it was prudent for us to go with the local assemblers/partners/distributors to enter in a big way. Accordingly, we have identified a local partner in Russia and we have to take trials of summer and winter conditions in the country and hope to enter the Russian market in next 12 months.”

“Similarly, we have also identified Indonesia and Malaysia for expanding our global base further and would soon identify the local partners there,” Hinduja said, adding distributors and local players are showing more interest. The firm currently exports to Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Nepal, West Asia East, Bhutan, East and West African markets. Chief operating officer Anuj Kathuria said: “We start producing BS VI vehicles from January and start ceding into the market post with. Though it is difficult to liquidate all the inventory, however, we have made plans to have only a minimal inventory to ensure dealers are safe from any burden. A dedicated team is monitoring the inventory at both factory and dealers' level and ensure that BS VI vehicles sale will begin from April 1, 2020 as mandated.”

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