Ashok Leyland sets up subsidiary for big EV push in Indian market

Switch Mobility Automotive will bring together Ashok Leyland’s capabilities both from Optare UK and Ashok Leyland’s EV division. OHM Global Mobility is a solutions company being piloted in India with plans to roll out mobility as a service (eMaaS) globally.

By:April 9, 2021 8:59 AM

Hinduja flagship commercial vehicle major Ashok Leyland (ALL) is planning to create a subsidiary christened Switch Mobility Automotive to carry out the electrical vehicle (EV) strategy of the company in India. This is being done through its subsidiary Switch Mobility, the UK based EV producer of buses and vans, as part of its global expansion in India.

The Chennai-based auto major is also planning to form a second subsidiary named OHM Global Mobility, which will focus on providing mobility as a service offering.

Switch Mobility Automotive will bring together Ashok Leyland’s capabilities both from Optare UK and Ashok Leyland’s EV division. OHM Global Mobility is a solutions company being piloted in India with plans to roll out mobility as a service (eMaaS) globally. Together, Switch and OHM will provide a net carbon zero-emission solution to India’s exciting trend towards EV urban buses and LCVs, ALL said.

Dheeraj Hinduja, chairman, ALL and Switch Mobility, said, “Switch Mobility Automotive will help us fulfil our aspiration of zero carbon emission transportation. With a strong presence and proven expertise in the commercial vehicle market in India and the experience of operating a large number of electric vehicles successfully in India and the UK, we see huge opportunities for growth through Switch’s expansion in Indian and global markets.”

Switch Mobility is a technology-focused bus and light commercial vehicle company. Formed in 2020 as a mature start-up, Switch is forged from the EV capabilities of Ashok Leyland, the fourth largest bus and LCV OEM in the world, and Optare, the British bus company with over a century of expertise in using the latest technologies in bus design. Currently fulfilling orders in the UK, Switch is creating a strong foundation for the expansion of its operations in Europe and driving growth in India and other parts of the world.

Vipin Sondhi, MD & CEO, ALL, said, “Creating Switch Mobility Automotive Ltd India and OHM Global Mobility Private Ltd will give us the ability to drive the sustainability agenda which Ashok Leyland is passionate about. It will combine our consumer-centric approach with the expertise in technology that the new entities will bring to the table.”

ALL, with nine manufacturing plants, seven in India, a bus manufacturing facility in Ras al Khaimah (UAE), and one at Leeds, United Kingdom has a product range from 2.5T GVW (gross vehicle weight) to 49T GTW (gross trailer weight) in trucks, 16 to 80 seater buses, vehicles for defence and special applications, and diesel engines for industrial, genset, and marine applications.

Andrew Palmer, vice chairman, Switch Mobility, said, “Through OHM Global Mobility, we believe we can accelerate the transition to net-zero carbon mobility in buses and vans. OHM Global Mobility’s pioneering offering is not only extremely comprehensive in India, but is also world-leading and will provide a robust model of business that can be leveraged by Switch in all its markets”.

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