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Tatas to drive in new truck

Calcutta, Dec. 5: Tata Motors is all set to introduce a 31-tonne truck, of the tractor-trailer variety, in two months from its Prima range of world trucks stable. The company has recently rolled out 40-tonne and 49-tonne trucks from the Prima range.

“We have started giving trials of these vehicles to our customers. Priced at Rs 40 lakh (49 tonne) and Rs 32 lakh (40 tonne), these are expensive products suited for bigger and better use. They will be used primarily in the steel and mining sector and the construction sector for building roads, dams and barrages,” Habib Saleh, regional manager (commercial vehicles) of Tata Motors, said while launching the 40-tonne and 49-tonne trucks (tractor-trailers) in Calcutta on Thursday.

A 31-tonne tipper was also displayed in the city, with its commercial launch scheduled next month.

The Tata World Truck Project was conceived in 2004 as a platform to develop the next range of commercial vehicles.

Tata Motors benefited from the acquisition of Daewoo Commercial Vehicles in 2005 (now called Tata Daewoo Commercial Vehicle Company) and leveraged the skills of many companies in Italy, Germany, Sweden, the US, Japan and South Korea.

The Prima range comprises about 10 major variants of multi-axle trucks, tractor-trailers, tippers, mixers and special application vehicles.

Tata Motors hopes the Prima range will grab a 25-30 per cent share in the medium and heavy commercial vehicle segments, a company spokesman said, adding that better infrastructure and changing priorities within the trucking community will boost volumes.

So far, 130 Prima trucks have been sold in the domestic market.

At present, the market is dominated by Ashok Leyland and AMW trucks. The Mahindra Navistar trucks, showcased at the 10th Auto Expo in New Delhi earlier this year, is due to hit the market.

The Mercedes Actros and Volvo trucks dominate the heavy commercial vehicle segment, which accounts for 1,500 units annually.

Heavy-duty trucks are priced in the Rs 65-70 lakh range.

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