Tata Motors plans to launch around 50 commercial vehicles (CVs) this fiscal as it looks to further consolidate its position in the segment, a top company official said.
The auto major, which saved close to Rs 1,900 crore in 2017-18 by enforcing cost-saving measures across CV and passenger vehicle segments, aims to achieve similar kind of savings in the current fiscal as well.
The company has also lined up a capex in the range of Rs 1,500 crore for CV vertical for the current fiscal. The amount would go into R&D, capacity expansion and towards making products compliant with BS VI emission norms before government deadline of April 1, 2020.
“Last year we launched more than 50 new products including variants and facelifts. This year also we will continue at the same rate in terms of new product launches,” Tata Motors President (commercial vehicles business) Girish Wagh told in an interview.
In order to set up a long-term strategy to introduce new products in the country, the firm is in the process of putting up a very strong product planning vertical in the company, he added.
“The focus of this entity is only to look into the future, see how customer requirements are changing, how global markets are and how things have changed there,” Wagh said.
The entity is tasked with the job of creating a five-year product plan, he added.
Tata Motors is the leading player in the CV space in the country. At the end of last fiscal, the company’s market share in the segment in the domestic market stood at 45.1 per cent, up from 44.4 per cent in 2016-17.
Commenting on the cost-saving measures adopted by the company, Wagh said the initiative helped accrue good cost reduction last fiscal.
“With the ideas generated last year, we continue to work during this year as well and there is a very good potential for cost reduction even this year,” he added.
With the significant increase in commodity prices this year, the cost reduction measures would further help the company in negating some of the cost increase, he added.
When asked about the quantum of cost-saving last fiscal, Wagh did not share details.
However, Tata Motors in an analyst meeting earlier this month, confirmed that it had realised savings of Rs 1,900 crore in 2017-18 as part of a turnaround strategy.
When asked about capex for the current fiscal, Wagh said, “Our capex generally has been around Rs 1,500 crore a year in CV business…We will continue at the same rate and in fact, the rate may go up slightly over the next two years especially because of the BS VI coming into force.”
He added that a significant amount of effort is going on in the company to meet BS VI emission norm compliance before the government deadline.
“We are tracking it on a weekly basis and as of now we are on track…,” Wagh said.
The company, which usually exports around 12-15 per cent of its total CV production during a year, is now scouting for new markets besides strengthening its presence in regions where it is already present.
“Our plan in a way is two-fold. Our first focus will be on increasing our presence in the existing markets and at the same time, we are also exploring some of the new markets. So we are looking at Latin America for example,” Wagh said.
The company has already entered some of the countries in the region, he added.