Story by:
Anwesh Koley & Gunjan D. Bidani

Commencing operations in 1985, S-CCI India Limited is setting up a plant at Gujarat to expand its reach in the CV market. Set up in collaboration with CCI Corporation, Japan, the company, a leading manufacturer of coolants and brake fluids, is catering to OEMs like Maruti Suzuki, Tata Motors, Force Motors, Mercedes-Benz, SML Isuzu, TAFE, Komatsu India, Nissan, Ford, Hindustan Motors and Toyota. Enjoying a good presence in the aftermarket, the company is eyeing a larger pie of the CV market to fuel growth. As the CV industry shifts gears, introduces new products that comply with BSVI emission norms, S-CCI India is eyeing a greater share of the CV market. Building the Gujarat plant to address the needs of Maruti Suzuki, Tata Motors, and other OEMs that have a presence in the region, the company is also investing in technology to ensure quality and efficiency. Confident that the Gujarat plant will be up and running by 2022, S-CCI India, according to S K Singh, Director, S-CCI India Private Limited, is looking at certain synergies emerging with the new plant being built at Chennai, and at Gujarat. Currently, it is the Bhiwadi and Sitarganj plants that are addressing all the manufacturing needs of the company.

Working towards increasing its reach in the aftermarket, the company is keeping a tab on the regulatory changes and market requirements. Commanding a market share of 75 per cent, the company, according to Singh, is addressing the changing needs of the Indian automotive market, and especially the CV segments by leveraging technology and know-how. Emphasising on the rise in average speeds of CVs, and the changing requirement for coolants and brake fluids, Singh said, “S-CCI India is working closely with its OEM clients to apprise them of what it could offer to help address their requirements. We are investing in technology at the same time.” Developing new products like a superior DOT 4 brake fluid that has a higher boiling point of company has responded to the OEM requirement of 260-degree Celsius by using superior and specialised chemicals. Investing in stringent quality measures and testing equipment, S-CCI India has the capability to produce 4,500 kilolitres of brake fluid per year. This includes the superior DOT 4 brake fluid with higher temperature resistance and low moisture absorption.

Explaining that the superior DOT brake fluid has a high boiling point and vapour lock temperature throughout its service life, Singh mentioned, “The product also has excellent resistance to absorb and retain water.” “It has superior corrosion resistance too,” he added. Developed for fail-safe operation of CVs, according to Singh, the new fluid is claimed to have good temperature and viscosity characteristics as well. With very low change of viscosity due to outstanding low and high-temperature stability, the superior DOT 4 brake fluid will also find its way to the aftermarket. At the aftermarket level, it is expected to dial more safety and efficiency into vehicle operations. It is also engineered to address the changing requirements of average speeds going up and the quest for higher uptime and productivity. With modern CVs possessing higher electronic content (which is poised to go up with BSVI), the superior brake fluid, according to Singh, will further increase reliability. “It will also help aftermarket players and service stations to address the requirement of their CV clients to offer higher level of service,” mentioned Singh.

Like brake fluids, technology in coolants has been changing. S-CCI India is looking at introducing coolants with a longer life span. With an eye on BSVI, It is leveraging technology to introduce coolants that need to be changed in a span of eight to 10 years. Of the opinion that awareness for quality brake fluids and coolants is rising, Singh averred, “Vehicle owners should be looking at brake fluids and engine coolants that are recommended by the respective OEM.” “Doing so would ensure longer engine life and lower long-term repair and maintenance costs,” he added.

Offering ‘Heavy Diesel’ anti-corrosion coolant for CVs and off-road vehicles, S-CCI India is investing in environmentally-friendly ways to manufacture fluids and coolants. While it is promoting ‘Heavy Diesel’ anti-corrosion coolant for CVs by stating that it is highly advanced, and feature slow-depleting organic acids that guarantee full anti-corrosion protection for longer periods even in harsh conditions, S-CCI India is investing in R&D. Having introduced an ‘extreme’ long life anti-freeze coolant with unlimited mileage roughly three years ago, the company is moving in the direction of providing absolute protection from corrosion and cavitation.

Receiving an in-house R&D certification, S-CCI, taking into account the rising complexity and sensitivity in engines, is digging into the research and development carried out by its joint venture partner in Japan. Increasing its focus on process engineering and product validation, the company is taking steps to significantly boost quality. It is taking measures to improve manufacturing excellence with an emphasis on safety, productivity, and cost. Putting in place stricter quality guidelines for brake fluids and coolants, S-CCI India is offering long life products. Investing in an advanced process control lab with 100 per cent testing the international standards for brake fluids, the company is witnessing a market shift towards quality over cost. “Purely quality-oriented business module and suppliers is the trend,” said Singh. Looking upto the Government to addresses the issue of sub-standard brake fluids and coolants on the market, Singh said, “The introduction of regulations, which allow for quality checks and product standardisation is necessary.”

With electric vehicles set to change the industry dynamics, S-CCI is leveraging the know-how of its Japanese partner. “Research is being done to identify the optimum operating temperatures in the EV applications,” revealed Singh. On the issue of EVs affecting the Indian auto components industry, Singh said, “The Government’s target to go all-electric by 2030 sounds adventurous.” Expecting both the technologies – electric and IC engines – to co-exist, Singh explained that S-CCI is in talks with BYD to develop a product for the Indian market. Witnessing a positive growth of 7.5 per cent in the previous fiscal despite the prolonged downturn in auto sales, S-CCI India is increasing its reach in the export markets. It is exporting to Oman, Egypt, Bangladesh, and Nepal. Banking on high level of localisation (some of its products continue to be imported), S-CCI India is working with domestic suppliers to get the quality right. It is also working on getting the quantity right. Looking for significant cost advantages, S-CCI India is looking at good growth coming from the CV market.

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