At the annual conference, Daimler India Commercial Vehicles introduced the MY24 BharatBenz portfolio against the backdrop of A robust performance, writes Richa Tyagi.

Daimler India Commercial Vehicles turns 11. The wholly-owned subsidiary of Daimler Truck AG marked a significant milestone for the India operations. In the inaugural address at the Annual conference at the Oragadam plant, Satyakam Arya, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of the company (DICV) reflected on the achievements and shared the future aspirations, underlining DICV’s commitment to bringing innovation, excellence and sustainability to the fore in the Indian CV industry. Reflecting on the performance of 2023, Arya expressed that the year 2023 was a pivotal year in the DICV’s history.

Referring to the impact that the CV market has seen in India with the mandate of 100 per cent air-conditioned trucks by October 01, 2025, Arya stated, “We have offered unmatched and unseen levels of reliability in all the products we have delivered to this market. We hear a lot about Aatma Nirbhar Bharat or self-reliant India and made in India for the world. At DICV, we’ve done it in the last 11 years.” He informed that the OEM has attained a 90 per cent localisation level of all our products in the market, more than 90 per cent, and for some close to 95 per cent. “We export about 30 to 35 per cent of our avenues. We are a net exporter and we export our products to over 60 markets around the world. In a short journey of 10 years, we have impacted many sectors of the Indian CV market,” he exclaimed. In 2023, DICV embarked on its journey into the next decade, referred to as the ‘DASHAK,’ with a clear focus on solidifying its position as a leading player in the Indian CV market.

Engineering safety and uptime

BharatBenz wants to live up to the assurance of being the most esteemed truck and bus brand in the Indian CV industry. It is banking on engineering, commitment to safety, and assurance of uptime. With the trust and respect of customers nationwide, BharatBenz sales and service locations span across India’s National Highways, covering the Golden Quadrilateral North-South and East-West Corridors. Customers on these highways are claimed to avail roadside assistance within two hours. With the safest crash-tested cabins in India, meeting the stringent safety standards of ECE R29-03, in line with European cab-crash regulations, the OEM has started on a promising note in the second decade of India operations.

CY2023 performance

In CY2023, DICV has attained record sales and revenue performance. The company’s domestic truck and bus sales grew by 39 per cent and revenue grew by 21 per cent over 2022. The bus volumes doubled in the same period, growing 107 per cent over 2022. The cumulative sales (including domestic and exports) grew by 13 per cent and the parts business grew by more than 21 per cent over CY2022. Commenting on the business performance, Arya explained, “Our best-ever sales and financial growth, since inception, was driven by excellent demand for our tipper and tractor-trailer product lines which grew 53 per cent and 79 per cent respectively compared to CY2022. A slew of strategic initiatives that we undertook in 2023 also helped us make informed decisions on costs, tackle headwinds effectively and sharpen our focus on key areas of our business.”

The business performance in 2023 was driven by several initiatives that DICV had undertaken as an organisation. Last year, the company is known to have attained its annual target of setting up 350 sales and service locations across India, expanding BharatBenz’s presence in new markets across the country. Manufacturing operations were streamlined and made cost-effective by introducing several digitisation initiatives such as automated workforce planning and predictive maintenance using data, and several other initiatives in the completion stage.

It all started with the OEM  revamping its entire BharatBenz truck and bus portfolio to comply with Bharat Stage VI (RDE OBD-II) regulations, with a greater focus on reducing the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO), increasing the productivity and offering industry-leading service intervals in India.

Sustainable transportation

On the sustainability front, DICV is committed to achieving 100 per cent carbon neutrality across its entire value chain by 2047. Having recently started its Total Quality Management (TQM) journey, which will last for the next five to six years, the company believes that it will play a vital role in making DICV a strong and sustainable business. Satyakam revealed that in 2023, nearly 85 per cent of DICV’s manufacturing operations run on renewable energy and nearly 90 per cent of its plant functions on upcycled water, reducing over 27,000 tonnes of carbon footprint. “In 2024, we aim to increase this from 85 to 90 per cent and we remain dedicated to enhancing diversity. Currently, on the diversity side, we are at 11 per cent, we aspire to elevate it to 14 per cent by the end of 2024,” stressed Arya.

With Daimler Trucks AG setting the benchmark in leading sustainable transportation around the world, the company in India aspires to increase sales of zero-emission vehicles to 60 per cent by the end of 2030 and by 2039 the company aspires to introduce a complete portfolio of zero-emission vehicles into driving operations in the market.

Satyakam admitted to moving very fast in developing technology that can transform the entire transportation portfolio to zero emissions in the coming years. If these trucks are present in India in the future, they can cover almost the entire CV market in India. “We are investing in two technology trucks, electric and hydrogen. We are also making rapid advancements when it comes to safety. We have come up with ‘Vision Zero’, which means zero accidents on the roads. We are working on advanced safety features which means not just on regulation, but beyond that,” he emphasised.

In line with DICV’s global strategy, DICV is driving innovation in the CV industry with India’s first FCEV luxury coach concept vehicle was built in partnership with Reliance Industries Limited with features including a range of 400 km @ 350 bar, 250kW power, and eight kg/tank H2 tanks that total to six. Pioneering safety transformation in the industry with the safest cabin in India – HDT cabin upgraded to ECE R29-03 safety standards, drive state monitoring in 2018, more than 60 per cent sales with fully air-conditioned factory fitted cabins.

Expectations from the Indian CV market in 2024

The CV industry is transforming on multiple levels. “In 2024, the truck market is projected to either remain flat at best or potentially decline by up to five per cent compared to the previous year,” said Arya. Conversely, the bus market is expected to grow significantly by about 25 to 30 per cent in 2024. Additionally, several trends are going to impact both the truck and bus market in India. “We have started CY2024 with great confidence, and with an ever-stronger product portfolio, engineered and packaged to drive business growth to new heights in 2024,” Arya said. The aim is to challenge ourselves and up the game on the TCO, uptime and reliability, all of which our customers will benefit from with our new MY24 heavy-duty truck portfolio. “These trucks reflect our highly evolved product development capabilities, which are being put to good use for the creation of new products to help answer future mobility needs,” he added.

Following its shop in 2023, DICV is set to launch all its MY24 BharatBenz heavy-duty trucks in the coming months. The first to be launched will be the all-new BharatBenz Rigid range, followed by the newly introduced AMT trucks and the all-new construction and mining truck Heavy-Duty (HD) range. In his statement regarding the all-new MY24 BharatBenz range, Sreeram Venkateswaran, President and Chief Business Officer (domestic sales and customer service), stressed the brand’s commitment to innovation and customer satisfaction. He highlighted BharatBenz’s success in the construction and mining sectors over the last decade and its proactive approach to continuously improving its offerings.

Venkateswaran also focused on the launch of the all-new Rigid HD range, promising best-in-class fuel efficiency, power, torque, safety, reliability, and service benefits. He said, “We are soon launching an all-new rigid HD range offering best-in-class fuel efficiency, power, torque, safety, reliability and service benefits. We are introducing the world’s best 12-speed AMT in our portfolio and will deliver an effortless driving experience and class-leading fuel efficiency in approximately five lakh  trucks around the world.”

The all-new BharatBenz Rigid HD range

The upcoming BharatBenz Rigid heavy-duty trucks with an April launch timeline offer a range of configurations including the 2826R (6×2), 3526R (8×2), 3832R (8×2), 4232R (10×2), and 4832R (10×2). These trucks will feature a new 6.7-litre, common-rail BSVI Stage 2 BharatBenz engine, designed to provide better acceleration, class-leading peak torque, improved durability, drivability, and reduced gear changes. Designed to excel in Indian conditions, the new BharatBenz Rigid range will offer unmatched reliability. Additionally, these trucks will offer various payload applications such as bitumen, bulker, Petroleum Oil & Lubricants (POL), widening the range of their customer base. The trucks will also feature an improved layout and a ‘cigar type’ After Treatment System (ATS) for enhanced performance and efficiency.

Introducing the 12-speed AMT introduced in BharatBenz trucks

BharatBenz is introducing its 12-speed Automated Manual Transmission (AMT) variants in its tractor-trailer and mining MY24 models. These AMT variants are available in models such as 4032TT, 5532TT, 3532CM, and 2832CM for long-haul and mining applications. They ensure a smooth transmission of power to the wheels with reduced shifting time, enhancing reliability and reducing the need for overhaul. Operable with a convenient steering column shift stick, the new AMT enhances driver comfort. Additionally, it is claimed to feature India’s safest cabin with AIS 031 certification and crash testing. The cabin features seven-layer heat insulation and a spacious 500mm wide berth, ensuring a comfortable and secure environment for drivers.

Construction and Mining HD range:

The redesigned BharatBenz construction and mining heavy-duty trucks represent a significant advancement in functionality, featuring several segment-first features as per company claims. Available in 2828C and 3532C configurations, these trucks are optimised to excel in surface transport construction applications and challenging terrains. Powered by high-power engines, they offer class-leading torque within their categories. The trucks have a chassis with higher yield strength, new service-free wheel hubs, and axles. These trucks are equipped with a revamped suspension system, providing higher ground clearance and have first-in-segment rear shock absorbers and hill-hold assist as standard features.

Venkateswaran mentioned that the MY24 BharatBenz range has undergone a comprehensive overhaul. He expressed confidence that the new trucks would elevate BharatBenz’s presence in the construction and mining industry, with tippers surpassing their predecessors in performance and features.

BharatBenz customers enjoy a range of high-value benefits that enhance their ownership experience. These include industry-leading longer service intervals, the best-in-industry manufacturer’s warranty, and a 48-hour service/repair uptime guarantee through the ‘Rakshana’ initiative. Additionally, fuel efficiency improvements further contribute to the overall cost-effectiveness of BharatBenz commercial vehicles. “To enhance customer success, we’re focused on developing solutions that improve driver comfort and safety, ensuring a better driving experience. Additionally, we’ve customised vehicles for specific applications, making them more suitable for diverse operational needs, concluded Pradeep Kumar Thimmaiyan, President of Product Engineering and Chief Technology Officer at the OEM.


DICV priorities and focus areas for 2024

At DICV the priority focus areas include ‘Product Leadership’. ‘Making Customers Successful’ and making DICV ‘Future-Ready’.  With the help of a strong product portfolio, the company expects to steer growth in 2024. The all-new range of rigid, all-new construction and mining range and the most advanced AMT in the world will be the MY24 BharatBenz range as per company claims. Apart from initiatives to ensure customer success, the company is focused on supply-side efficiencies like TQM for enhancing processes and enabling customer-centricity. The target is to achieve scope 2 CO2 neutrality of 90 per cent and the commitment to reaching 14 per cent gender diversity by the end of 2024.

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