BKR Prasad, Tata Hitachi.
Tata Hitachi is harnessing its strong, localized manufacturing and design competence to enhance productivity, while lowering the life cycle costs of its customers, avers BKR Prasad, General Manager, Marketing, Tata Hitachi.

What demand do you see emerging for excavators in the coming years?
Tata Hitachi India is banking on its strong, long drawn, localized manufacturing capabilities and tailormade services to cater to the requirements of the construction and mining industries with its excavators and wheel loaders. The company sees firming up of demand for excavators in the coming years, led by rising infrastructure and mining activities in India. Demand will continue to be influenced by the 7- to 20-ton market, which accounts for over 80% of the sales.

In addition, demand for mini excavators will gain further traction as customers are becoming aware of the utilities of this category of equipment with its various attachments. Sales of mini excavators constitute around 10% of the total sales, which is likely to grow as the product is finding increasing acceptance in the rental market as well.

What is the company’s strategy to drive sales?
Competition is set to increase across the infra and mini segments of excavators and wheel loaders. Robust competition will ensure smaller lead times for manufacturers to develop and promote their upgraded products. In view of this, Tata Hitachi’s strategy will be to continue to expand its product portfolio.

Our best-in-class network ensures an unmatched customer experience. Tata Hitachi dealers provide support to the customers through parts and expert service. We also take pride in our marketing and service network of over 275 touch points – one of the largest distribution networks in the country. These inherent strengths have held the company in good stead and helped drive sales consistently so far.

Tata Hitachi will also bank on its fully localized manufacturing and design competence to develop products as per specific application requirements, backed by timely and cost-effective product support and timely customer support.

BKR Prasad, Tata Hitachi.

What gives Tata Hitachi products a competitive edge in the market?
Our products deliver higher productivity as they have features based on advanced technologies. While the company has a strong position in the excavator class of 10- and 20-ton and above, we are the pioneers in India for the mini excavator segment with products ranging across the 2-, 3, and 5-and 7-ton classes. This gives us an edge over other manufacturers in the mini excavator segment.

The Kharagpur Plant produces excavators ranging from 37-, 45-, 47-, 65-, and 120-ton classes for the mining segment. In the recent past, Tata Hitachi was importing higher capacity excavators from Japan, but is now increasing local production in line with the ethos of Aatmanirbharta.

We also have one of the largest customer bases in the country. This stems from our innate understanding the Indian market and application, and our ability to customise Japanese technology to meet Indian requirements.

What new technologies and value-additions is Tata Hitachi introducing in its wheel loaders?
Tata Hitachi is the only manufacturer to use hydrostatic technology in our 3.4-ton wheel loader, TL340H PRIME, which delivers about 20% more fuel efficiency. This machine is seeing an encouraging response from customers in a variety of applications. The advanced hydrostatic technology in this wheel loader eliminates use of conventional transmission. It handles the same payload while maintaining the lowest deadweight of the machine. This technology also increases efficiency by minimizing mechanical losses.

Our 5-ton wheel loader ZW225 is a perfect example of indigenisation of Japanese technology. This CEV-IV compliant wheel loader exemplifies Tata Hitachi’s commitment to offering the best value to customers in terms of reliability, productivity, and return on investment. Packed with state-of-the-art innovative technologies that are primed to deliver on this commitment to customers, this machine can deliver exceptional productivity, without compromising on fuel efficiency. ZW225 is a versatile Wheel Loader that effortlessly lends itself to a variety of applications, further maximizing the customer’s earning potential.

Tata Hitachi is adding more value to its wheel loaders with new attachments to make them more versatile for various applications. Attachments include specialized buckets for handling solid waste, and side tilt buckets for wheel loaders working in tunnels. In addition, we are also seeing demand shifting from the 3-ton wheel loader to the 5-ton with crushing and screening plants becoming bigger in size.

BKR Prasad, Tata Hitachi.

What customer benefits accrue from Tata Hitachi’s service contracts?
Rendering end-to-end services and support is crucial for driving sales. One of the key initiatives in this direction by Tata Hitachi are its Full Maintenance Contracts for servicing excavators and tipper trucks working in the mining industry. Our aim is to help customers derive total cost of operations.

Seeing the benefits, an increasing number of customers are opting for our Full Maintenance Contract agreements which include performance supervision and monitoring. Tata Hitachi has been able to ensure over 90% availability of the machines and assured performance. A case in point is the 1,00,000 hours clocked by Tata Hitachi’s EX2500, 250-ton excavator, which was delivered to Tata Steel in 2003, and continues to be under maintenance contract all through these years.

Tata Hitachi is now keen to introduce the Full Maintenance Contract to the infrastructure and construction segments where it offers its ‘Consite’ and ‘Insite’ telematics support. The company has a network of 52 domestic dealers who drive sales and render support to the company’s products.
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