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VOL 2 | ISSUE 4 | MARCH 2012

38 | Customer speak

39 | Travel and living

Building fleets A customer from Kenya talks about theTataMotorsvehiclesinhisfleet

04 | Cover story 10 | Interview

A wild time in Kenya OnwhatqualifiesKenyaasa paradise for a wildlife enthusiast

Getting it right every time Best management practices in Nepal that aided in business development

14| News

Journey to excellence Interview with Siddhartha Rana, Tata Motors Nepal distributor Managing complexity Interview with C Ramakrishnan, ChiefFinancialOfficer, Tata Motors

25 | In focus

Partners in progress Tata Motors helps Mozambique shift to CNG buses

42 | Crossword

Who am I? Identify the Tata Motors vehicles

18 | Spotlight

In the news Snippets on Tata Motors from around the world Tata Safari Storme The SUV that gives customers the go-anywhere ability All right turns The story of Tata Motors transformation into a global auto maker

28 | Photo gallery 30 | Events

Automobiles down the ages The history of automobiles depicted through stamps Auto Expo 2012 Bologna Motor Show

EDITORIAL TEAM Anisha Ashokan Gayatri Kamath Maya Gunavanthe Medini Bhatwadekar Nithin Rao Roxana Cooper Shalini Menon Shubha Madhukar DESIGN TEAM Abraham K John Ashwini Baviskar Sonal Sonavane A Tata Motors International quarterly Content and design by The Information Company Websites www.tatacarsworldwide.com www.cvglobal.tatamotors.com

35 | Product showcase

Features that make Ace Zip a smart micro truck


March 31st signifies the end of the financial year for several of our partners across the world. It made sense therefore to cover the concept of value in a slightly novel form in this issue of Strides. For the last decade or so Tata Motors has grown steadily in value, scope and range of operations through its domestic market presence, international business and good-fit acquisitions. The company is the worlds fourth largest truck and bus manufacturer. Along the way, Tata Motors has also invested in the growth and development of its channel partners, broadly through the transfer of two key items of value one, a wide spectrum portfolio of robust and world-class products, and two, knowledge. Knowledge is a broad word that includes an array of services that Tata Motors delivers directly to its channel partner it includes training of sales and workshop personnel, consultancy on big customer accounts, and transfer of tried-and-tested processes for efficient operations.

This issues cover story is a case study on how Sipradi Trading, Nepals biggest auto distributor, has evolved into a large, professionally-run model organisation with the help of management best practices, many of which have been imparted by Tata Motors. Our second major story is on Mozambique and talks about a unique value transfer comprising both products and knowledge. The Mozambique story is a good example of the deep-dive engagement and value addition that Tata Motors provides. Also featured in this issue of Strides is an interesting column by C Ramakrishnan, Chief Financial Officer, Tata Motors, who talks about how markets are affected by financial and economic volatility, and whether there is scope for a third kind of value transfer, namely financial support (in the form of planning, advice, processes or aid). Our other pages deal with a variety of stories, ranging from the tale of Tata Motors transformation from a domestic truck maker to a global automaker and a peek into the history of automobiles through stamps, to articles on new wheels Tata Safari Storme and Ace Zip. Theres a mixed bag of tales in this issue of Strides all wrapped up in a new design. We hope you like the new look and selection laid out for you. Regards, The Strides editorial team

March 2012 | Strides | 3

cover story

Getting it right every timeHow Sipradis mastery of best management practices has helped itheres no trick to excellence. Its about painstaking attention to detail rather than ad hoc sleight of hand. It calls for a deep understanding of the minutiae of running a business operation and a commitment on the part of the entire organisation to adopting best practices and following them so that they get it right every time. One remarkable example of excellence in action is Sipradi Trading, Tata Motors authorised distributor in Nepal. Today Sipradi Trading has become Nepals largest vehicle distributor with a 67 percent

grow into one of Nepals biggest vehicle sellers


market share in commercial vehicles and ranking second in passenger cars. It has the nations biggest network of sales and service centres and has sold more than 50,000 vehicles in Nepal since its inception in 1982.

Sipradi is the countrys largest importer of vehicles, in fact it accounts for over 60 percent of Nepals total vehicle imports. It employs only 500 people but contributes a significant amount to the countrys economy through taxes and investments. Far more significant is the fact that it has evolved into one of Nepals premier, professionally-managed

Corporate office and workshop of Sipradi Trading at Naya Naikap in Kathmandu

4 | Strides | March 2012

organisations with a strong commitment to excellence. In a place where talent drain to other countries is a big issue, Sipradi stands out as a professionally run organisation, which is a tribute to its people management. The company has achieved this through sheer hard work and a belief in unfailingly following best management practices and processes; most of which have been introduced, developed and further refined with the help of Tata Motors. At Sipradi, process orientation is not about breaking down a best practice into a series of steps. If anything, it is the opposite, ie, refining and tweaking the details until a process works so well that it is elevated into a best practice. Some of the best practices that Sipradi follows religiously are those that deal with boosting sales, inventory management, customer engagement and improving internal HR functions.

How process orientation helps SipradiImprovement

in overall performance management. Increased organisational efficiency. Changed focus from the rigidity of functions to processes. Stronger cross-functional interaction. Empowered employees leading to improved relationships. Utilisation of IT as an indispensible enabler. Heightened customer focus.

Super sales

fIGURe 1: saLes pLannInG and contRoL pRocess pIpeLIne During the vehicle buying process a customer goes through four distinct stages:C0 Prospective customers C1 Price enquiries C2 Orders booked C3 Final invoices

Sipradi follows the Tata Motors Sales Planning and Control Process (SPCP) that makes it easy to track prospective customers, monitor sales activities, quantify the vehicles

Front-end improvements

Back-end improvements Lower

Qualitative Achieving

improvements in retail marketing higher retail sales

and active inventory

levels Improving

internal efficiencies of systems and people

Leads to

Leads to

Higher market share and better brand visibility for Tata Motors

Better inventory management Availability of quality manpower Increased sales and higher ROI

March 2012 | Strides | 5

Customer care: Then and nowSipradi Trading CEO Shambhu Dahal talks about the changes and positive impact that process orientation has brought to the company In the old days a Sipradi customer had to wait for weeks and sometimes months for spare parts. This was because we didnt follow proper systems and processes in our operations. We had scarcity of resources, lack of standardised processes and procedures, inadequate facilities, and poor training and development programmes; all of which led to dissatisfaction among our customers. In the last 10 years, there has been a sea change in our business. We have 11 branches, 23 service centres and over 300 spares / lubricants retail outlets in Nepal. Our new workshop in Kathmandu, with an investment of over $1.5 million, is one of the largest and best equipped in South Asia. Recently we implemented the ISO 9001:2008 Quality Management System. We use Kaizen methodology to improve quality and productivity. We have a robust customer feedback and complaints handling system. As part of our CSR strategy, we are focusing on becoming a green distributorship by conserving energy. Our entire approach has changed to become customer-focused; in fact, we want to adopt a more proactive framework that involves measurement of customer perception. The time has come for us to earn the loyalty of our customer by providing products and services of the highest quality and greatest value.

that need to be ordered and predict the necessary inventory levels (see figure 1).

The process is especially helpful in managing the entire customer pipeline from initial prospects to proud owners. It also helps sales executives track how many of the former are necessary to drive up numbers of the latter. For instance, the SPCP process helps a sales executive define exactly what he or she needs to do to achieve a sales target of, say, 30 trucks in a month: How many prospects should be contacted? How many customers should be contacted per day? How many of these should translate into enquiries for quotations, and by what date in the month? Will any additional marketing activities be required?

yet rewarding experiences. The company now uses it across several businesses commercial vehicles, passenger cars, spare parts, etc.

The entire organisation had to adapt itself to the SPCP process. The sales team underwent extensive training. Sales managers made sure that the process was rigorously implemented. Interlinked IT systems were made available to all levels of the sales team to allow convenient entry and flow of information. A strong review mechanism was set in place to ensure the veracity of the information. With the help of SPCP, managers were able to take quick decisions and create more effective marketing campaigns, and Tata Motors got a better perspective of the Nepal market. SPCP impacts the entire organisation as it enables pipeline management, sales skills, knowledge, database management and monitoring customers and competition and market coverage. Sipradi was one of the first

Managing change

According to Saurya SJB Rana, President of Sipradi Trading, implementation of the SPCP process was one of the most difficult

6 | Strides | March 2012

distributorships to integrate the pipeline with their procurement model. Ordering was done on the basis of viable sales prospects and the distributor could successfully reduce stock levels and maintain an optimised inventory. There are HR related benefits as well. Sipradi was the first distributor to use the sales pipeline for identifying skill gaps in its sales force. In the last five years, it has further expanded the model to help in determining a sales persons performance and linking it to performance appraisal.


The SPCP is also useful when the markets are experiencing a downturn. Instead of focusing on retail conversion when the markets are slow, the sales teams focus on increasing the number of prospects (C0s) and customers who request a quotation (C1s); this generates a robust pipeline of good leads which can be encashed once the market revives.

of all Tata product offerings. with competitor products, highlighting the Tata advantages. Updated Tata and competition retail price lists. Application matrix of the vehicle as compared to the competition. Comparison of life cycle costs and operating economics of Tata and other vehicles. List of sales and service outlets in that region. Photographs / brochures of various applications of Tata vehicles. Model-wise sales talk. Testimonials from satisfied customers (of different applications).Comparisons

The best kit

Even the way Sipradis sales team approaches a prospective customer has been reinforced by a good practice the sales kit. All vehicle dealers keep sales kits ready but the ones used at Sipradi are exceptionally comprehensive. They contain:

Follow-up calls are an important part of Sipradis post service feedback process

Vehicles at Sipradi Tradings Soltee workshop

March 2012 | Strides | 7

The customers voice

The company has also put in place robust processes that deal directly with customers. One of the more significant ones deals with customer feedback. For instance, the Post Service Feedback process ensures that a Sipradi customer relationship officer will call every customer whose vehicle leaves the workshop within three days and ask if there are any issues or complaints. Complaints generated from these calls or any other source go through a rigorous Customer Complaint Management Process. This practice ensures that every single customer complaint is logged, made visible to all stakeholders (from functional heads to the CEO) and tracked daily. Sipradi uses the Redmine software that automatically generates emails to all stakeholders every day and tracks the number of days taken to resolve issues. Complaints that take over 15 days are reviewed at Sunday meetings; special cases are discussed at board level meetings. With top leadership keeping a close eye on complaints, the pressure is on the teams to keep customers happy!


of recent newspaper advertisements.

People positives

The focus on best practices has pervaded deep within the organisation. Aiming to become a company that people would die to work for, Sipradi hired external management consultants in 2006 to formulate a new HR process. After an extensive HR audit, research across Nepal, and benchmarking across subcontinent dealerships and firms, a roadmap was developed.

initiated to improve satisfaction levels and resolve complaints. Buyers within the last three years are contacted directly to garner feedback on issues and prospects of buying new vehicles. When Tata Motors offered to pass on details on Nepal leads to Sipradi, the company immediately put in place a new process to handle these leads with speed. Not only does this process track good prospects, it also goes a step further to resolve any older pending issues.

Where Sipradi takes processes to a higher level is the quickness with which they adopt new ones. Last year, Tata Motors started a Voice of Customer (VOC) Project and Customer and Sales Satisfaction Project. Based on customer feedback, action is

The end result is an all encompassing HR policy that covers structure, recruitment, selection, performance appraisal, promotions, employee classification, job descriptions, salary and benefits, training, grievance handling and so on. Today, Sipradi employees get above market benefits, personal accident insurance coverage, loans and financial support, etc.

Par excellence

To standardise and refine its processes to an external benchmark, Sipradi embarked on the ISO 9001:2008 certification process,

8 | Strides | March 2012

Launching the NanoThe recent Nano launch in Nepal is another example of how meticulous planning and processes can help in doing an otherwise complex task. Planning for the launch started months before the actual event. A crossfunctional team was formed to maintain a high-level perspective and track all activities that went into the event. The complete pre-launch activities relating to the Nano Yatra Nepal was planned and executed by this team. The launch event drew in nearly 5,000 people. A strong lead generation and management process which was put in place prior to the launch made it possible to effectively handle the huge amount of enquiries that came up during the launch. A daily reporting format was created for enquiries, testdrives, bookings, etc to streamline the operation; this was managed centrally. The delivery of 100 Nanos on the first day was a very difficult task to manage operationally: it called for collating bookings, tie-ups with financing companies, pre-delivery inspection and servicing, and the actual delivery at the mega event. It was dedicated teamwork and efficient processes that made it possible.

which was awarded in May 2011. The benefits are visible: A more effective, transparent, efficient management system. Better service quality leading to higher customer satisfaction. Reduction in operating costs. Better employee engagement.

The organisation is even keen on adopting the Tata groups own excellence methodology (called the Tata Business Excellence Model). Says CEO Shambhu Dahal, Many of the processes are the product of synergies in values and beliefs mutually held by Tata Motors and Sipradi. Many are also driven by the knowledge that only process and systems driven enterprises

can flourish in the future. We have found that through the years Tata Motors is always ready to help and guide their dealers to continuously improve and reengineer themselves, provided that the dealership has the humility to accept that they have a lot to learn. Not all processes are successful but the effort to strengthen processes and build a strong organisation will continue. Sipradis journey began with small steps but has taken the company a long way on the road to excellence.

Gayatri Kamath with inputs from Vinay N and Gurinder Singh, and special thanks to Rajib Ghosh

March 2012 | Strides | 9


Journey to excellenceIn an interview with Strides, Sipradi Trading Chairman Siddhartha Rana talks about processes and values, which are among the critical factors that make the Nepal distributorship stand out in the marketplaceWhat makes Sipradi stand out from other distributorships? Sipradi stands out among all other automobile distributors as the largest automobile distributor in Nepal which covers the full range of commercial as well as passenger cars manufactured by Tata Motors. No other distributor deals with such a large range of products within the territorial boundaries of Nepal.


ipradi Tradings upward climb began in 1996, when current chairman Siddhartha Rana took charge of the organisation. He inducted a new team of highly qualified professionals, facilitated a voluntary retirement scheme that led to 85 per cent reduction in the workforce and started Sipradi on its journey to excellence through absorption of several best management practices. Mr Rana strongly believes that an organisations success is linked to its ability to develop its processes, and that these processes help immensely in adding value for the customer, in gaining a competitive edge and in improving internal management and operations. In this interview, Mr Rana talks about the importance of processes and the impact it has had on the business.

What special or unique propositions do you offer customers? We score over competition as we offer the largest sales, service and spares network throughout the country. In addition, our relationship with financial institutions at most places where we are present gives us an added advantage in servicing the needs of our clients.

Systems and processes seem to be the focus points at Sipradi. What is the importance given to processes? Today, Sipradi is a systems and processdriven organisation, so much so that one of its five core values is system orientation;

10 | Strides | March 2012

What are the benefits from this process orientation? The process orientation has helped the company in many ways. It has improved overall performance management; increased organisational efficiency; changed focus from the rigidity of functions to processes; strengthened cross-functional interaction; ensured empowered employees, leading to improved relationships; utilised IT as an indispensible enabler; and most importantly heightened customer focus. The benefits translate into much more efficient operations, better controls and risk management. We would not have managed to grow and to continue to grow without a very coherent operating procedure being laid out.

in the hardware and software of the business for the years ahead.

What does the partnership with Tata Motors mean to Sipradi? Our association with Tata Motors is now nearly 30 years old and it continues to grow stronger with each year. We value our partnership with them because it gives us a wide range of commercial and passenger products to bring to our customers. Tata Motors is a well-respected global company with values and ethical standards, and we are proud to be their partners. We see a very bright future in representing Tata Motors as the company is clearly on the path to become a more robust global player.

What are Sipradis plans or aspirations for the coming year? One of Sipradis main priorities for the coming year will be to liquidate as much of our old stock as possible, and to protect and possibly increase our market share in all segments, given the fact that the automotive sector is one of the hardest hit in terms of decline in sales year-on-year. We will also take this period to revalue our investments

What, in your opinion, are Tata Motors strengths as compared to other automakers? Tata Motors strengths include its low cost of ownership advantage, engineering capabilities, global acquisitions and its ability to draw on best practices and knowledge available to it. Another strong advantage is its vastly diversified product portfolio, which puts it in a very good position as compared to other automobile manufacturers.

Nicolas Joseph Cugnot, believed to have designed the first self-propelled road vehicle in 1769, drove one of his vehicles into a stone wall and caused the first motor vehicle accident.

the others being integrity, responsibility, teamwork and respect. The system orientation core value reads: We value the importance and the outcome of being systems and process driven in all our operations. We further aim to implement best practices on a continual basis in order to achieve better efficiencies, dependability and competitiveness.

Tata Motors strengths include its low cost of ownership advantage, engineering capabilities, global acquisitions and its ability to draw on best practices and knowledge available to it.

March 2012 | Strides | 11


Managing complexityIn the last few years, Tata Motors has grown to become a $27 billion company with operations across the world and a product portfolio that spans the spectrum of passenger and commercial vehicle applications and includes iconic brands such as Jaguar and Land Rover. In this column, C Ramakrishnan, Chief Financial Officer of Tata Motors, shares his thoughts on the current state ofs an industry, automobile manufacturing is fairly capitalintensive. The lifeline of the industry lies in new products and automakers need to create and maintain a state of excitement in the marketplace, mainly through steady investments in new products.

the vehicle industry


In addition, the gestation period is generally high for capital investments: From the drawing board to the time a new product starts generating cash, it can take about fourfive years. Then there is a relatively high fixed cost base. But the most important factor is cyclicality and market uncertainty, whether it is in passenger cars or in commercial vehicles. With this, two things become clear. First, auto manufacturers such as Tata Motors

Advantage Tata Motors

Tata Motors has huge advantages in the commercial vehicles business: strong capabilities, large domestic volumes, and a scale that is comparable to any automaker in the world. In most of the segments, we are globally competitive. The scale also gives us advantages across the entire business chain, for example in distributor

need to continuously operate in a lean and cost-efficient manner. Second, we need to be careful about capital deployment and return on capital employed. Simply put, this industry is a high risk, high reward business where greater volumes lead to better profitability, and lower debt means that your balance sheet remains strong even in a downturn.

12 | Strides | March 2012

operations, dealer operations, supply chain management, etc.

New risks

Strategic support

For our overseas markets, we are looking at new ways in which the Tata Motors treasury, through Tata Motors Finance or other banking relationships, can help the IB business derive greater scale. Here, we should consider not just the ability to provide financial solutions to our customers, which will become even more important in an economic downturn, but also to channel partners. The ability to deliver this depends on how much capital we can allocate and how much we deepen our relationships with financing partners. We will have to do this differently in different markets through local partnerships and tie-ups. Our endeavour is to support IB in this and do it intelligently, meaningfully and efficiently.

A large part of our export volumes are from SAARC countries such as Sri Lanka and Bangladesh where currency and economic fluctuations are a big factor. The role that Tata Motors can play is limited but we can consider providing advice and consultancy on operations, revenue enhancement, cost management and foreign exchange management to our channel partners.

meticulous as it can be a differentiator for us. We have the opportunity to distinguish ourselves through excellence in service.

The other area where we can benefit our channel partners is IT support for meaningful and quick exchange of information. In India, for instance, our IT network links our channel partners. These systems can be customised to suit different geographies. The third area is support through spare parts and service offerings. We need to be more rigorous and

The currency markets have been particularly volatile in the recent past. When Indian companies thought the rupee would touch 40 against the dollar, it plummeted to 53. When everyone thought it would devalue further, it firmed up. We have also become a much more diversified, multi-locational global business. This requires much more robust systems, processes, standard definitions / language and metrics, commonly aligned objectives and approach to markets, and synergising on opportunities and relationships. Today Tata Motors is best positioned to take its products global; many of the attributes that Tata Motors represents are very relevant for emerging markets. In terms of scale and ability, we are at the stage where we can take the Tata Motors brand to the world. We are a responsible and customerconscious brand and we can demonstrate this in all our markets.

We have the added advantage of a much richer product line, with new generation products in the light, medium and heavy segments. Hence we have the potential and the opportunity to build a much stronger international business (IB) operation. From a strategic point of view, this is the right time to take our products to the world. Our focus will be on building our brand in a particular country, building a presence, building capability to serve our customers, setting up local operations, and so on. In other words, we are looking at new markets from a business rather than a sales approach. Decisions to enter new markets will be taken on the basis of long-term strategic thinking rather than flash-in-the-pan opportunities.

We have the added advantage of a much richer product line, with new generation products in the light, medium and heavy segments. Hence we have the potential and the opportunity to build a much stronger international business operation.

March 2012 | Strides | 13


In the newsAt the 82nd Geneva Motor Show, Tata Motors presented the Tata Megapixel, a new fourseater city-smart global range extended electric vehicle concept for the performance-seeking and environment-conscious motorist. Combining a lithium ion phosphate battery and an onboard petrol engine generator for recharging on the move, Tata Megapixel offers a range of up to 900km (with a single tank of fuel), path-breaking CO2 emission of just 22gm/km and fuel economy of 100km/litre (under battery only power). Speaking on the occasion, Prakash M Telang, Managing Director, India Operations, Tata Motors, said, Tata Megapixel, developed by our design centres in India, the UK and Italy, is our idea of a city car for discerning motorists in any megacity of the world. It is a result of the progress we have made on the Tata Pixel, displayed last year. It also denotes the companys future design direction. The Geneva Motor Show will be covered comprehensively in the

Tata Motors showcases Tata Megapixel

From left: Ratan Tata, Chairman, Tata Sons and Tata Motors; Cyrus Mistry, Deputy Chairman, Tata Sons; Ravi Kant, Vice Chairman, Tata Motors; Prakash M Telang, Managing Director, India Operations, Tata Motors; and Dr Timothy Leverton, Head, Advanced and Product Engineering, Tata Motors, with Tata Megapixel

events section in the next issue of Strides.

New distributor in Myanmar

Tata Motors signed a distributor agreement with Apex Greatest Industrial (AGI) for Myanmar on January 4, 2012, in Mumbai, India. The company will be selling the commercial vehicle and passenger car range from Tata Motors in Myanmar. AGI group companies deal in import of heavy and small

vehicles, retail of passenger cars, rubber plantations, real estate, construction, etc.

Kyi Thein (left), Chairman, Apex Greatest Industrial, being appointed distributor for Myanmar

14 | Strides | March 2012

New distributor in SpainTata Motors has appointed a new distributor in Spain Nijuler Automocion Siglo. The distributor agreement was signed on December 16, 2011, in Madrid. Nijuler Automocion has started operations with the existing dealer network to give them an assurance of continued Tata business support in Spain, and it covers marketing and sales of the entire applicable range of Tata cars (Vista), SUVs (Aria) and pickups (Xenon). Nijuler Automocion is led by Juan Ballesteros and his team, who have expert knowledge on the Spanish car market.

Regional Manager of North and West Africa Anil Sekhar and the Regional Director of West Africa Sudeep Ray handed over the keys to the Transport Minister of Ghana, Alhaji Collins Dauda, in a formal ceremony. The Indian High Commissioner to Ghana, Rajinder Bhagat, and the Board of Directors and employees of MMT attended the function. Eight personnel from MMT underwent training in India on the LPO 1618 buses. Extensive driver training clinics were held to get the drivers comfortable with the buses.

50 Tata Marcopolo buses delivered to GhanaIn a commissioning ceremony held on February 29, 2012, at the State House in Accra, Ghana, Tata Motors delivered 50 LPO 1618 Tata Marcopolo buses to Metro Mass Transit (MMT), a public transport company in Ghana. With this purchase, MMTs total fleet strength of Tata vehicles plying on Ghana roads has soared to over 140 buses.

Tata Ace Graduate Employment Programme launched in Sudan

hands for this project to provide self-employment to unemployed graduates.

A mobile vegetable shop on Tata Ace

Central Trading Company (CTC), Tata Motors distributor in Sudan, launched the Tata Ace Graduate Employment Programme in Khartoum State, Sudan, on February 25, 2012. The Governor of Khartoum State Dr Abdesl Rehaman Al Khidr, supported by the Minister of Social Development Madam Afaf Ahmed Abdelrehman, is the architect of the programme. CTC and Tata Motors joined

The project aims to distribute 1,000 units of Tata Ace, built to serve as cafeterias, mobile shops and container vans. About 250 distinguished guests attended the function and were addressed by RT Wasan, Head, International Business of Commercial Vehicle Business Unit Tata Motors; Dr Abdel Rehman Al Khidr; CTC Chairman Dr Amin Abdel Latif; and CTC President Ahmed Abdel Latif.

Tata Motors Indias most reputed company says Nielsen studyTata Motors has been ranked as Indias Most Reputed Company in the Nielsen Corporate Image Monitor (CIM) study 2011-12. Some of the key categories where Tata Motors ranked first was it being at the top for its familiarity, favourability and for being the most-admired company. It also ranked first for its corporate reputation index, which is the difference between goodwill scores of

A fleet of Tata Marcopolo buses

March 2012 | Strides | 15

Tata Motors and those of other companies. The company ranked second for its favourable media visibility and corporate social responsibility. The 11th edition of CIM covered 32 top companies in India, including multinational companies. Among the attributes studied were products / services, R&D, customer service, talent attraction, industrial relations, investment worthiness, trustworthiness and ethics, and communication of vision to stakeholders.

Dawnd Wellenkamp of Durban won an Apple iPad2, which was handed over to her by Virat Mehta at Tata Umhlanga, one of the Tata Motors dealerships in Durban.

Tata Motors strengthens online presence

The fan base of Tata Motors Tata Vista Ego Facebook page, started in March 2011, has grown to approximately 32,000 people. One of the recent initiatives was a competition with user-driven content the Tata Holiday Photo Competition where fans had to submit pictures of themselves on holidays. Results, decided by an online poll, were announced in January 2012.

An initial draw on the page was a Test Drive Competition, whereby anyone who test drove a Tata Vista Ego could participate in a lucky draw, with the winner receiving ZAR5,000 in cash or five advanced driving lessons. This competition was won by Fem Shaik, who was happy to accept the prize of ZAR5,000. The Facebook page is regularly updated and covers a wide variety of topics including Tata Motors news, marketing activities, driving tips, automotive news, and activation updates and reminders.

(SUV), Deepa Malik entered the Limca World Book of Records for becoming the first paraplegic woman to drive through the highest motorable road in the world. She crossed nine high passes and covered 3,000km in 10 days. Tata Safaris engine delivers a power of 140HP at a rate of 4,000rpm, making it a true glider on Indian roads. It is one of the most luxurious SUV models, providing utmost comfort with excellent safety features, which include airbags, anti-lock braking system with electronic brake force distribution and reverse guide system.

Tata Safari drives owner into Limca Book of RecordsDriving her customised Tata Safari sports utility vehicle

Tata Motors wins Star Performer Award

The Indian Engineering Export Promotion Council (EEPC) has conferred Tata Motors with the Star Performer Award (2009-10) for its outstanding contribution to engineering exports in the motor vehicle large enterprise category.

Dawnd Wellenkamp (right) receiving an Apple iPad2 from Virat Mehta, Senior Manager, Mumbai Corporate, at Tata Umhlanga

Biswadev Sengupta (right), CEO, Indonesia Operations, Tata Motors, receiving the Star Performer Award from Jyotiraditya M Scindia (left), Union Minister for Commerce and Industry

16 | Strides | March 2012

On behalf of Tata Motors, Biswadev Sengupta, CEO, Indonesia Operations, Tata Motors, received the award from the Union Minister of State for Commerce and Industry Jyotiraditya M Scindia. Since 1967-68, EEPC India, the apex body promoting bilateral trade and investment in the engineering sector, recognises contributions of its member exporters, who circumvent innumerable challenges and uncertainties to emerge as leading exporters. Through the Export Excellence Awards, EEPC India awards its member exporters for their outstanding performance in different engineering export categories.

Participants planning strategies at the FOCUS 2X conference

Tata Motors ranked first among Indian automobile brands

The Brand Wagon-Synovate Best Brands Survey 2011 has ranked Tata Motors as No1 across all automobile brands in India. Tata Motors has been ranked No5 across all brands in India and No1 across all automobile brands in the results of the national survey, published in Brand Wagon (The Financial Express supplement) dated December 20, 2011. Through sustained innovations and out-of-the-box ideas, Tata Motors has managed to successfully break through the advertising clutter during the year. Its sustained advertising has strengthened the salience of the Tata Motors brand in the customers mind and

made its products more desirable compared to other automobile brands.

Team-building outdoor activities at FOCUS 2X

target of doubling sales volumes every year. The intent of having the IB team from all global markets and every function under one roof was to align them to the business strategy for the next few years and particularly to detail out the tasks for the year ahead.


The annual business conference of the Passenger Car Business Unit, International Business (IB), Tata Motors, was organised from February 23-25, 2012, at Khandala a picturesque hill town about 100km from Mumbai. The theme of this years business conference was FOCUS 2X, an acronym for: Fabulous products. One team. Customer orientation. Urgency. S 2X stands for the stretch

Since the team size had grown by about 15 percent in the last 12 months, it was also an opportunity for the team to connect face-to-face in an out of office setting. The respective Regional and Functional Heads outlined their specific goals and targets to those assembled. The team then divided into cross-functional groups to detail opportunities and challenges in achieving the region-wise targets for the year ahead. This was later presented to the entire team who crossquestioned the assumptions and plans with the view of making the plans robust and watertight.

March 2012 | Strides | 17


Tata Safari StormeThe all-new Tata Safari Storme brings back the magic of true-blue SUVs by retaining the go-anywhere ability that enthusiasts desire, while being sharper looking, more fuel-efficient, versatile and capabletanding out from the current genre of competing soft-roaders, the new generation Tata Safari Storme epitomises style and performance, true to its four wheel drive pedigree, with a host of technologies and new exteriors and interiors. Five adults, two children and their paraphernalia can be transported with ease. Tata Motors new sports utility vehicle (SUV) marries a smart, new exterior with a class-leading, technology-laden chassis, which was first premiered on the Tata Aria crossover. While gaining all the car-like attributes of the crossover chassis, which translates into excellent steering, manoeuvrability, handling and braking, the vehicle retains its renowned off-road abilities, ably assisted by the two-speed transfer case. The new Safari Storme gains an all-new interior, which is elegantly styled with contemporary new materials and finishes, while retaining class-leading spaciousness. The vehicle will be offered in Europe with a 2.2 litre direct injection common rail (DICOR) turbo-diesel engine, with variable turbine technology (VTT), particulate filter and a five-speed manual transmission. The Safari Storme is targeted to retain CO2 emissions of less than 200g/km.


A new chassis frame which is torsionally stiffer than its predecessor by orders of magnitude: Helps in quelling vibrations, works in concert with safety systems in the event of an accident, is lighter and contributes to improvements in ride and handling. Contemporary chassis underpinnings abound: New front suspension (double wishbone type with coil springs over shock absorbers enhances front-end feel). New braking system (disc brakes on all four wheels, with ABS 8.1 by Bosch, ensure assured stops at all times). New steering system (hydraulically-assisted rack and pinion gives the steering precision demanded of contemporary SUVs).

SPECIFICATIONS Model Engine Max engine output Max torque Steering Gearbox Length x width x height (mm) Wheelbase (mm) Ground clearance (mm) Tyre size Safari Storme 2,179cc , 16 valve DOHC VTT DICOR (common rail turbo diesel) 110KW at 4,000rpm 320Nm at 1,700-2,700rpm Hydraulic power-assisted G-76 (Mark II) 5-speed manual; synchromesh with overdrive 4,650 x 1,965 x 1,922 2,650 200 235/60 R 17

A brand new interior which heightens the elegance factor, while retaining the Safaris traditional virtues of comfort, space and flexibility. The colours, materials and textures are all chosen with a careful attention to detail and contemporary trends. A fully integrated roof-mounted airconditioning unit for the second row of seats is available. Front-facing seats in the third row for small children, which fold away when not in use.

STANdArd ANd OPTIONAl FEATurES Dual SRS airbags ABS with EBD Limited slip differential Super select four-wheel drive: electronic shift, on-the-fly Dual AC with electric control and roof-mounted separate blower (concealed) for rear passengers Leather upholstery Lumbar support adjustment for drivers seat Electrically-operated rear view mirrors Front and rear fog lamps Radio / cassette / CD player with antenna Engine immobiliser Reverse parking system Alloy wheels Remote-assisted central locking

Information contained in this article relates to the LHD European / Euro 5 version of the Safari Storme.

A new exterior skin for the Safari Storme replaces the well-hewn, outdoorsy styling of the Safari. This is analogous to a mature man donning an elegant suit, instead of his leather jacket, denims and boots, while still retaining his love for the outdoors. Some of the new enhancements include: Projector beam headlamps. Understated chrome accents in all the right places. A choice of 16 or 17 inch alloy wheels. Ultrasonic reverse parking sensors.


All right turnsThe story of how Tata Motors grew from a domestic truck maker into a global automaker with a wide array of passenger, utility, commercial and application vehiclesor a vehicle buyer today, Tata Motors presents a vast choice of options from the smallish Nano and Vista to the upper class Jaguar XF and the powerful Land Rover Freelander2. Then there are the gleaming Hispano and Marcopolo buses, the Magic vans and the heavy-duty Prima models. The brand new product range is the most dramatically visible effect of the transformation of Tata Motors. Set up in 1945 two years before India independent it plugged along for decades making trucks and buses for India. And yet, though the trucks were robust, the business model was not: Commercial vehicle sales were volatile, driven up and down by economic factors such as the cost of money, inflation, import-export regulations and taxes.



Realising the need to create a sturdier base for itself, Tata Motors spent the first decade of the 21st century in transforming its business and scope of operations. Today it has grown to a $27 billion organisation that has revenues flowing in from cars, utility vehicles, buses and application vehicles; it has manufacturing and assembly sites in Asia, Africa and Europe; and it has acquired companies such as Hispano Carrocera, Daewoo Commercial Vehicle Company and Jaguar Land Rover that provide a turbo boost to the balance sheet.


2005 - 2006

Indias first indigenously developed passenger car Tata Indica unveiled

Truck division of Daewoo Motor Company, South Korea, acquired

2005: 21 percent stake in Hispano Carrocera, Spain; 2006: joint venture with Marcopolo, Brazil

Heres a quick look at the moves that made Tata Motors the smooth-running business engine it is today.

Leadership with vision

One of the biggest game-changers for Tata Motors was the decision to change its business model and launch passenger cars. The move was necessary. At the beginning of the 1990s, around the time when the Indian government embraced economic liberalisation and allowed foreign brands to set up shop in India, Tata Motors found itself in a very vulnerable position because its only business was trucks and buses, and it was in need of newer technologies. Foreign entrants with deep pockets could have easily made inroads into Tata Motors territory. To make matters worse, the scope for growth in India was then limited because Tata Motors already had an overwhelming share of the commercial vehicles market that was subject to the vicissitudes of business cycles. It had to break out of this trap. When the company Chairman Ratan Tata suggested a way out making cars many analysts got all set to write off Tata Motors because they thought a truck maker could not and should not make a car. Tata Motors went ahead with its plans and, on December 30, 1998, introduced the most

A strategy of growth

Another significant move by Tata Motors was the decision to grow strategically through acquisitions. Mr Tatas view was clear: if you have to be competitive in India, you have to be competitive in the world; otherwise, the Indian advantage will get eroded one day as foreign companies expand their presence in India. Though Tata Motors had exported small numbers of commercial vehicles for many years, the destinations were mainly developing countries. Breaking into the large and lucrative developed country markets needed a different approach. It needed acquisition of new technologies and production facilities. The breakthrough came in March 2004, when Tata Motors acquired the truck division of South Koreas troubled Daewoo Motor Company. The acquisition gave the Indian company a large commercial vehicles operation in the Korean market, with a strong potential for export.

modern car ever to be designed by an Indian company: the Tata Indica. Within a week of its unveiling in 1999, the company received 115,000 bookings. In two years, the Indica became the number one car in its segment. Today, after the success of the Indica, Indigo Vista and Manza platforms, Tata Motors ability to compete in the car market is now taken for granted.

2009 2008 2008

Iconic Jaguar and Land Rover brands acquired

Small wonder Nano unveiled

The world truck Prima launched

(Clockwise from top left) Tata Motors manufacturing facilities in India, South Korea, South Africa, and the UK

This acquisition was a first for Tata Motors. The Korean unit got much-needed financial stability, and Tata Motors moved one step further towards becoming a global automotive company. The rebranded Tata Daewoo Commercial Vehicle Company launched several new products in the Korean market, while also exporting these products to several international markets. Today, twothirds of heavy commercial vehicle exports out of South Korea are from Tata Daewoo.

New technologies

The JLR story

Subsequently, Tata Motors sensed an opportunity in the fully-built bus segment and decided to look at increasing its footprint in the bus and coach segments in Europe, Africa and Latin America. This led to the acquisition of a 21 percent stake in Hispano Carrocera of Spain, the leading European bus and coach cabin maker, in 2005. The bus portfolio was further boosted in 2006 by a joint venture with Marcopolo of Brazil, another global leader in bodybuilding for buses and coaches. Today, a significant number of

But the biggest impact on Tata Motors came through its buyout of the Jaguar and Land Rover (JLR) brands in 2008. The company came under severe criticism for this move: Ever since Ford put JLR on the block and Tata Motors emerged as the preferred bidder, commentators and analysts had categorised the deal as audacious, illadvised, risky and overambitious. Very few were willing to give much of a chance to Tata Motors in reviving the iconic auto brands, something that Ford had failed at but not for lack of trying. The biggest fear was that JLR was overpriced at $2.3 billion and would overly stress the Tata Motors balance sheet. Indeed, in 2009, Tata Motors

Tata Motors buses with Marcopolo bodies roll out from a new plant in Dharwad, Karnataka. In 2009, the company picked up the remaining stake in Hispano, making it a fully-owned subsidiary known as Tata Hispano; today Tata Hispano buses are selling in several European countries.

22 | Strides | March 2012

announced a loss of over $500 million in its consolidated accounts.

Yet Tata Motors managed to accomplish what Ford could not do put Jaguar and Land Rover back in the black. Last year (a little over two years after the buyout), JLR contributed a whopping GBP10 billion to Tata Motors balance sheet, with GBP1 billion as profits after tax. This remarkable turnaround was the result of an intensive management exercise that focused on shaving off excess costs, keeping a very close eye on cash flows, trimming down the workforce, pushing JLR brands in emerging markets such as China and India and, most significantly, developing a new range of contemporary and fuel-efficient models. Through these global acquisitions, Tata Motors imbibed world-class technology, built up a portfolio of well-known brands and established its profile as a global automaker.

Big wheels

On the other end of the spectrum from the small Ace is the heavy-duty Prima, a truck envisioned by Tata Motors as one that would match the worlds best. The creation of the Prima directly benefited from the Daewoo acquisition. Ravi Kant, Vice Chairman of Tata Motors, explains: We had been planning for some time to make trucks for the international market. But when our acquisition of the Daewoo commercial vehicles operations happened, we decided to build the world truck jointly with the Korean unit.

carrier Magic. The mini-truck contributes almost 38 percent to total export volumes of Tata Motors commercial vehicles.

Spirit of innovation

Whats new is a question of paramount importance in the auto world. While customers are happy to recognise improvements, what makes or breaks an automakers reputation is radical innovations. Tata Motors too has found that success lies on the path of innovation. Back in the early 2000s, the Indian commercial vehicles market was bursting with new opportunities. The governments highway and rural road expansion programmes had opened up a new scenario with massive new demand created for smaller trucks to act as feeders plying between villages and small towns. For instance, 10 one-tonne vehicles could split the cargo of a 10-tonner and carry it to 10 different final destinations. That is how the idea of the less-than-atonne Ace mini-truck originated. The Ace was launched in 2005 and became a big hit. The company has built a 250,000-vehicles a year capacity plant to produce Ace and its variants, which includes the small passenger

Prima is indeed an engineering marvel its truck cabs have been styled in Italy, and know-how for the chassis frame has come from Mexico; the engine technology is from the US and Europe and gearbox expertise from both the US and Germany; while the suspension has its origins in the US, the sheet metal dies have been sourced from the best manufacturers in Japan and South Korea. Tata Prima has already begun its international journey at South Africa. Soon the truck will be in the hands of customers in the Middle East and South Asia. The success of the Ace and Prima platforms has led to Tata Motors now being able to offer a commercial vehicle at every possible tonnage point from the low-end 0.5 tonne Ace Zip to the high-end, heavy-duty 65 tonne Prima.

Small wonder

But the biggest example of innovation is the Tata Nano. Mr Tata had for long felt that the need existed for a small peoples car, especially in India. His vision of a lowcost affordable car was one that did not compromise on safety, comfort or quality. A casual comment during an interview that a peoples car should cost about Rs100,000 ($2,000-2,500 according to then prevailing

March 2012 | Strides | 23

exchange rate) was taken by the media to imply that Tata Motors would launch Nano at that price point. The misquote led to a Herculean task for the company creating a car at Rs100,000 in a market where the nearest competitor cost 2.5 times as much, that too without compromising on value to the customer, aesthetics or safety and environment requirements.

network of more than 650 delegates across the world.

To make the vision a reality, Tata Motors found that it had to look at radical or disruptive innovation to find solutions. In fact, it took innovation in technology, materials and design, and a six-year journey to create Nano. When Nano was unveiled at the January 2008 Auto Expo, it became the cynosure of not just the global media but also the global auto industry. Tata Motors had done what big names such as Ford, Nissan or GM had said could not be done. Today the Nano has found a ready market in international markets such as Sri Lanka and Nepal. But more significantly, it is a testament to the companys innovative spirit and has helped put Tata Motors in the spotlight.

As a result of the international thrust, the Tata Motors brand is now highly visible in several markets. Tata Motors buses are used as safe and luxurious transportation by Saudi Arabian schoolgirls. In Haiti, Tata Xenons and Safaris are used for much-needed rehabilitation work in the aftermath of the earthquake that rocked the country in January 2010. Tata Ace is working its magic in markets such as Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Africa as an affordable goods transport option. In South Africa, Tata vehicles are zipping shoulder-to-shoulder with bigger brands. Manza is already in Nepal and Sri Lanka, and Vista is cruising in South Africa, Ghana, Nepal, Italy, Sri Lanka and Turkey. With a strong international presence, a portfolio of robust brands and a ranking among the top vehicle sellers in several markets, Tata Motors has come a long way from its old role as a domestic truck maker. Today it has no compunction about going head-to-head with leading auto brands the world over.

Going global

Today the company has manufacturing and assembly plants across Asia, Africa and Europe, and a distribution and after-sales

Based on the article All right turns, Tata Review, May 2008

Ratan N Tata, Chairman of Tata Sons and Tata Motors, driving the first Tata Indica off the assembly line in 1998

PM Telang, Managing Director, India Operations, Tata Motors with the Range Rover

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Partners in progressBy helping Mozambique shift to CNG buses, Tata Motors has delivered a low-cost, high-value solution to the countrys need for public transporthe country of Mozambique in East Africa is looking to upgrade its infrastructure and speed up its development programme. And one of its partners in this journey is Tata Motors. Motors has participated in the nations effort to modernise infrastructure.


Tata Motors has given the countrys public transport system a major boost not only has it convinced the authorities to opt for 150 CNG buses that will use local fuel rather than imports (Mozambique happens to be sitting on huge reserves of natural gas), it has also provided the much-needed consultancy on how to operate and maintain large fleets of high-tech buses. By providing customised buses that are low on maintenance and upgrading support infrastructure for fuelling CNG buses, Tata

Vintage wheels

A large part of Mozambique still has one leg in the past. Using road transport here means climbing on to old buses, chapas (minibuses), kombi-taxis, laranjhinas (taxi-scooters) or pickups (also known as bakkies). There are only two or three large bus companies in Mozambique and a recognised shortage of buses in the capital city of Maputo as well as the rest of the country. Maputo has more than one million inhabitants but the public passenger transport is mostly informal mainly 15-seater chapas that are second- or third-hand Toyota vans. The minibuses and vans are operated by small firms that receive no government subsidy, credit or

Tata Motors contributes to Mozambiques effort to modernise infrastructure with CNG buses

March 2012 | Strides | 25

In Focus

grants. There is one state transport company Transportes Publicos de Maputo (TPM) that used to run about 90 large buses. However, due to adverse conditions, the fleet size progressively dwindled. And though there are several private companies that run long-distance services, these too have ageing buses that are hardly luxurious or even comfortable. In short, Maputo needed new and modern buses.

A Tata CNG bus cruising the roads in Mozambique

other African countries were expected to visit Maputo and the government wanted to project the right image.

Fuel factors

In Mozambique, most of the vehicles run on diesel, which has high sulphur content. This leads to higher maintenance costs as the sulphur affects engine parts. This despite the fact that Mozambique is home to huge reserves of natural gas and CNG is actually around 35 per cent cheaper than diesel. Keeping the long-term interests of the country in mind, Tata Motors along with Tata Holdings Mocambique Limitada (the local distributor) tried to convince the Ministry of Transport and Communications to buy new CNG buses. In fact, Tata Motors was the first to propose CNG as an option. Then another factor came into play: Maputo was to host the All-Africa Games in September 2011. Several dignitaries from

The Ministry of Transport and Communications decided that the time was right to introduce new buses in Maputo. Since the government was already in talks with Tata Motors, a high-level delegation from the ministry and TPM went to India to visit the Tata Motors facilities. The delegation was first taken to the bus plant in Lucknow in north India where they inspected the full range of Tata buses (diesel, CNG, petrol, low-floor, semilow floor, rear engine, etc). The technical team from TPM studied various options and held several discussions with the product, sales and marketing teams of Tata Motors and Tata Holdings Mocambique.

Best choice

The final choice was the LPO 1613 bus with Marcopolo body. The bus met all local conditions, had a lower life cycle cost and was a good product platform to quickly rejuvenate the bus fleet. Since the CNG buses would be a new venture, the delegation went to New Delhi (capital of India) to study the operations of Delhi Transport Corporation

26 | Strides | March 2012

(DTC), the main public transport operator in New Delhi. They visited the Millennium Park bus depot, which is the largest bus station in the world, and spoke to the service staff there about the maintenance of fleet buses. Seeing the workshop and the entire aftersales support process, the delegation was completely satisfied and went on to place the order for 150 CNG buses. The supply of buses started in April 2011 and the entire order was executed by August 2011, well before the All-Africa Games.

were dedicated to the CNG buses to ensure quicker uptime.

Ideal fit

Strong support

The company also took some proactive steps such as ordering and stocking critical spare parts before shipments started; hiring a team at the distributor especially for these buses; appointing a customer care manager to act as a single-point solution provider for all issues. In the Tata workshop, seven bays

But in the meantime, Tata Motors was delivering value of another kind transfer of knowledge. The company went the extra mile to conduct intensive training in service, maintenance and operations: Imparting three-level service training to TPM and the distributors technicians at the Lucknow plant. Deputing a dedicated Tata Motors customer care manager for the first six months to ensure that all after-sales processes are implemented at TPM and Tata workshops in Maputo. Deputing three engineers from Tata Motors production plant to give handson training on fleet maintenance.

Then when Mozambiques first CNG buses started rolling on the streets, a new problem came to light. The CNG filling stations in Maputo had slow filling nozzles meant for cars, which meant buses took as much as 4550 minutes to fill up their 600-litre tanks. Tata Motors helped the filling stations to procure appropriate nozzles for buses and fast-filling receptacles for buses; now the waiting period for filling buses is just a few minutes. Tata Motors CNG buses were showcased during the All-Africa Games and used to transport players as well as the general public. By demonstrating its strong after sales support and supplying much-needed consultancy, Tata Motors has smoothened Mozambiques path to adopting new technology. Gayatri Kamath, with inputs from Srinivas Jagathkar, Rajesh Khanna and Rajiv Jaiswal

Over and above the after-sales support was the work done on the buses themselves. The new CNG buses were modified further to meet TPMs exact requirements: The rear windshield was blanked for lower maintenance. The glass was removed and replaced with fibrereinforced plastic. The rear door was modified with additional stanchion pipes for ease of entry and exit. Electronic day-viewable display boards were installed that would display destinations and routes in Portuguese.

Henry Ford installed the worlds first conveyor belt-based assembly line around 1913-14, where the Model T was assembled in 93 minutes.

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photo gallery

Human ingenuity saw som e early inventors consider wind-drive n vehicles. One of the first to do so was a 14th century Italian physician and inventor Gui do da Vigevano, who in 1335 cam e up with the design of a wind wa gon, featuring a windmill on the back of a wooden carriage with gears and wheels.

th da Vinci came out wi inventor Leonardo In 1478, legendary ately it remained ropelled car. Unfortun his design of a self-p red vehicle, which designed an armou ly on paper. He also on in France. Chteau at Amboise is on display at the

Automobiles down the agesThough automobiles are ubiquitous around the globe today, they were rare in the early part of the 20th century, despite decades nay, centuries of efforts by engineers and technicians trying to master the art of making a small carriage move on its own volition. How modern day vehicles evolved is a fascinating story. Nithin Rao traces the history of the automobile.

A Europea n priest, in ventor, ma astronome thematicia r, cartograp n, her, diplom polyglot, F at and erdinand V erbiest is b have built elieved to the first w orking stea vehicle for m-powere a Chinese d emperor in 1672.

oseph Nicolas J inventor am, an In France d with ste Army; perimente x French Cugnot e s for the esigned d vehicle to have d powere believed e is hicle. in 1769, h -propelled road ve lf e the first s

28 | Strides | March 2012

German inventors and businessmen Gottlieb Da imler and Wilhelm Maybach cam e out with their version of an inte rnal combustion, petrol-driven engine and a four-wheeled vehicle . In 1890, they established Da imler Motoren Gesellschaft (DM G), selling their first vehicle with an engine branded as Da imlerMercedes, two years late r.

In the UK, in 1801, Richard Trevithic k became famous for driving his Puffing Dev il locomotive on the roads. The British vehicles were large and caused enormous damages on the roads.

were car manufacturers The worlds first 1889 and d and Levassor in French Panhar . Peugeot in 1891

ed that the first It is widely acknowledg obiles with internal modern autom powered with combustion engines erged out of petrol (or gasoline) em towards the workshops in Germany th tury. Karl Friedrich end of the 19 cen sidered to be Benz (1844-1929) is con l-powered the inventor of the petro the Benz Patent automobile called s patented in Motorwagen, which wa January 1886.

Etienne Lenoir, a Belgian (wh o was granted French citizens hip later), designed the first inte rnal combustion, single-cylinder , two-stroke engine in 1859.

Ultimately the title of the father of the automobile was given to Henry Ford, an engineer with the Edison Illuminating Company, who invented a self-propelled vehicle called the Ford Quadricycle in 1896. Mr Ford built a 26 HP automobile in 1901 and launched his famous Model T a motor car for the great multitude in 1908.

March 2012 | Strides | 29

Auto expo 2012

Tata Motors unveiled Tata Safari Storme, Tata Ultra and Tata LPT 3723 at the New Delhi Auto Expo 2012 in January. The company also showcased its alternate fuel technology capability through Tata Nano CNG, Tata Indigo Manza dieselelectric hybrid car, Tata Starbus fuel cell (hydrogen) and Tata Magic Iris CNG. Displays included Tata Sumo Gold in passenger vehicles and Tata Prima 3138.K AT, Tata Venture ambulance, Tata Ace Refresh and Tata Super Ace (left hand drive) in commercial vehicles, as well as concept vehicles.


From left: Ravi Kant, Vice Chairman of Tata Motors; Ratan N Tata, Chairman of Tata Sons and Tata Motors; and Cyrus Mistry, Deputy Chairman of Tata Sons at the Auto Expo 2012

From left: Girish Wagh, Head, Passenger Car Operations, Tata Motors; R Ramakrishnan, Vice President, Commercial Passenger Car Business Unit, Tata Motors; Ravi Pisharody, President, Commercial Vehicle Business Unit, Tata Motors; PM Telang, Managing Director, India Operations, Tata Motors; and Dr Timothy Leverton, Head, Advanced and Product Engineering, Tata Motors

The Tata Pixel concept car was the cynosure of all eyes

Tata LPT 3723 at the stand


The Tata Motors passenger vehicles stand at the expo

captions Tata Indica Vista Concept S2

32 | Strides | March 2012

Tata Motors participated in the Bologna Motor Show in December 2011. Aria Euro V and Xenon Euro V made their European debut at the show. Aria Euro V received a very positive feedback from the dealers, media and the industry experts. Xenon Euro V became one of the first pickup models introduced that conforms to Euro V emission standards. The other Tata vehicles showcased were Indica Vista and Tata Super Ace. Two special editions of the Indica Vista Vista Bi-color and Vista LX, as well as a petrol / CNG bi-fuel version were also part of the show. The event registered more than 840,000 footfalls in nine days of opening to the public.

Bologna Motor show

Team Tata at the stand

March 2012 | Strides | 33



Tata Aria Euro V at the Tata Motors stall


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The Tata Motors stall at the Bologna event

Ace ZipTechnologically superior, stylish and versatile, Ace Zip, the smart micro truck earns good profits for the customer through better performance, better safety and better comfort. Ace Zip comes with a warranty of 36,000km or 12 months and is the only vehicle in the sub-600kg category to be powered by a water-cooled engine.

March 2012 | Strides | 35

product showcase


Strong cabin with frontal crash protection compliant to front pendulum crash test. Wide windscreen ensures excellent driving visibility. Safe night driving enabled by large clear lens headlights. 12-inch radial tyres for better stability. ELR seat belts for added driver and passenger safety. Grab handles for greater security.

PerFormance Powerful, water-cooled and low-maintenance engine enables longer trips. Best-in-classfuelefficiency of 27kmpl. 600kg payload-carrying capacity. Max speed 50kmph Max gradability 22 percent.

Fact File Engine Power Torque Gearbox Wheelbase (mm) Steering36 | Strides | March 2012

Greaves 600W, single cylinder Loading deck (mm) water-cooled diesel engine Gradability (%) Minimum turning circle (m) GVW (kg) Kerb weight (kg) Payload (kg) Length x weight x height (mm) 11hp @ 3,000rpm 31Nm @ 1,600-1,800rpm TA 59, 4 forward, 1 reverse 1,650 Mechanical rack and pinion

1,685 x 1,480 x 400 22 7 1,285 685 600 3,020 x 1,480 x 1,800

Engine capacity (cc) 611 cc


Stylish exteriors and full monocoque body gives feel of a car. Trendy and elegant headlamps. Stylish dashboard and digital instrument panel.


Spacious, comfortable cabin with roof liner to prevent heat dissipating into cabin. Easy access to dashboard controls, dashboardmounted gear lever creates more space with no hindrance between driver and co-driver. Car-like combi-switch and synchromesh gearbox, vents for fresh air. Sliding seat for the driver, ease of entry and exit due to optimum ingress height and wide door opening angle. Window winders for easy winding.


Small turning diameter of 7m allows easy navigationthroughsmallbylanesandtrafficprone streets. High gradability of 22 percent to traverse difficultgradients. Large loading area of 2.5m2 for all types of loads. Strong load body of 1.2 mm thickness.March 2012 | Strides | 37

Customer speak

Building fleetsA customer from Kenya and owner of a large construction company, NM Dave, speaks about the Tata Motors commercial vehicles in his fleetWe have around 50 Tata Motors commercial vehicles and have had a pleasant experience with Tata LPK 2516, Xenon 2.2L and Super Ace which we purchased from Tata Africa Holdings (Kenya). The services from Tata Kenya have kept these vehicles on the road and relatively problem-free. The performance and fuel consumption of the vehicles is excellent. The parts availability for all Tata Motors models is good. The technical and driver training imparted to our team was helpful in maintaining and utilising our fleet to an optimum level. Tata Kenya is coming up fast in this part of the world. We have become a loyal customer purely because of the excellent services rendered. We at DM Enterprises would like to say a big thank you to all concerned at Tata Motors. NM Dave Director, DM Enterprises

The DM Enterprises team with some of their Tata Motors vehicles

Crossword answers 38 | Strides | March 2012aCross: 4. Safari, 5. Starbus, 8. Nano, 10. Megapixel, 11. Vista down: 1. Daewoo, 2. Marcopolo, 3. Xenon, 5. Sumo, 6. Sierra, 7. Prima, 9. Ace

A wild time in KenyaWith its world-famous national parks and awe-inspiring jungle safaris,enya is known for its wildlife parks and exciting jungle safaris shown on the National Geographic channel. The word safari itself originates from the East African language Kiswahili, which is the national language of Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and means long journey. It also refers to the big game hunts in the vast reserves of Africa undertaken by groups of people in 4x4 SUVs (think Tata Safari). For a wildlife enthusiast, Kenya easily qualifies as a paradise as it offers pristine

Kenya easily qualifies as paradise for a wildlife enthusiast


natural beauty and a variety of wild animals, be it the lions of Maasai Mara game reserve, the gigantic elephants of Amboseli National Park, the rhinos of the Nairobi National Park, the flamingos of the Nakuru National Park the list goes on. Equally fascinating are the white sand beaches of Mombasa and Malindi along the 300-mile coast by the Indian Ocean. As soon as I landed in Nairobi for my sixmonth post-graduate trainee rotation, I made up my mind to make the most of the opportunity and visit a couple of game reserves. All wildlife reserves in the country

Jagged spots and short tassel of hair on its tail define Maasai giraffes, found in the wilds of Nairobi, Kenya

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travel and living

are maintained by the Kenya Wildlife Service, a government organisation.

Adventure in the woods

My first trip was a weekend getaway to the Nairobi National Park, the only wildlife park bordering a national capital. Incidentally, it also borders the Tata Kenya office, and the road leading to the east gate of the park was just a stones throw away from my office window. For the safari, I and my three colleagues used a Tata Sumo, which truly lived up to its reputation as it tackled the jungle terrain with utmost ease. As we drove into the forest, the first animal to greet us was a stout rhinoceros. We readied our cameras and leaned out of the windows to get the best shot.

and playing with each other. It was an enthralling 10-minute wait before the giraffes decided to give way for us to go. Next in the list of animals that blocked our way were zebras. A scintillating sight the only time I found so many pinstripes in my life was while watching a baseball game of the New York Yankees. There were herds of deer grazing along with the zebras.

As the Sumo trudged deeper into the forest, we kept spotting giant ostriches, wildebeests, hundreds of deer and wild buffaloes. Suddenly, a huge giraffe stopped us short. We stopped the vehicle and were admiring the giraffe when two others joined the party. The trio were busy munching leaves from the treetops nearby, pushing

In natures lap

Our next visit was to the Maasai Amboseli game reserve (now Amboseli National Park), an elephant reserve project and home to the largest elephants on earth. It is located in the Rift Valley Province, at the KenyaTanzania border, and about 50km from Mount Kilimanjaro, the worlds tallest free-standing mountain. The reserve is situated in the middle of a rich ecosystem spread across more than 80,000sq km. Amboseli means salty dust in Maasai language and refers to the dust from the volcanic ash of Kilimanjaro. A volcano-turned-into-mountain, Kilimanjaro has a flat tabletop peak. The famed Maasai warriors and herdsmen were the inhabitants of the Amboseli forest and Kilimanjaro. We saw dozens of elephants grazing around in the lush green grasslands of Amboseli. We noticed that even the female elephants in Africa had

We had roamed the forest for nearly three hours, and the daylight was fading. We had seen many animals but were yet to see the lion. It took us another 30 minutes, however, before we could spot the king of the jungle. We came across a truly majestic and magnificent pack of lions. Walking calmly on the mud track, the lions did not even care to turn around and look at the red Tata Sumo following them a mere 5m behind and the four pairs of admiring eyes following every movement of theirs. We followed them for a good 15 minutes before they decided to launch their prowl for prey and disappeared into the bushes.

Herds of deer are a common sight in Nairobi National Park

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Amboseli is home to some of the largest elephants on earth

tusks, unlike their Indian counterparts. The mammoths were far bigger than the Indian elephants, and their enormous ears constantly waved back and forth as they grazed and played with each other. After dark we retired to our bandas, a complex of cottages surrounded by electric fencing. We sat outside the banda in the moonlight after dinner. We were in the middle of the dense African jungle with Mount Kilimanjaro towering above us and wild beasts hunting for their prey. It was one of our most thrilling experiences.

Meeting the tribesmen

Next morning we came across other animals including hyenas, hippos, rhinos, wildebeests, deer, ostriches, impalas, cape buffaloes, zebras and a host of birds. After a quick meal, we set off to the Maasai village. A famed tribe of East Africa, the Maasai are slender and tall and wear bright red clothing and sport a lot of jewellery. Mostly herdsmen, they lead a nomadic pastoral life. They live in small communities in groups of 150-200, and build their homes with mud, cow dung, hay and ebony sticks. Their communities are fenced with dried shrubs and ebony sticks, and live without fear of the wild. When a Maasai boy attains manhood, he sets out into the jungle armed with only a spear. He

is supposed to kill a lion and present its head to the community leader (who is the eldest male in the village). He is then pronounced a man and is eligible to marry.

The Maasai tribe leads a nomadic pastoral life

Magesh Kumar

We were welcomed by the Maasai with traditional songs and dance. They proudly showed off some of their skills such as making fire out of two sticks and the art of house construction. We were then taken to their marketplace where they showcased chains, necklaces, bracelets, bangles, animal toys, dolls and vessels made out of material available in the forest. They even sold teeth and claws of lions and cheetahs. Our stay at one of the worlds most well-known wildlife parks was an unforgettable and exciting experience, one that would remain etched in our memories forever.

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Who am I?1 3 4 6






7 8 9



A10 11



Set out on a desert adventure with this off-roader. 5. A star performer that carries many. 8. Small in name but seats a family of fivecomfortably. 10. A mega concept that is set to take the world by storm. 11. Explore open vistas with this sturdy vehicle.


DOWN1. 2. 3. 5. 6. 7. 9.

A name that brings to mind heavyduty trucking. A bus brand ready for tough roads. An inert gas by name but accelerates to top speeds. Heavyweight like Japanese wrestlers. Sails through rugged mountain ranges smoothly. Holds prime position among trucks. Tops in navigating narrow lanes with heavy loads.

Answers on page 38

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travel and living


bal Presence

Distribution network

Manufacturing bases in India

r&D centres

Manufacturing and assembly operations (through subsidiaries, associate companies, franchisee or joint ventures)

India (Pune, Jamshedpur, Lucknow and Dharwad), South Korea, Spain and UK UK, South Korea, Thailand, Spain, South Africa, Bangladesh, Ukraine, Myanmar and Senegal

Jamshedpur, Pune, Lucknow, Pantnagar, Sanand and Dharwad