The company has adopted a modular platform as well as the iGen6 technology for its 18.5 -55 tonne BS 6-compliant vehicle range in order to make them robust for varied applications as well as markets
Ashok Leyland has introduced its AVTR range of BS 6-compliant trucks. The company claims that the new range has underwent a most rigorous testing schedule in the CV maker’s history, as it developed over 100 prototypes that have been tested for six million kms across diversified terrains to prove the technology robustness. The vehicles have also been put through two lakh hours of simulation testing as well as 30,000 hours of system testing for multiple applications, in order to build on its performance. Ashok Leyland AVTR range has not only tested its vehicles inside the lab or its testing circuit, but also in the customer’s hands across mines, high altitudes, high temperatures among others.
Ashok Leyland already enjoys an access to Euro 6 expertise based on its presence across international markets, but decided to develop a new solution altogether to comply with stricter emission norms in India. The company has leveraged its competencies it garnered during the developed of iEGR technology as well as of its sister concern Albonair, an aftertreatment specialist, to roll out the iGen6 technology. The new technology offers an optimal blend of iEGR and SCR technology to enable a compact design, incremental payload as well as low AdBlue consumption in the vehicles. Given the unique duty cycles that the Indian markets witness across long haul, or intra-city bus, the company believes that the iGen6 technology is robust enough to cater to various market requirements.
Ashok Leyland has invested significant time in upgrading the base engine it used in BS 4 to comply with BS 6 norms without significant reduction in vehicle fuel efficiency. The company decided to benchmark BS 6 norms for future vehicles and opted for a modular platform that funnels three platforms into one. The chassis has undergone a significant change; however, it will inherent from BS 4 such as front and rear axles, gearbox among others. The company opted for a modular structure to reduce complexity in building a vehicle as per the customer’s needs faster and offer combinations that are suitable to their respective needs.
The new modular platform enables the company to offer a whopping six lakh unique truck combinations that opens up a plethora of opportunities for its customers. Ashok Leyland now offers a loading span in a range of 18-32 feet with change in every two feet. Customers can now choose the vehicle frame thickness among 6 mm, 7 mm or 8mm as per its vehicle’s applications. With four engine, options, H6 200 hp, H6 350 hp, N4 250 hp and N6 360 hp, the engine flywheel interface coordinates remain the same that can be mated to 6-speed, 8-speed or 9-speed gearbox. Ashok Leyland’s engineers have now opted for a wider radiator that allows for increased air flow and better ground clearance, thereby leading to improved performance. The design protected steering system enables the company to opt for a right hand drive or a left hand drive without much effort.
Ashok Leyland believes that with the introduction of iGen6 and modular platform, it is also well covered for various upcoming regulations such as CAFÉ norms and RDE. Dr N. Saravanan, CTO, Ashok Leyland stresses that the platform is here to stay for next 20 years as it is designed to offer multiple options of loading spans, cabins, suspensions and drivetrains. And to suit their respective needs, these combinations would be offered to customers through a custom built product configurator, he added.
Overall, Ashok Leyland has spent Rs 500 crores over the last four years aimed at upgrading the entire ecosystem that includes supply chain, service teams as well as dealers. Moreover, the company is also now focussing heavily on digitalisation that will include prognostics & diagnostics, telematics for vehicle health management as well as fuel & tyre management. We are also looking at meeting various requirements, in terms of infrastructure development across the after-sales network and skilling the workforce across workshops to troubleshoot problems faster, Dr. Saravanan noted.