Ashok Leyland unveiled a slew of BS 6 compliant products in November 2019 where the company also discussed in detail about the new Mid-NOx technology to comply with stricter emission norms
Commercial vehicle major Ashok Leyland has unveiled its roadmap to comply with BS 6 emission norms due next year. The company took an innovative approach during its transition to BS 4 emission norms with iEGR technology and this time too the company has decided to benchmark the new emission norms to set its journey for the future. Auto Tech Review got a chance to speak to Dr N Saravanan, Chief Technical Officer, Ashok Leyland to know more about the company's approach in the new Mid-NOx technology to comply with the stricter emission norms.
Mid NOx Technology
Ashok Leyland has about 1,500 engineers in its Chennai R&D Facility that are currently working full time across engine development, chassis development as well as gearbox among others. Typically, the company spends about 2 % of its revenues, and that remains flexible to reach 3-4 %. The company claims to spend around Rs 700 crores over the last four years for the ecosystem upgradation across dealers, service teams and supply chain to comply with BS 6 norms. According to Dr Saravanan, Mid-NOx technology offers a blend of iEGR, SCR system and will enable compact design for incremental payloads, easier maintenance as well as reduce Ad-blue consumption. Ashok Leyland has leveraged its competencies in both iEGR technology as well as its sister company Albonair to develop the Mid-NOx technology.
Complexity in a vehicle is consistently on the rise and with the new emission norms, vehicle sophistication is bound to increase. Dr. Saravanan said that a lot of emphasis is being laid on simulation as the product development times have shortened and no company has the time to build & test prototypes every time. Ashok Leyland also banks on technical support from its sister company called Hinduja Tech that precisely focusses on building up advanced technologies across sectors. Together, we make sure that we have the right partnership across engine, powertrain and chassis space from a future perspective like CFT, structural analysis, said Dr Saravanan. Ashok Leyland also conducts physical activities as it has developed a component test lab for their respective testing individually, system test lab where the entire system can be put together and tested for robustness. Additionally, the Hinduja Group company also has vehicle level tests to test the product across torcher tracks such as rough roads simulating the scenario as well as on-road running, simulating the real world operations.
Ashok Leyland has the access to various international markets and complies with various norms as per the market demand. However, Dr Saravanan claims that it is important to build technologies that suit Indian duty cycles as they are unique in the world. BS 6 technology needs optimal temperature and engine performance levels to undertake chemical reactions. The company unveiled a slew of products in November 2019 that it claims have been tested for over two million kms till date, which is further expected to reach five million kms before the April 2020 deadline is implemented to ensure product robustness.