Simba Colt Motors bets on new Fuso model to capture light and heavy duty market
By Standard Digital Reporter
| May 30th 2013 | 3 min read
By Standard Digital Reporter
NAIROBI, KENYA: Simba Colt Motors, the franchise holder for Mitsubishi Motors and heavy commercial vehicles expects the entry of the new FUSO model to shake up the light duty and heavy Commercial truck market and fill the growing customer demand in the region.
The new line-up of fuel-efficient FUSO trucks will trade under the brand name ‘FUSO’. This is a move from the past where for the longest time the trucks were sold under the brand name ‘Mitsubishi Fuso’.
“There is no doubt there is stiff competition in the light-heavy duty commercial vehicle market, we have always maintained the leading position in the heavy commercial division in Kenya auto market.” Says Mr Adil Popat CEO of Simba Corporation. “We do believe that the new direction that combines German FUSO is a well known brand worldwide that will put us above the market,” he said in an interview.
The new Trucks are designed to address the global economy trend that shows significant growth potential shifting to developing markets in Africa.
The new Business Model is precisely designed to address these trends and uplift Daimler Trucks which owns 90 per cent of Mitsubishi Trucks and Bus Corporation based in Kawasaki Japan and dealership arrangement for FUSO Trucks through Simba Colt Motors for its operations in Kenya.
“The Fuso range of trucks that will be manufactured in the Daimler Oragadam plant in Chennai are based on Daimler Truck platform and meant only for exports. We plan to export 1,000 trucks this year to Asian and African markets beginning June 2013,” said Albert Kirchmann, head, Daimler Trucks Asia and president and CEO of Mitsubishi Fuso Truck.
Daimler Trucks Asia under the new Asia-Africa Business Model is moving towards an optimized footprint with two major production hubs in Kawasaki, Japan, and Chennai, India.
The Chennai plant will concentrate on export of the all-new robust FUSO trucks for select markets in Asia and Africa, thus, and on truck deliveries of Mercedes-Benz and BharatBenz trucks for India complementing the central Kawasaki production hub.
The German truck maker began operations at the Oragadam plant in Tamil Nadu in September. The unit currently has an annual capacity of 72,000 trucks. The five models of FUSO Truck range between medium and heavy duty (25 and 49 tonnes), light and medium tonne (between nine and 16 tonnes).
The Kawasaki plant is positioned as the central completely-built-up and knocked-down vehicles production hub especially in terms of delivering the highest standards to meet the ever demanding customer requirements for light-duty, medium-duty, heavy-duty truck products for Japan and international markets.
The Chennai plant will be complementing Mitsubishi Fuso Truck’s Kawasaki plant in Japan, and the combined target of Mitsubishi Fuso Truck and Daimler India Commercial is to double annual sales of Fuso trucks to 290,000 units by 2020.
"The countries being targeted are already being served by Japan. But India can serve these countries better than Japan or other plants of Daimler — given the proximity to Asian and African regions," said Albert Kirchmann, president and CEO, Mitsubishi Fuso Truck and Bus Corporation. According to Dr Kirchmann Daimler AG has no plans as yet to open a production plant similar to the one in Chennai or Kawasaki as the assembly plants located mainly in Kenya Morocco and South Africa is able to meet the current demand.
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