German truck and bus maker Daimler India Commercial Vehicles (DICV) plans a product-offensive drive with a plan to introduce AMT variants to up its ante in the medium and heavy commercial vehicle (M&HCV) segment in this calendar year amid a flat growth outlook for 2024.

The company expects the total volumes of medium and heavy commercial vehicles in 2024 to remain flat mainly due to a likely slowdown in the first half on account of the high base effect and General Elections.

However, it expects to outperform the industry in 2024 supported by new product launches across three key segments where it achieved higher growth than the industry in 2023.

DICV plans to roll out 14 new trucks across heavy-duty rigid, tractor-trailers, and tipper segments. A new range of rigid trucks, which will come in five configurations and be introduced next month, is to come up with a new BharatBenz powertrain range.

“With this more efficient range of trucks, the company enters into new segments such as bulker and petroleum oil & lubricants transportation segment where BharatBenz brand has not been present,” said Sreeram Venkatesawaran, President & Chief Business Officer (Domestic Sales and Customer Service), DICV.

AMT trucks

While the company claims a strong position in the tractor-trailer segment, it seeks to further strengthen its position with the introduction of the all-new AMT (automated manual transmission) variants, aimed at offering better fleet fuel efficiency. These AMT variants will come in tractor-trailers and mining applications.

The company has already completed some trials and claimed to have received encouraging results for the AMT trucks apart from safety and comfort for the driver. AMT that the company is bringing to the market is a globally tested one - Mercedes Benz AMT. This has been fitted in more than half a million trucks across the world so far.

“We are bringing it at this time because we believe the market is getting ready for it. With all the investment and infrastructure that has been done and the customers are looking for better fleet utilisation and turnaround times, they are ready to pay more to enable that to happen. We believe this will up the game once again in terms of technology and in terms of what you can derive from the products,” said Satyakam Arya, MD & CEO, DICV.

In the tipper segment, which has been a very successful product segment for BharatBenz brand, a new range of tippers with stronger engine power and a lot of segment-first features in terms of improving fuel efficiency and reducing maintenance costs, will hit the market.

In the long-haul (multi-axle trucks) segment, the industry reported a degrowth or flat growth. DICV reported 22 per cent in its sales. In tractor trailers, which saw a good revival in 2023, DICV reported 79 per cent growth as against the market growth of 52 per cent. In the tipper segment, where investment in infrastructure spurred growth, the market had a growth of 11 per cent, while the BharatBenz brand grew at a whopping 54 per cent.