Tata Motors to expand to southern markets

| Updated on: Jun 01, 2015
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To get 30 dealerships in the next 6-12 months; half of them to be in the south

In a bid to ramp up its presence, especially in the southern markets, Tata Motors is undertaking one of its biggest dealership expansion drives.

The company plans to appoint 30 more dealerships for its commercial vehicles in 6-12 months across the four regions in the country.

Half of these will be in South where the auto-maker finds itself under-penetrated compared with other regions.

Five of the new dealerships will be in Tamil Nadu, two in Kerala and the rest across Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka.

“We are looking at towns and cities of smaller population of 50,000-2 lakh in the South. This would be largest in terms of the number of dealerships being appointed in one year,” said R Ramakrishnan, Senior Vice-President (Commercial Vehicles Business Unit) at Tata Motors.

The dealerships would be rolled out on a franchisee model. At present, the country’s largest commercial vehicles manufacturer has a total of 34 dealerships in the South, compared with 40-60 across other regions.

In terms of market share, the company gets most sales from the East, followed by the North. While its share in the West is at par with its national average, the share in the South is lower.

Tata Motors is hoping to change that statistic with the new roll-out. “We are trying to have specialty dealerships that address part of the product range. Earlier, it used to only full-range dealerships, now it would be only small commercial vehicle dealerships, which would be smaller format to cater to vehicles such as Ace and Magic Iris,” Ramakrishnan added.

Tata Motors, which has six plants in the country, has a portfolio of commercial vehicles including new generation Prima, Ultra, Ace, Xenon and its brands of trucks and buses.

After-sales focus These dealerships would be at par with passenger car or retail outlets, with air-conditioners and quality services. For the drivers, who bring in their vehicles for servicing, Tata Motors will also provide a resting place, lockers to keep their personal valuables, free towels and soaps, and subsidised or even free food.

The company, which is the country’s largest commercial vehicle manufacturer, is also looking at increasing the number of container workshops to 400 in the current financial year. At present, the Mumbai-based company has a total of 240 container workshops.

Further, Tata Motors is also looking at equipping more number of dealers to be able to offer mobile workshop services. Mobile workshops are useful for highway assistance and towing services. At present, the company has more than 100 fully-loaded mobile workshops. By the end of the year, all its 600 workshops will be able to offer on-road assistance.

Published on January 24, 2018

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