Established in 1945, Tata Motors is India’s largest automobile company, with revenues of Rs 24,000 crore (USD 5.5 billion) in 2005-06. The company began manufacturing commercial vehicles in 1954 with a 15-year collaboration agreement with Daimler Benz of Germany. It is the leader by far in commercial vehicles in each segment, and the second-largest in the passenger vehicles market with winning products in the compact, midsize and utility vehicle segments. The company is the world’s fifth-largest medium and heavy commercial vehicle manufacturer.
Areas of business
Tata Motors’ product range covers passenger cars, multi-utility vehicles as well as light, medium and heavy commercial vehicles for goods and passenger transport. Seven out of 10 medium and heavy commercial vehicles in India bear the trusted Tata mark. The company developed India’s first indigenously developed light commercial vehicle, India’s first sports utility vehicle and, in 1998, the Tata Indica — India’s first indigenously manufactured passenger car. Within two years of launch, Tata Indica became India’s largest selling car in its segment.
Commercial vehicle business unit
The company has over 130 models of light, medium and heavy commercial vehicles ranging from two tonnes to forty tonnes, buses ranging from 12-seaters to 60-seaters, tippers, special purpose vehicles, off-road vehicles and defence vehicles.
Passenger car business unit
The company’s passenger car range comprises the compact car Indica, the midsize Indigo and Indigo Marina in both petrol and diesel versions. The Tata Sumo, the Tata Safari and its variants are the company’s multi-utility vehicle offerings.
In addition to the growth opportunities in the domestic market, the company is pursuing growth through acquisitions. In 2004, it acquired the Daewoo Commercial Vehicle Company, Korea’s second-largest truck maker, now named Tata Daewoo Commercial Vehicles Company. In 2005, Tata Motors acquired a 21-per cent stake in Hispano Carrocera, a reputed Spanish bus and coach manufacturer, with an option to acquire the remaining stake as well.
Research and development
Tata Motors invests approximately up to 2 per cent of its annual turnover on research and development, with an emphasis on new product / aggregates development and technology upgradation. Its Engineering Research Centre in Pune employs over 1,400 scientists and engineers and has India’s only certified crash-test facility and hemi-anechoic chamber for testing of noise and vibration.
The company also draws on the resources of leading international design and styling houses like the Institute of Development in Automotive Engineering, SPA, Italy, and Stile Bertoni, Italy. The company has also been implementing several environmentally sensitive technologies in manufacturing processes and uses some of the world’s most advanced equipment for emission checking and control.
Tata Motors has led the Indian automobile industry’s anti-pollution efforts through a series of initiatives in effluent and emission control. The company introduced emission control engines in its vehicles in India before the norm was made statutory. All its products meet required emission standards in the relevant geographies. Modern effluent treatment facilities, soil and water conservation programmes and tree plantation drives at its plant locations contribute to the protection of the environment and the creation of green belts.
Tata Motors’ vehicles are exported primarily to Europe, Africa, the Middle East, South and South East Asia and Australia. The company also has assembly operations in Malaysia, Bangladesh, Ukraine, Kenya and Russia. Over the years, the company has received more than 50 awards from the government of India’s Engineering Export Promotion Council, for its export initiatives. While currently about 14 per cent (as on March 31, 2005) of its revenues are from its international business, the company intends to increase its international business through organic and inorganic growth routes.
Tata Motors has made substantial investments in building associate and subsidiary companies that complement and support its business activities. These include:
- Tata Daewoo Commercial Vehicle Company, manufactures heavy trucks ranging from 15T GVW to 45T GVW. Tata Motors acquired this company in March 2004.
- Tata Cummins, a joint venture with Cummins, USA, manufactures Cummins engines for Tata Motors.
- Telco Construction Equipment Company, a joint venture with Hitachi Machinery Company, Japan, is engaged in the manufacture and sale of earthmoving machinery and construction equipment such as hydraulic excavators, cranes and wheel-loaders.
- Tata Technologies, provides IT support in the areas of engineering design, development and validation, business information systems and ERP systems.
- HV Axles, manufactures axles for Tata Motors’ medium and heavy commercial vehicles.
- HV Transmissions, supplies gearboxes for the company’s medium and heavy commercial vehicles.
- Tata Holset, a joint venture between Holset Engineering Company, UK, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Cummins Engine Company, USA and the Tatas (Tata Motors, Tata International and Tata Industries are shareholders). Incorporated in 1994, this company manufactures turbochargers for engines made by Tata Cummins as well as other auto manufacturers.
- TAL Manufacturing Solutions, manufactures painting systems, welding lines, material handling systems and robotics. It also develops factory automation solutions and provides consultancy services in the field of manufacturing processes and factory layouts.
- Concorde Motors (India): Retails Tata Motors’ range of passenger vehicles.
- Tata Precision Industries, Singapore and Tata Engineering Services, Singapore, are engaged in the manufacture of high precision tooling and spare parts, and warehousing, respectively.
- Nita Company, Bangladesh, is engaged in the assembly of Tata vehicles for the Bangladesh market.
- Tata Motors has been chosen as India’s Most Trusted Brand in cars in a Readers Digest-AC Nielsen consumer survey in 2006.
- Tata Motors’ mini-truck, Ace, which has created an all-new category in the commercial vehicles market, received the BBC-Top Gear’ Design of the Year 2006. The company’s Starbus low-floor city bus and the Novus heavy truck were adjudged second and third respectively.
- For the second consecutive year, Tata Motors was rated by Auto Monitor as the ‘Commercial Vehicle Manufacturer of the Year’ for 2006.
- The Commercial Vehicle Business Unit won the CII-Exim Bank Award for 2005 for Business Excellence, for being a role model of excellence in management. The award particularly recognises excellence in the management of quality as a fundamental process.
- The two divisions of the company also won the Tata Group’s JRD QV Awards for Business Excellence in 2005.
- The Jamshedpur plant and the car plant at Pune received the Union Ministry of Power’s National Energy Conservation Award, which recognise significant initiatives to reduce energy intensity and improve energy efficiency. The Jamshedpur plant won the award for the fourth year in a row. The Commercial Vehicle Business Unit and the Passenger Car Business Unit also received the CII’s National Award for excellence in energy management. The Foundry Division at the Pune plant received the Gargi Huttenes Albertus Green Foundry of the Year Award. ……. any many more….!!!
Tata Motors has manufacturing plants at Jamshedpur (eastern India), Pune (west), and Lucknow (north) as well as a nation-wide sales, service and spare parts network focused on providing users with easy-access service solutions.