Friday, 27 April 2018

Ford India launches cool, capable, connected compact utility vehicle Ford Freestyle in Chennai

Ford introduced India’s first compact utility vehicle, Ford Freestyle for Indian consumers at a compelling price starting from Rs. 509,000 in Chennai recently.

The all-new global product from Ford combines SUV-like robust design, benchmark performance, innovative technologies and outstanding fuel efficiency – for greater choice to customers. The brand new CUV is available in four variants across two fuel options and six new colours.

“The all-new Ford Freestyle is a cool-new car for the young, new age, emerging Indian customers who aspire to own an SUV-like vehicle,” said Anurag Mehrotra, President and Managing Director, Ford India. “Freestyle will meet this unmet need of customers and enable them to own a vehicle that combines both SUV styling as well as capabilities, at a price that they want.”

Capable & safe

The Freestyle comes paired with Ford’s all-new, three-cylinder 1.2L TiVCT petrol engine that is small, light, strong and delivers outstanding fuel efficiency. The naturally aspirated engine will generate best-in-class 96 PS of peak power and 120 Nm of torque to deliver Ford’s fun-to-drive DNA.

Consumers will continue to have a choice to opt for Ford’s trusted 1.5L TDCi diesel engine that generates class-leading 100 PS peak power and 215 Nm of torque.

Both engines are paired with an all-new, five-speed manual transmission that’s sportier, quicker and enhances its fun-to-drive capabilities.

This new manual transmission has almost 15% lighter and helps improve fuel economy while reducing NVH. It requires 40% lesser gear oil than its predecessor too. Drivers will experience slicker, more responsive gear shifts when they behind the wheel, enhancing Freestyle’s sporty appeal.

Adding to the list of all-new features and technologies, Ford has introduced innovative and first-in-class intelligent technology, Active Rollover Prevention (ARP) with the Freestyle. The system works with Electronic Stability Control and applies brakes on relevant wheels to decrease engine torque and help prevent any potential rollover situations.

Freestyle will deliver sportier performance in all driving conditions and will feature a uniquely tuned suspension with TCS, ABS with EBD, hill launch assist, a segment first, and uniquely tuned EPAS among others.

The Freestyle will continue Ford’s leadership on safety, offering standard dual airbags across the variant line-up. For those looking for greater safety, Freestyle will offer up to six airbags on top Titanium+ trim.

Cool & compact

The latest Ford looks modern, aggressive, inviting and ready for action, whether on or off-road.

Featuring a striking-look, and a commanding stance, the Ford Freestyle uses design elements common to more expensive mini SUVs. The unique Freestyle grille with three-dimensional mesh gives this car a sportier look.

The front bumper has sculpted sections – that inspire a sense of confidence and add to its SUV-like look & rigidity. The skid plates on the front and rear, make the car a perfect companion whether on-road or off-it.

Freestyle, with its best in class ground clearance of 190MM, can conquer challenging surfaces with greater ease and will feature wider 15-inch tyres with aggressive black alloys.

The CUVs interiors feature sporty, dual tone interiors. Like all Fords, there are 20 storage spaces throughout the cabin and a boot with 257-litre capacity to easily accommodate two suitcases. The rear leg room of 871 mm and headroom of 959 mm is amongst the best in the hatchback segment.

There is extensive use of damping and sound absorbing materials to reduce vibrations or road noise, making the Freestyle’s cabin quietest among hatchbacks.

Clever, connected & convenient

The Ford Freestyle also features Ford’s in-car infotainment system, SYNC 3 with a 6.5-inch touchscreen which allows drivers to control their entertainment and their connected smartphone with conversational voice commands.

SYNC 3 system is also Apple Car Play and Android Auto compatible.

The Freestyle is replete with convenience features including, a reverse parking camera, keyless entry and a push start. The automatic climate control on the Freestyle will be among the best-in-class, capable of bringing cabin temperature down from 50-degrees to a comfortable 25-degrees, in just 15-minutes.

The all-new Freestyle is produced at Ford India’s Sanand factory in Gujarat, for consumers in India and all around the world, including parts of Europe and Africa. The CUV is available in six colours, including a new White Gold, Canyon Ridge, Moondust Silver, Oxford White, Smoke Grey and Absolute Black.

Variant-wise prices*:
Petrol (1.2L TiVCT)
Diesel (1.5L TDCi)
Ford Freestyle Ambiente
INR 509,000
INR 609,000
Ford Freestyle Trend
INR 599,000
INR 699,000
Ford Freestyle Titanium
INR 639,000
INR 735,000
Ford Freestyle Titanium+
INR 694,000
INR 789,000

* All prices ex-showroom, pan-India.

Thursday, 26 April 2018

Mahindra BAJA SAEINDIA announces the launch of registrations for the 12th edition

Mahindra presents BAJA SAEINDIA announced the launch of registrations for BAJA SAEINDIA 2019. This marks the 12th season of the competition that offers a platform for young engineering talent to showcase their skills and transform their theoretical knowledge into practical experience as they compete to build an ideal all-terrain vehicle.

The theme for this season is “Adventure Reloaded”. It is based on the challenging nature of the competition and through this season, BAJA SAEINDIA would like the teams to experience this journey of adventure comprising designing, manufacturing, driving, teamwork and a lifetime opportunity to live the foremost level of difficulty.

The teams will be judged on six main parameters in the Virtual BAJA event which are – their knowledge of the rulebook, the design of the vehicle, the project plan, the design methodology, the design evaluation plain and viva sessions. This will be followed by two main events to prove their mettle.

To promote electric mobility in India, eBAJA teams who are new, will receive a financial support of up to Rs. 1.5 lakhs from BAJA SAEINDIA.

In order to encourage diversification in the upcoming BAJA SAEINDIA 2019, the teams will benefit with additional points during the virtual BAJA rounds if they comprise of students from non-mechanical background.

The registrations will be open until the 20th May 2018 and the competition is scheduled to be kicked off on the 13th July 2018 at Chitkara University, Punjab.

Registration portal link -

Saltigoto focus more on business opportunities in India

LANXESS subsidiary showcases solutions at Chemspec India

Saltigo GmbH, a subsidiary of specialty chemicals company LANXESS, will be presenting its comprehensive expertise and longstanding experience as a reliable custom manufacturing service provider and producer of multi-customer products at Chemspec India 2018, which is being held in Mumbai from April 25 to 26. “Saltigo has been participating in Chemspec India since 2010 and our presence here this year, too, only showcases our absolute confidence in the market potential that the Indian market has. We are aligned with our business targets and are working towards expanding our activities in the pharmaceutical and agrochemical segments. We look forward to strengthening our business with selected multi-customer products. We have also been successful in attracting customers from the specialty chemicals segment, where outsourcing is not yet a common practice, to our portfolio,” says Torsten Derr, Managing Director of Saltigo, summarizing the company's plans.

Combining an exhibition and conferences, this tradeshow is an important event in India offering buyers and sellers of high-quality chemicals, based on complex synthesis requirements, the opportunity to further develop business partnerships and to initiate new business. “Our participation underlines the value we place on this important market and presents our company as a reliable supplier of chemical intermediates and partner for custom synthesis manufacturing with an efficient project management. Saltigo is a problem solver capable of shortening time to market, which is nowadays an important differentiation factor in the chemical industry,” says Christoph Schaffrath, Head of Key Account Management at Saltigo.

While in the past, India has been seen as a target for procurement and sourcing, the country is nowadays also a rapidly expanding market in the field of fine chemicals and active ingredients for pharmaceutical and crop protection applications. “We can support growth in custom manufacturing in particular, as this is our core competence,” says Dirk Sandri, Head of Sales at Saltigo. Key areas of expertise here include phosgenation and halogenation – such as reactions involving hydrogen fluoride or phosphorus chlorides and the Halex reaction. Further examples are metal organic syntheses, e.g. by means of a Grignard reaction, which is run at Saltigo in a multi-1000 ton-scale including the production of the reagent.

Saltigo keen to unlock new customer sectors

“Also for our multi-customer products such as phosgene derivatives or 1,2,4-triazole, India is an important market. In addition, we strive for business with innovative companies specializing in photovoltaics, polymers, lubricants, flavor and fragrances and biocides,” he adds.

In addition, Saltigo is awaiting the registration of its insect repellent Saltidin (chemical name Icaridin) in India. Insect repellents containing the active ingredient of Saltigo protect against infection with dangerous diseases, like the Zika virus or dengue fever, by keeping mosquitoes at bay. Saltigo has reacted fast to the increased demand by increasing the production capacity significantly  and has taken measures for additional capacity expansion.

Saltigo supplies products to some 150 customers from the agrochemical, pharmaceutical and fine chemicals industries. These include active ingredients and intermediates for crop protection agents and medicines together with chemicals for numerous applications, such as the tried-and-tested insect repellent active ingredient Saltidin.

Saltigo offers manufacturing opportunities based on complex chemistry and technology needs having passed an FDA-audit. The extensive know-how in implementing technical customer requirements and developing and optimizing custom-made processes in extremely well structured chemical parks in Leverkusen and Dormagen is one of the reasons why high-profile companies in many countries around the world choose the LANXESS subsidiary, Saltigo, as a full-service supplier which shows a high commitment to quality, safety and environmental protection.

Detailed information about Saltigo’s services can be obtained online at

Wednesday, 25 April 2018

Triumph Motorcycles India launches its first all-new Bonneville Speedmaster

With the aim of building a category-defining repertoire in India, Triumph Motorcycles India has launched its new 2018 Bonneville Speedmaster in Chennai. The fun and accessible contemporary of Bonneville gets a significant retrofit in capability and style to create this iconic classic cruiser. The style, performance, features, the safety combined with the trademark Triumph experience will not just catapult the brand to dominate the Indian market, but also the hearts of all motorcycle enthusiasts in the country. Mr. Vimal Sumbly, Managing Director, and Mr. Shoeb Farooq, National Head - Sales and Dealer Development, Triumph Motorcycles (India) Private Ltd., were among those who attended the Bonneville Speedmaster launch function in Chennai.

Mr. Vimal Sumbly commented: “With the Speedmaster, your motorcycle will not just be your trusty, beloved ride, but also the accessory that redefines your individual style. And what’s more, the Speedmaster, like all Triumph offerings, comes without compromise to quality, efficiency, and safety. Featuring in the Classic Cruiser category, this product showcases the changing world of motorcycling. Our goal is not just to dominate the market but to continue upgrading the entire biking experience in India. We will further strengthen this category over time, and continue to deliver THE RIDE that Triumph is known for.”

Since 2013, in just over four years, Triumph Motorcycles has built something truly great, with a dealership network that reaches 15 cities across the country, and an unmatched portfolio of several different motorcycle models across five premium categories.

Triumph Motorcycles India is a subsidiary of the iconic British motorcycle manufacturer Triumph Motorcycles, one of the oldest British motorcycle brands established in 1902 with the fastest growing luxury & lifestyle brand, with 5000 plus bike owners, got 51 major Auto Awards, crossing over 16 state-of-the-art dealerships at strategic locations in India and an upcoming Dealership shortly in Mangalore. Having CKD Assembly Facility at Manesar, Haryana, Rider groups started in all dealer cities (Riders Association of Triumph) in line with Triumph Motorcycles’ brand ethos for the Ride.

The salient features are it fits into Superbike, Classic, Cruiser, Adventure category and its reflects the attitude of individuals. It is 36% more comfortable than any other brand with single and twin seater and the starting price is Rs. 7.5 lakhs to Rs. 11.5 lakhs. It has 2 years unlimited warranty with 30,000 km comes with Highway kit, Hoodi, Clothing, Jacket, Brand Experience, comes in 3 colours like Black, Red and White Twin & Grey.

The 115-year-old British motorcycle company is pegged at value driven population of India and it has 19% market share in India and focusing on 75% sales from metros urban high-end population and 30% comes from South Indian market and the plant at Manesar, Haryana is indigenous with make in India initiative assembled with care and it is targeting all the 20 Tier-II cities like Trichy, Coimbatore, Madurai, Salem, Trivandrum, Cochin, Calicut, Vizag, Vijayawada, Hyderabad, Hubli, Bangalore, Mysore, Mangalore, Goa, Pune, Ahmedabad, Haryana, Lucknow, Kanpur in India, through Franchisee network. Approximately they produce 1,200-1,300 motorcycle units a year and plans to expand the marketing dealership network in India. In Chennai they have only one showroom with sales & service network done by company professionals situated on the Central Business District of Egmore-Anna Salai.

The motorbike with superior handling, comfort, style and attitude, authentic British custom, switchable traction control, torque assist clutch, ABS, ride by wire, single button cruise control with LED lamps the Bonneville collection, Speed Master a real gift to Indian corporates.

Honeywell inaugurates its first Asian Industrial Cyber Security Center in Singapore

The center develops new cyber security technologies, provides hands-on training and monitors customer sites for threats

Honeywell recently opened its first industrial cyber security center of excellence (CoE) in Asia. The center was developed with the support of the Singapore Economic Development Board (EBD) and designed to help defend the region’s industrial manufacturers against evolving cyber security threats.

“The only way manufacturers can reap the benefits of digital transformation such as increased uptime and reduced maintenance is if their industrial environments are cyber secure,” said Jeff Zindel, Vice President and General Manager, Honeywell Industrial Cyber Security. “Today marks another important step forward in Honeywell’s leadership in industrial cyber security, further strengthening our ability to secure and protect assets, operations and people. The center’s state-of-the-art capabilities and managed security services improve cyber security protection, detection, management and response for customers, which are key enablers for successful digital transformation in the industrial sector.”

The cyber security center will be used to conduct proprietary research, develop new security technologies, provide hands-on training and certifications, and test and validate actual solutions deployed at customer sites. In addition to serving as a research and development lab, it also will deliver managed security services to help customers reduce the risk of security breaches and proactively improve their security posture. These services include continuous security and performance monitoring and alerting, threat detection and risk management, security device management, and incident response with 24-hour expert support 365 days a year.

“Cyber security is vital not just for the technology industry, but also our industrial sector and critical infrastructure which are being increasingly digitalised,” said Gian Yi-Hsen, Executive Director, Cities, Infrastructure and Industrial Solutions, EDB. “We are excited that Honeywell has chosen Singapore as the base for its new industrial cyber security center to leverage our world-class infrastructure and vibrant talent pool to develop security innovations and reinforce the security within the industrial space. We look forward to the development of cutting-edge cyber security innovations by the center to help companies across sectors realize the full potential of digital transformation, and also grow our pool of local specialists in this emerging field.”

The new cyber security center is located in Singapore’s Changi Business Park and the third Honeywell facility of its kind in the world. Earlier this year, the company opened a new center in Dubai that serves customers in the Middle East and Europe. Honeywell’s original cyber security center is located in Atlanta, Georgia, USA.

Tuesday, 24 April 2018

Mahindra Electric and Meru join hands to deploy EVs

Launch EV pilot project in Hyderabad

On the occasion of Earth Day, Mahindra Electric, part of the diversified US$19 billion Mahindra Group and Meru, the pioneer of tech enabled cab services, announced a collaboration for a pilot EV project in Hyderabad with the intention to replicate the same model in other cities soon. The pilot will see Meru deploy a fleet of eVeritos, the all-electric sedan by Mahindra.

Speaking on the collaboration, Mahesh Babu, CEO, Mahindra Electric, said: “As pioneers of electric mobility, we at Mahindra Electric are happy to lead electric fleet adoption in India and are glad to partner with Meru for pilot deployment of eVeritos in Hyderabad.  This is definitely going to make it easier for the city to adopt EV technology and will also be in line with our constant endeavor to make EVs more accessible to a larger urban population. We believe that innovative and unique partnership models like this pilot, will lead the way towards sustainable transportation in urban cities. We are now looking forward to working with Meru to have this project rolled out to more cities.”

Speaking on the new initiative, Nilesh Sangoi, CEO, Meru, said: “Electric Vehicle ecosystem is growing at a rapid pace towards the inflection point where it would soon bridge the viability gap. EVs’ potential to bring down the air pollution levels and savings in country’s energy bills is unparalleled. Government is actively promoting adoption of EVs through National Electric Mobility Mission and other initiatives through various ministries. We are launching a pilot in Hyderabad with Mahindra eVerito sedan cars in association with AimGreen. Based on the learnings of this pilot, we will expand this initiative to induct more EVs in our network in other cities that we operate in. Over next 4 years, we intend to move major part of our fleet to EVs. We believe that this initiative will greatly benefit the society, consumers and also enhance the earnings of our driver partners.”

The Mahindra eVerito will be available for booking in Hyderabad through Meru’s mobile apps, website (, call center (4422-4422), and will also be available at the Meru Zone at Hyderabad Airport. The services will be available at the same fare as governed by the Telangana Government’s radio taxi fares for sedans.

Mahindra Electric has been pioneering the EV movement in India for close to a decade, while Meru has been running their entire fleet on green fuel for the past 11 years in cities where CNG is available. Both organisations have been taking conscious steps towards environmentally friendly practices and this association is in sync with these philosophies.

Meru pioneered the concept of tech enabled ride hailing service in India in 2007 in association with True North (formerly India Value Fund Advisors), a premier India centric private equity fund. Since its launch, Meru has served over twelve million customers in 24 cities. Meru service is available for travelling local and outstation destinations, both as point to point as well as hourly rental packages through its Android and iOS mobile apps with 5+ million downloads, website and call center. It is the only Government licensed cab service in India which is official partner of all the private airports in the country. Meru has received numerous accolades from the industry including India’s Most Favorite Cab Service and Best Cab App by TripAdvisor Traveler’s Choice for 2 consecutive years; Times Travel Award, NASSSCOM CNBC IT User Award for 3 consecutive years and Economic Time’s Most Promising Brands Award.

Mahindra Electric, a part of the US$19 billion Mahindra Group is a global pioneer in the development and production of electric vehicles. Mahindra Electric is India’s only EV manufacturer with indigenously developed EV technologies that have won global accolades. The Mahindra Group has one of the most diversified portfolios of electric vehicles with the e2oPlus hatch, the eVerito sedan, the eSupro minivan and panel vans and its electric rickshaw, the e-Alfa Mini.

Pushing the limits of technology and innovation, Mahindra has acknowledged the need to redefine mobility at every step. This has led to a vision with a desire to transform; a vision which provides an imagination which is more sustainable and more dependable. Venturing into the paradigm of alternative technology has helped Mahindra enable a clean, green and a smarter tomorrow.

The Mahindra Group companies that enables people to rise through innovative mobility solutions, driving rural prosperity, enhancing urban living, nurturing new businesses and fostering communities. It has a leadership position in utility vehicles, information technology, financial services and vacation ownership in India and is the world’s largest tractor company, by volume. It also enjoys a strong presence in agribusiness, components, commercial vehicles, consulting services, energy, industrial equipment, logistics, real estate, steel, aerospace, defence and two wheelers. Headquartered in India, Mahindra employs over 200,000 people across 100 countries.

Learn more about Mahindra on / Twitter and Facebook: @MahindraRise

Monday, 23 April 2018

Royal Orchid Hotels opens a new property in Somnath

With the growth in religious tourism in India, Royal Orchid Hotels, one of the fastest growing hospitality chain in India, added a new property ‘Regenta Central’ in Somnath.

Nestled in the coastal city of Somnath, Hotel Regenta Central is suitably located on the main highway of Veraval and a 5 minutes’ walk from main Somnath temple. The hotel is well linked and located within 5 km from Veraval and Somnath Railway Station.

Regenta Central offers a comfortable stay in well-appointed rooms which incorporates the highest service value along with unique design and modern facilities. The hotel offers spacious banquet halls and plush lawns which can accommodate up to 2,000 people for various occasions such as large scale family social gathering, business presentations, seminars and confidential corporate meets. The guests can also indulge in various relaxation activities at the hotel’s gymnasium, spa and swimming pool.

The hotel includes two restaurants PINXX and Sugar N Spice. PINXX – a multi-cuisine restaurant, serves vegetarian and kathivyadi delicacies. Sugar N Spice – is an à la carte multi-cuisine restaurant offering a delicious range of fast food and quick bites.

Somnath meaning "Lord of the Soma", an epithet of Shiva, is first of the twelve Jyotirlinga shrines. It is located on the western coast of Gujarat and is one of the oldest temples of the country. Reconstructed in the Chaulukya style of architecture, it portrays the fine skills of the oldest and best temple architects. The modern day Somnath Temple was built over five years, from 1947 to 1951 and was inaugurated by then President of India, Dr. Rajendra Prasad.

Apart from the magnificent temples of Somnath, it is also known for its picturesque beaches. Somnath beach which is located at the south-west end of the Arabian coastline is a perfect way to enjoy a serene evening after a long day of travelling. Both the locations are just 6 km away from the hotel, providing travellers the perfect blend of divinity and serenity.

Mr. Chander K. Baljee, Managing Director, Royal Orchid Hotels, at the launch of the hotel, said: “We are excited to add another property to our portfolio, continuing our ambition of expanding hotels across India. With a constant surge in domestic travellers, not only we are benefitted but also the consumers have an advantage of having affordable stay with finest facilities and services. The current year looks promising for the hotel industry and we plan to make the most of it by expanding our brand all over India.”

P.N. Sridhar takes over as TANGEDCO JMD

Mr. P.N. Sridhar took over as the Joint Managing Director of the Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation (TANGEDCO) in the headquarters located in Chennai recently. Earlier, he was Managing Director of the Dharmapuri District Cooperative Sugar Mills.

Friday, 20 April 2018

Honda 2Wheelers retails grow over 80% in Akshay Tritiya

After closing FY’2017-18 with all time high sales crossing 6 million units, Honda 2Wheelers India has created new high yet again on Akshay Tritiya, the first major festival of 2018.

Honda’s single day retails grew by more than 80% and breached the highest ever mark for the first time ever on Akshay Tritiya.

Now more and more Indians are choosing to celebrate festivals with a new Honda two-wheeler. Within the regions, West once again led the festive buying followed by South and Central regions.

Activa – India’s highest selling two-wheeler led strong as India’s first choice for festival buying.

With motorcycle industry returning to double digit growth for the first time in 6 years, festive buying sentiment was strong across segments. Most popular in motorcycle retails was Honda’s CB Shine – India’s only 125cc motorcycle to make an entry into the top 3 selling motorcycles of India. Retails of Honda’s ‘Dream series’ of 110cc entry-level motorcycles (CD 110 Dream, Dream Neo and Dream Yuga) grew by a phenomenal 300% plus.

Sharing how India is now celebrating festivals with Honda and the significance of Akshay Tritiya retails, Mr. Yadvinder Singh Guleria, Senior Vice President - Sales & Marketing, Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India Pvt. Ltd., said: “Akshay Tritiya being the first major festival of the year, is a barometer of the mood of economy and buying sentiments. What is most encouraging is that retails surpassed our expectations and grew by over 80%. 2018 has firmly started on a positive note for us. This is why, we at Honda are delighted that ever highest number of customers purchased a Honda two-wheeler in the single day of Akshay Tritiya.”

Nissan India saves 95 million litres of water through Car Foam Wash initiative

In line with the vision of enriching people’s lives, Nissan in India has saved 95 million litres of water over the past four years though an innovative cars wash technique called Foam Wash. Introduced in 2014 at most of the service centres across India, the Foam Wash technique uses only 90 litres of water per car compared to the conventional car wash which consumes 162 litres, thereby reducing water consumption by 44%. Car washes at service centres are a major component of after sales and servicing of customers’ vehicles that require a large amount of water.

Commenting about the initiative, Sanjeev Aggarwal, Vice President, After-Sales at Nissan Motor India Pvt. Ltd., said: “Nissan aims to contribute towards sustainable development of society through our product and services. The Foam Wash initiative is quite popular amongst Nissan and Datsun car owners and allows us to collectively save water, time and contribute towards a sustainable eco-system.”

Nissan Motor Co. Ltd. is a global full-line vehicle manufacturer that sells more than 60 models under the Nissan, INFINITI and Datsun brands. In fiscal year 2016, the company sold 5.63 million vehicles globally, generating revenues of 11.72 trillion yen. In fiscal 2017, the company embarked on Nissan M.O.V.E. to 2022, a six-year plan targeting a 30% increase in annualized revenues to 16.5 trillion yen by the end of fiscal 2022, along with cumulative free cash flow of 2.5 trillion yen. As part of Nissan M.O.V.E. to 2022, the company plans to extend its leadership in electric vehicles, symbolized by the world's best-selling all-electric vehicle in history, the Nissan LEAF. Nissan’s global headquarters in Yokohama, Japan, manages operations in six regions: Asia & Oceania; Africa, the Middle East & India; China; Europe; Latin America; and North America.

Nissan has a global workforce of 247,500 and has been partnered with French manufacturer Renault since 1999. In 2016, Nissan acquired a 34% stake in Mitsubishi Motors. Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi is today the world’s largest automotive partnership, with combined sales of more than 10.6 million vehicles in calendar year 2017.

SMEV inks MoU with Taiwan External Trade Development Council to strengthen Electric Vehicle Ecosystem

With a vision to create a favorable ecosystem for electric mobility between India and Taiwan, the Society of Manufacturers of Electric Vehicles (SMEV) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA). The partnership aims at putting joint efforts for the development of electric vehicles (EV) through the exchange of information and technology.

The MoU provides opportunities to discuss significant matters like Governments’ EV policies, EV market trends, technologies, business and investment possibilities available in the EV sector. It also aims at establishing an R&D sector in the country, giving a boost to EV manufacturers in India at the grassroots level. Additionally, the MoU will provide local assistance to the representatives of both the associations for promoting their business interest in the country. The MoU is expected to bring in more investment and enhancement to the Indian EV industry.

Speaking on the occasion, Mr. Sohinder Gill, Director - Corporate Affairs, Society of Manufacturers of Electric Vehicles, said: “Our association with TAITRA will provide essential growth tools to the Indian EV sector and help the manufacturers in addressing the challenges with real solutions. This MoU underlines the commitment of both partners to the Government’s vision of 100 % electric mobility in India by 2030.”

“As a part of the collaboration, both the parties would be undertaking several market studies on the EV sector to identify key issues and addressing them accordingly. The associations would be taking necessary steps that are feasible for the development of electric vehicles through trade promotion and economic co-operation between the two countries,” said Mr. Walter Yeh, President, Taiwan External Trade Development Council.

In addition, TAITRA and SMEV would be organizing EV Forum during Taiwan Expo in India at Pragati Maidan, New Delhi, on May 18, 2018.

Thursday, 19 April 2018

AkzoNobel India receives GreenPro certification from the CII-Green Products & Services Council

AkzoNobel, a leading global paints and coatings company and the makers of Dulux Paints in India, have been accredited with the prestigious “GreenPro Certification” at the 2nd Edition of GreenPro Summit 2018 held in Hyderabad recently. Dulux and Dulux Professional range of products have been certified based on their sustainability assessment. The summit organised by CII - Green Products & Services Council, aimed to facilitate market transformations in production and consumption of green products in the country.

The objective of GreenPro is to assess the environmental performance of a product, based on a holistic framework, and in turn provide guidance on achieving excellence in environmental performance. The GreenPro certification system adopts a cradle to cradle approach in assessing products on parameters that includes - design, raw materials, manufacturing process, and performance during use, recycle and reuse at the end of the product life.

Speaking on this occasion, David Teng, General Manager, Decorative Paints, South Asia Cluster, AkzoNobel India, said: “Sustainability is at the heart of everything we do at AkzoNobel. It’s our commitment to doing more with less  and creating more value from fewer resources. By working together with all our customers and partners, we aim to make life more liveable, healthy and inspiring. The GreenPro certification is a testimony to our commitment in creating a sustainable future.”

GreenPro is a product certification that was launched by CII in 2015 with the intent to empower customers with the knowledge of the product and steer them towards sustainable products. It is an attempt to encourage companies to be more environmentally conscientious.

Honeywell announces major expansion of its manufacturing facility in Pune

Fulgaon plant responds to increased local and global demand of automation solutions by doubling operational space

Honeywell has announced the expansion of its Fulgaon manufacturing facility in Pune to meet the growing demand for automation solutions and factory instrumentation more effectively. In line with the growth of the Indian manufacturing sector, Honeywell continues to invest in its local production capabilities by doubling the operational space of the plant to 151,000 square feet. The state-of-the-art facility enables Honeywell to provide enhanced expertise and training capabilities to customers and expand its production range.

Originally built in 2014, the facility integrates advanced engineering, testing and manufacturing of equipment for the process industries such as refining, oil and gas, pulp and paper, power generation, chemicals, life sciences, and metals, minerals and mining. In addition, it offers a customer integration center, thermal solutions and smart metering factories, and a Honeywell Intelligrated demonstration center. The center provides an immersive experience by letting customers interact with technologies that make manufacturing safer, more secure, comfortable and energy efficient.

“The expansion of our plant allows us to now commercialize new technologies that are researched and developed in Honeywell technology development centers here in India and globally and with that to widen our product range and meet future customer demand,” said Ashish M. Gaikwad, Managing Director, Honeywell Automation India Ltd. “In alignment with the Government’s ‘Make in India’ mission, we continue to leverage the existing local manufacturing expertise and support our domestic as well as international customers.”

Honeywell products and solutions manufactured in Fulgaon offer precision, repeatability, and durability for industrial applications across the markets. Honeywell’s flagship product, Experion Process Knowledge System (PKS) - a solution that integrates control and safety systems along with other crucial manufacturing processes, will be assembled at the facility. Some of the other products to be manufactured in this facility include hybrid programmable logic controllers (PLC), load computers, smart transmitters, industrial burners, gas trains, smart meters, sensors, shifters, and switches.

“The Fulgaon facility continues to build Honeywell’s local footprint and expertise to improve our customer service for the automation business in India,” said Vimal Kapur, President, Honeywell Process Solutions. “With production and integration facilities closer to the domestic customers, we can seamlessly integrate customer needs and specifications into our products and solutions - helping us to serve them more quickly and efficiently.”

Aside from the Fulgaon plant, Honeywell has a significant presence in Maharashtra with its automation and turbocharger manufacturing facilities based in Pune.

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Plastics are an important part of our daily lives. They are in our coffee machines, our bicycle helmets, and our cars, to name but a few examples. The high-tech plastics of Durethan and Pocan from LANXESS are specialists in complex, technical applications. With HiAnt, the chemical company can also offer customers all-round service for the development of comprehensive system solutions. Tailored to customer requirements, this service covers component design, material selection, functional construction, and tool design, through to assistance with the commencement of production.


The HiAnt brand name is based on the word “ant”. Ants can carry multiple times their own body weight despite their delicate bodies. They are also renowned for their industriousness and well-organized teamwork which interlink through effective communication. These qualities are also closely related to this service, which is why LANXESS came up with the brand name HiAnt. “These qualities point to innovations that we used in the lightweight design of high-strength structural components in relation to materials, material combinations, design, and processes. Our HiAnt engineers work side by side with our customers during the component design, material selection, functional planning, and mold design phases through to technical support with production processes,” says Jan Bender, Head of Marketing EMEA in the High-Performance Materials (HPM) business unit. The similarity in sound between HiAnt and the term “high-end” is no coincidence. “We regard ourselves as a technology leader and provider of high-end solutions in many innovation areas with our plastics,” says Jan Bender.


LANXESS serves customers in the lighting, electrical, and electronics industries through all development phases of plastic components. “We want to develop component solutions with our customers, which are optimally tailored for all stress scenarios and requirements, and which are also convenient and economical. For example, we check the suitability of a material for a certain application as quickly as possible. This enables our customer to ensure purposeful development,” explains Frank Lutter, CAE team leader in the Customer Engineering Services division in HPM.

One highlight of HiAnt is a simulation tool, which enables components to be designed with the right plastics in order to efficiently dissipate heat. It takes the component geometry, installation situation, and heat input into account. It can be used to show how the temperature of an LED heat sink, for example, depends on its geometry and source material. “We can also visualize the flow of air (air convection) around a component. This enables design engineers to align cooling ribs with the convection, for example, to improve heat dissipation,” Frank Lutter explains. These simulations help to save costs and time, as the prototyping workload is reduced and a large part of the development work can be conducted virtually by computer. Another key service element of HiAnt is the computational design of components, which are subject to strong mechanical stresses due to shock or impact, for example. LANXESS can thus carry out computational simulations of the hammer and ball-drop impact tests commonly used in the lighting industry and adapt the design of a housing to the forces by making modifications to reinforcing ribs.


The HPM business unit at LANXESS is also a strong development partner for the automotive industry. HPM determines important material data for customers, such as strain-rate-dependent material values in complex high-speed tensile tests, which are key indicators for the simulation of the crash behavior of components. Component checking is another area of expertise of HiAnt. In the shaker testing facility for vibration checks, all typical vibration checks can be carried out on the largest intake modules for the air intake tract in the engine. HiAnt services include feasibility, weight, cost and risk analyses, as well as application-specific recommendations for material selection. We also offer advice to ensure that the right plastics are used in molded parts and we provide material characteristics to determine key load cases. “We also simulate the production process and mold filling as well as component behavior in terms of aspects such as static and dynamic load-bearing capacity, natural frequency, stone impact resistance, and crash behavior,” Jan Bender summarizes.


With its HiAnt engineering expertise, LANXESS helps its customers at all stages of the development of components for new forms of mobility – from the initial idea through the start of production. “We make use of our extensive experience with plastic components for the automotive, electrical, and electronics industries. We understand our field and know how these industries think,” Jan Bender explains.

Mahindra launches Plush New XUV500

Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd. (M&M), part of the US$19 billion Mahindra Group, launched the Plush New XUV500 which sets a new benchmark in the premium SUV segment with a bold new design, plush, luxurious interiors and higher power and torque. It offers a more pleasurable ride through an enhanced suspension, and comes with a quieter cabin. Starting at an attractive new price of Rs. 12.32 lakhs (ex-showroom Mumbai, for W5 variant), it will be available at Mahindra dealerships across India with immediate effect.

Speaking at the launch of the Plush New XUV500, Mr. Rajan Wadhera, President, Automotive Sector, Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd., said: “Since its launch in 2011, the XUV500 has been a trendsetter in the premium SUV segment with its great value proposition of head-turning style, aspirational hi-tech features, unmatched performance and best-in-class safety. The XUV500 was the creator of the premium SUV segment in the Rs. 12 to 18 lakhs price range in India and continues to be the frontrunner in the segment when it comes to setting new trends and pushing boundaries. Today, with the launch of The Plush New XUV500, we have strengthened its value proposition further by creating new benchmarks in luxury and styling. It has been designed to meet the customer’s rising aspirations for more premium and luxurious offerings.”

The Plush New XUV500 sets new benchmarks with differentiated offerings, including:

* Soft-touch Leather on Dashboard and Door-trims
* Luxurious Quilted Tan Leather Seats
* Industry-First Smart Watch Connectivity
* New 6th generation electronically controlled Variable Geometry Turbocharger (eVGT)
* Industry-First Connected Apps & Ecosense Technology
* Arkamys Enhanced Audio
* 45.72 cm (235/60 R18) Diamond-cut Alloy Wheels

The Plush New XUV500 comes with a bold and head-turning new design comprising a new wider grille with chrome inserts, fog lamps with a refreshing new chrome bezel, an all-new, stylish tailgate with spit tail-lamps and a new spoiler, stunning LED DRLs and larger 45.72 cm (235/60 R18) diamond-cut alloys. The interiors of the new XUV500 are now more luxurious and come with a premium new tan and black theme comprising of new quilted tan leather seats, finely crafted soft-touch leather dashboard and door trims and a new piano-black center console. The fit and finish of the new XUV500 has been further refined and its cabin is now even quieter.

Equipped with a more powerful mHawk155 engine the new XUV500 comes with higher power of 114 kW (155 BHP) and higher torque of 360 Nm.  The new 6th generation electronically controlled Variable Geometry Turbocharger (eVGT) has improved the low-end torque further, to ensure an even more pleasurable urban driving experience. The enhanced suspension of the new XUV500 promises a plusher ride. New technology offerings in the XUV500 include the industry-first smart watch connectivity and Arkamys enhanced audio output.

It continues to offer aspirational hi-tech features, which are not available even in vehicles that are double its price. It is high on safety features with 6 airbags, ABS with EBD, ESP with Rollover mitigation, hill hold and hill descent control and disc brakes on all wheels. In addition, the XUV500 also offers the first-in-class safety feature of Emergency Calling.

Available in 5 diesel variants, including an optional pack, namely W5, W7, W9, W11 & W11 OPT, the new XUV500 will also offer one gasoline option of G AT to customers. It also offers the widest range of diesel automatic variants, namely W7 AT, W9 AT, W11 AT, W11 OPT AT and W11 OPT AWD AT.  Customers can now also choose from 7 attractive colors – New Crimson Red, New Mystic Copper, Pearl White, Volcano Black, Moon dust Silver, Opulent Purple and Lake Side Brown.

In select cities, prospects can experience the Plush New XUV500 through “Bring the Showroom Home” - a portable, mobile based interactive Virtual Reality experience. This is an all-encompassing and immersive virtual showroom experience wherein customers can explore the XUV500 in 360 degree view through a VR device from the comfort of their home.

Customers can also book the Plush New XUV500 online at and

Yamaha FZ 25 bags India Design Mark Awards 2018

Successive win in the higher cc category of FZ series is a testimony to the brand’s DNA of sporty, stylish and innovative

India Yamaha Motor (IYM) Pvt. Ltd. is proud to announce the receipt of prestigious India Design Mark (I Mark) by the Indian Design Council. The acknowledgement is awarded to Yamaha’s powerful, mid-class, street fighter motorcycle FZ 25 for its engineering and design. Since 2012, Yamaha's design philosophy has received the true testimony for its entire range of products like YZF-R15 (2012), Cygnus Ray (2013), Cygnus Ray Z (2014), Cygnus Alpha and FZ (2015), Yamaha Fascino & Saluto 125 (2016), Cygnus Ray ZR and YZF R3 (2017) followed by FZ 25 winning the certification this year.

India Design Council is an autonomous body of Government of India established under the aegis of Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion, Ministry of Commerce & Industry. It is a national strategic body for multi-disciplinary design and is involved in promotion of design to ultimately make India a design enabled country. The Council is spearheading the national design direction and is working with other Government agencies, the design community, industry and education institutions to promote design in business, society and public services and developing design excellence.

In 2008, Yamaha had introduced FZ series in India which has got an overwhelming response from Indian customers. By 2017, while over 1 million proud owners of FZ series were waiting for upgradation, the all new FZ 25 was launched to strengthen & expand FZ brand in India. With a newly designed air-cooled, 249 cc, high torque, fuel-injected engine on a lightweight frame enabling the joy of control as the rider intends, FZ 25 came to existence in India as a "Powerful, mid-class, street fighter". Not only is it an affordable offering in the higher displacement, premium 250 cc segment with the macho styling inherent to the FZ brand, it also adds further emphasis on the aesthetics due to its design. The FZ 25 is a light weight machine weighing 148 kg combined with its class-leading torque delivery and powerful exhaust note that comes with a twist of the wrist. The excellent fuel efficiency from the Blue Core engine means fewer stops for petrol and more time spent in the saddle, giving its owner the best of both worlds with less stress on their wallet. It has the ride comfort and power on tap to make it an excellent tool in the city, while it also has the handling and speed to make it an enjoyable weekend ride for touring trips with friends. The bike’s standout, muscular, and modern street presence combined with this stimulating riding experience not only charms the rider, but serve as a form of visual and aural self-expression that turns heads as the FZ 25 goes by.

Commenting on the achievement, Mr. Roy Kurian, Senior Vice President, Sales & Marketing, Yamaha Motor India Sales Pvt. Ltd., said: "Yamaha is excited to be honoured by industry’s one of the most coveted recognitions, ‘India Design Mark’. The brand always strives to bring the most innovative and stylish products to its consumers and this certification have further induced Yamaha’s zeal to cater to its patrons with exciting products that revs heart for its excellence in design, style and comfort.”

India Design Mark (I Mark) symbolizes product excellence in form, function, quality, safety, sustainability and innovation and communicates that the product is usable, durable, aesthetically appealing & socially responsible. The Mark is granted to an applicant after following a diligent evaluation process aimed at identifying good design that exceeds the prescribed criteria of evaluation.

Yamaha Motor made its initial foray into India in 1985 as a joint venture. In August 2001, it became a 100% subsidiary of Yamaha Motor Co. Ltd. (YMC), Japan. In 2008, Mitsui & Co. Ltd. entered into an agreement with YMC to become a joint-investor in India Yamaha Motor Private Ltd. (IYM). YMC has established its wholly-owned subsidiary - Yamaha Motor India Sales Pvt. Ltd. (YMIS) in India to independently support IYM in Sales & Marketing of its products.

Presently, YMIS supports IYM to market and sell its two-wheelers including: Sports model YZF-R3 (321 cc), YZF-R15 version 3.0 (155 cc), YZF-R15 S (149 cc); Blue-Core Technology enabled models such as FZ 25 (249 cc), Fazer 25 (249 cc), FZ-S FI (Fuel-Injected, 149 cc), FZ FI (Fuel-Injected, 149 cc), Fazer FI (Fuel-Injected, 149 cc), SZ-RR version 2.0 (149 cc), Saluto (125 cc), Saluto RX (110 cc), Cygnus Ray-ZR (113 cc), Fascino (113 cc), Cygnus Alpha (113 cc), Cygnus Ray Z (113 cc); latest superbike MT-09 (847 cc) and YZF-R1 (998 cc).