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Old 10th November 2015, 04:52   #1
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Default Eicher Buses making a comeback

With a separate thread for Ashok Leyland and TATA Motors buses, it's high time we have one for sharing information/discussion on Eicher buses, especially when they are expanding their market in heavy buses segment.

TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS (source: Eicher website)
Model 20.15 N LPO Bus Chassis
Wheelbase (mm) 5340
Rear Overhang (mm) 3400
Front Overhang (mm) 1900
Overall chassis Length (mm) 11140
GVW (kg) 14600
Steering Power Steering
Brakes Air Brakes
Engine - Type E613 TCI BSIII New Mech Type
Max Power BSIII Mech: 113Kw @ 2600 rpm
Max Torque BSIII Mech: 600 Nm @ 1300 rpm

After a few (failed) attempts over a decade, Eicher is back with a bang on the heavy duty bus segment.
With some of the state run RTCs (APSRTC, KeSRTC, Kadamba, GSRTC, etc) adding them in their fleets, now the private operators (stage carriers) have slowly started to experiment this product. Especially in the bastion of Ashok Leyland, EICHER has been marking up their presence well in many districts (where TATA has failed to make any major impact over the years).

Comments and inputs are welcome!

Pictures (Courtesy: Respective Owners)
Attached Thumbnails
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Eicher Buses making a comeback-12189467_1697723993782305_4834904903916624830_o.jpg  

Eicher Buses making a comeback-18292404410_2976e3c5cd_b.jpg  

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Old 10th November 2015, 07:15   #2
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Default re: Eicher Buses making a comeback

KSRTC has acquired Eicher buses and are in service now.
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Pictures courtesy: http://images.ksrtcblog.com/2015/02/...side-pics.html

Eicher has also introduced Rear Engine Semi Low Floor (RESLF) City Buses.
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Last edited by rajeev k : 10th November 2015 at 07:25.
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Old 10th November 2015, 08:03   #3
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Default re: Eicher Buses making a comeback

Wondering what Eicher has that is different from Ashok Leyland and Tata. I think they have a single chassis and engine where as Ashok Leyland has many engines and a variety of chassis. Tata too has various chassis dimensions and engines.

Ashok Leyland engines are said to be good for long distance operations and Tata engines are said to be good for short distance and ghat sections, what are Eicher chassis good at?

I think the Viking 222" is the best chassis for Inter-city transport. Its got a front overhang, can comfortably accommodate 35 average sized adults and comes with a BS4 engine

For Intra-city operations I think Tata 1510 is the best, short front overhang and quiet Cummins diesel

Wondering where Eicher will fit into. If you talk to People, they seem to hold Eicher and Swaraj Mazda on the same platform. ICV and LGV manufacturers
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Old 10th November 2015, 08:26   #4
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Default re: Eicher Buses making a comeback

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheARUN View Post
Wondering what Eicher has that is different from Ashok Leyland and Tata. I think they have a single chassis and engine where as Ashok Leyland has many engines and a variety of chassis. Tata too has various chassis dimensions and engines.

Ashok Leyland engines are said to be good for long distance operations and Tata engines are said to be good for short distance and ghat sections, what are Eicher chassis good at?
For now, they have one engine and wheel base option which is good enough for stage carriage, staff and school/college application.
As per initial reports, USP is price, mileage and good pickup too.
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Old 10th November 2015, 16:57   #5
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Default Re: Eicher Buses making a comeback

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheARUN View Post
Tata engines are said to be good for short distance and ghat sections
From what i've seen & experienced over the years, it's a pain to watch a Tata struggling & panting up inclines, when a Leyland pulls it effortless with that throaty grunt. That's one main reason most long distance/ghat routes, be it private or govt, prefers a Leyland over here. Tata is faster in the plains. Eicher seems to slot right in between the two.
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Old 10th November 2015, 17:27   #6
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Default Re: Eicher Buses making a comeback

From my experience the Eicher engines are a lot lot smoother as compared to the TATA or a Leyland. the 709s perform almost like a car
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Old 11th November 2015, 11:23   #7
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Default Re: Eicher Buses making a comeback

Quote:
Originally Posted by v1kram View Post
With a separate thread for Ashok Leyland and TATA Motors buses, it's high time we have one for sharing information/discussion on Eicher buses, especially when they are expanding their market in heavy buses segment.
That's nice to see a new thread and Eicher do deserve it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by v1kram View Post
Model 20.15 N LPO Bus Chassis...
Apart from this, there is a 12m model available which Eicher has not launched but seen them quoting in tenders. But unlike AL - 12M, they were just derived out of existing 11m chassis like TML.

Quote:
Originally Posted by v1kram View Post
.....After a few (failed) attempts over a decade, Eicher is back with a bang on the heavy duty bus segment.
Eicher got a very good reception during the 2007 - 2008, in Chennai. Of course the reception was only from Parveen but it was so high that one point, Parveen had the largest fleet of Eicher buses in country, almost 500+. Even during induction of those Chassis, they were not trouble free, but were available for a mouth watering price.
Parveen, didn't look anything beyond price and it was the time they started a good entry into staff transportation especially with Hyundai and most of its suppliers. Same way with IT and ITES companies who had premises away from Chennai.
Stiff rear suspension, Gear box issues are few of the many niggles the chassis had. But Eicher was working hand in hand and ensured buses were onroad and campaign was carried out regularly. And most important point was Eicher was giving atleast 5% to 10% better fuel performance than corresponding AL. This ensured sales was not getting hurt atleast with Parveen.
At that time only AL was only choice for Intercity with Parveen and they did have lot of AC seaters. But interest for Parveen with Eicher grown and they started operating intercity buses with Eicher. Slave engines were fitted for AC buses. But reliability levels were far less and they pulled them from Intercity operations quickly.
After some years there was a sharp decline in the sales of Eicher even for the staff transportation with Parveen as well. Even till then no one showed interest in them though there were many staff bus operators in Chennai like APR, OST, Garuda, SRS. Infact even KPN and ARC didn't buy them, though they are dealers for Eicher.

Primarily because of reason for reduced reliability and durability and most importantly due to poor resale value. Here poor means almost no takers. Also the fuel performance started getting reduced over the period of time. To my knowledge only APR have take few Eicher buses for their Royal Enfield operation. When I was employed there it was only 2 AL Viking and 2 Eicher Starline.
Quote:
Originally Posted by v1kram View Post
With some of the state run RTC’s (APSRTC, KeSRTC, Kadamba, GSRTC, etc)
Same way Eicher did had lot of struggles entering STU business as well. If some states say, a manufacture should have sold so many buses to any STU to qualify to submit bid, others did say they should have so many years experience into bus making.
But their first major breakthrough was GSRTC with 1000+ chassis and it was followed by APSRTC and now after a great struggle with KeSRTC as well.
Eicher have showed good improvement (though nothing far superior) and they didn't have any panic failures.
Infact this was quoted by KeSRTC as well.

Quote:
We understand you have inducted Eicher and Scania buses and have branded some of your buses as ‘Silverline Jets’. How are these vehicles performing?

The Eicher buses which were recently inducted are doing well. We want to see how they perform in the long run.

Quote:
Originally Posted by v1kram View Post
adding them in their fleets, now the private operators (stage carriers) have slowly started to experiment this product. Especially in the bastion of Ashok Leyland, EICHER has been marking ulyp their presence well in many districts (where TATA has failed to make any major impact over the years).
Comments and inputs are welcome!
Jeyavilas was first to induct them into Stage Carriage operation and they are supporting Eicher for a long time. And now its good to see they are bought by many stage carriage operators. Also after several attempts KPN did put Eicher in Intercity operation for some of the routes inside TN like Cbe - Chennai some time back and now they are running for nearly 2 years.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rajeev k View Post
Eicher has also introduced Rear Engine Semi Low Floor (RESLF) City Buses.
Attachment 1437490
This was showcased by Eicher 2010 Auto Expo and GSRTC bought 20 of them.
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheARUN View Post
Wondering what Eicher has that is different from Ashok Leyland and Tata.
In power and performance they are just matching Tata in all terms, though they are having only one choice of engine. Infact even Tata have only one choice in 11m buses till recently. They also dont offer AC in 11m.
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheARUN View Post
Ashok Leyland engines are said to be good for long distance operations and Tata engines are said to be good for short distance and ghat sections, what are Eicher chassis good at?
None of these are true in recent times. Eicher is doing duty in both plains and Ghats. But if HRTC is the only benchmark to call a chassis Ghat fit, then there is nothing to do chassis rather with tender requirements, as it calls for specific length which only TML has and that makes the only manufacturer to quote. And that's the only reason they get orders from HRTC as well and that has nothing to do with performance.
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheARUN View Post
I think the Viking 222" is the best chassis for Inter-city transport. Its got a front overhang, can comfortably accommodate 35 average sized adults and comes with a BS4 engine
Tata does have front overhang chassis and they do have the excellent! 1613 BS4 chassis with 697 engine.
But Eicher has done nothing in the bus chassis especially for the city bus applications so far. They have missed both the major chassis purchases by states under JNNURM. Even the RESLF chassis doesn’t meet UBS. Infact they are yet to develop a 900mm floor FESLF buses. The E687 engines really don’t have the punch for continuous long distance operations like intercity. But still promising developments happening after EML became VECV.

Last edited by Gannu_1 : 12th November 2015 at 18:53. Reason: Corrected as requested.
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Old 11th November 2015, 22:14   #8
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Default Re: Eicher Buses making a comeback

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ashley2 View Post
Eicher got a very good reception during the 2007 - 2008, in Chennai. Of course the reception was only from Parveen but it was so high that one point, Parveen had the largest fleet of Eicher heavy buses in country, almost 500+. Even during induction of those Chassis, they were not trouble free, but were available for a mouth watering price.
Thank you for some background information, I do remember the Parveen Eicher staff bus, it was displayed on the 2002/03 auto expo held in Coimbatore. Also displayed was the first stage carriage Eicher bus (belongs to Coimbatore based operator ST).
Recently Eicher had invited bus operators for a plant visit, looks like few more operators are willing to go Eicher way.

Last edited by Gannu_1 : 12th November 2015 at 18:53. Reason: Quoted post edited.
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Old 13th November 2015, 16:28   #9
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Default Re: Eicher Buses making a comeback

An interesting thread Vikram.

The problem is their service facility in small towns and the resale value (as Ashley rightly pointed out). Jayavilas is able to manage because of their large fleet.

The beauty of Ashok Leyland and Tata are, it can be serviced even (regular maintenance of Leaf spring, bearing, universal-joints, etc.,) in smaller places like Palladam.

The third photo seems to be taken at Palladam bus stand and I have travelled millions of times on this route
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Old 14th November 2015, 06:58   #10
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Default Re: Eicher Buses making a comeback

I have travelled occasionally by Eicher BMTC buses in Bangalore. My only observations have been:
- Poor quality gear lever construction. Its often broken or poorly welded to the rest of the gear lever
- Gear shifts are horrible, with loud clanging and giving an impression of metal thrashing against metal. I have seen this phenomenon only in BMTC buses.
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Old 14th November 2015, 17:50   #11
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Default Re: Eicher Buses making a comeback

Quote:
Originally Posted by vharihar View Post
I have travelled occasionally by Eicher BMTC buses in Bangalore. My only observations have been:
- Poor quality gear lever construction. Its often broken or poorly welded to the rest of the gear lever
- Gear shifts are horrible, with loud clanging and giving an impression of metal thrashing against metal. I have seen this phenomenon only in BMTC buses.
The buses came sometime in the 2006-07 period. So we can't really blame Eicher here. The gear lever gets modified at the drivers' whims at the depots. And, BMTC never bothers to maintain their buses - so poor gear shifts and noisy gear shifts are no surprise.
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Old 15th November 2015, 15:10   #12
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Default Re: Eicher Buses making a comeback

Quote:
Originally Posted by RGK View Post
...
The beauty of Ashok Leyland and Tata are, it can be serviced even (regular maintenance of Leaf spring, bearing, universal-joints, etc.,) in smaller places like Palladam.
Not sure because of Maintenance because even Tata buses do require some maintenance which is not so easy outside ASC. Its more of brand reception and resale value.
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Old 16th November 2015, 11:26   #13
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Originally Posted by Ashley2 View Post
Not sure because of Maintenance because even Tata buses do require some maintenance which is not so easy outside ASC. Its more of brand reception and resale value.
Tata is easy to maintain. Non-ASC support is pretty much available everywhere.
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Old 16th November 2015, 21:12   #14
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Default Re: Eicher Buses making a comeback

Good to know that its available, but not all owners of 1512 acknowledge that.
Still parts support for Tata is not streamlined even in cities like Coimbatore in service stations and with independent workshops its going to take still a longer time to get parts.
This is the scenario currently and for a long time.
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Old 25th November 2015, 13:11   #15
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Default Re: Eicher Buses making a comeback

There are 4 models available with Eicher 20.15
Here is a comparison chart.
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