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Old 29th October 2010, 18:05   #166
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J engine technolgy was transferred,J Engines were avalable at AL for evalaution and Neptune is benchmarked aganist J series also, when the design was started. Hence my assumption that Neptune is superior.

I believe TCL Euro 3 is a ECU controlled rotary pump.( which is like a mech pump but it is ECU controlled) AL introduced this way back in 2005-- that too as an in house project ---- WITHOUT asssistance from AVL. Incidentally, this was the first CV engine to be certified as Euro 3, way before TML.
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Old 29th October 2010, 22:02   #167
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Since technology can now be freely imported, the path of indigenous R&D has perhaps been abandoned by
Thanks directinjection for taking time for the detailed reply. Well said. I dont think TM totally abandoned in house R&D, but reduced it on Engine technology, but increased elsewhere.
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Incidentally, this was the first CV engine to be certified as Euro 3, way before TML.
Being first does not make it better.
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Old 30th October 2010, 01:03   #168
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Being first does not make it better.
Being first means a more proactive R & D team , especially when done without any external assistance.

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Old 30th October 2010, 11:06   #169
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I feel AL and TML can be attributed to Super Star Rajnikanth and Kamalhasan.
Though the earlier has a excellent crowd pulling capacity and an untammed mass super star(highest paid star in whole of Asia) when it comes to acting and trying new things Kamalhasan scores better.

So Rajnikanth can be attributed to TML and Kamalhasan can be attributed to ALL.
I am not sure this will be understood by all
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Old 30th October 2010, 11:33   #170
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Being first means a more proactive R & D team , especially when done without any external assistance.
You call AL R&D team proactive, you are joking right? AL was using British Leyland and Hino technologies for a long time. Forget the engines, even the first iBus was designed by some one other than AL engineers. I feel sympathy for the AL R&D team.
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I feel AL and TML can be attributed to Super Star Rajnikanth and Kamalhasan.
You may be right, AL got the attitude of Kamal and TM got the simplicity of Rajni.
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Old 30th October 2010, 13:25   #171
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You guys can fight out to your hearts content, but here are some facts to be borne in mind. I have stated them elsewhere in this forum and am just repeating lest you forget the context.

1. The owner's manual for our last AL chassis purchased in 1978 mentioned the overdrive gear as an option. Do not ask me why it is still not in the market. Even Raj_5004's bus to be delivered in a couple of months still does not have an overdrive gear. (5 forwards gears, out of which one is a crawler gear, that makes it four normal gears; overdrive means 6 forward gears).

This is more a function of the M800 syndrome, aka the Indian market settling for the least priced product when better, more efficient products are available.

2. AL was the first HCV manufacturer to introduce full synchromesh gear boxes for normal chassis.

3. When the Hino engine was introduced (forget R&D and such stuff for some time, please) with synchro GB as standard, there were no takers, because they were ahead o the times. This was in mid 1980s.

Hinos and synchro gear boxes had to be hammered down the market's throats when emission norms forced AL to withdraw the AL 370 engine. This is more a function of market acceptance rather than AL's failure.

4. AL launched the first rear engined buses; Have some operating in Chennai as late as 2003/4. Again, very ahead of their times.

5. ALhad the better all air, diagonaly split brake circuit, long before Tatas even thought of it. Tatas discarded the fluid type brakes only in teh latter half of 1980s.

6. AL had the better 24 Volt electrical systems as standard, TML introduced the 24 Volt electricals only in 1980s.

7. Tata buses used to suffer from harmonic vibrations (not any more). AL buses / HCVs are still free of any kind of engine vibration being transferred to the chassis / body. Please do not confuse engine vibrations / harmonics from rattling body parts caused by shoddy body building.

One thing for sure, AL was ahead of its times. Now, competition is catching up. Probably, it is getting ahead. At least, TML buses are getting better.
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Old 1st November 2010, 19:18   #172
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You call AL R&D team proactive, you are joking right? AL was using British Leyland and Hino technologies for a long time. Forget the engines, even the first iBus was designed by some one other than AL engineers.

Well, Hino technology dates to 1970's and Leyland technology dates to 1950's.

AL's R & D team- without any external assistance- made those engines compatable to Euro 1 & 2. People think that those engines were already compatible with Euro 1 nd 2 but thay are not.

The same engines were made Euro 3 & 4with external assistance- which Leyland and Hino themselves have not done.

And now they have developed a new engine -- I call this proactive, being in Engine R & D and currently working with Cummins Advanced Engineering, US

Well for a layman, the AL R &D team might look like a joke, because they don't have any idea what work goes into these projects.

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Old 1st November 2010, 20:49   #173
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There are always some positive & negative sides for various strategies adopted by AL and TML. But looking thus far for CV segment in India, AL's tradition of innovation is highly appreciable.
I don't disagree with what you have said but if you look at the entire history of TML and AL (and not merely the recent years), TML has been no less innovative. Rather, it has been more innovative. TML invested heavily in R&D and set up the ERC. In 1970s, AL did not have a facility like ERC or test tracks which TML had both at Jamshedpur and Pune. TML developed the more fuel efficient and powerful DI version (692 DI) of the original Mercedes IDI engine (OM 312), independently of MB. It designed and introduced the semi-forward control 1210S truck in 1975 on its own. This truck was popular not only in India but also in many foreign countries like Ghana, Nigeria, Malaysia, etc. where it outsold the comparable MB truck. This truck was even license-manufactured in Malaysia where TML played to the local partner the role which MB had played w.r.t. TML. The 160 HP 1516 truck (later redesignated as 1616) equipped with a factory-fitted, international quality, fully-built sleeper cab (which cab continues till today) was developed in late 1970s without any help from MB, except for the bigger 697 engine which had to be license-built. Later model developments like 1312 truck which competed with AL's Tusker (used a bigger version of 1210's engine, locally developed), 807 (four cylinder 495 DI engine), 610 (4X4 version of 807 but fitted with with six cylinder 692 engine) were all indigenous efforts. TML's diversification into the LCV business was an indigenous and highly successful effort whereas AL's effort was neither indigenous nor particularly successful. Within an year of its launch, the sales of 407 truck well more than the combined sales of all four Indo-Jap LCVs in the country. In 1988, TML launched the Tatamobile, India's first pick-up truck that was designed completely indigenously. Its derivatives (Sumo, 207, Grande, Safari) continue to be sold even today.

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Back in 2000 when the BS1 norms came into effect, the AL engines (both Leyland & Hino) could easily comply with it.
Are you sure about the Leyland engine easily complying with BS-1? AL had to go to Hino in 1980s itself since the Leyland engine wasn't considered modern and fuel-efficient enough. There's no doubt that the Leyland engine was very robust.

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But the 697 & 497 series of engines used by TML was modified with addition of Turbocharger to attain the emission levels. And TML cleverly & effectively made "Turbo" a marketing weapon. In 2005, when BS2 was enforced, TML again added "intercooler" to its CV engines (both 497 & 697 series) and the fuel system changed from Inline mechanical FIP to electronic Rotary FIP. But AL only added turbocharger & intercooler. While the Hino E series attained BS2 status even with old Inline FIP system.
Hino engine was definitely more modern than 697 & 497 engines, so this is not surprising. 697 & 497 were derived from MB's 300 series developed in 1950s and 1960s from an Opel engine belonging to World War 2 era.

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Again the engines made by AL is comparable to Cummins
Which AL engine are you referring to? TML went to Cummins just like AL went to Hino in search of more modern technology.

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because if we consider 5Lakh Kms as average engine life, TML 697series seldom achieve this mark, while AL & Cummins easily cross it very often.
May be due to the petrol ancestry of 697. 697 which is basically license-built version of MB's OM 352 engine which belongs to MB's OM 300 series whose design is derived from an Opel petrol engine of WW2 era. By the way, many Tata 1210 Haryana Roadways buses fitted with 692 engine crossed 3 lac kms in 1970s.

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And this is the very basic reason for Cummins engines being widely accepted by TML customers rather than TML own engines.
Good for TML. The decision to go in for Cummins B series was taken after lot of thought involving careful examination of available options. B series is a highly regarded engine internationally.

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Similarly India's first CNG engine was from AL.
Really? Which engine was used? The AL low floor CNG buses in Delhi use the same Cummins B series derived engine. One would have expected TML to have an advantage here since CNG versions of Cummins B have existed in US for school buses for a long time. The CNG technology was readily available to TML through Cummins.

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Again India's first BS5 CNG engine was developed by AL with MPFI system. TML sourced HCV Bseries gas engine from Cummins, even today.
Please do throw some light on this engine. Even AL sources CNG engines from Cummins. Is there any particular reason for that in spite of AL having its own technology?
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Old 1st November 2010, 21:08   #174
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Are you sure about the Leyland engine easily complying with BS-1? AL had to go to Hino in 1980s itself since the Leyland engine wasn't considered modern and fuel-efficient enough. There's no doubt that the Leyland engine was very robust.


I might be wrong here, But I think we got slightly off on timeframes here.
AL went to hino is 1970's To Get Hino Technology.

AL went to IVECO in 1980's to get Even Newer engine technology. (8045 and 8065 series)

Ivecos' engines when introduced in 1990's with high local content was too complicated for the regular garage (they had Rotary FIP's - nobody had heard of them then), so they were a failure. But the engines were really contemporary.

So my point here is, it is not technical expertise what counts, It is the market requirement.
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Old 1st November 2010, 21:14   #175
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Well, Hino technology dates to 1970's and Leyland technology dates to 1950's.

AL's R & D team- without any external assistance- made those engines compatable to Euro 1 & 2. People think that those engines were already compatible with Euro 1 nd 2 but thay are not.

The same engines were made Euro 3 & 4with external assistance- which Leyland and Hino themselves have not done.

And now they have developed a new engine -- I call this proactive, being in Engine R & D and currently working with Cummins Advanced Engineering, US

Well for a layman, the AL R &D team might look like a joke, because they don't have any idea what work goes into these projects.
Fully agreed. TML has also been following roughly the same path. It continued making incremental improvements to the originally license-built engine, independently of the collaborator. When a quantum leap in technology was required, it went to Cummins just like AL went to Hino. TML even developed new engines from scratch, for instance the Tatamobile/Sumo engine. What TML and AL engineers have done deserves credit. As AL and TML grow bigger and expand into international markets, one hopes they'll invest more and more in R&D. Here's looking forward seeing more Neptunes!
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I might be wrong here, But I think we got slightly off on timeframes here.
AL went to hino is 1970's To Get Hino Technology. AL went to IVECO in 1980's to get Even Newer engine technology. (8045 and 8065 series)
You are right about the time frame for Iveco but not for Hino. The collaboration with Hino materialised only in mid 1980s, as the news report I had cited in the earlier post also mentions. In late 1970s, AL decided to introduce low floor integral coaches (called Leyland National in UK) in collaboration with its parent company British Leyland. Indianised versions of these coaches were introduced by AL in early 1980s but weren't successful, the concept being ahead of times for India. The Indian version had the same engine & gearbox as the ordinary chassis based Viking bus chassis.

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Ivecos' engines when introduced in 1990's with high local content was too complicated for the regular garage (they had Rotary FIP's - nobody had heard of them then), so they were a failure. But the engines were really contemporary. So my point here is, it is not technical expertise what counts, It is the market requirement.
Agreed.

Last edited by directinjection : 1st November 2010 at 21:29.
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Old 1st November 2010, 22:01   #176
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TML invested heavily in R&D and set up the ERC. In 1970s, AL did not have a facility like ERC or test tracks which TML had both at Jamshedpur and Pune.
That's true!...TELCO was fortunate to be a Tata group company, while AL was struggling for funds in its earlier stages.

TML developed the more fuel efficient and powerful DI version (692 DI) of the original Mercedes IDI engine (OM 312), independently of MB. Even TML does not claim that!


It designed and introduced the semi-forward control 1210S truck in 1975 on its own. This truck was popular not only in India but also in many foreign countries like Ghana, Nigeria, Malaysia, etc. where it outsold the comparable MB truck. This truck was even license-manufactured in Malaysia where TML played to the local partner the role which MB had played w.r.t. TML. The cab design again was derived from MB. And for exports TML has done wonders. (no doubt!)

The 160 HP 1516 truck (later redesignated as 1616) equipped with a factory-fitted, international quality, fully-built sleeper cab (which cab continues till today) was developed in late 1970s without any help from MB, except for the bigger 697 engine which had to be license-built.
"International cab"?...and the basic design was again taken from MB model. And untill 1980's end TML did not have any model other than 1210 series/variants (incl. 4x4) in HCV segment.

Later model developments like 1312 truck which competed with AL's Tusker (used a bigger version of 1210's engine, locally developed), 807 (four cylinder 495 DI engine), 610 (4X4 version of 807 but fitted with with six cylinder 692 engine) were all indigenous efforts. TML's diversification into the LCV business was an indigenous and highly successful effort whereas AL's effort was neither indigenous nor particularly successful. Within an year of its launch, the sales of 407 truck well more than the combined sales of all four Indo-Jap LCVs in the country. In 1988, TML launched the Tatamobile, India's first pick-up truck that was designed completely indigenously. Its derivatives (Sumo, 207, Grande, Safari) continue to be sold even today.
1312 model was launched in 1998 with cummins engine and not bigger 697 (1210 engine)! 807 was again from MB stable including its cabin. Its true that ALs efforts in ICV segment was not much better with Commet minor, comet810 etc. (LCV & below not considered as AL in not there....we cannot compare.) But TMLs efforts in LCV is the best.

Are you sure about the Leyland engine easily complying with BS-1? AL had to go to Hino in 1980s itself since the Leyland engine wasn't considered modern and fuel-efficient enough. There's no doubt that the Leyland engine was very robust. Please note Leyland engine is still used in AL multiaxle models 160Hp and BS2 (Taurus 2516tipper). AL went for Hino by end of 1980 because Volvo tookover the British Leyland and also its holding in AL was bought by Hinduja.

Hino engine was definitely more modern than 697 & 497 engines, so this is not surprising. 697 & 497 were derived from MB's 300 series developed in 1950s and 1960s from an Opel engine belonging to World War 2 era. And that's why i compared hino with cummins. And for leyland engine again 697 is no match.

May be due to the petrol ancestry of 697. 697 which is basically license-built version of MB's OM 352 engine which belongs to MB's OM 300 series whose design is derived from an Opel petrol engine of WW2 era. By the way, many Tata 1210 Haryana Roadways buses fitted with 692 engine crossed 3 lac kms in 1970s. Leyland engine scores for reliability, efficiency, serviceability, durability etc . Thats why later most of the STU turned to AL...

Really? Which engine was used? The AL low floor CNG buses in Delhi use the same Cummins B series derived engine. One would have expected TML to have an advantage here since CNG versions of Cummins B have existed in US for school buses for a long time. The CNG technology was readily available to TML through Cummins. DTC tender specifies for "cummins B gas engine" as OE fittment (and that's different story). Again inspite of access to cummins gas engine technology, why TML did not take the inititaive to bring it in India?

Please do throw some light on this engine. Even AL sources CNG engines from Cummins. Is there any particular reason for that in spite of AL having its own technology? AL has developed CNG engine based on its Hino engine. The initial buses of DTC were fitted with them. Now the ALlowfloor buses of DTC is made as per specification of DTC unlike other. So we find cummins engine in it).

My opinion is marked in bold above. And I do not under value the efforts of TML in indian CV industry, but AL was the leader at least untill 2000. For us indians...double decker, vestibule bus, power steering, air brakes, multiaxle trucks, tippers, rear engine buses, CNG bus...all came from AL first.
TML displayed its marketing brillance....
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Old 1st November 2010, 22:50   #177
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And I do not under value the efforts of TML in indian CV industry
The tone and tenor of your comments certainly suggests so. It'll be better if comments are kept unbiased. In fact, I find the thread title itself objectionable. There never was any war between TML and AL. Both companies produced vehicles with acceptable levels of quality and reliability and hence did well. The market was big enough to absorb their entire produce. In fact, in the seventies, SRTCs had to run after TML and AL, their combined production not being sufficient to meet demand. Premier Automobiles and Hindustan Motors failed to give decent quality and reliability in their CVs and hence both failed miserably in the CV sector. AL and TML both deserve praise, none of the two being the victor, there not being a race in the first place.

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but AL was the leader at least until 2000. For us indians...double decker, vestibule bus, power steering, air brakes, multiaxle trucks, tippers, rear engine buses, CNG bus...all came from AL first. TML displayed its marketing brillance....
It is unreasonable to dismiss TML's substantial R&D efforts and attribute its success merely to marketing brilliance. Daimler-TML technical collaboration is internationally acknowledged as one of the world's best examples of successful technology transfer from developed to developing country and is the subject matter of case studies in courses on technology transfer. Usually the partner in the developing country undertakes zero R&D and is dependent on the collaborator/parent company for every design change or new product development. What better example of this than Maruti. TML's case was different.

I'm unable to respond to your other comments immediately since the same aren't being displayed in the reply box. Will attempt to respond later.

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TML developed the more fuel efficient and powerful DI version (692 DI) of the original Mercedes IDI engine (OM 312), independently of MB. Even TML does not claim that!
Well it does and the market also knows it. You probably need to undertake more research and read more stuff to discover this.

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The cab design again was derived from MB.
1210 S cab design was TML's own and differed from the MB semi-forward cab design which was much more rounded. Visually the two trucks looked completely different, unlike the long bonnet 1210 produced by TML earlier which was almost identical to MB L 312 visually.

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"International cab"?...
I had said international quality.This cab was a generation ahead of anything produced in India till then, including AL products.

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and the basic design was again taken from MB model.
A copy, probably yes. But done without any help from the ex-collaborator. Definitely not a hand-me-down from the foreign collaborator.

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And untill 1980's end TML did not have any model other than 1210 series/variants (incl. 4x4) in HCV segment.
1516, 160 HP turbo truck with power steering was introduced in 1980.
1312, 120 HP 13 tonne GVW was introduced in 1981.

Last edited by directinjection : 1st November 2010 at 23:07.
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Old 1st November 2010, 22:52   #178
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being in Engine R & D and currently working with Cummins Advanced Engineering, US

Well for a layman, the AL R &D team might look like a joke, because they don't have any idea what work goes into these projects.
But the problem is actual buyers are not experts in engine R&D. So may be they dont know, what AL R&D is proactivly doing. But what they know is which option is better for their business and probably that may be reason, TML got over 60% market share of the CV segment in India.
Off topic and Nothing personal here, but in my opinion, All employees should have full confidence in the product they are working on and need to work hard to improve the product to make it better than the competition. A loyal employee should not be praising competition in public.
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For us indians...double decker, vestibule bus, power steering, air brakes, multiaxle trucks, tippers, rear engine buses, CNG bus...all came from AL first.
As i mentioned earlier, being first does not mean much, doing right is more important. MicroSoft (OS) and Apple(Music Players) were not the "First" in their respective fields, but they are the best in their respective product categories.
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Old 1st November 2010, 23:29   #179
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1312 model was launched in 1998 with cummins engine and not bigger 697 (1210 engine)!
There was another 1312 which was launched in 1981. It had a 120 HP, 5 litre engine called 695 DI, being bigger than that of 1210 which had a 112 HP 4.8 litre engine.

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807 was again from MB stable including its cabin.
It resembled the MB truck and perhaps that's why you say that it was from MB stable but it was done locally. It was TML's first response to the Indo-Jap LCV onslaught, 407 and 608 coming later. Will you also say 407 was from MB stable because it looked like MB LCV? Well it wasn't. Everything was done done locally at Pune.

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Leyland engine scores for reliability, efficiency, serviceability, durability etc . Thats why later most of the STU turned to AL...
No STU in North India (the market I'm more familiar with) abandoned TML for AL's sake. Both enjoyed roughly 50:50 market share. South always had preference for AL, geography too playing some role here. That's why AL set up a plant in Alwar, Rajasthan and TML set up plants in Pune and Karnataka, to overcome the geographic hurdles.
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Old 1st November 2010, 23:42   #180
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But what they know is which option is better for their business and probably that may be reason, TML got over 60% market share of the CV segment in India.
Off topic and Nothing personal here, but in my opinion, All employees should have full confidence in the product they are working on and need to work hard to improve the product to make it better than the competition.
Point 1, Engine technology alone does not make a market leader, If it were the case BMW would be in the place of maruti.

Point 2, Well, I worked for Leyland before and have full confidence in the products which I helped Develop. Cummins- by no means has an inferior product, my concern is, it may not be custom developed for indian market.

Point 3, Being from the auto industry, I've never seen a Suzuki enginner working on the 1.3lMJD, claim his engine is better than a BMW 1.5l/2.0l engine. Whatever the company does, Facts remain facts - brand loyaty leads you nowhere.
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