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Old 18th February 2011, 00:12   #1
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Default Report & Pics: Mahindra Navistar MN25 Tipper & MN40 Tractor Trailer Launch

Mahindra Navistar Automotives Ltd. (MNAL as they are known), showcased its complete range of Heavy Commercial Vehicle (HCV) trucks at the January 2010 Auto Expo. From that range, they launched the cargo variants of the MN25 (25 Ton) and the MN31 (31 Ton) in the same month. Considering the powerful competition MNAL had to face from Tata, Ashok Leyland, Volvo, AMW, they ended up selling a humble 300 units from then up till now.

Report & Pics: Mahindra Navistar MN25 Tipper & MN40 Tractor Trailer Launch-mahindralogo1.jpg

After studying the market for a year and looking at the demand for tipper trucks and tractor trailers, MNAL launched the MN25 tipper and the MN40 tractor trailer, today in Mumbai at a press launch inside the Intercontinental, Andheri.

Report & Pics: Mahindra Navistar MN25 Tipper & MN40 Tractor Trailer Launch-unveiling.jpg
Unveiling the MN25 Tipper.

Report & Pics: Mahindra Navistar MN25 Tipper & MN40 Tractor Trailer Launch-bothtrucks.jpg
Both new comers side by side, the MN40 and the MN25 Tipper

Report & Pics: Mahindra Navistar MN25 Tipper & MN40 Tractor Trailer Launch-mn40.jpg
The 260 bhp MN40

Report & Pics: Mahindra Navistar MN25 Tipper & MN40 Tractor Trailer Launch-tipperfront.jpg
The 210 bhp MN25 Tipper

Mr. Nalin Mehta, Chief Operating Officer, MNAL began the press conference by talking about the biggest automobile manufacturing plant in India, Mahindra Chakan, where these Navistar trucks are manufactured. A video showcasing the different manufacturing processes involved in the production of these trucks was shown. One very unique method worth mentioning is the “Ro-Dip Painting” (Rotary Dipping), in their paint shop. In this process, the complete cabin is dipped in 1.5 lac litres of paint by rotation. This ensures that the paint reaches innermost sections of the body which are difficult to access in normal paint-shops. MNAL is India’s’ first and the world’s second manufacturer to use this system after Honda in Swindon, UK. The complete Chakan plant runs on the principle of being environmentally friendly.

What triggered the launch of these two new body styles is the very demanding market in the tipper and the tractor trailer category.

Report & Pics: Mahindra Navistar MN25 Tipper & MN40 Tractor Trailer Launch-nalinmehta.jpg
Mr. Nalin Mehta, Chief Operating Officer, MNAL addressing the media.

The MN25 Tipper is powered by a MAXXFORCE 7.2 litre turbo-charged inter-cooled engine which produces 210 bhp @ 2200 rpm. The same engine powers the MN40 but a more powerful, 260 bhp CRDI version is also available. Power is transmitted to the wheels through a 6-speed transmission. The power figures might not sound a lot considering the amount of cargo these work horses haul, but MNAL has balanced the engine to give just the right power output and better fuel efficiency at the same time.

Report & Pics: Mahindra Navistar MN25 Tipper & MN40 Tractor Trailer Launch-gearknob.jpg
The Six-Speed Gear Box by Eaton. Reverse gear does not have any different mechanism to engage (Clip, push) thus you will end up putting it in the First gear frequently.

Report & Pics: Mahindra Navistar MN25 Tipper & MN40 Tractor Trailer Launch-pedals.jpg
Steering column separates the clutch from the accelerator and brake.

Mr. Mehta also said that after studying the Indian customer, his needs and the compromises he has to make in the transportation industry, they came up with a new slogan which reads “Ok is no longer Ok”. Thus, the Navistar trucks are equipped with safer cabins, basic driver needs such as comfortable seats, telescopic steering, roof fans, air conditioning, wide sleeper berths and so on. Global Positioning System (GPS) is optional for the MN25, MN31, MN40 but comes as standard equipment with the 260 bhp MN40.

Report & Pics: Mahindra Navistar MN25 Tipper & MN40 Tractor Trailer Launch-dash.jpg
Simple, unattractive dashboard. Could have been better honestly. Knobs and switches have a sturdy feel.

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Roof mounted fan. Very cool (literally!) for hotter climate. Both the driver and spotter have separate fans for each other

Report & Pics: Mahindra Navistar MN25 Tipper & MN40 Tractor Trailer Launch-tipperknob.jpg
The Tipper operation knob on the MN25

You will observe that the Navistar trucks are definitely a big step up in terms of fit and finish from the local coach built trucks or even AMW (Asia Motor Works ) for that matter, but do not seem to be at par with the Volvo trucks available in India. But this does gives MNAL an advantage over the Volvos in terms of price as Volvos are all Rs. 30 lakhs and above. Even the Tata Prima starts at Rs. 33 lakhs.

Ex-Showroom Pune prices to Mahindra Navistar BS III Variants:

MN25 - Tipper : Rs. 23.26 lakhs ( No Air Conditioning and No GPS )
MN40 - 210 bhp : Rs. 17.15 lakhs ( White Cab, No Air Conditioning and No GPS )
MN40 - 260 bhp : Rs. 19.30 lakhs ( White Cab, No Air Conditioning, Factory Fitted GPS )

Report & Pics: Mahindra Navistar MN25 Tipper & MN40 Tractor Trailer Launch-mn31.jpg
A quad-axle MN31.

Mr. Rakesh Kalra, Managing Director – MNAL said that although large production volumes is not their priority right now, they aim to sell the MNAL products in huge numbers after the next 3-4 years. Early next year MNAL will launch the MN49 which is a 49 ton tractor trailer.

Report & Pics: Mahindra Navistar MN25 Tipper & MN40 Tractor Trailer Launch-rakeshkalra.jpg
Mr. Rakesh Kalra, Managing Director, MNAL addressing the media.

Important Highlights about MNAL:

• MNAL aims to export the MN range to Right Hand Drive markets such as South Africa.

• MNAL provides a 6 - day training program for all drivers before they start driving for their fleet.

• MNAL has already begun work to construct driver dormitories at their service stations with facilities for over-night stay, showers, entertainment.

• The 24x7 Expert Assistance is controlled by one national call center which can be reached on a common telephone number or on a press of a button from the GPS.

• This emergency roadside assistance is multi-lingual (upto 7 languages)

• MNAL has 30 dealerships already, will have 40 by March 2011 and a 100 by the end of this year.

• MNAL plans to introduce 16-ton buses in the coming years.

• Total investment in the Mahindra Navistar project has been approximately 900 crore.

Report & Pics: Mahindra Navistar MN25 Tipper & MN40 Tractor Trailer Launch-three.jpg
From L-R, Mr. David Majors, Sr. Vice President, Global Product Development, Mr. Nalin Mehta and Mr. Rakesh Kalra with the MN25 Tipper.

Report & Pics: Mahindra Navistar MN25 Tipper & MN40 Tractor Trailer Launch-tipper.jpg
I hope MNAL provide those mud-flaps with all their trucks. They do look nice.

Report & Pics: Mahindra Navistar MN25 Tipper & MN40 Tractor Trailer Launch-touristers.jpg
Mahindra Touristers are now branded as Mahindra Navistar Touristers

Overall, a the event was nicely organized by MNAL. Lets hope they do make their mark in the Commercial HCV Segment in India.

Last edited by Stratos : 18th February 2011 at 14:38.
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Old 18th February 2011, 00:37   #2
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Default Re: Report & Pics: Mahindra Navistar MN25 Tipper & MN40 Tractor Trailer Launch

Superb report Stratos. Those are some seriously good trucks there. Nice to see that Mahindra is taking on the international HCV market by looking to export these trucks to other RHD markets. They look great from the exterior but your interior pictures show that there is room for improvement in there namely the fit and finish.

I had seen the Tata World Trucks during my last visit to Tata Motors and they sure had presence. Hope to see these soon as well

The MN25 looks really sweet by the way. Nice pics. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 18th February 2011, 07:51   #3
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Default Re: Report & Pics: Mahindra Navistar MN25 Tipper & MN40 Tractor Trailer Launch

Really el-cheapo interiors. Both AMW and ALL U-trucks the main competitors of this truck have better interiors.

It will be very difficult for them to enter the market, with nothing really that stands out as a USP.

And they still dont seem to have made any announcement on the improvement of their service facilities.

Is this also an all India launch or just limited to a few states??
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Old 18th February 2011, 09:41   #4
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Default Re: Report & Pics: Mahindra Navistar MN25 Tipper & MN40 Tractor Trailer Launch

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Originally Posted by julupani View Post
Is this also an all India launch or just limited to a few states??
They did not specify any particular states, so I suppose it is an all India launch.
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Old 18th February 2011, 09:56   #5
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Default Re: Report & Pics: Mahindra Navistar MN25 Tipper & MN40 Tractor Trailer Launch

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stratos View Post
After studying the market for a year and looking at the demand for tipper trucks and tractor trailers, MNAL launched the MN25 tipper and the MN40 tractor trailer, today
That was a very late decision and they are following TMl and AL after Prima and U-Truck. SInce the voulumes in the rigid trucks are not justifying for a cabin models TML and ALL went to Tippers and tractors first rather than entering Rigid trucks. It should be noted that Prima and U trucks are yet to be launched in the rigid trucks. But MNAL was too fast in entering that segmetn and now they have bounced back.

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Originally Posted by Stratos View Post
One very unique method worth mentioning is the “Ro-Dip Painting” (Rotary Dipping), in their paint shop. In this process, the complete cabin is dipped in 1.5 lac litres of paint by rotation. This ensures that the paint reaches innermost sections of the body which are difficult to access in normal paint-shops.
There are two stages in the painting process. One is PT ED and other is top coat.
The Ro-dip process is only for PT ED and not for Top coat. Top coat is normally done by Robots.
The amout 1.5lsc litres of paint may sound high but TML has a 2.5 lac litre dip tank for the same process. ( Though its not ro-dip and only dip)

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MNAL is India’s’ first and the world’s second manufacturer to use this system after Honda in Swindon, UK. The complete Chakan plant runs on the principle of being environmentally friendly.
Not very true.
There are lot of manufactures in the world who uses ro-dip process including BMW( which I myself have seen). May be in India its first and its no where superior to the normal dip process. The only difference being in MN's case the cab is rolled over into PT&ED where as in others case its dipped(immersed) in the bath. Both offers the ED paint to get painted into the channel sections unlike conventional painting
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Originally Posted by Stratos View Post
Mahidra Touristers are now branded as Mahindra Navistar Touristers
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Old 18th February 2011, 10:11   #6
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Default Re: Report & Pics: Mahindra Navistar MN25 Tipper & MN40 Tractor Trailer Launch

Nice report, Stratos and thanks for sharing it with us.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stratos View Post
they ended up selling a humble 300 units from then up till now.
That's pathetic compared to Mahindra's brand pull & distribution network.

Quote:
The MN25 Tipper is powered by a MAXXFORCE 7.2 litre turbo-charged inter-cooled engine which produces 210 bhp @ 2200 rpm. The same engine powers the MN40 but a more powerful, 260 bhp CRDI version is also available.
What's the torque rating? This is more important.

Quote:
Thus, the Navistar trucks are equipped with safer cabins, basic driver needs such as comfortable seats, telescopic steering, roof fans, air conditioning, wide sleeper berths and so on. Global Positioning System (GPS) is optional for the MN25, MN31, MN40 but comes as standard equipment with the 260 bhp MN40.
Nice equipment list. When I sat in Tata's new range of Trucks at the Auto Expo 2010, man, they blew me away. The amenities & overall comfort were better than C segment sedans.

Question : Why do all Mahindras have poor interiors? The Navistar's bits seem shoddily put together.

Like the idea of an overhead fan. That's only for the non-air conditioned variants?

Mahindra's passenger UVs are generally robust, reliable, engineering is simple and engines are fuel-efficient. If these attributes are carried over to the Navistars, it could just click in the market. After all, what matters to the truckers is days on the road, load carrying / abuse-friendly build, low maintenance and fuel efficiency. On the face of it, the Navistars seem to be priced well too.
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Old 18th February 2011, 14:58   #7
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Default Re: Report & Pics: Mahindra Navistar MN25 Tipper & MN40 Tractor Trailer Launch

The Tata Prima cab and its complicated electronic systems is what really differentiates it with from the AMWs, ALL U-trucks or the MNALs. The in cab equipment list of the Prima cab is truly more like that of a C-segement sedan rather than a truck and even more importantly the quality of the cabs matches up too.

Entering the tipper and tractor market is always better, becuase it is in those sectors today where the customer is ready to shell out more money for a better equipped higher power truck. MNAL should have entered with the 40tonne 2axle tractor and the 25ton tipper. They should have quickly followed up the the 31tonne tipper and the 3-axle 49tonne tractor. It hope they mean early next financial year when they say next year to launch the 49tonne tractor.

The pricing truly seems to be good to compete with the AMW and U-truck. The question still remains service network and their ability to market their product. The lack of a USP here is still my biggest concern for the success of MNAL.

I doubt GPS is really a necessary tool for the tippers, though it is so on the long haul tractors.
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Old 18th February 2011, 17:07   #8
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Default Re: Report & Pics: Mahindra Navistar MN25 Tipper & MN40 Tractor Trailer Launch

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It hope they mean early next financial year when they say next year to launch the 49tonne tractor.
They specifically said the 49 ton MN49 will be launched in 2012 . It is already listed on MNALs website and looks way better than the complete range with its body colored bumpers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Like the idea of an overhead fan. That's only for the non-air conditioned variants?
I remember seeing it in all the versions, so it possibly is standard equipment.

Last edited by Stratos : 18th February 2011 at 17:11.
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Old 19th February 2011, 07:50   #9
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Default Re: Report & Pics: Mahindra Navistar MN25 Tipper & MN40 Tractor Trailer Launch

A full year to add an extra axle!!!! What is the R&D dept doing the whole of next year???

The overhead fan I dont think is much of use. Plain and simply opening the window will be a better solution to cool yourself off. And if I have an AC, I would much rather use it. Also its positioning right over the seat is not exactly good in my opinion, especially in a sleeper cab.

Does the cab have a flat floor??
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Old 21st February 2011, 20:10   #10
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Default Re: Report & Pics: Mahindra Navistar MN25 Tipper & MN40 Tractor Trailer Launch

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Considering the powerful competition MNAL had to face from Tata, Ashok Leyland, Volvo, AMW, they ended up selling a humble 300 units from then up till now.

Both new comers side by side, the MN40 and the MN25 Tipper

Mahindra Touristers are now branded as Mahindra Navistar Touristers
300 Units for an entire year. Mahindra should be scratching their heads by now with those kind of sales figures.

Both the trucks look nice.

Regarding the Tourister, all I have to say is . I pray God that somehow, someone should teach Mahindra to come up with better looking frontal design in their vehicles.
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Old 21st February 2011, 23:28   #11
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Default Re: Report & Pics: Mahindra Navistar MN25 Tipper & MN40 Tractor Trailer Launch

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Regarding the Tourister, all I have to say is . I pray God that somehow, someone should teach Mahindra to come up with better looking frontal design in their vehicles.
Totally agree, but the buying public are not concerned. Off late, i see more Tourister school buses, than TMs in Kerala roads.
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Old 22nd February 2011, 06:28   #12
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Totally agree, but the buying public are not concerned. Off late, i see more Tourister school buses, than TMs in Kerala roads.
That's true. Even in Chennai roads, the Touristers easily outnumber the Marcopolos. But seriously, how does Mahindra's design department approves these frontal designs? I, and for that matter, most of us would prefer the old Tourister's front than this. The less said about the Gio, the better.
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Old 22nd February 2011, 09:38   #13
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Default Re: Report & Pics: Mahindra Navistar MN25 Tipper & MN40 Tractor Trailer Launch

M&M is trying to keep the front grill and headlamp design same across their models, but it doesn't look so good on the mini buses. Navistar's schoolbuses all have that characteristic grill.

----

There's nothing new in their range of trucks. All these and much more are already provided by ALL, TM, AMW etc. MNAL trucks don't have any eye-catching features like the U-trucks or Primas. IMO, their sales and marketing teams will have a tough job in their hands.
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Old 22nd February 2011, 23:21   #14
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Default Re: Report & Pics: Mahindra Navistar MN25 Tipper & MN40 Tractor Trailer Launch

Honestly, I don't like the look of it at all. I mean is this the same company that designed Lonestar in the US.

Any way good luck to Mahindras! Lets hope this JV doesn't go sour like Renault with thousand of owners left stranded for parts and services.
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Old 23rd February 2011, 15:47   #15
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Default Re: Report & Pics: Mahindra Navistar MN25 Tipper & MN40 Tractor Trailer Launch

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Honestly, I don't like the look of it at all. I mean is this the same company that designed Lonestar in the US.
These trucks haven't been designed by Navistar but by Mahindra here in India. Only the engine and drivetrain are borrowed from Navistar. These trucks look much better in real life than in pics.
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