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Old 29th August 2010, 20:53   #16
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Nitrous, Today I happened to see one of the Ashok Leyland Chassis of a mutli axle truck. I was just amazed to see that the rear axles had only four tyres where as it is supposed to have 8 tyres. I thought it was one of the cost cutting which has to be born by the customer. Now I am sure why they were running with only four.

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Originally Posted by nitrous View Post
Ground reality is that there is a severe tyre supply shortage.

Infact, this Ashok Leyland engineer tells me that chassis' have been leaving the production line with 1 tyre (I still don't know how)
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Old 29th August 2010, 21:17   #17
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I have on multiple occasions seen the Ashok Leyland truck chassis being driven-off from the factory in Hosur with 2 tyres on the rear axles instead of 4. I dont think its a cost cutting measure as the chassis, when it goes on to become a truck or a bus defintely cannot run around with just 2 tyres.

Since, its the chassis is it something to do with reducing the unsprung weight at the rear (handling/braking), especially as these chassis will be driven to far off dealers..?
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Old 29th August 2010, 23:01   #18
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Thanks @Nitrous and all. This is a totally different perspective I gained today by reading this thread.
Never was aware of the nuts and bolts of tyre industry.

Now a fundamental question: Why is there a reduction in inputs (I mean rubber)?
Is it that the world itself is growing less rubber or its more of a cartel syndrome wanting to control the pricing just like petrol/diesel?

Last edited by ampere : 29th August 2010 at 23:02.
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Old 29th August 2010, 23:34   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nitrous View Post
Infact, this Ashok Leyland engineer tells me that chassis' have been leaving the production line with 1 tyre (I still don't know how)

Well, I just happened to see a news in todays local Malayala Manorama news paper, which tells that Kerala State Road Transport Corporation is facing acute shortage of tyres and their buses are 'standing one tyred' in their respective garages. There is a picture, with many buses with just two rear tyres instead of four.
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Old 30th August 2010, 10:43   #20
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Originally Posted by jeeva View Post
I have on multiple occasions seen the Ashok Leyland truck chassis being driven-off from the factory in Hosur with 2 tyres on the rear axles instead of 4. I dont think its a cost cutting measure as the chassis, when it goes on to become a truck or a bus defintely cannot run around with just 2 tyres.

Since, its the chassis is it something to do with reducing the unsprung weight at the rear (handling/braking), especially as these chassis will be driven to far off dealers..?
I too have seen new trucks driven in a convoy with one tyre instead of two at each end of the rear axle. This phenomenon is not new, as I have been noticing for quite a long time (10+ years).

Of course this is not as strange as two tractors bolted to each other traveling to a dealer.

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Originally Posted by AbhiJ View Post
Well, being from the rubber industry, here are my 2 cents.

The current pricing structure is a result of cartels and bad policys.

The Indian Growers produce less rubber than indian demand currently. However all rubber imports are taxed @ 20%. The IRGA (Indian Rubber Growers Association) is not going the let the government lower the duty, otherwise the prices of natural rubber will crash by the same % almost immediately.
Rubber is agricultural product and follows the classic demand supply curve. When the going is bad, rubber growers neglect it and grow some thing else. When the going is good they try to rejuvenate the plantation, but that takes time. Such cycles are seen in all crops.

The same boom-bust is seen in ship building, cement industries and a host of other industries apart from agriculture. The trick is to anticipate the demand and tailor the production to it. Of course if your predictions are accurate every time you would tend to maximise the profits rather than serve the community.

With current remote sensing technology, it is possible to predict agricultural productivity to a fair extent. US Government does it for major export crops, so the wheat sown in the US mid west is matched to the expected yield in the importing countries. Rubber is slightly more complicated due to the gestation period, but the production can also regulated, based on future demand.

Last edited by Rehaan : 31st August 2010 at 20:23. Reason: Posts merged. Please use the MULTIQUOTE button instead of making multiple consecutive posts in the same thread. Thanks.
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Old 30th August 2010, 11:08   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nitrous View Post
Owing to this demand, the tyre cartel have been increasing prices every 1-3 months for the past 18 months or so by 3% every time. Make a rough calculation and you'll realise how much tyre prices have gone up by.
I blame car manufacturers for this state. If they offered more than the 500 bucks per tire (or lesser) that they do now, then the tire companies would have an incentive to invest in more capacity.
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Old 30th August 2010, 14:08   #22
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the current shortage is NOT simply because of raw material shortage etc, but main reason is capacity shortage in the tyre industry which has been compounded many fold by labour issues in 2 key players - APOLLO AND MRF.

recently Apollo has come to some settlement in their unit in Kerala. but the industry suffers from regular labour issues.

Michelin is investing around 7000 cr to set up a new plant in chennai. apollo's new plant is coming up in orgadam.
once these and other projects are up and running the problem should hopefully be solved
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Old 31st August 2010, 10:54   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nitrous View Post
Ground reality is that there is a severe tyre supply shortage.
Thanks for sharing this, I was completely unaware. Some misc thoughts on the same:

- Why source "unheard of brands" from Russia? Surely, Asian countries known for their low costs (Thailand, China etc.) would be able to supply brand name tyres at a cheaper rate? This Q is specific to the Vento.

- The tyre companies definitely have vested interests in this tyre shortage. The Indian car market has been defying global trends since 2007 - 2008; the sales numbers of 2010 were expected. Why didn't they install additional capacity?

- How can a VW Vento with an expected 3,000 units a month face tyre shortages, when a Maruti with 100,000+ units a month is able to source tyres locally?

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Originally Posted by Gilead View Post
If they offered more than the 500 bucks per tire (or lesser) that they do now, then the tire companies would have an incentive to invest in more capacity.
Are you serious? OEM tyres are bought for a mere 500 bucks?

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Michelin is investing around 7000 cr to set up a new plant in chennai.
This plant will only produce tyres for commercial vehicles. Atleast, that's the plan.
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Old 31st August 2010, 11:23   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post

- The tyre companies definitely have vested interests in this tyre shortage. The Indian car market has been defying global trends since 2007 - 2008; the sales numbers of 2010 were expected. Why didn't they install additional capacity?

- How can a VW Vento with an expected 3,000 units a month face tyre shortages, when a Maruti with 100,000+ units a month is able to source tyres locally?
It is not a tyre manufacturing capacity shortage, it is a shortage of processed rubber itself. Yesterday there was a news in a Malayalam daily about vast areca nut estates being coverted to rubber plantations after felling of the areca nut palms. This itself shows the shortage in supplies and huge pent up demand

Also Vento maye be facing shortages because all the current tyre supplies are already tied up with the existing car manufacturers. A tyre manufacturer may be more interested in servicing a Maruti or Hyundai than a VW or Fiat due to the volumes and hence the cost of purchase for these guys may go up

However as you said, they could've sourced from the known Far East manufacturers than from Russia - at least psychologically we will be comfortable
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Old 31st August 2010, 12:11   #25
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I do not see anything wrong in Russian tires.
When our trrops can use russian arms, ride russian tanks / submarines / planes (now don't you bring up the MiG stories - they are OLD planes) - why do we fear that russian car tires would be worse than chinese ones?
Just because of a slightly jumbling name to pronounce - we should not fall for dingdong, linglong etc kind of tires.
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Old 31st August 2010, 12:16   #26
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Take care of your tires guys. It may be possible that tire thefts starts growing in our country. Most of our thieves are seasonal & once they know this situation they will start stealing tires form the cars. It will be good business for them for sure
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Old 31st August 2010, 12:30   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Are you serious? OEM tyres are bought for a mere 500 bucks?
I heard this from one of the Managers at CARS India, Chennai. OEM JK tyres for Swift is procured by Maruti at Rs 300 - 400 per tyre and the quality is not the same as the one we buy from tyre stores which costs around Rs 1,600/-.
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Old 31st August 2010, 12:32   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nitrous View Post
Infact, this Ashok Leyland engineer tells me that chassis' have been leaving the production line with 1 tyre (I still don't know how)
Yes. Shortages can make manufacturers do strange things. I remember one LCV/HCV manufacturer rolling out vehicles when they had rear axle-housing shortage. They used to roll out the vehicle, keep a drum under the chassis, remove the rear axle-housing and take it back to the assembly line.

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Old 31st August 2010, 15:23   #29
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When I bought Apollo Accelare last year, it costed around 2800 Rs per type and now its costing 3800 Rs.
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Old 31st August 2010, 16:17   #30
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When I bought Apollo Accelare last year, it costed around 2800 Rs per type and now its costing 3800 Rs.
Whoa man!!.. that's some serious price hike. About 35% in a single year. Are you sure they are the same size, spec?. My Bridgstone Turanza's cost me 3350 last year, and this year, about 3500/-. btw, I change tyres every year and I'v never seen such a huge hike.
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