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Old 11th December 2023, 16:36   #1
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Govt. mandates AC cabins for trucks from October 2025

The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has issued a notification that states that all trucks manufactured from October 2025 onwards must have factory-fitted AC cabins.

Govt. mandates AC cabins for trucks from October 2025-image-.jpg

As per the gazette notification, N2 and N3 category vehicles manufactured on or after October 1, 2025, should be fitted with an air-conditioning system. It also mentions that the testing of the cabin fitted with the air-conditioning system will be as per the notified automotive standards.

The ministry had earlier proposed to implement this from January 2025, but the date was revised following consultations with stakeholders.

Commercial trucks come under the N2 and N3 categories. In India, manufacturers offer several configurations including, chassis, chassis+cowl and chassis+cabin. The new regulation will pave the way for OEMs to sell the chassis with the cabin and a factory-fitted AC.

Source: ET Auto

Link to Team-BHP news

Last edited by TusharK : 11th December 2023 at 16:58.
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Old 11th December 2023, 16:42   #2
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Re: Govt. mandates AC cabin for trucks from October 2025

While itís a great move, the fineprint needs to be understood.

How can manufacturers sell cowl models with AC pre installed? There is no cabin, that is to be built later by the body maker. Will they provide the compressor-condenser-blower unit separately? Or does this rule mandate factory made cabins complete with AC? In that case, this will mark the end of the road for cabin making by third party body makers.
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Old 11th December 2023, 16:48   #3
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Re: Govt. mandates AC cabin for trucks from October 2025

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shreyans_Jain View Post
In that case, this will mark the end of the road for cabin making by third party body makers.
Good point and I think the chassis and chassis + cowl will have to go for this rule to be effective.

The ET Auto link in the OP hints in the same direction.

Last edited by shancz : 11th December 2023 at 16:52. Reason: Removed quoted info
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Old 11th December 2023, 16:56   #4
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Re: Govt. mandates AC cabin for trucks from October 2025

A welcome move, infact truck body builders have started retrofitting HVAC units.
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Old 11th December 2023, 19:21   #5
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Re: Govt. mandates AC cabins for trucks from October 2025

I think truck owners will give incentive to drivers to keep the ACs off and windows down.
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Old 11th December 2023, 21:13   #6
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Re: Govt. mandates AC cabins for trucks from October 2025

I recently had a talk with a highway truck driver who was on a >1500 km journey and he told me that, he gets very less as a fixed payment per journey to run expenses. But he saves huge money from the fund allotted for the fuel by saving that via juicing highest fuel efficiency and saving liters of fuel and his part of money.

I have seen this trend with almost all taxi plyers and I have never came across a driver who uses A.C. for himself so as to save his part of money.

I hope this doesn't remains the same even after these better environment inside a cabin at least as a truck's fuel efficiency won't much reduce due to tiny A.C. compressor as compared to their huge engines.
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Old 11th December 2023, 21:50   #7
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Re: Govt. mandates AC cabins for trucks from October 2025

Quote:
Originally Posted by TusharK View Post
The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has issued a notification that states that all trucks manufactured from October 2025 onwards must have factory-fitted AC cabins.
In a country where car makers were selling cars without AC in base trims (at least the market leader was) - its pleasant to see the ministry thinking of driver-cleaners' comfort and convenience.

That said - how much of a difference that compressor makes in the performance of the truck will be interesting to note. While on paper the dent in the performance will be minuscule - one has to remember that the trucks already are run overloaded more often than not. Occupying all lanes at snail speed on our poorly designed + executed highways with unplanned crest-trough layouts with random subway crossings.

An overloaded truck will definitely feel more pinch with an AC compressor ON. While I don't think this will make a big difference - I won't be surprised to see further slower trucks on the mountain roads OR drivers resorting to driving with AC switched off like people used to, with the M800 / M1000 / Alto etc.

The ministry seems to frequently come out of with regulations that are easy to enforce on auto-makers, while not really being interested in making road designs safer, road contractors responsible for their shoddy work. At least in my nick of the woods - centrally owned & maintained roads are the biggest problem and widow/widower makers. Mandatory AC in a truck cabin should come after fixing this.

Last edited by Reinhard : 11th December 2023 at 21:54.
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Old 11th December 2023, 23:02   #8
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Re: Govt. mandates AC cabins for trucks from October 2025

Truck cabins are generally smaller in size/Volume when compared to average passenger vehicles, also they are simple in shape and need to cool only one row of seat, even a low rated compressor should be able to cool the cabin effectively without sapping much power from the engine.

I expect overall effect on fuel efficiency in decimals.
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Old 12th December 2023, 11:27   #9
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Re: Govt. mandates AC cabins for trucks from October 2025

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Originally Posted by Gaur View Post
Truck cabins are generally smaller in size/Volume when compared to average passenger vehicles, also they are simple in shape and need to cool only one row of seat, even a low rated compressor should be able to cool the cabin effectively without sapping much power from the engine.

I expect overall effect on fuel efficiency in decimals.
This is true only for small trucks - 407/709 / Ashok Leyland Cargo series etc. All the larger / cross country heavy carriers now have moved to the 21st century (finally) and have a large rear cabin area with sleeping space for driver/cleaner etc. Overall cabin height is also quite high.

And remember - the cabins of most our trucks also house the engine right underneath and have rather "leaky" cabins with not much insulation or sealing.
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Old 12th December 2023, 11:42   #10
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Re: Govt. mandates AC cabins for trucks from October 2025

A very welcome move IMHO. A small step in the right direction for overall Safety. This will be useful to the driver community at large since our weather is on the hotter side for the most part of the year! Also this comfort might reduce the fatigue and hence unforced human errors while driving long hours.

Now we will definitely have cases where they might have to resort to switching off the AC when overloaded and on steep inclines, but in the overall scheme of things its a small comfort feature for people who end up spending the whole day in the truck cabin (got to see lunch and dinner also being made inside a truck cabin.)

But continuing in the same thread we are in dire need for a Central Body to oversee all road design, planning, execution AND maintenance (All roads, not just NH, SH etc)!

Similar to, say the BNCAP. If all Automobiles have to be certified before being used on these roads, shouldn't the said roads also be certified by a central agency ? Since the very assumptions of these testing don't take into account poor road design & maintenance - AFAIK.
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Old 12th December 2023, 22:09   #11
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Re: Govt. mandates AC cabins for trucks from October 2025

Are the current Bharat Benz range of trucks and the like AC equipped (& used in operation)? That would be a good yardstick as they are quite a common sight now and surely economics have to add up for them to ply on the roads.
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Old 13th December 2023, 12:38   #12
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Re: Govt. mandates AC cabins for trucks from October 2025

Quote:
Originally Posted by Reinhard View Post
All the larger / cross country heavy carriers now have moved to the 21st century (finally) and have a large rear cabin area with sleeping space for driver/cleaner etc. Overall cabin height is also quite high.

And remember - the cabins of most our trucks also house the engine right underneath and have rather "leaky" cabins with not much insulation or sealing.
Agree with the larger size cabins but they are still relatively simpler in shape compared to passenger vehicles, e.g 3row MUV/SUV where you have obstructions (seats) which would hamper even cooling and require additional vents/condensers for rear rows.

The greenhouse of a truck cabin would also be lesser compared to a passenger vehicle, engine heat is an additional aspect that needs to be looked into but nothing thats too much of a concern.
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Old 13th December 2023, 20:33   #13
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Re: Govt. mandates AC cabins for trucks from October 2025

A move in the right direction, may be some detailed thoughts should be given on the implementation of it.

For example, in non-optimal conditions, say when the temparature outside is less than 15 degrees or greater than 30 degrees (just examples), the AC should automatically kick in at a default temperature of 22 degrees. The driver / owner cannot switch it off in these conditions.

The drivers & owners can then be educated that, it is better for them as well as fuel efficient to roll the windows up and use the AC, and make a habbit of this.
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Old 14th December 2023, 13:36   #14
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Re: Govt. mandates AC cabin for trucks from October 2025

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Originally Posted by Shreyans_Jain View Post
In that case, this will mark the end of the road for cabin making by third party body makers.
Very true, i think one of the greater Objective is to either end such third party body makers under the unorganized sector or force them into mainstream body building factories that can bring significant tax income to the State/Centre treasury. I hope many would know, down south its either "Namakkal" Cabin or "Sangagiri" Cabin. Its more of a monopoly that cabin construction is concerned in South especially for Leyland trucks and most of the cabin manufacturing industries are unorganized which leads for tax evasion. Potential reason for the government to bring in such measures.
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Old 14th December 2023, 14:26   #15
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Re: Govt. mandates AC cabins for trucks from October 2025

I think AC usage will take off. It will eventually be recommended by truck owners that drivers use the HVAC whenever required if not at all times.

This will lead to lesser fatigue for the drivers in our HOT summers and enable them to cover longer distances even if there is heat around. Summer afternoons on our highways can get eerily lonely. It is a time when practically nobody wants to be on the road. Even the police interceptors take a break.

It is too hot for 2-wheeler riders to venture. Truck drivers take their breaks during these hours since it is too hot to drive and risk heat stroke. I actually enjoy this opportunity to cover maximum miles while the sun is still shining bright but then so will the truckers if they can comfortably cruise in that weather without getting their skin burnt off in the heat.

All this will eventually lead to faster, safer and more reliable freight movement and reduction in unnecessary accidents. Trucks will reach their destinations faster and can carry more #of loads in say, 3 months leading to better asset utilization and more profit for the operators. It is ultimately in the interest of the truck owner that the Aircon never gets turned off as long as the truck is moving.
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