This was expected to be a quiet transition year. It marked a long-awaited environment-friendly, but highly complex transition from Euro 4 to Euro 6 standards. Little did we anticipate the impact of an invisible virus that brought the world to its knees, and the CV industry to a halt. As we exited a total lockdown, the industry witnessed drama at the Supreme Court related to vehicle registrations. Small businesses and operators struggled to pay their EMIs and looked for intervention. All through the crisis, we were left looking for solutions to keep our homes well stocked while we stayed home.
World-Class Technology Made in India
The year 2020 was expected to pose a challenge to the CV industry. A transition to significantly lower emission BS-VI trucks was scheduled for April 1, 2020. Emissions in diesel trucks and buses would reduce by over 50-90%, significantly reducing pollution from vehicle exhausts. To complicate things, India would be making the transition in less than a third of the time it took Europe and China to do the same. While the odds were stacked against them, all OEMs spent a lot of time and energy in preparing for the transition.
They invested heavily in technology (over hundreds of crores each). They worked closely with their parent companies, their joint venture partners or collaborated with global technology leaders to minimise the learning curve. The technology was adapted to Indian conditions. They collaborated with suppliers locally and globally to make it cost-effective. Then they tested, learnt and re-tested the technology in simulations, inside sophisticated labs and on challenging road conditions. Thousands of technicians were trained to handle the all-new electromechanical technology at service centres across the country.
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