Saturday, April 07, 2018

Trucks: Tata Ultra 814 & 1014 Intermediate Light Trucks Launched in Malaysia

Tata Motors together with their Malaysian partners and distributors, DRB-HICOM Commercial Vehicles (DHCV) had launched their latest Intermediate Light Truck platform. The Tata Ultra 814 & 1014 series truck together with the Tata Super Ace mini-truck were unveiled at an event attended by the High Commissioner of India, H.E. Shri Mridul Kumar and also Mr. Rudrarup Maitra, Head of International Business, Commercial Vehicle Business Unit Tata Motors. 

According to the folks at Tata, the Tata 814 (above) and 1014 series of trucks have been designed based on a combination of global performance parameters with an emphasis on enhanced levels of durability and reliability. The Tata Ultra series of intermediate light duty sized trucks is tasked to set new benchmarks in the light to medium duty commercial vehicles categories in Malaysia. 

Tata Motors have designed the Ultra series of truck to have a combination of driver comfort, high load carrying-capacity and safety, along with best life-cycle cost.  They have also made the platform versatile for various applications and as usual, is supplied in chassis form for the customers to build upon their required specifications.

First up is the Tata ULTRA 814. The 814 is powered by a new generation Euro 3 NG 3.0 Lt CRDI (commonrail ) 140hp 390Nm engine coupled with their next generation 6 speed transmission. It is available in 4.5ton payload with up to 5.5tons permissible rear axle weight capacity. All these together make the ULTRA 814 a reliable asset and the most efficient solution for optimum business profitability. 

The larger Tata ULTRA 1014 makes it an ideal work-horse for movement of materials across longer distances compared to the 814. The ULTRA 1014, also has the Euro 3 rated NG 3.0Lt engine (above) with the same output of 140 HP / 390Nm torque, a new-generation 6 speed transmission, the G-550 overdrive gear box. It has a longer wheelbase of 4530 mm compared to the 814's 3310mm / 3920mm makes Tata Ultra the perfect Business Utility Vehicle (Seems like a new term - BUV) and it suitable for varying business applications such as FMCG, white goods and more.

The Tata Ultra 814 is priced from RM86,990 (before body options and insurance) while the Tata Ultra 1014 starts at RM97,990 (before options and insurance). These trucks are at the moment fully imported from India and will eventually be locally assembled at DRB-Hicom's Pekan plant in the near future.

At first glance, the Tata Ultra series of trucks seem to be well designed and the cabin looks inviting with usage of robust looking plastics that should be durable. The cab feels airy and could be a comfortable place to be in for many hours. Of course, don't take my word for it as I have not sat in the cabin for more than a few minutes!

DRB-HICOM’s Dato’ Abdul Harith Abdullah, Chief Operating Officer, Automotive Distribution, Defence and Manufacturing & Engineering also mentioned that the launch was a key milestone for the Group in getting a foothold of the growing Commercial vehicle market in Malaysia. DRB-Hicom via DHCV would like to continue their relationship with Tata Motors which has lasted nearly four decades. He added that DHCV are very confident about the market acceptance of the new Ultra variants and specifically the smallest diesel powered mini truck, the Tata Super Ace which is expected to be popular with small business owners across Malaysia. 

"Our local knowledge coupled with a robust dealer network across the country has been crucial to our success thus far. With our partner Tata Motors, we are confident about making a significant impact in the selected commercial vehicle categories and thus grabbing market share incrementally in what is a very competitive niche market. The economy is poised to grow this year which bodes well for our joint venture with Tata Motors.” said Dato' Harith.

Mr. Rudrarup Maitra, Head – Commercial Vehicles, International Business, Tata Motors, also said, “Malaysia is one of our key markets in South-East Asia and we are delighted to be a part of one of the fastest growing ASEAN nations. An integral part of our presence here is DRB-HICOM, a partner that has showcased tremendous enthusiasm and passion over the years. With this partnership we can truly establish a long-term relationship with our customers in Malaysia.  It gives us immense pleasure to chart out our growth story and expand our portfolio in this market. We are delighted to bring the three new commercial vehicles to Malaysia today.”

DHCV and Tata Motors had mentioned that they will continue to explore new potential and new vehicles -in the 1980s Tata buses were sold here and this could be another point of entry for Tata. Right now, they are still focusing on customer’s preferences and are also conducting research for new product variants to sustain their growth and expansion for the medium to long term. Let's hope DHCV bring in those Tata buses and other unique commercial products and more. Remember, Tata also produce cars and even electric vehicles in India as well as elsewhere. They are actually a global company with sales in Africa, South America, South Asia and South East Asia. 

As for those who would like to try a Tata, the sales network in Malaysia is currently served by a network of 24 outlets nationwide. DHCV aims to expand this reach in tandem with sales growth and market for the benefit of their customers and future customers too.

Tata 1014 photos below

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