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Automakers seek delays, exemptions to planned new rules for parts: Sources

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NEW DELHI: Foreign automakers are seeking delays and exemptions to planned new quality rules for imported auto parts, arguing the regulations will increase costs, hurt sales and disrupt supply chains, sources with direct knowledge of the matter told Reuters.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi is keen to reduce imports to boost local manufacturing to make India more self-sufficient and enable it to play a bigger role in the global supply chain. That said, the move is seen mainly aimed at slashing the amount of lower-quality imports from China.
“There is short term pain but there is long term gain,” commerce minister Piyush Goyal told an auto convention last week, saying India has become a dumping ground for low-quality goods by not having standards similar to other countries.
New rules mandating stricter quality checks have been flagged in stages for various auto parts since early this year and tighter regulations for wheel rims could be introduced as soon as October, according to a draft government notice.
All automakers will have to comply, but foreign premium brands such as Daimler’s Mercedes-Benz, BMW and Audi will suffer most as they have the highest ratio of imported parts, four auto executives told Reuters.
“It’s just an additional compliance burden and will not lead to higher local production because the volumes for luxury are too small to achieve economies of scale,” said one of the executives.
The sources declined to be identified, citing sensitive negotiations with the government.
Luxury carmakers account for less than 1% of India’s annual passenger car sales in terms of volume although they contribute roughly 10% in terms of revenue.
Executives from premium German brands as well as Volkswagen AG, Ford Motor Co and Toyota Motor Corp have held several rounds of talks with government officials in recent weeks, sources said.
Martin Schwenk, head of Mercedes-Benz India, said in a statement to Reuters that additional requirements “will make low volume business unviable”. His company is requesting a “reasonable time line for mid to long term implementation, and exemptions for low volume manufacturers in the short-term.”
Volkswagen Group’s India unit also said in a statement that for premium vehicles it was not possible to localise a “majority of components or spares as the total size of market is marginal.”
Other automakers named in this article did not respond to Reuters requests for comment.
Automakers are also lobbying through the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM) which sources say is seeking up to a year to comply with the rules for higher volume vehicles where parts can be sourced locally.
The industry body is also seeking exemptions for low volume cars such as luxury models and for parts which automakers directly import as opposed to parts imported by trading companies and by vendors in the after-sales market, the sources said.
Mercedes’ Schwenk said the company had addressed its concerns through SIAM to relevant authorities and was “hopeful of a positive outcome”.
In addition to those lobbying efforts, Volkswagen, Mercedes and BMW also held a meeting with the German ambassador in New Delhi in July to apprise him of the issue, sources said.
UNWELCOME COMPLEXITY
The draft government notice for wheel rims calls for new rules to go into effect from Oct. 1 and includes a requirement that there be an audit of the plant where the rims are made. That would be difficult with current travel restrictions in place due to the coronavirus pandemic, sources said.
It was not clear when the draft notice might be finalised.
To receive a shipment of imported cars or knocked-down car kits an order needs to be placed with global headquarters at least four months in advance, executives at two automakers said.
“If there is no clarity, the headquarters will not take new orders and sales will suffer,” said one of the executives.
From April 1, 2021 similar rules will apply to windshields and other safety glass. In June, India also made it mandatory for companies to get a licence to import certain types of tyres.
“This is against every tenet of ease of doing business,” said a senior auto executive, noting the new rules come at a time when the pandemic has hit revenue and demand, and could discourage further investment in India.
“Much more than the cost it is the complexity which affects the willingness of global companies to continue selling affected car models in India,” the executive said.

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Triumph Speed Triple 1200 RS: 2021 Triumph Speed Triple 1200 RS breaks cover, to launch on January 28

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NEW DELHI: Triumph Motorcycles India on revealed the upcoming 2021 Speed Triple 1200 RS. The motorcycle will be launched on January 28.
The Triumph Speed Triple 1200 RS is priced at £15,100 in the UK (on-road price) which converts to Rs 15.11 lakh and the Indian ex-showroom price could be somewhere close to this figure. In the global markets, the Triumph Speed Triple 1200 Rs takes on the likes of Yamaha MT-10 SP, BMW S 1000 R, Kawasaki Z H2 and KTM 1290 Super Duke R.
The 2021 Triumph Speed Triple 1200 RS is powered by a 1160cc engine making it the fastest Speed Triple ever. The engine which was developed by the automaker’s Moto2 team manages to deliver 180 PS of maximum power and a peak torque of 125 Nm. The new engine revs harder and maintains an extraordinary torque in the low and mid-range, which is a key character of a Speed Triple. The motorcycle also gets a free-breathing intake and exhaust which offer an all-new crisp sound.

The Speed Triple 1200 RS also earns its reputation of being the most agile Speed Triple yet offering top notch handling and precision. The Speed Triple 1200 RS is 10 kg lighter than the predecessors and tips at 198 kg (wet). The centralized chassis results in a narrower structure offering a more dominant and purposeful riding position.
The Triumph Speed Triple 1200 RS takes the riding experience to another level with track specification equipment like the Ohlins suspension, Metzeler Racetec RR tyres and Brembo Stylema brakes.

The Speed Triple 1200 RS also moves paces ahead in the technology front with features like optimized cornering ABS, switchable optimized cornering traction control, 5-inch TFT instrument cluster, 5 riding modes including an enhanced Track mode, Triumph Shift Assist quickshifter, full-LED lighting, keyless system and the My Triumph Connectivity System.
The Triumph Speed Triple 1200 RS also comes with a reduced overall cost of ownership with a 16,000 km service interval and 2 years unlimited mileage warranty.

The deliveries of the motorcycle will begin from the end of February.


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Tata Safari 2021 price: Tata Safari launched, bookings begin on February 4 |

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NEW DELHI: Tata Motors on Tuesday unveiled the all-new Safari, a 7-seater version Harrier, on Tuesday. The bookings will open on February 4.
The Tata Safari upon its launch in February will lock horns with the MG Hector Plus, upcoming Mahindra XUV500 and the upcoming 7-seater version of the Hyundai Creta. The 2021 Tata Safari is expected to range between Rs 16 lakh – Rs 24 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi). Tata Safari will be offered in 6 variants- XE, XM, XT, XT+, XZ, XZ+.

The Tata Safari underpins the same platform as its not-so-little brother, the Tata Harrier. The Safari sits on the OMEGARC platform which has been derived from Land Rover’s D8 platform. This is a massive change as the Safari is now making its transition from ta body-on-frame chassis to a monocoque. The Tata Safari also adopts the same design language as the Harrier which is Impact 2.0.

The Tata Safari borrows the 2.0-litre Kryotec turbo-diesel engine from the Harrier that offers 170 PS of power and 350 Nm of torque. The transmission is also carried forward the 6-speed MT and the 6-speed AMT are offered as it is. The 3 existing drive modes are offered too- Eco, City and Sport. The SUV also gets ESP based drive modes- Normal, Tough and Wet.
The Tata Safari plans to stand apart from the Harrier and that has resulted in a completely different design behind the C-pillar. The 2021 Safari bids homage to the original model by sporting a similar quarter window at the back. The Safari inscription, stepped roof, refreshed rear profile with redesigned LED taillamps and a sleeker tailgate, and an upright rear section give the SUV a distinct character of its own.

On the inside, the Tata Safari flaunts an oyster white theme and ashwood accents, most notably on the dashboard. The Tata Safari boasts a stadium seating concept offering optimum comfort in all three rows and eliminating the claustrophobic effect usually seen in most 6- and 7-seaters in India. All seats including the 3rd-row offer best ergonomics for an adult occupant.

To enhance the in-cabin experience, the Tata Safari boasts iRA connected tech and becomes the third car in the portfolio to do so after Nexon and Altroz iTurbo.
In terms of dimensions, the Safari is bigger than the Harrier, precisely 63mm longer and 80mm taller. The increase in the dimensions clearly reflects in the third row. With a pushed back A-pillar, enhanced architecture and proportions, the 3rd-row seats will not have to be treated like emergency seats but will offer optimum comfort to any and every occupant.
The Tata Safari also gets an optional 6-seater arrangement with 2 captain seats in the middle row. With this feature, the Safari is directly locking horns with the MG Hector Plus. The 9-modes of seating configuration also take the competition to another level.
The 2021 Tata Safari also carries forward the same standard of safety like the rest of the automaker’s portfolio. The SUV’s structure has excessive 6-airbags, ESP, all-disc brakes, auto IRVM, cornering assist, electric parking brake, hill hold control and hill descent control. The standard safety features across variants are dual airbags, ESP, projector headlamps and all-disc brakes.


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tata safari: Tata Safari unveiled, bookings begin on February 4

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NEW DELHI: Tata Motors on Tuesday unveiled the all-new Safari, a 7-seater version Harrier, on Tuesday. The bookings will open on February 4.
The Tata Safari upon its launch in February will lock horns with the MG Hector Plus, upcoming Mahindra XUV500 and the upcoming 7-seater version of the Hyundai Creta. The 2021 Tata Safari is expected to range between Rs 16 lakh – Rs 24 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi). Tata Safari will be offered in 6 variants- XE, XM, XT, XT+, XZ, XZ+.

The Tata Safari underpins the same platform as its not-so-little brother, the Tata Harrier. The Safari sits on the OMEGARC platform which has been derived from Land Rover’s D8 platform. This is a massive change as the Safari is now making its transition from ta body-on-frame chassis to a monocoque. The Tata Safari also adopts the same design language as the Harrier which is Impact 2.0.

The Tata Safari borrows the 2.0-litre Kryotec turbo-diesel engine from the Harrier that offers 170 PS of power and 350 Nm of torque. The transmission is also carried forward the 6-speed MT and the 6-speed AMT are offered as it is. The 3 existing drive modes are offered too- Eco, City and Sport. The SUV also gets ESP based drive modes- Normal, Tough and Wet.
The Tata Safari plans to stand apart from the Harrier and that has resulted in a completely different design behind the C-pillar. The 2021 Safari bids homage to the original model by sporting a similar quarter window at the back. The Safari inscription, stepped roof, refreshed rear profile with redesigned LED taillamps and a sleeker tailgate, and an upright rear section give the SUV a distinct character of its own.

On the inside, the Tata Safari flaunts an oyster white theme and ashwood accents, most notably on the dashboard. The Tata Safari boasts a stadium seating concept offering optimum comfort in all three rows and eliminating the claustrophobic effect usually seen in most 6- and 7-seaters in India. All seats including the 3rd-row offer best ergonomics for an adult occupant.

To enhance the in-cabin experience, the Tata Safari boasts iRA connected tech and becomes the third car in the portfolio to do so after Nexon and Altroz iTurbo.
In terms of dimensions, the Safari is bigger than the Harrier, precisely 63mm longer and 80mm taller. The increase in the dimensions clearly reflects in the third row. With a pushed back A-pillar, enhanced architecture and proportions, the 3rd-row seats will not have to be treated like emergency seats but will offer optimum comfort to any and every occupant.

The Tata Safari also gets an optional 6-seater arrangement with 2 captain seats in the middle row. With this feature, the Safari is directly locking horns with the MG Hector Plus. The 9-modes of seating configuration also take the competition to another level.
The 2021 Tata Safari also carries forward the same standard of safety like the rest of the automaker’s portfolio. The SUV’s structure has excessive 6-airbags, ESP, all-disc brakes, auto IRVM, cornering assist, electric parking brake, hill hold control and hill descent control. The standard safety features across variants are dual airbags, ESP, projector headlamps and all-disc brakes.


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