It’s a norm after buying a car; to go back to the service station for check up and tuning on a periodic basis. But is it done for tyres? Not yet, but will be for the high value commercial vehicle radial tyres. With the increased usage of radial truck-bus tyres in the Indian commercial vehicle segment, recent research by Apollo Tyres showed a growing need among users for mechanics trained in the fitment and use of radial tyres. To fill this growing gap, Apollo Tyres has introduced the Apollo Radial Service Assistance (ARSA) in the 50 of the top radial markets in India, beginning today with Jaipur.
Said, Naresh Singhal of R C Motors, Jaipur, who became India’s first ARSA service dealer: “For radial tyres, from fitment to maintenance to tracking performance parameters, all are critical. For so long, no one was providing this critical service to our customers. Now with Apollo Tyres’ trained manpower at my dealership, I will be able to take better care of radial users in Jaipur. It’s a service which could become a game changer in this growing segment.”
Over the course of the year Apollo Tyres plans to train and equip over 50 of its business partners to enable them to provide this service. In the past 5 years, radial tyres have grown from 3% to 16% of all commercial vehicle tyres; and is expected to reach 20% in the next one year. In northern India, as per Apollo Tyres estimates for 2011-12, Jaipur will lead with 36% of commercial vehicle tyres being radial, followed by Sriganganagar and Bhilwara, while the state of Rajasthan itself would be 25% radialised.
Commented Rajesh Dahiya, Group Head, Sales & Marketing, Apollo Tyres, “Through ARSA, the idea is to provide the customer with a value-added service which allows him to take care of his tyres, but most importantly to enable him to extract a better cost per kilometre. When fleet operators buy radials they are making an investment and we need to work alongside them to help them realise value out of this technology investment. And Jaipur is an ideal location to begin. Here we also run a Health Care Clinic working towards awareness and prevention of HIV-AIDS amongst truckers living in or visiting the city.”
Radial tyres are a technologically advanced product, compared to the traditional cross-ply tyres, and need proper fitment, timely inspection and repair to derive the maximum benefit out of them. With improved road conditions in India, radialisation of truck-bus tyres is gaining pace. Apollo Tyres’ Chennai plant was built to cater to this rising demand and will be producing 6,000 premier Endurace truck-bus radials every day by the end of the year. Apollo currently has a leadership position in the commercial vehicle segment with a 30% market share.