M&M to develop four new platforms for tractors along with Mitsubishi

Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd is set to come out with a new range of tractors, developed in collaboration with Mitsubishi of Japan, to further strengthen its position both in the domestic and overseas markets. The project is developed by Mitsubishi Mahindra Ag machinery teams in Japan and the Mahindra Research Valley teams in Chennai. The partners are planning to create four new platforms.


Rajesh Ganesh Jejurikar, Additional Director & Executive Director of Automotive and Farm Sectors, Mahindra & Mahindra Limited, said, "K2 is an ambitious and a significant project aimed at creating a lightweight global platform--something that we don't have adequately in our portfolio today". 


It's a collaborative project between Mitsubishi Mahindra Ag machinery teams in Japan and the Mahindra Research Valley teams in Chennai. 


The company plans to create four new platforms, which are global in nature. The partners are looking to start from 13 horsepower going up all the way to 70 horsepower, for markets like the US, Southeast Asia, India and Japan. 


"We've been working on this for the past one-and-a-half years already. And we should start seeing the first of the platforms one-and-a-half or two years from now," he added.

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Mahindra said that North American tractor business is a very important part of the turnaround action. Many actions have been taken in the year Fiscal 20. "We are very confident that we will be able to break even by Fiscal 22. The management said it has fixed most of the transition issues. Price and value proposition was a concern in Fiscal 20. The company still has transition issues because it had old stocks of higher prices in the pipeline," Jejurikar said. 


He added that the company has now adjusted prices for all of those and has see very good retail momentum in April and May. 


"And again, counterintuitive as it may sound, the North American market for tractors is actually growing very well, and so are we in the Covid era and mainly because you can imagine people are spending more time in their farms rather than in their urban locations. A lot of actions are underway and have been taken on restructuring our costs. And a much more focus on digital marketing rather than mass media marketing," he added.


Speaking about demand in the domestic market, he said, tractor demand has clearly been very positive. 


"We are at 80 per cent production capacity now, and it is improving as we talk. So we hope that we will be able to ramp up to higher levels. Clearly, the way we see it from a tractor side is the determinant performance will be the management of the supply chain. And we would do our best to put that in place and streamline that to the extent possible. All our suppliers are operational now, and maybe 90 per cent of our dealerships are operational," Jejurikar said.