In September, the first excavators rolled off Volvo Construction Equipment’s (Volvo CE) new Indian assembly line – an EC210B Prime and an EC290BLC Prime. These machines subsequently underwent an extensive testing and validation regime, ahead of a full-scale production launch of the machines. Plans are in place to ramp up excavator production significantly next year, and this new development will see factory total capacity tripled in 2012. The expansion also benefits the existing road machinery range of products, with production doubling of the company’s soil and asphalt compactors, pavers and pneumatic tire rollers. It is envisaged that this investment will also have a positive impact on employment at the facility.
The new excavator line is part of an SEK 144 million (Rs 90 crores) upgrade and refurbishment of Volvo CE’s Bangalore plant. The local production of excavators will mean greater machine availability for Indian customers, as well as shorten delivery lead times and respond to customer requirements more quickly. Begun in June 2010, the upgrade includes a complete overhaul of the existing assembly area, as well as new assembly lines, warehouses and paint shop. Much of the 33-year-old plant was demolished or modified to make way for the new addition. All new areas of the factory have been built with Volvo Group’s site safety and security guidelines, waste reduction and environmental care in mind. This last point extends to a reduction in energy consumption, waste reduction and – by harvesting rain water and employing recycling techniques – the facility’s water requirements have been reduced by some 20%.
“With demand for excavators set to rise by 30% in 2011 the time is now ripe for Volvo CE to introduce production of these products to our Bangalore plant,” says Muralidharan, managing director of Volvo India Pvt. Ltd. in Bangalore. “These machines are intended for Indian customers, as today the construction equipment market is healthy – particularly for excavators. With this investment, Volvo CE has shown its dedication to India, one of the world’s fastest rising economies, and we in turn are ready to take on the challenge of delivering quality machines that are ideally suited to the local Indian market.”
“Our factory in Bangalore plays a significant role in our global industrial system to better serve the Indian market – which has a high strategic priority for us,” says Executive Vice President Operations Jean-Marc des Courieres. “By investing in new facilities and deploying our Volvo Production system and core values, we are introducing the latest international production techniques, ensuring we offer customers in India the high level of quality and performance that they expect of Volvo CE."