KOCHI: Apollo Tyres is in the process of developing new tyres for defence services. These tyres will be jointly developed by the Department of Defence and the company. The trial supply has already started and regular supply will start n ext year, a top official of the company said.
“Apollo Tyres has been supplying bias tyres to the defence services from a long time now. Currently, we are in the process of developing new tyres for them, which will be produced at our Chennai (Oragadam) facility going forward,” said Satish Sharma, president, Asia-Pacific, Middle East & Africa, Apollo Tyres.
Currently, tyres for the defence services are imported at exorbitant rates. As much as 60 per cent of the requirement is met by imports. The tyres required by the forces are unique in size and the volumes are low.
Now, the defense services will procure tyres from the domestic market to reduce dependency on imports. The producers are being selected through an open tender. Most of the domestic manufacturers are supplying to the defence department based on the tender.
“The all-radial Chennai facility of Apollo Tyres currently has a capacity of 16,000 passenger car tyres and 6,000 truck-bus radials per day. The company is already in the process of doubling the truck-bus radial capacity of this unit to 12,000 tyres per day with an investment of Rs 2,700 crore.
Leading automotive manufacturers Ford and Volkswagen have rated our Chennai plant highly (with Ford Q1 and Volkswagen A+).
The superior ratings for Apollo Tyres’ Chennai manufacturing unit mean that we can supply tyres to any of their plants globally from here.
In addition to these automobile manufacturers, the Chennai unit also supplies to leading automobile companies in India such as Daimler, Toyota, Hyundai, General Motors, Skoda, Tata Motors and Maruti Suzuki,” added Satish Sharma.
Apollo Tyres’ Chennai facility is the company’s latest greenfield facility. In addition to catering to the domestic demand, the company is also exporting tyres from the plant to Europe, Asean region and the Middle East. This facility also produces winter tyres for the European market.