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Ashok Leyland, John Deere JV to ramp up product portfolio

The company, which has sold about 1,200 units so far in India, feels that the worst is over for the Indian market

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Hinduja flagship firm Ashok Leyland's joint venture with US-based plans to gradually ramp up product portfolio to gain a significant foothold in the estimated $3 billion construction equipment market in India.

"We have been in the market for just about 18 months and we have two products right now. We do have plans to introduce more products in future," John Deere Construction Equipment Company CEO told PTI.

When asked to elaborate, Ravishankar said: "Very soon we will be coming up with wheel loader for bulk material handling applications. We do aim to be a principle player in the Indian construction equipment market."

He, however, did not share further details.

The company, which has sold about 1,200 units so far in India, feels that the worst is over for the Indian market, which has been reeling under a prolonged slump.

Commenting on the Indian construction equipment market, he said: "It has been down this fiscal. While it is very difficult to predict when will it rebound, the worst is over."

In volume terms, the construction equipment market in the country is about 67,000 to 70,000 units of which about 50% is the backhoe loader segment, he added.

"In value terms it (the market) is around $3 billion," Ravishankar said.

The main players in the segment include JCB, and Tata Hitachi among others.

The 50:50 JV firm--Ashok Leyland John Deere Construction Equipment Company, recently unveiled a new Backhoe Loader in the country.

The model--435E BHL, is specifically targeted at first time users, offering them 10% improvement in fuel cost.

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