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10,000 Isuzu D-Max pickups sold in 10 days

Isuzu D-Max pickups were one of the highlights of the Amman Motor show, held recently in the Jordanian capital.

The D-Max display organised by Isuzu dealer FTC earned a trophy for the most stunning pickups in the show. FTC used a desert theme for its stand to emphasize the pickup's superior performance and rugged dependability in tough driving conditions.

The Isuzu 5th generation pickup, the Isuzu, D-Max sold the first 10,000 units in ten days following its official launch in Thailand.

Combining Isuzu truck manufacturing innovation with the evolution of pickups to meet global needs and world class standards in the 21st century, the Isuzu D-Max improves the fuel economy and durability of its highly renowned predecessors.

Isuzu D-Max underwent extremely harsh testing to ensure the highest levels of performance and durability.

Isuzu D-Max pickups are available at the Sathosa Motors Ltd., showroom at Vauxhall Street, Colombo 2.

Isuzu truck sales double

The sale of brand new Isuzu trucks doubled during the last financial year (2005-2006) in Sri Lanka.

Comfort for the drivers and the economy of wear and tear are two remarkable features of the increasing popularity for brand new Isuzu trucks according to Thilak Gunasekera, Deputy CEO of Sathosa Motors Ltd. (SML) the sole agent in Sri Lanka for Isuzu Motors.

Sathosa Motors Ltd, Japan Sri Lanka joint project which was converted to a private sector business venture in the early ninetees has achieved remarkable success as a commercial venture under the present Japan-Sri Lanka management.

At present SML imports the full range of Isuzu brand new vehicles mostly from Japan.

S. P. Jayasooriya, Managing Director of SML said that SML gives the priority for the convenience of its customers. SML handles not only the imports of the full range of Isuzu vehicles but also the efficient after sales service and spare parts supplies to the customers.

The present high standard of SML is mainly due to the efficient management and the well trained employees according to the Managing Director.

Diesel-powered TATA ACE launched

DIMO, one of Sri Lanka's largest automobile companies and TATA Motors, the flagship company of the TATA group India launched the diesel-powered mini truck - Tata ACE last week at the Sri Lanka Exhibition and Convention Centre.

Tata ACE is considered Sri Lanka's first diesel - powered mini truck. The mini-truck is powered by a small and efficient unique twin cylinder 16bhp IDI 700cc diesel engine.

Suitable for rural and urban use, the Tata ACE has the ability to carry a variety of payloads and has the agility to navigate narrow by-lanes with its turning radius of 4.3 metres.

carries a 36000-km/ 12 month warranty on the vehicle, and is backed by comprehensive spares and service network. An extensive network of 50 additional TATA Service Stations and TATA Service Facilities has been set up across the country to cater to customers of TATA Commercial Vehicles.

The TATA ACE is a high performance, low maintenance, safe and reliable mini-truck with sporty car-like features to ensure comfort in ride and handling. It has an ergonomically designed, all-steel cabin, including elegant two-toned seats, clear instrument cluster, utility trays, magazine pockets, twin-blade, twin-speed wipers and combination switches. The conveniently positioned gearshift lever and parking break enhance comfort in ride and handling.

The TATA ACE meets all safety norms-including frontal crash, roof crush and rear wall strength. To ensure the safety of the driver and co-driver, seat belts are standard fitment. Disc and drum breaks in the front and rear respectively ensure high performance in sudden braking while the large windscreen and rear window allows for higher level of vision and clarity. All these features come coupled with the economy of diesel and very good mileage.

Since its launch in India, in May 2005, the TATA ACE - which is also India's first mini-truck - has received stupendous response from customers and has created a new category in the Indian commercial vehicle industry.

In a short span of 10 months, TATA ACE has witnessed sales of about 30,000 vehicles. Even in Sri Lanka, 250 units have been pre sold, even before the launch. To cater to the huge demand, TATA Motors is expanding the production capacity of the Tata ACE.

TATA Motors

TATA Motors, the flagship company of the TATA Group, is India's largest automobile company, with a revenue of US $ 4.7 billion in 2004-05. With over three million TATA vehicles plying in India, it is the leader by far in commercial vehicles and the second largest in passenger cars.

It is also the world's fifth largest medium and heavy truck manufacturer and the second largest medium and heavy bus manufacturer. TATA cars, buses and trucks are already being marketed in several countries in Europe, Africa, the Middle East, South Asia and South East Asia and in Australia.

The company acquired the Daewoo Commercial Vehicles Company, Korea's second largest truck maker, in 2004. In 2005, it acquired a 21% stake in Hispano Carrocera, the reputed Spanish bus and coach manufacturer. TATA vehicles have been on Sri Lanka's roads since 1961 and over 25,000 TATA vehicles run on the roads.

DIMO (Deisel and Motor Engineering Co. Ltd.)

DIMO is one of Sri Lanka's largest and most respected automobile companies with a revenue of Rs. 7.9 billion (2004-05). The company has a state-of-the-art commercial vehicle workshop at Siyambalape with 39 bays to service TATA commercial vehicles.

A fully equipped training centre at Siyambalape organises free training programs for mechanics and drivers. DIMO also has a dedicated TATA car workshop in Colombo.

The company has two dedicated 24-hour road assistance vehicles to provide on-site relief in the event of a vehicle breakdown.

Maruti Suzuki achieves top rating

Maruti Suzuki has been selected as the No-1 brand new vehicle with regard to customer satisfaction in India. This is the sixth consecutive year Maruti Suzuki has achieved this prestigious ranking. Maruti Suzuki is also Sri Lanka's No-1 brand new vehicle for the third consecutive year recording the highest sales from 2003, to 2005.

The study named J. D. Power Asia Pacific 2005 India Customer Satisfaction Index Study assesses customer satisfaction on 42 attributes grouped into seven main categories, which are problems experienced, service quality, user-friendly service, service advisor, service initiation, service delivery and in-service experience.

Mohit Arora, India Director at J. D. Power Asia Pacific, said "Maruti Suzuki's overall strength lies in building an organisation that is sharply focused on the voice of the customer. Maruti's consistent performance over the past several years has resulted in a steady increase in the percentage of its customers who say they intend to remain loyal to the brand".

Jagdish Khattar, Managing Director of Maruti Udyog Ltd., said, "Achieving the top rating in this sixth year is as special to me as it was when we achieved it first in year 2000. Maruti had the right products for India, with reliable quality, low cost, top performance and so on. What else could we offer? It was then that we decided to focus on customer satisfaction.

Caring for the customer, thinking from his and her point of view, building transparency in our interactions, orienting ourselves to face the customer's needs and concerns rather than the other way round. As we pause to celebrate this achievement, we have to continue defining new benchmarks in customer satisfaction", he said.

The study examines the satisfaction of new vehicle buyers with the authorised service experience at 12 to 18 months of ownership. More than 4,200 owners of 33 different vehicle models participated in the study.

Customer satisfaction in the service support for Maruti Suzuki vehicles in Sri Lanka is no less with Maruti Suzuki being selected as Sri Lanka's No-1 brand new vehicle for three consecutive years.

A main part of the credit for it should go to Associated Motorways Limited, the local agents for Maruti Suzuki in Sri Lanka.

A spokesperson for AMW said that the loyalty of Suzuki-Maruti customers to the brand was one of the key strengths in today's market where customer loyalty is earned with difficulty. Service support and honest caring by our dedicated service staff has created a kind of family bonding, he said, adding that this is the prime reason for Maruti Suzuki to emerge as the highest selling brand of new vehicles in Sri Lanka.

In pursuit of service excellence, Associated Motorways has invested heavily in providing custom designed showrooms for Suzuki-Maruti brands, adding service strength and availability ex-stock to establish a domineering presence in the market. The company has already commenced investing in setting up showrooms in the provincial capitals. The new branch in Kurunegala to be opened soon is the first of several planned for the future.

Ceygra motorcycles increasing popularity

200cc and 125cc motorcycles specially made for the European market will be available in the near future at CEYGRA Sikifu showrooms islandwide. CEYGRA-Sikifu motorcycles were introduced to the Sri Lankan market six months ago by Ceylinco Grameen Automobiles (Pvt) Ltd.

125cc Ceygra City, Ceygra Swat, Ceygra Panther and 110cc Ceygra Hardy are available at Ceylinco Grameen Centres in all districts.

According to the Marketing Director of Ceylinco Grameen Automobiles Ceygra Hardy 110 motorcycles are the best selling motorcycle among self-employed Grameen members.

Ceylinco Grameen set up six years ago to serve the poorest segment of people in Sri Lanka amounts to 20 per cent of the population.

At present under the Grameen scheme 250,000 self-employed women are in the agriculture, micro industry and fishery sectors.

When they need a motorcycle, tractor or a car, Ceylinco Grameen Automobiles offer their services to them, the Marketing Manager said. "A durable, quality product at a reasonable price is the Grameen automobiles philoshopy.

The motorcycles are sold to Grameen members without collateral and even without a down payment. Ceygra Sikifu motorcycles are popular among private and public sector organisations as well as among individuals due to their competitive prices and the high quality of product.

The assembling plant of Grameen automobiles operates at Panadura under the strict supervision of foreign trained technicians.

Special events welcome

The Biz Motors special feature page for automobiles is published every second Sunday of the month in the Sunday Observer. Information, news and photographs of special events in the automobile sector are welcome.

Please send all correspondence to:

Biz Motors,
Sunday Observer Business (LSAW),
D. R. Wijewardene Mawatha,
Lake House,

T.P. 071-4007528 and 011-2384726.

Email - [email protected]



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