Ashok Leyland Stile likely to be launched on October 9th

Tuesday 01 October 2013, 12:11 PM by

Ashok Leyland, one of the leading light and heavy commercial vehicle manufacturer, is expected to soon arrive in the passenger vehicles arena. Sources claim that the India based transport buses and truck manufacturer is all set to launch its Multi Purpose Vehicle (MPV), named Stile on 9th October, 2013. The firm, established in 1948, is also engaged in manufacturing emergency and military vehicles. Interestingly, the second largest commercial vehicle maker in the country works in a joint venture with Nissan-Renault. Launch of Dost LCV (Light Commercial Vehicle) in 2011 is seen as the result of this partnership. Experts claim that soon to be launched Stile will be based on the platform of Renault Lodgy and has borrowed its aesthetics from Nissan Evalia. Renault is also expected to launch its Lodgy in some time next year.

Ashok Leyland Stile likely to be launched on October 9th |
Ashok Leyland Stile likely to be launched on October 9th

The development plans at Chennai headquarters of Ashok Leyland is upbeat and the firm expects to rule the segment with its first passenger vehicle. When asked about the similarities of Stile with Nissan's Evalia, Ashok Leyland Vice Chairman V Sumantran replied, "Globally automobile makers have identified the need for common platforms to build vehicles. Evalia is more for personal use whereas STILE is more for commercial use." He was further supported by Andy Palmer, Nissan Motor Company's executive Vice President, “The venture is not for cross badging of models. There are some customer groups that Ashok Leyland and Nissan Motor can't reach individually but together they can."

These statements from the top brass of both automobile giants suggest that currently both the firms share camaraderie within the circles and with mutual support, they hope to cover those sections of market which are currently out of their reach. Reports also suggests that the vehicle will be manufactured at the house of Nissan in Oragadam. Stile, similar to the Nissan Evalia, will come equipped with a 1.5-litre K9K diesel engine, churning out a maximum power of 74 bhp and 185 Nm of peak torque. 5-speed manual transmission system of this car will transmit the power to its front wheels.

The car will compete with the likes of Maruti Suzuki Eeco, Chevrolet Enjoy and Chevrolet Tavera. Another theory is that the car will cater to the segment of customers that uses passenger cars for commercial purposes like taxis, ambulances and courier vans. At the unveiling, it was clear that the car will be a 7-seater vehicle. Also, it is expected to feature modified headlamps and a new grille. As per initial rumours, the car will have three variants, namely Base, LS and LX. The car maker will also offer it in all three fuel options – petrol, diesel and CNG. It is being speculated that despite losing out on some premium features of Evalia, Stile will have a spacious airy cabin.

Industry experts are of a view that domestic buyers might get to see an eight seater variant of Ashok Leyland too. Sources close to the development process have revealed that the company has decided to keep the price of Stile lower to that of Evalia by Rs. 30,000 to Rs. 35,000. It is of utmost relevance to notify here that along with Ashok Leyland, Nissan is also geared up with a series of LCV vehicles. Both the firms are of the view that their joint venture will give them access to a variety of consumers. As per market analysts, consumers can expect some new vehicles like Ashok Leyland Partner and N-truck apart from the new variants of Stile and Dost. Carlos Ghosn, CEO, Nissan Renault Alliance further clarified and was quoted as saying, "Though they might play in the same segment, the products will be targeting different customers, will have differentiated features and will be in different price points."