KaMAZ Targets India through Tatra-Vectra Tie-Up

Interesting report here about KaMAZ and its plans for India. This is the market to be in at the moment, and it’ll be interesting to see just how the Russian OEM gets on against the indigenous giants – Tata and Ashok – and the newly keen European OEMs – including Volvo, MB, Scania and MAN. Add to this heady mix the Chinese - through Asia Motor Works – and it all adds up to seemingly interesting times ahead.

Volvo, Freightliner Position Themselves for Increase in Hybrid Vehicle Demand

No shortage of hybrid news kicking around today. There’s an announcement here concerning Freightliner’s pitch for a piece of the medium-duty hybrid market, whilst here is a tale about Mack’s take on the genre. We assume that the Freightliner variant is closely reelated to Fuso's Eco Hybrid. We don't make any assumptions about Mack and Volvo, because our conversations with the US end of the Swedish OEM tend to be a touch stilted.

We tend to take a very dim view of the whole alternative fuel thing. With BioDiesel actually costing more – in energy terms – to produce than its resulting benefits offer, it is no alternative. GTL and CTL fuels similarly fail to stand up to any form of robust cost benefit analysis.And so hybrids look to offer at least a part solution to the problem of diminishing oil supplies. It’s interesting that much of the impetus for their development comes from the end user – UPS, FedEx, WalMart – and, in the case of the Mack thing discussed above – the USAF – are all driving hybrid development, and the OEMs appear to be responding.Is this a case of socio-environmental responsibility on the part of the end user? Don’t know – hybrids seem to be this year’s big thing, but could yet turn out to be the automotive equivalent of the Betamax VCR. We will wait and see.