Mr. Suresh K V, Country Head, ZF India
In this exclusive interaction with Huned Contractor, ZF India’s Country Head Suresh K V elaborates about how the company’s engineering prowess is helping usher in an automotive revolution across the globe
As a leading component manufacturer and technology innovator, ZF has a significant presence in both the automotive and non-automotive businesses in India. With corporate headquarters at Chakan, Pune, ZF has a wide manufacturing footprint in India across 16 locations. The company operates in India through two wholly owned subsidiaries of ZF and five joint venture partners. The consolidated resource strength of the group is 12,000, including JV partners. Its products include: active and passive safety systems, steering systems, clutch systems, axle drives and chassis components for passenger cars; steering systems, transmissions and chassis systems for trucks; steering systems, transmissions and axles for off-highway applications; gearboxes for the wind turbine industry
Additionally, ZF Group also supplies high-end technology products, such as transmissions, axle drives and suspension components for luxury and high-performance passenger cars and buses in India. Other applications of ZF products include rail, aerospace, marine and armoured vehicles. A strong local mechanical design and application engineering team supports the local OEMs on product development. The India Technology Centre (ITC) in Hyderabad, launched in 2017, is one of the main pillars for digitalization for ZF in India and globally. The ITC, dedicated to electronics and embedded software, is working on developing software for autonomous driving functions. Excerpts from the interview:
ZF regularly integrates its innovative products into vehicles in order to show how creatively ZF engineers are already implementing tomorrow’s mobility functionalities into the vehicles of today. In recent times, we have developed many ground-breaking technologies for passenger cars, commercial vehicles, off highway vehicles and multi-utility vehicles.
In 2017, India was the fourth fastest growing economy in the world. The automotive industry, which is experiencing extremely rapid change, is playing a large part in this. It already contributes around 7% to the gross domestic product, and this figure is trending upwards. India’s government wants to both promote this development and ensure that it is sustainable. In doing so, it is confronted with two main problems: as people are increasingly drawn to the cities thanks to the industrial boom, air pollution there is extremely high. In addition, the number of victims of road accidents is extremely high. As a technology company, ZF is optimally positioned to help India overcome these challenges.
ZF has a unique position in the industry with its expertise and product portfolio to enable vehicles to see, think and act. The catchy phrase ‘See-Think-Act’ summarizes concisely the company’s leading theme. For example, ZF can interconnect cameras and sensor systems, such as radar or LIDAR, thus providing a 360-degree panoramic view (See). In addition, ZF develops, produces and connects the switching centres of the vehicle using a network of electronic control units (Think). And naturally, the company can connect mechatronic systems in the drive, chassis or steering system to create modern drive functions (Act). This makes vehicles not only safer, but improves their efficiency. Further, our ‘Vision Zero’ vehicle is not only paving the way toward zero accidents but also zero emissions and is aided in this process by an electric axle drive system with an output of 150 kilowatts that can power a mid-sized car comfortably and powerfully, thus making it eco-friendly.
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