Hangzhou Tyres OE in India
Tyres produced by Hanzhou Zhongce, the Chinese manufacturer at the centre of a half a million-unit recall in the US, are supplied OE clients such as Tata Motors in India. “Tata Motors is satisfied with the quality of tyres from China, and has not faced any issues,” a Tata Motors was quoted as saying. The tyres involved in the US were radials, while Tata Motors imports only bias tyres, one Indian news source reported.
Indian tyre manufacturers told dnaindia.com that while Hangzhou Zhongce Rubber has the technology to manufacture quality products – it contract manufacturers for other global brands like Goodyear and Cooper – many smaller Chinese companies dump substandard products in the Indian aftermarket.
“It’s a little scary, given our lack of safety regulations or data on fatality rates due to tyre failure. Chinese imports between April and December 2006 were over 500,000 units compared to 300,000 in the entire 2005-06,” said a senior official of a local tyre manufacturer.
Arnab Bannerjee, head of Ceat’s marketing and sales, added: “There is a huge variance in the quality of Chinese products. It is also very inconsistent, and the presence of numerous brands adds to problems for the customer. However, OEs like Tata Motors are very stringent with their quality tests and hence OE sourcing is not likely to be a suspect.”
“Tata Motors imports 50,000 Hangzhou Zhongce tyres a month. Eicher and Ashok Leyland are also importers. We have been selling the products and have had absolutely no complaints. In the industry, there are many types of tyres and in the US what has been recalled is one type of tyre. A trader importing them might have chosen a cheaper product,” said Vijay Kumar Beriwal of Shree Siddivinayaka Tyres, a reseller of tyres manufactured by Hangzhou Zhongce Rubber Co in Mumbai.
Hangzhou Zhongce sells tyres under Yartu brand in India. Beriwal said the pricing of the product was about 20-25 per cent lower than Indian tyres and hence very popular.