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Ashok Leyland enters Southern African market with Dost workhorse

26th January 2024

By: Irma Venter

Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor

     

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India’s Ashok Leyland has entered the Southern African commercial vehicle market with its Dost 1.5 ℓ turbodiesel workhorse.

Headquartered in Chennai, with nine manufacturing plants, Ashok Leyland is the flagship of the Hinduja group.

It is the second-largest manufacturer of commercial vehicles in India and the fourth-largest manufacturer of buses in the world.

The Ashok Leyland model range is distributed in South Africa through ETG Logistics (ETGL), a business vertical of the ETG group.

ETGL will operate dealerships for Ashok Leyland in seven Southern African countries.

In South Africa, 14 dealers have already been appointed.

The Dost offers a 1 478 cc, three-cylinder, turbo-charged diesel common-rail engine, producing maximum power of 44 kW at 3 300 r/min, and maximum torque of 158 Nm at 1 600 to 2 400 r/min.

It is paired with a five-speed, full synchromesh manual transmission.

Three models are available, namely a chassis cab, a fixed-side deck model, and a drop-side deck model.

The initial Ashok Leyland model line-up for Southern Africa will focus on the 1.25 t load-capacity Dost pick-up, followed by the 4.5 t Partner light truck and the 1.86 t load-capacity Phoenix pick-up to launch later this year.

ETGL says heavier Ashok Leyland trucks and buses, including electric vehicles, will join the Ashok Leyland product offering at a later stage.

“We have ambitious growth plans for the African market,” says Ashok Leyland Africa business head Sachin Dasharath.

“Our time-tested products are well suited for the African terrain and offer superior value proposition to customers.”

“Considering the tough economic conditions in Southern Africa and the escalating finance and operating cost for farmers, small businesses and fleet operators alike, the Ashok Leyland Dost, with its class-leading fuel consumption, impressive load carrying capacity, competitive pricing and generous warranty, presents outstanding value for money and will definitely assist the target market in reducing vehicle acquisition and operating cost,” says Ashok Leyland Southern Africa brand head Francois van Eeden.

Dost is a Hindi word that means ‘friend’.

Pricing starts at R229 999 for the chassis cab model, with the drop-side model coming in at R254 999.

The Dost is sold with a five-year/500 000 km warranty.

Edited by Martin Zhuwakinyu
Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor

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