Since 2011, Mahindra USA has tripled its revenues, doubled market share and exceeded the market growth by 4 times in 2014, says Cleo Franklin, vice president of marketing, product development and strategic planning for Mahindra USA.
The company first entered the U.S. market in 1994 selling only 500 tractors and has now grown to the number 3 position in the 0-120 horsepower range in terms of North American market share. “We have more than doubled our product offering since 2011 and now have over 50 products in the 0-120 horsepower range,” Franklin says. “Our product portfolio plan led by Mac Payne, our director of product and dealer development, is to go up to 150 horsepower to support our growing customer base with more value priced products —a strategy Mac’s team successfully introduced with the mFORCE 100 in 2012 and now the mFORCE 105.”“New products, including plans for tractors in the higher horsepower range, expanding our dealer base and adding more people to support our growth are some of the factors driving our success. In addition, our relationships with our dealers, customers and global supplier partners is one we are most proud of, as it is a partnership based in trust, respect shared vision and aligned goals, leading to mutual growth,” says Franklin.
Mahindra boosted its offering in the lower horsepower range in 2013 with its eMax line of subcompact tractors (22 and 25 horsepower), including the eMax sub-compact cab and the Max 24 (a new addition to its existing line) as well as additional Tier 4 models throughout its existing mid and subcompact and utility lineups. The models come standard with Mahindra’s 5 year power train warranty.
Franklin says Mahindra’s tractors stand out by being heavier duty and more reliable as well as offering a more cost effective and more simply designed Tier 4 engine.
“The eMax and Max series are the only true tractors in the sub compact tractor category. They have full tractor frames, heavier weights, best-in-class turning radius, and highest loader- and 3-point lift capacity. They also run at a lower RPM, giving the tractors a longer engine life and better fuel economy,” Franklin says. “What had dominated the market before was a lawn-and-garden version of the tractor. We’ve brought a true tractor into the category and we’ve done it at a price point that customers value and appreciate.”
Mahindra recently introduced its mFORCE 105, expanding the company’s tractor lineup into the 100+ horsepower range.
Franklin says Mahindra’s Tier 4 engines and industry exclusive mCRD technology offers another price point advantage. The technology, a $30+ million company investment, features a diesel oxidation catalyst and eliminates the need for the diesel particulate filter (DPF) that competitors use.
“There is no need to replace or service a DPF or stop the tractor while operating for regeneration. With our solution, the cost of ownership is lower and the uptime is maximized. This gives us a leg up,” Franklin says. “The replacement cost of our competitors’ DPF is as high as $3,600 and this does not include the service cost.”
Adding UTV Lineup
Cleo Franklin is vice president of marketing, product development and strategic planning for Mahindra USA.
Mahindra recently announced its entry into the UTV segment and is partnering with Intimidator of Batesville, Ark., to manufacture its mPACT XTV. The gas and diesel versions will be available in 6 models in early spring 2015. The models come standard with Mahindra's 3 year power train warranty:
- 750 & 1000cc standard, which has seating for 3 passengers and a cargo bed
- 750 & 1000 cc crew, which has seating for 6 passengers and a cargo bed
- 750 & 1000 cc long bed, which has seating for 3 passengers and a cargo bed that unfolds to a flatbed.
“The decision to enter the utility vehicle segment is an extension and a complement to our core business as Intimidator’s business values are aligned with ours and their vision of partnering, investing and supporting the people within their community too mirrors our Mahindra ‘Rise’ philosophy. The UTV market continues to expand at a double-digit rate. With this partnership, we see a great opportunity with our growing tractor base of customers,” says Franklin. “Our dealers and customers are excited about this new offering and it has been validated by orders … a strong and growing order bank for the Mahindra mPACT utility vehicle.”
Strengthening Infrastructure, Team
Mahindra’s recent investments extend beyond products. It recently expanded its parts distribution center in Houston from 45,000 to 120,000 square feet. In addition the company announced its new Midwest Authorized Distribution Center, a 15-acre facility that is a joint project with its loader attachment partner, Kansas Machine Works (KMW) of Lyons, Kan. The center will serve Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota with the ability to ship 150 tractors per month once fully operational.
“This is our fifth distribution center and our second expansion to open the past 12 months,” says Franklin. The Southeast Mahindra Assembly and Distribution Center operated by Chattanooga Tractor & Equipment of Chattanooga, Tenn., opened in June 2014. “We’re investing in all aspects to provide better service, support and onsite training for our dealers and continue to build on our shipping response time to the market for a lower cost to our dealers.”
Franklin says the company has also grown its employee numbers by 42% since 2011.
Expanding Dealer Network
Franklin says Mahindra’s dealer network has grown about 70% since 2011 and now includes more than 500 locations. “We continue to see more and more dealer interest with adding Mahindra to their business which is driven by reputation as a true ‘partner’ in the industry. We have experienced growth all across North America, but particularly in the Northeast, Midwest, Canada and the West Coast. Expansion plans from our director of sales John Grooms are well underway.”
He says the decision to expand its horsepower range will help dealers reach more general purpose agriculture customers, ranchers and others. “As we cross the different horsepower levels, we’re able to bring in more products, support and service to this segment for better value. As we bring in more products, there’s an opportunity for us to expand geographically and continue our customer first-strategy with simple, but reliable products they can depend on,” Franklin says.