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Dana Commissions Technical Centre at Pune

Dana Commissions Technical Centre at Pune

A significant player in the development of technology for automobiles and off-road equipment, Dana Holding Corporation has set up a technical centre at Pune reports Huned Contractor

Dana Holding Corporation, a global supplier of driveline, sealing, and thermal-management technologies that enhance the efficiency and performance of passenger vehicles, commercial vehicles, and off-highway equipment has commissioned its technical centre at Pune. Built on a plot of 8,000 sq.m, the centre is home to more than 240 engineers, and strategically equipped to offer world-class engineering capabilities to original equipment manufacturers throughout the region. Said George Constand, Chief Technical & Quality Officer, Dana Holding Corporation, on the eve of the inauguration: “The Dana India Technical Centre is the company’s 13th facility in India, further expanding Dana’s footprint in the region to support future growth.”


Prior to the commissioning of the technical centre at Pune, Dana had a technology centre in India. It has always had one according to Constand. Its role was however limited to designing the prototypes. The task of making of the prototypes and testing them was done overseas. The new facility at Pune makes it possible to carry out all the operations in India. “It wasn’t too cost-effective to do the testing elsewhere. Also, with India coming to be a major automotive hub, it makes sense to have everything under one roof,” averred Constand. Speaking at the inauguration of the technical centre at Pune, he expressed that India is a vital market that propels economic growth throughout the Asia Pacific region. “Our investment in India over the past half century demonstrates our commitment to the region. It also demonstrates our confidence.” The technical centre would allow Dana’s clients to access local technical expertise and connect directly to the company’s industry-leading global engineering resources.


Dana’s clients in India include automakers like Ashok Leyland, Caterpillar India, Deere and Co., Force Motors, Ford India, General Motors India, Mahindra & Mahindra, Mahindra Trucks and Buses, TAFE, Tata Motors, and VE. The overseas clients of the company include Caterpillar, Ford, Land Rover, Nissan, Renault, Still and Toyota. According to Robert Pyle, President, Light Vehicle Driveline Technologies, Dana Holding Corporation, the technical centre at Pune, devoted to the research, design, development, and testing of drivetrain, sealing, and thermal management products, is fully integrated into Dana’s global research and development system to support new products from concept development through launch, as well as to adapt technologies developed elsewhere in the world for the specific needs of the Indian market.

The centre combines design, finite element analysis, and testing for all of Dana’s product groups under one roof. The new lab in Pune features the latest testing equipment for axles, transmissions, materials, NVH, prototyping, inspections, and machining to ensure that products engineered and manufactured by Dana in India meet the company’s highest standards for performance and durability. This equipment includes dynamometers, a rotating bending test stand, a beam fatigue test stand, a multi-axis spin stand, rotary actuators, and linear actuators. “For decades, we have worked side-by-side with leading vehicle and equipment manufacturers in India, and by locating a full range of engineering resources here, we can deliver drivetrain solutions as much as 12 months quicker than our competitors,” Constand said.


“With this new facility, we can rapidly deliver customized solutions that accommodate local needs and requirements for optimising total cost of ownership, enhancing vehicle efficiency, and addressing environmental concerns,” added Pyle. Dana has demonstrated the value of local engineering and OEM support through the development of the Spicer Rui Ma brand of off-highway transmissions and axles. Supported by the Dana China Technical Centre in Wuxi, Spicer Rui Ma drivetrain solutions provide an optimised blend of product features, performance, dependability, and cost demanded by purchasers of the majority of construction and other off-highway vehicles manufactured in China today. Likewise, the India centre will offer advanced technologies and product lines designed in India for India.

The centre is also, the latest step in the company’s increasing commitment to customers in the region. Last May, Dana expanded its Victor Reinz India (VRI) joint venture with Jayant Group to include heat exchanger technologies. The agreement leverages Dana’s existing technical knowledge and manufacturing capabilities with Victor Reinz India’s customer relationships and physical infrastructure to expand the company’s reach and product offerings in India, including engine oil coolers, fuel coolers, transmission oil coolers, and power steering oil coolers. In November, Spicer India, Dana’s joint venture with Anand, opened a new manufacturing plant in Lucknow to supply propeller shafts for buses and trucks to Tata Motors’ assembly facilities in Lucknow and Jamshedpur.


Elaborating about the company’s constant endeavour to expand its global footprint, Pyle said, “The India centre is one of three brand new research and development facilities for Dana. Last year the company opened a comprehensive technical centre in Wuxi, China, and in May it plans to dedicate a technology centre to develop continuously variable planetary (CVP) technology for use in light vehicle and certain off-highway transmissions. In all, Dana will have 16 global technical centres operational by mid-year.” The Pune facility has been set up with an investment of $28 million and will also be instrumental in working on new technologies related to hybrid engines and emission control systems. “The Asia Pacific region contributes up to 20 per cent to Dana’s global revenues and therefore the India centre assumes lot of significance,” Constand said.

As to whether this is the right time to make such an investment considering the dull climate in the automotive sector, Pyle said, “This is just a temporary phase and we continue to remain very optimistic and bullish about the automotive industry, specifically so in India. Our future focus of development will include power and thermal technologies. This is the time when the latest technologies are being shared by almost all the countries and that includes India where the customer has become very conscious of what a product can offer. As such, we will continue to grow, especially in the light vehicle segment where we have a major market share. Similarly, the off-road equipment offers a lot of promise too, especially in the areas of mining, agriculture and construction.”

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