SOURCE: WABCO Holdings Inc.

August 11, 2009 07:00 ET

WABCO Announces Multi-Year Development and Supply Agreement With Ashok Leyland, One of India's Largest Manufacturers of Commercial Vehicles

BRUSSELS, BELGIUM--(Marketwire - August 11, 2009) - WABCO Holdings Inc. (NYSE: WBC) (, a global technology leader and tier-one supplier to the commercial vehicle industry, today announced that WABCO and Ashok Leyland, the Indian flagship of the Hinduja Group, have completed an agreement for development of transmission automation technology and the long term supply of automated manual transmission (AMT) systems from 2010 through 2015.

Ashok Leyland, one of India's largest manufacturers of commercial vehicles, offers a world class range of trucks, buses, special application vehicles and engines across 20 countries worldwide.

Starting in 2010, WABCO will supply Ashok Leyland with its new OptiDrive™ modular AMT system, a breakthrough in transmission automation technology and one of the most creatively engineered products in WABCO's portfolio. Ashok Leyland is the first manufacturer of commercial vehicles in India to adopt WABCO's highly advanced OptiDrive system in volume production.

Depending on the driver's preference, WABCO's new OptiDrive system can change gears in full automatic mode or as initiated by the driver. By shifting gears at the most efficient speed, the OptiDrive system significantly contributes to fuel economy, a major cost saving over the vehicle's lifetime. It requires less maintenance, substantially reducing the vehicle's downtime and boosting its operating efficiency. It also increases driver comfort, improves vehicle control and further enhances vehicle safety.

"As a technology leader, our passion for engineering excellence defines our ambition to offer products with the best value for our customers. By partnering with WABCO, we can continue to create value in the marketplace while strengthening our commitment to innovation," said Mr. R. Seshasayee, Managing Director, Ashok Leyland Ltd.

"We are passionate about partnering with Ashok Leyland in India, a leading player in a market that offers significant opportunities for growth. Our long term agreement with Ashok Leyland marks another milestone in expanding and securing WABCO's global leadership position in automated manual transmission technology," said Hans-Jürgen Sander, WABCO Vice President, Driveline Control. "As a technology breakthrough, WABCO's OptiDrive system will continue to grow demand for automated manual transmissions worldwide, particularly in emerging markets like Brazil, Russia, China and India, where adoption of such systems is expected to expand rapidly."

"This agreement with Ashok Leyland is WABCO's first new major contract since taking control of WABCO-TVS in India two months ago, further leveraging the well-anchored leading position of WABCO-TVS in the local market and our ability to provide maximum value for customers," said P. Kaniappan, Director, WABCO-TVS (India) Ltd. "We continue to demonstrate cross-border connectivity between teams from engineering through to customer support. We are also proud to introduce WABCO's OptiDrive system into India, one of the company's most sophisticated products."

In 1986, WABCO introduced the first electronic transmission automation system for commercial vehicles, an industry breakthrough, and today the company is the leader in transmission automation technology based on more than 20 years of continuous innovation in driveline controls.


WABCO Vehicle Control Systems (NYSE: WBC) is a leading supplier of safety and control systems for commercial vehicles. For over 140 years, WABCO has pioneered breakthrough electronic, mechanical and mechatronic technologies for braking, stability, and transmission automation systems supplied to the world's leading commercial truck, trailer, and bus manufacturers. With sales of $2.6 billion in 2008, WABCO is headquartered in Brussels, Belgium. For more information, visit

About Hinduja Group

The Hinduja Group is an investment and banking group with a diversified global portfolio of holdings across the manufacturing services and banking sectors. The Group, founded by Shri P. D. Hinduja in 1914, has activities across three core areas: investment banking, international trading, and global investments. As part of its global investments, the Group owns businesses in Automotive, Information Technology, Media, Entertainment and Communications, Banking and Finance, Infrastructure, Project Development, Chemicals and Agri business, Energy, Real Estate, and Healthcare. The Hinduja Group also supports charitable and philanthropic activities across the world through the Hinduja Foundation. For more information, visit

About Ashok Leyland

Ashok Leyland is the flagship of the Hinduja Group and a leading manufacturer of commercial vehicles in India with a turnover of US$ 1.3 billion for 2008-09. With six manufacturing locations at Chennai, Hosur (three plants), Alwar and Bhandara, the Company has an annual production capacity in excess of 100,000 vehicles. The Company has associate companies in the Czech Republic and the United Arab Emirates and joint ventures in Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, besides exports to over 20 countries worldwide. For more information, visit

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