Mary has over 20 years experience as the editor of our Malaysian sister magazine, The Tyreman. Based in Kuala Lumpur, she writes articles for us on the Malaysian and other South East Asian markets.
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As the urban population grows, increased pressure on public transport and cars is inevitable. In conjunction with its 15th anniversary, ZF Sales and Service (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd (ZFSSM), a part of the ZF Group, renewed its commitment to enhance urban transport modernisation in Malaysia.
“Urban centres face demand for commercial vehicles that are reliable, safe, cost effective and productive. Sustainable urbanisation is a challenge as automotive industry requires vehicles to have low operating costs given the high vehicle usage without compromising safety and speed. ZFSSM intends to be the enabler for the Malaysian transport network by lending our expertise to modernise urban transport backed by ZF Group’s innovative products and technologies,” explained General Manager of Business Unit Services, Siew Chee Kok.
For 15 years, ZFSSM has supplied SACHS shock absorbers to Proton and Perodua for the aftermarket to providing rail shock absorbers for Rapid KL. ZFSSM said it delivered products and services that represented efficient dynamics and costs effectiveness, combined with ‘unrivalled’ quality, safety and comfort.
“As the second largest aftermarket organisation in the automotive suppliers segment in the world, we are a service-oriented partner that includes spare-parts business, technical information and training, remanufacturing, repair and fleet services. Our core strength lies in our high quality and competent products, while ensuring minimal downtime and service orientation for customers in the Original Equipment (OE) aftermarket and workshop business,” Siew said.
To support sustainable urbanisation, ZFSSM equipped 300 MRT single deck city feeder buses with ZF EcoLife, a high performance 6-speed automatic transmission. The buses currently service the MRT Sungai Buloh-Kajang line. To-date, more than 900 city buses in Malaysia are equipped with ZF EcoLife transmissions.
This transmission is available in seven versions with input torque ranging from 1,000 to 2,300Nm, ensuring an efficient and powerful drive in buses up to 32 tonnes gross vehicle weight.
With its intelligent drive program, ZF EcoLife adapts driving conditions and smoothly adjusts the gearshift strategy for the route, leading to improved fuel efficiency. Furthermore, its integrated primary retarder in the vehicle's brake management system supports high braking power even at low speeds. These city buses would also have lower carbon emissions.
ZFSSM is currently collaborating with Rapid Penang to fit its city buses with ZF EcoLife for preventive overhaul, which allows significant extension to the vehicles service life without compromising safety or cost efficiency.
Siew added that through its connectivity solutions, Openmatics would encourage a more cohesive service network as the brand offered fleet management, asset tracking, vehicle diagnosis, engineering as well as entertainment and multimedia applications.
It is an innovative telematics solution that allows fleet management to be transparent. Its Asset Tracking solution enables tracking and monitoring of valuable assets and the core element is Bluetooth Smart TAG that could be easily installed anywhere. It could be used for up to five years before being recycled.
Compatible with existing telematics hardware, it is easily accessible through mobile application (Google Play or Apple Store) and a web portal. Capable of communicating wirelessly in an area of at least 30 metres, users could receive real-time alerts to enable prevention of loss or damage of goods.
ZFSSM is working with RapidKL to implement Openmatics for prototype-testing in its fleet. In addition, ZFSSM is collaborating with Sync R&D Sdn Bhd to develop a 12-metre electric bus equipped with ZF’s AVE 130 electric portal axle for higher engine speed and bigger passenger space.
ZF currently has more than 490 employees in Malaysia, comprising six entities, ZF Sales & Service (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd, TRW Automotive Services Sdn Bhd, TRW Asiatic (M) Sdn Bhd, and ZF Chassis Systems Sdn Bhd, Lucas Automotive Sdn Bhd and Lucas Varity (M) Sdn. Bhd.
Siew noted that ZFSSM’s long-term strategy was to continue enhancing its service network development and Openmatics system in Malaysia while ramping up efforts introducing e-mobility to the automotive industry to support the country’s ambition of becoming a regional EEV hub. ZF in Asia Pacific recorded €7.7 billion sales in 2016, 22 per cent increase from 2015.
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