In the bus sector, the preference did not change in 2021 either. One of the Koç Group companies, Otokar has once again become the favorite brand of urban public transportation, personnel and tourism transportation. Despite the difficulties brought by the coronavirus pandemic, Otokar maintained its leadership, completing 2021 as the market leader for the 13th time.
Otokar Deputy General Manager Basri Akgül; “We left behind a successful and productive year in commercial vehicles. We became the leader for the 13th time in the total of the bus segments in which we operate; We became the most preferred bus brand of 2021. Approximately one out of every two vehicles sold in the entire bus market was Otokar. In urban public transportation, Otokar has become the choice of big cities, especially Ankara, Izmir and Istanbul, for public transportation. In the field of tourism and shuttle transportation, 2 out of every 2021 small buses that hit the roads in 2 became Otokar Sultan. Our electric bus, Kent Electra, was tested every inch of Europe. While our Atlas trucks were among the primary choices of fleets, we achieved a growth above the market. In 1, we aim to maintain our leadership in the Turkish bus market and increase our exports, especially in Europe. 2022 will be Otokar's innovation year,” he said.
Turkey's leading automotive industry company, Otokar, renewed its leadership in the bus industry. Otokar, which has the widest product range in Turkey with its buses in different lengths from 7 meters to 21 meters, shared the year 2021 at the online meeting held with the participation of H. Basri Akgül, Deputy General Manager responsible for Domestic Market Sales and Marketing, and Otokar executives. Otokar, which has achieved many firsts in the sector with its R&D, digital transformation, alternative fuel vehicles and sustainability studies, in addition to the vehicles it produces with its 59 years of industry experience; Became the most preferred bus brand in Turkey for the 13th time.
“WE CONTINUED TO INVEST IN OUR FUTURE”
Despite the ongoing Covid-19 process; Stating that Otokar is the most preferred bus brand in Turkey for the 13th time in the total of the segments in which it operates, with the vehicles designed and manufactured in line with user expectations, and uninterrupted sales and after-sales services, Deputy General Manager H. Basri Akgül said: and we continued to develop our product range, which is highly acclaimed all over the world, to meet future needs, and added new ones to our pioneering areas. Despite the pandemic conditions, we continued to promote our vehicles, share our competencies, and stand by our customers both in the domestic and international markets.
MARKET LEADER FOR 13 consecutive YEARS
Otokar Deputy General Manager Basri Akgül stated that the Turkish bus market grew by nearly 8 percent on a unit basis last year and said, “Despite the shrinkage in the intercity bus market in 2021, total bus sales in Turkey increased by 8 percent. We have once again become the first choice of the industry with our wide product range, after-sales services, high second-hand value of our vehicles and the trust in our brand. We increased our market share by four points compared to 2020 in the total of the segments in which we operate. One out of every two buses sold in Turkey has become Otokar brand. We would like to thank all our colleagues, business partners, and customers who preferred Otokar and enabled us to become a leader for the 13th time.”
OTOKAR IS 2 OF EVERY 1 VEHICLES IN TOURISM AND SERVICE TRANSPORTATION
Stating that the sales in the tourism and service transportation segment have increased significantly with the normalization process that started in June, and Otokar small and medium-size buses have come to the fore in the market, Akgül said, “Otokar was again the first choice in the small and medium-size bus market, which grew by about 5 percent compared to the previous year. In this segment, where we have sold nearly 700 buses, approximately 1 out of every two vehicles sold carried the Otokar brand. Sultan Comfort and Sultan Mega became the most preferred vehicles in the market.”
OTOKAR HAS BEEN PREFERRED IN 3 METROPOLITAN CITIES IN PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION
Stating that there was a significant transformation in public transportation preferences with the pandemic, Basri Akgül said: “Due to the pandemic, the need to increase the capacity of public transportation vehicles arose. Municipalities made important purchases last year in order to meet their pandemic needs and renew their fleets. The market grew by 75 percent compared to last year. In the light of the experience we have gained from our vehicles serving all over Turkey and the world's largest metropolises, our vehicles were included in the most preferred list. 2021 out of every 2 municipal buses sold in 1 was Otokar KENT. The company that increased its market share the most was Otokar. With the tenders we won in Istanbul, Ankara and Izmir, we became the bus supplier of the three largest cities in Turkey. We delivered all of the Izmir ESHOT orders we received in the previous year in 2021. We made the bus deliveries of Ankara Metropolitan Municipality EGO before the end of 2021. We became the winner of the 100 metrobus tender with IETT under the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality. We will carry out our BRT deliveries, which we have specially designed for Istanbul, in batches this year.”
“ATLAS CONTINUES TO LIGHTEN THE BURDEN OF TRADE”
Akgül stated that the 8,5-tonne Otokar Atlas, which alleviates the workload of businesses in different business lines, was appreciated by the market with its renewed design and features in the previous year; “The 8,5-ton truck market in which we operate has grown by nearly 2020 percent compared to 50. In the increase in demand in the transportation market, our Atlas truck came to the fore with its high torque, powerful engine and superior features. We have achieved a growth above the market in this area as well. Atlas' sales increased by 2020 percent compared to 64, and we have become one of the priority choices of fleets.”
“OUR GLOBALIZATION BREAK CONTINUES”
Akgül stated that Otokar, which offers comfortable and safe public transportation to millions of passengers every day in our country and in more than 50 countries, made a significant contribution to Turkey's automotive exports in 2021 as well, adding, "Our target market is from Italy to Germany, from Spain to France. We continued our growth in Europe. We take great pride in the fact that our buses designed and manufactured in Turkey are used in metropolises all over the world. We started the deliveries of 40 orders from Bratislava, Slovakia. This year, we will complete the deliveries of high volume orders we have received from the Middle East as well as Europe. Our company, which is an important player in the global competition for alternative fuel vehicles and electric buses, has received high volumes of natural gas-fired KENT CNG orders from Ukraine, Romania and Azerbaijan. We will complete the deliveries of the vehicles within the year. As you may recall, we signed an important agreement with IVECO last year. We started our work last year within the scope of the agreement for the production of IVECO BUS buses in Turkey.”
Otokar Deputy General Manager Basri Akgül; He shared that Otokar, the first electric bus manufacturer of Turkey, introduced the new generation electric bus, KENT Electra, in Turkey and throughout Europe, and that the vehicle gained great popularity in all countries it went to, adding: “Europe's first face-to-face Auto Fair after the coronavirus pandemic. At IAA Mobility 2021, our electric KENT bus carried over 2 visitors. Drawing attention with its dynamic, elegant and modern design in the organizations it participates in, KENT Electra draws attention with its low operating costs. Our vehicle, which can offer a range of more than 300 kilometers, was highly appreciated in France, Italy, Spain, Romania and the Benelux countries as well as Germany.”
THE PIONEER OF THE FIRST IN THE INDUSTRY
Akgül stated that Otokar's R&D expenditure in 552 years, which continues its activities with more than 500 R&D engineers in its factory spread over an area of 10 thousand square meters in Sakarya Arifiye, has reached 1,3 billion TL; “As the pioneer of alternative fuel vehicles, smart buses, and driverless bus projects in Turkey after the electric bus, Otokar continued its work on the autonomous bus project carried out in cooperation with Okan University. On the other hand, our success in R&D and design was once again crowned. Our highly acclaimed bus, Territo U, which we designed specifically for the European market to offer a wide range of uses such as intercity, shuttle and school transportation, was deemed worthy of the BIG SEE Awards 2021 and the European Product Design Award.”
OTOKAR IS WORKING FOR A SUSTAINABLE FUTURE
Otokar is one of the 6 companies included in Borsa Istanbul's Sustainability Index for the last 61 years with its environmental, social and governance studies. In line with Koç Holding's 2050 Carbon Neutral Program on climate change and emissions management, Otokar carries out studies such as alternative fuels, energy efficiency and green purchasing. Otokar also adopts the United Nations Global Compact, of which Koç Holding is a signatory, and UN Women's Women's Empowerment Principles.
2022 WILL BE OTOKAR'S INNOVATION YEAR
Basri Akgül, who made statements about his targets for the year 2022, in which the globalization breakthrough will continue, said; “This year, we aim to maintain our leadership in the domestic market, we will continue to invest and work with all our strength to add new ones to the areas in which we are pioneers. Due to the regulations in Europe, the transition to alternative fuel environmentally friendly vehicles and electric buses is accelerating. We think it is a great opportunity for Otokar. We will continue our promotional activities to increase our exports in our target markets, especially in Europe. We aim to maintain our successful rise in the truck market for the last two years, as well this year. In 2022, we will expand our product range in electric vehicles, of which we are the pioneers. For years, there has been an exciting wait for our minibus in our country and export markets. This year that wait is coming to an end. This year, we will put on sale an unrivaled vehicle in urban transportation with its design and features. 2022 will be Otokar's innovation year.”