Going green - environmental upgrading and value chain coordination in the Indian automotive industry. Previous debates have linked environmental upgrading processes in global value chains above all to the influence of powerful lead firms from developed countries. In this paper, we argue that the Indian automobile sector, too, shows a growing tendency for more environmental protection. However, the decisive impetus is often not given by international lead firms.Applying the concept of global value chains, this paper aims to identify both the dominating coordination mechanisms in the Indian automobile chain, and the strategies of different actors for environmental upgrading. The empirical section draws on findings from 130 qualitative interviews with eight vehicle manufactures, 54 component suppliers and several industry experts held between 2009 and 2011. Our results indicate that Indian vehicle manufacturers are presently more pivotal to driving “green” supply chains than international players. Our findings suggest that especially the strong technical and organizational support provided by Indian lead firms is the crucial factor to push component suppliers to improve their environmental performance. On this account, the recent debate on greening of supply chains seems to be led too much from a western perspective. Rather, it appears that many environmental upgrading processes in automobile supply chains occur independently of western lead firms. In fact, they are mostly initiated and implemented by local lead firms.