Honda Motorcycles & Scooters India (HMSI) has utter dominance in scooter segment. Thanks to its ever-popular Activa range, Honda has kept scooter sales charts under its grasp and is likely to stay that way for a long time.
With motorcycles, Honda has an entry-level offering called CB Shine. It is the second highest-seller for HMSI and highest-seller when Honda’s motorcycle range is considered. Where the Indian motorcycle market is taken into account, it is Hero MotoCorp that absolutely decimates the competition.
Splendor is the one to beat in India with 2.25 lakh units sold last month while Honda Shine was at No 2 behind Splendor and HF Deluxe with 87k units sold. Honda has been reportedly working on a new budget commuter. Now, the Japanese brand has patented a new design in India in that regard. Let’s take a look.
Looking at the design patent, one can immediately say that it has been built to be priced aggressively in the entry segment. Even with budget commuter standards. As of now, the name of this upcoming motorcycle is not known. That said, it bears semblance with CG Dream series of budget commuters that is sold in underdeveloped markets like Pakistan.
Speaking of Pakistan, Honda offers a CG 125 Dream with spoked wheels. In India, HMSI is likely to plonk a 110cc engine that currently does duty in CD 110 Dream. Honda’s entry-level offering CD 110 Dream is currently not doing well against Hero Splendor despite offering a larger 110cc engine as opposed to 100cc and matching the price too.
There can be an attempt by Honda to offer a 125cc motorcycle with spoked wheels and barebones functionality and match Splendor Plus’ Rs. 71.5K price point. This way, Honda can expect to push more volumes and grab some of Splendor’s pie.
There is a third possibility of offering a new 100cc engine and going toe-to-toe with Splendor Plus which gets a 100cc engine as well and even undercuts the latter in pricing. By going this route, HMSI can bring a contender to rival Hero HF Deluxe which is the 4th highest-selling motorcycle in India and is priced at an absolute steal at Rs. 55K.
Even though it is very early in the time frame for speculating a flex-fuel offering, it is a possibility. We say this because Honda’s new budget commuter which is patented in India has an unusually large engine casing for a budget commuter motorcycle.
But it looks like the engine casing is extending beyond its cradle frame. This is unusual for a budget motorcycle with just a 100-125cc engine unless it is holding additional equipment for flex-fuel tech. Notable features include a double cradle chassis, telescopic front forks and twin shock absorbers at the rear, a single-piece seat, and spoked wheels. When launched this year, Honda’s new budget commuter will take on Hero HF Deluxe and Splendor Plus. A price bracket of around Rs. 60-70k is likely to be a logical bet for this upcoming motorcycle.