The partnership between Bajaj Auto and Triumph Motorcycles to develop medium displacement sportsbikes has been in the news for quite sometime but a formal agreement is yet to be reached. The collaboration between the two brands is expected to be comparable to the one between TVS and BMW Motorrad.
Speaking to Moneycontrol, Rakesh Sharma, Executive Director, Bajaj Auto, confirmed that both the companies have held several rounds of discussions and were able to resolve the principles of engagement satisfactorily and amicably. He added that the formal agreement signing is only a matter of putting the elements of these discussions in a formal language. The official also said that the formal agreement between Bajaj Auto and Triumph Motorcycles is expected by Q3 of this financial year.
Given that the official agreement is currently in the works, the two entities have commenced dialogue on manufacturing and R&D operations. The partnership which was announced in August 2017 would be focusing on new medium displacement motorcycles. Unlike Bajaj’s partnership with KTM in which it owns a stake of 48%, the association with Triumph would not involve equity.
Given Bajaj’s expertise in low-cost manufacturing and Triumph’s expertise in engineering premium motorcycles, the association is expected to bring the best of both worlds. The deal would be designed in such a way to harness various synergies between the brands.
Development work on the first products under the new partnership is expected to begin before the end of this year. The resulting common platforms would underpin both Bajaj and Triumph motorcycles. It remains to be seen how Bajaj and Triumph go about their market positioning strategies.
Bajaj’s Chakan plant which currently manufactures Bajaj and KTM branded motorcycles for domestic and international consumption is expected to be ramped up to cater to Husqvarna and Triumph brands. While Husqvarna will play in the 400 cc segment, we guess the new Indo-British partnership to focus on 400-800 cc segment.
If things go as per plan, we could be seeing the first products under Bajaj-Triumph partnership to be ready in about 2-3 years. The models would be pitted against comparable products from Harley Davidson, Kawasaki, Honda, and so on.