The Covid-19 pandemic has played spoilsport to another new automotive project in India
The Bajaj-Triumph partnership is one of the most talked-about joint ventures in the Indian automotive industry in recent past. Both companies entered into a long-term partnership in 2017 which will focus on a non-equity tie-up to develop mid-capacity motorcycles ranging from 200cc to 750cc.
However, the first product out of this joint venture might face a delay due to the ongoing crisis. In an interaction with ET Auto, Rajiv Bajaj, MD, Bajaj Auto, has revealed that the upcoming bike from Bajaj-Triumph partnership could be delayed by several months because of the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Delayed to 2023
Bajaj said that due to COVID-19-related disruptions, launch of the first Bajaj-Triumph bike may get deferred to 2023. It was earlier reported that this JV planned to bring out its first model sometime in 2022. Both bikemakers have remained reticent about the models to be developed under this JV. However, some reports indicate that its lineup will include Triumph Tiger, a baby Daytona 250 and a mini Bonneville.
Although one thing is clear that most of these motorcycles under this tie-up will be manufactured at Bajaj’s facility in Chakan near Pune in Maharashtra with localisation up to 99 percent as in the case with Bajaj-KTM partnership.
Additionally, Bajaj will also be responsible for marketing and sales of Triumph motorcycles in India manufactured by it as well as oversee the exports to neighbouring countries in the subcontinent, Asia, Africa and other markets.
Expected Details of the first model
All these motorcycles under this JV are likely to wear the nameplate of Triumph. The first model out of this is likely to be built on a 200cc platform which will be powered by the same 200cc single-cylinder, liquid-cooled engine which also powers Bajaj Pulsar NS200 and KTM Duke 200. This bike is expected to be based on the entry-level Triumph Bonneville which sports a retro-classic design.
It might feature a round headlamp, a single-piece flat seat, alloy wheels, a tear drop shaped fuel tank and a semi-digital instrument cluster. Anchorage duties might be handled by disc brakes on both ends assisted by a dual-channel anti-lock braking system (ABS) as standard. This motorcycle is likely to be priced below Rs 2.0 lakh (ex-showroom) and will rival models from Royal Enfield and Jawa.
In recent times, we have witnessed many foreign high-end bikemakers partner with Indian manufacturers to offer affordable premium motorcycles for Indian consumers. Some of the notable examples are TVS-BMW Motorrad, Bajaj-KTM, Jawa-Classic Legends and the most recent being Hero MotoCorp-Harley Davidson.