Honda is targeting sales of 300,000 units per annum in the 250-500cc motorcycle category in the next three years
Honda Motorcycles and Scooters India (HMSI) has revealed that it is looking to introduce multiple new models in the middleweight segments to take on market leader Royal Enfield. The mid displacement segment between 300cc and 700cc has been dominated by the Chennai-based bikemaker for a long time now.
The Japanese brand, on the other hand, has only two models in this space- H’Ness CB350 and CB350 RS, both of them being fairly recent launches. The company is targeting sales of 300,000 units per annum in the category in the next three years with the new portfolio of locally manufactured mid displacement motorcycles.
Together, sales of Honda CB350 and CB350RS has crossed the 30,000 sales mark in Oct 2021. This also marks the 1st anniversary of the Honda 350cc motorcycles in India. Honda aims to increase the yearly sales by 10 times in the segment, to take on Royal Enfield – who has about 90% market share.
In an interaction with a leading newspaper, Atsushi Ogata, President, HMSI revealed that sooner or later Honda will add new products to its lineup. The number of models in the mid displacement segment of motorcycles will increase year by year. The company intends for sales to increase up to 3 lakh units within three years.
Honda BigWing expansion
The bikemaker will also look to expand its reach across the country as currently, it has 70 Big Wing outlets in the market. The company has said that it will expand its presence to 300 customer touchpoints in the next three years and is working to put in place 100 Big Wing outlets to cover top 50 UIO (units in operation) areas by the end of the ongoing financial year.
HMSI intends to quicken the dealer expansion process in order to cover the top 100 UIO areas in the upcoming financial year. In addition, the sales team of HMSI is also trying to utilise its existing Big Wing dealership network by convincing dealer partners to consider the small branch concept in small towns as well.
As per data provided by the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM), as many as 276,365 motorcycles with engine capacities between 250cc and 500cc were sold during the first seven months of the ongoing financial year FY2021-22. This has resulted in YoY growth of 4.2 percent. However, during the same period, overall sales of motorcycles declined by 1 percent and stood at 5,369,358 units.
Royal Enfield Dominates
Royal Enfield continues to dominate this space with a sales volume of 244,964 units recorded between April and October 2021. However, the company’s monopoly has been challenged in recent times as it faces heat from new competitors with its market share falling 700 basis points over the year-ago period. Meanwhile, Honda’s market share in this space has increased to 6.8 percent in comparison to 0.5 percent in Apr-Oct FY21.
That said, Royal Enfield is working on a plethora of new products which will be launched in the coming few months. Currently, the brand retails three motorcycles in the 350cc category including Bullet, Meteor and Classic. It will also add Hunter 350, a retro classic roadster, to the lineup in the near future.