Piaggio to double their production capacity for Indian auto industry
In order to go ahead with their plans of relaunching themselves in the 2 wheeler segment of the Indian auto industry, Piaggio announced earlier today that they will be doubling their production capacity in order to meet the growing demand for 2 wheelers in India.
Apart from the Vespa brand of scooters, Piaggio plans to launch their powerful motorcycles which were displayed last year in Mumbai. Piaggio also plans to launch a SCV – small commercial vehicle in India with a payload capacity of 500 kgs.
Mr Ravi Chopra, MD & Chairman, Piaggio India, said, “We see a tremendous opportunity for a range of scooters since this a market which is growing. So, we will double our scooter production capacities from 1.5 lakh annually, which is for the Vespa, to 3 lakh per annum by the first half of 2013 to produce this range of scooters. We also see growth in upper end of the motorcycle market, in the executive and premium segments rather than in the entry or economy segment. Therefore, we are evaluating the feasibility of bringing in our upper end bikes, keeping in mind growth in this segment.”
“We are developing a passenger variant for the Ape Mini Truk, currently operating as a small commercial vehicle which will come into the market by the end of this year. This is targeted at the low cost transportation segment and is not expected to eat into our three-wheeler passenger carrier market,” Chopra added.
Talking about their future plans, Mr Chopra said, “We are ahead of schedule and we could even start selling Vespas by February-March. By the first half of 2013, we expect to be able to double that capacity, to 3 lakh units, when we will bring in a range of scooters. The Vespa is not a scooter, it is an aspirational, lifestyle product. Our range of scooters will aimed at the growth expected in the scooter market: last year, that segment grew at 40%, selling 2.5 million units. For the next five years, it is expected to have a compound annual growth rate of 20% hence our need for a range of scooters.”