Mumbai: Bajaj Auto expects high-end motorcycle sales to rise faster than other motorcycles, and a senior company executive said its investment of Rs 650 crore in a new plant near its current production facility in Chakan is aimed at building capacity to take advantage of this potential development.
Earlier this week, the Pune-based two-and three-wheeler manufacturer signed an agreement with the Maharashtra Government to set up a new manufacturing facility for super-premium motorcycles such as KTM, Husqvarna, and Triumph on the planned Rs 650 crore investment along with electric vehicles (EV), starting with Chetak.
Bajaj Auto has a 48 percent stake in the Austrian luxury sports motorcycle company KTM. The brand Husqvarna, part of the KTM chain, was launched in the country in February of this year.
In January, the Pune-based automaker confirmed the formal launch of its global non-equity relationship with the British legendary Triumph motorcycle manufacturer to produce a range of mid-capacity bikes across the world.
As per Sharma, though Bajaj Auto’s total sales of motorcycles, including overseas sales, decreased by 21 percent during the April-November fiscal year, the premium-end sales of motorcycles, including sales of KTM and Dominar, increased by 24 percent during the same period.
The next plant, which is scheduled to begin operation very soon, will be situated only four kilometers away from its current manufacturing facility in Chakan.
It will spread over 190 acres of land and Rs 650-crore investments would go primarily to, among others, construction, plant, and machinery.
When fully operational, the new plant would have a gross capacity of 1 million units per year. The current Chakan plant has a capacity of 1.20 million motorcycles per year, he added.
The new plant would bring around 2,500 positions directly and many more indirectly, with 50 dedicated vendors, he said.
In India, the overall demand for motorcycles is not in good shape at the moment, and sales in fiscal 2020-21 may end up at the 2013-14 average, Sharma said.
On Bajaj’s partnership with Triumph, he said the two parties were seeking to make up for a missed time as the R&D work on the project was hampered by the pandemic.