Good days are back at TVS Motor. After a lacklustre run for three years, the motorcycle maker seems set to win back the market share it lost to Hero Honda and Bajaj during its lean phase.
In the first four months of the current year, TVS motorcycle sales jumped by 30% against the estimated industry growth of 20%. What's more, its sales chart is accelerating with each passing month. In April, TVS sales volume leaped by 53%, more up from 24% growth in January and 30% in March.
Enthused by sales performance the company is now aiming to garner an additional 2-2.5% share of the domestic market in the current financial year. At the end of last financial year, TVS has a 13% share of the motorcycle market down from 16.4% at the end of '03-04.
“We are back into the high growth trajectory. Our recent product launches have been very successful and we aim to sustain the growth momentum witnessed in the January-April period this year,” says R Chandramouli, vice-president (sales and marketing), TVS Motor.
Industry analysts seems to agree. “Going forward we expect TVS to outperform the motorcycle market. As against, industry growth of less than 20%, we project TVS sales to grow by 24% in the current financial year,” says an auto analyst on the condition of anonymity.
Analysts attribute the revival of TVS fortune to new-product launches that filled the gaps in its product portfolio. A few months back, it had only a small presence in the 100cc entry segment and was missing from the fast-growing premium segment.
In September '05, it launched 100cc Star City, followed by 150cc TVS Apache in January this year. “Both models have done well and are set to become segment challengers,” says Mr Chandramouli.
According to him, over 65,000 units of Star City were sold in April '06, bringing it close to segment leader Bajaj CT 100. CT 100 sells over 70,000 a month.
The demand for TVS Apache exceeds supply, forcing a ramp-up in production capacity. Premium segment is presently lead by Bajaj Pulsar. The company has now set its sight on re-establishing its dominance in the 100-125cc executive segment, once ruled by TVS Victor.