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Scooter leader Honda Motorcycles enters Indian motorbike market with Unicorn

09-September-2004
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Scooter leader Honda Motorcycles enters Indian motorbike market with Unicorn

The Rs 1000-crore Honda Motorcycle & Scooters India (HMSI), a fully-owned subsidiary of Honda Motor Company of japan, plans to add 15 new models of motorcycles and scooters in the coming few years, MD & COO Yukihiro Aoshima said while launching Unicorn, the company’s first motorcycle in the Indian market, on Wednesday. The Unicorn is a 4-stroke, 150cc motorcycle.

Available in five colours, namely, blue, black, red, silver and grey, and priced at Rs 50,043, the Unicorn is targeted at students and working professionals. Honda is targeting sales of over 12,000 numbers of Unicorn this fiscal. It expects to manufacture 56,000 motorcycles annually. The bikes will be distributed through 252 dealers across 207 cities and towns.

On competition with Hero Honda’s motorcycle CBZ, Aoshima said this won’t have any impact on the company’s business performance. The company’s plant has an annual production capacity of 1,50,000 units, and this is expected to reach 3,00,000 in 2005 and 6,00,000 units by 2006-07. The combined capacity for motorcycles and scooters will reach 1.2 million by 2006-07.

Manish Tandon, Deputy Manager, Marketing, says the ad campaign for the new bike will hit the print and electronic media by the second week of October. The campaign will focus on the bike’s features. Dentsu Communications is handling the account.

HMSI, which began operations in India in the scooter segment in 1999, has cornered a market share of 76 per cent in the mid-size scooter segment and 26 per cent in the full-size scooter segment. HMSI is the No.1 scooter manufacturer in India, and ranks No. 4 in the overall two-wheeler sector.

The two-wheeler major exports over 60,000 scooters annually. New markets of South East Asia, South and Central America are being explored, Aoshima said.

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