Hero MotoCorp entered into a strategic alliance with American motorcycle manufacturer Erik Buell Racing (EBR) by acquiring a minority stake of 49.2% in the company in early 2012. Hero’s investment in this alliance stands at $25 million that helped EBR develop new products including the 1190RX. Beginning 2014, Erik Buell Racing will become the exclusive dealer of Hero MotoCorp’s motorcycles and scooters in North America.
Though the number of dealerships is few at the moment, plans are in the offing to expand the dealership network with the introduction Hero’s motorcycles and scooters in the USA. Low cost bikes from Hero and expensive bikes from EBR will be on sale together at the same dealerships providing too much of a diversity to the customer.
In early 2012, EBR entered into a long-term strategic partnership to provide technical prowess and engineering services to Hero MotoCorp, the world’s largest manufacturer of 2-wheelers. Hero will be devoted to sponsoring two racing outfits namely ‘Team Hero’ and ‘AMSOIL Hero’ in the AMA Pro Racing Series. In essence, Hero sponsors two bikes on behalf of EBR in the motorsport series. This establishes Hero MotoCorp’s foray into the world of motorsports. Hero is also known to be a long time supporter of sports in India. Erik Buell Racing has sent engineers to India in view of development of new products and thus help create bikes with better specifications which look much more contemporary.
The collaboration between the two companies will facilitate indigenous product development, Research and Development initiatives and will also promote motorsports to greater heights. Both EBR and Hero MotoCorp believe that the collaboration of the world’s largest 2-wheeler company and one of world’s leading innovators make up for a formidable team. The list of 2-wheelers to be launched in the North American market is not yet disclosed. But models like Karizma ZMR, Hunk, HF–Deluxe and Pleasure are expected to go on sale in North America next year. This would ultimately result in Hero getting a strong presence in the American market which would account for a solid head start over other Indian 2-wheeler manufacturers.