Several court cases have restricted the launch of the RE60 quadricycle in India forcing Bajaj Auto to launch the model overseas first where it has received a positive response towards the product.
Bajaj Auto very optimistically showcased the RE60 quadricycle at the 2012 Auto Expo, only to find itself in a bunch of controversies and petitions slammed across various courts in the country. The result has been such that even a year after the production version was showcased at the 2014 Auto Expo, Bajaj still hasn’t received the needed approval from the government to launch its replacement to three-wheelers. Not entirely giving up, the Pune based automaker has now decided to make some change in its strategy and will be launching the RE60 internationally first.
In a recent interview, Bajaj MD, Rajiv Bajaj said that the company was extremely keen on launching the RE60 in India first in the hopes of the category getting its approval soon, but given the uncertainty till when the case will continue in courts, production has commenced for export markets. Markets like Sri Lanka, Nigeria and Egypt are keen on adopting the RE60 quadricycle and the bike maker has commenced the process of seeking approvals in the respective countries.
Bajaj also said that certain rivals equalled the quadricycle to small, light, slow four-wheelers in a deliberate attempt to complicate the issue, getting their facts wrong. Quadricycles have been termed as commercial vehicles that can move people or cargo in different body styles. Bajaj had approached the ARAI for the approval of quadricycles initially, but the approval process was stalled for a brief period due to the court cases. But since all the standalone cases have been vacated by the regional courts to the Supreme Court, ARAI has resumed the approval process which is said to be in its final stages.
At present, the automaker is looking forward to its next court case hearing that will determine as to when Bajaj can launch the quadricycle in India as it gets ready to ship its latest offering overseas. Doing a quick memory refresh, the Bajaj RE60 is powered by a 216cc single-cylinder, 4-stroke engine that produces around 20 HP of power and is paired to a 5-speed gearbox. The quadricycle will be available in petrol and CNG options with a seating capacity of four/five and is expected to return a fuel efficiency of 35 km/kg on CNG. Depending on the apex court’s verdict on quadricycles, Bajaj will schedule the Indian launch of the RE60 that can come as early as later this year.
Source – EconomicTimes.com