Suzuki decides to pull the plug on commuter segment bikes in India.
Suzuki has decided to exit the commuter segment of bikes in India and focus on scooters and 150cc+ motorcycles. The company has decided to stay away from the entry-level commuter bikes segment in view of the upcoming stricter safety norms in the country. A premium bike could see a 10 percent increase in prices whereas a commuter motorcycle could see a 30-40 percent hike in its prices, hence, upgrading commuter bikes will prove to be a costly affair.
By 2020, the automaker intends to sell one million units annually in the country. In order to increase sales, Suzuki will launch one to two products every year. The company is bullish on the Indian market and has sold 3.5 lakh units in the last fiscal while this year it has already reached that mark in just seven months.
The company’s manufacturing facility near Haryana has an annual capacity of 5.4 lakh units. It is currently considering various options for the location of a second plant and possible production capacity. Suzuki says there would be a minimum investment of Rs. 500 crores going into the second plant.
The only product the company has in the commuter bikes segment is the Hayate (the Slingshot has been discontinued). Suzuki confirms it will produce the bike till 2020 for export markets and also cater to the northern part of India where demand for commuter motorcycles is still large. Post that, there will be no commuter bikes from Suzuki as mandatory ABS and BS6 emission norms will increase cost of 100cc and 125cc bikes considerably.
The Japanese automaker is working on a 250cc motorcycle for India which will be launched by 2019 and will be locally produced. Recently, the Hayabusa maker had revealed it is considering shifting production of the Suzuki GSX-250R to India for global markets due to low cost of manufacturing in India. Suzuki is also planning to launch the V-Strom 650 in the country next year, brought in via the CKD route.
Suzuki To Exit Commuter Segment
– Suzuki will only focus on scooters and 150cc+ bikes
– The Japanese automaker intends to sell 1 million units annually by 2020
– The company is considering to have a second manufacturing plant in India