Bajaj points at an overlap with KTM motorcycles as one of the reasons to opt out from purchase of Ducati.

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KTM products attract performance enthusiasts while Bajaj is more commuter oriented

Pune-based automaker Bajaj announced its global partnership with Triumph Motorcycles a couple of days back. With an aim of launching new mid-capacity motorcycles through the collective use of technology and resources, the Bajaj Triumph alliance hinted at increased product diversity and market reach. Prior to their official word on the partnership, rumours about top brands including Royal Enfield, Honda and Hero MotoCorp planning to acquire Ducati, an Italian performance motorcycle brand owned by Volkswagen group, were doing rounds on the internet.

Subsequently, Bajaj and Harley-Davidson became the talking point with other bidders reportedly out of the race. Amidst unending speculations, MotorBeam was the first to inform its readers that Bajaj wasn’t in the hunt to acquire Ducati. In fact, Bajaj didn’t even consider to purchase Ducati in the first place. Ducati’s valuation didn’t make any sense to the domestic giant due to the former’s loss-making history and expensive running cost. Moreover, it was the KTM portfolio which turned out to be a stumbling block in the decision.

Since both Ducati and KTM specialise in performance motorcycling, product overlap between the two brands would have been inevitable. While the Ducati 1199 Panigale rivalled the KTM RC8 R in some markets, the Diavel and Monster 1200 range goes head-on with the KTM 1290 Super Duke with the Multistrada 1200 locking horns with KTM 1290 Super Adventure. Bajaj’s share has been concentrated towards the commuter segment of motorcycles, slowly expanding towards the sub-400cc premium segment. Meanwhile KTM brings performance motorcycling to the table and the made-in-India Husqvarna range will cater to a different set of audience altogether.

In this business scenario, a strategy to adopt another performance brand would have backfired. Bajaj Auto made a wiser choice by joining hands with Triumph. Triumph’s motorcycles certainly fill the void created by the lack of 400-800cc lazy style riding motorcycles in Bajaj’s diverse portfolio. Days before the Bajaj Triumph partnership was announced, Volkswagen cleared the air and confirmed that Ducati is not for sale, especially not for bargain hunters and Bajaj definitely seemed like one!

Bajaj Ducati Deal

– Bajaj cites KTM products as the reason to drop out Ducati
– Partnership with Triumph was announced recently
– KTM and Ducati cater to a similar audience
– Ducati Panigale, Multistrada and Monster series rivals the KTM RC, Super Adventure and Super Duke range respectively

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