Archive for the ‘2010’ Category

Harley Roars into India

Posted: July 16, 2010 in 2010

Harley-Davidson has launched its first Indian dealership as it pitches the “freedom of the open road” in a nation with some of the world’s most congested traffic, the US company said Saturday.

Harley-Davidson, the iconic heavyweight motorcycle maker, launched its first outlet in the southern city of Hyderabad on Friday and plans to open more across the country, the company said in an emailed statement.

“We look forward to initiating a new era of motorcycling,” said Anoop Prakash, managing director of Harley-Davidson India.

The Milwaukee-based company, whose brand was made famous in the movie “Easy Rider”, is using the slogan “Hear the Roar!”.

Prakash said bike is well suited for Indian roads due to its weight and hulking design, adding that the company plans to launch in other cities before the end of the year, including capital New Delhi and financial hub Mumbai.

But while India is the world’s second-largest motorcycle market, most sales are of small, inexpensive bikes that can weave through traffic in India’s clogged cities easier than a 1500cc Harley “Fat Boy”.

India does have open roads outside the large cities but many are potholed and make for less than easy riding.

The bikes, which loyal riders affectionately nickname Hogs, are made in the United States and shipped to India where they face hefty custom duties.

The cost of the bikes in India start at 695,000 rupees (14,917 dollars) and range up to 3,495,000 rupees, said a spokeswoman.

Moving into India is part of Harley Davidson’s strategy to break into emerging markets as its customers in developed markets are ageing.

The company, which cites the lure of India’s rapidly growing economy and rising middle class, is launching 12 variants of the bikes in the country.


Toyota Kirloskar Motor (TKM), in which Japan’s Toyota Motor Corp holds an 89% controlling stake, is tweaking its marketing strategy to make deep inroads into heartland India.

Toyota Kirloskar, which till date focused mainly in metros and urban areas, has drawn up plans to sell 40% of its cars in the rural markets. In calendar 2010, the company has set a sales target of 70,000 vehicles compared to 55,000 vehicles in calendar 2009.

The company is also weighing the option of exporting its small car Etios, which will be available in India from January 2011. While Etios is in its product basket, TKM aims to achieve a 150,000 car sales in 2011 and subsequently increase the volume to 300,000 – 350,000 cars by 2015.

Talking to ET, Mr Hiroshi Nakagawa, managing director of TKM said: “Japan, the US and the EU are facing difficulties while India is emerging as the most promising market in the world. India is a very attractive market for Toyota. Currently, India has only 16 cars per 1,000 people while Japan has 593 cars per 1,000 people. The company believes the car market in India will grow in the range of 10% against the global growth rate of 5%. Our small car Etios will drive our sales volumes in India in the coming days. We are also looking at exporting Etios but nothing has firmed up yet.”

“To achieve this scale of volume, we have to enter India’s rural markets in a big way. We are aggressively expanding our dealership footprint in India and quite a significant portion of this will be in country’s heartland. By end of 2010, we plan to have 150 dealers across the country,” said Mr Nakagawa . This apart, Toyota Kirloskar will invest Rs 3,200 crore in a second plant in Bidadi. “This new plant will create jobs for 2,000 people,” the TKM MD said. The company now employs 3,700 people.

Commenting on the company’s plans to set up an engine manufacturing plant in the country, Mr Nakagawa said: “The proposal is under active consideration and we are now studying the market in India.” He also indicated that the company’s plan to set up a research and development unit in India is also being examined by the company.

Toyota Kirloskar has drawn up plans to sell 40% of its cars in the rural markets This year the company has set a sales target of 70,000 vehicles compared to 55,000 vehicles in 2009 TKM aims to achieve a 150k car sales in ‘11 and subsequently increase the vol to 300k – 350k cars by 2015