Honda Motor plans big push in rural areas

PTI New Delhi | Updated on March 21, 2011

Two-wheeler maker Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India (HMSI) has said that it is targeting to dethrone market leader Hero Honda within the next one decade, with focus on the rural areas and plans to introduce its first 100-cc bike next year.

“Our target during the next decade is to be number one in India...For the first time we will introduce a mass segment motorcycle in 100-cc category,” the company President and CEO, Mr Shinji Aoyama, told reporters here today.

Currently, the demand is more from the urban market which is going to reverse in the next 10 years, he added.

“At present two-third of sales is coming from urban and one-third from rural and semi-urban areas. In a decade, the situation may be reversed,” Mr Aoyama said.

The company is expecting to sell 16.5 lakh units in 2010-11, with a jump of 30 per cent over last fiscal.

He said the company is aiming for an increase of over 27 per cent in its sales to 21 lakh units in 2011-12.

When asked about its new mass segment bike, Mr Aoyama said: “For a while we will concentrate on introducing mass models in the Indian market. Will introduce the 100-cc bike in next year...It is currently under development.”

He also announced that he will leave the Indian firm after serving for four years to join the parent Honda Motor Company from April 1, 2011. HMSI will have Mr Keita Muramatsu as its new President and CEO from next month.

Last year, the Japanese auto major decided to sell its entire 26 per cent stake in India’s largest two-wheeler maker Hero Honda to the other promoter — BM Munjal led Hero Group.

Hero Honda sold over 40 lakh units during last fiscal.

Published on March 21, 2011

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