Benelli to focus on 300-500cc bikes

G Balachandar Chennai | Updated on August 09, 2018

Dante Bustos, CMO, Benelli, at a press conference in Chennai on Thursday   -  Bijoy Ghosh

Italian superbike-maker Benelli, which is re-entering the Indian market with a new partner, hopes to position itself strongly in the 300-500cc segment in India in the next couple of years. It has put in place a three-pronged approach to achieve that.

“In the coming months, we expect the 300-500cc market to grow faster. A good chunk of customers in the 200-250cc categories would want to graduate to more power and a better riding experience. Also, they will have more options in this category, going forward,” Dante Bustos, Chief Marketing Officer, Benelli, said here.

New partner

Benelli, now owned by a Chinese group, has chosen Hyderabad-based Mahavir Group’s Adishwar Auto Ride International (AARI) as its new dealer-cum-bike assembly partner for the Indian market (it has ended the partnership with DSK Group). It plans to offer a dozen products across naked, sport, modern classic, adventure and heritage categories in 250-600cc range.

“The first set of products under the TNT brand, with engine capacity of 300cc, 302cc and 600cc will be introduced by October. It will be a CKD operation by us near Hyderabad,” said Vikas Jhabakh, Managing Director of AARI.

The company is planning to set up 20 new dealerships across the country in the next 12 months. Also, 18 existing dealerships have agreed to stay on with the new partner.

The company will also revamp the dealerships with a new look and theme, and add facilities such as a meeting point for bike enthusiasts.

It is working on a new communication strategy with a strong thrust on after-sales support, social media and use of the digital platform for quicker supply of spare parts and service.

Benelli hopes to sell about 3,000 units in the calendar 2019. It has sold close to 6,000 units in the last 3-4 years.

Published on August 09, 2018

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