Harley Davidson bets big on India

Nov 22 2012, 15:01 IST
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Harley Davidson eyes expansion in India. (Reuters) Harley Davidson eyes expansion in India. (Reuters)
SummaryThe company launched its 'Fat Bob' model in India priced at Rs 12.8 lakh.

US based iconic cult bike maker Harley Davidson is targeting smaller towns in India as it looks to enhance presence in the country.

The company, which launched its 'Fat Bob' model in India priced at Rs 12.8 lakh, also said it will consider increasing the number of models assembled in India to offer its products at "affordable rate" for the customers.

"We are looking to expand our dealer network. Currently, we have nine showrooms and by the end of the year we will have our tenth and next year we will add three more in Jaipur, Indore and Pune," Harley Davidson India Managing Director Anoop Prakash told reporters here.

He said the company has taken a conscious decision to spread presence in the tier II towns as there is a latent demand for Harley Davidson bikes.

"We are getting a good pull in smaller towns. There are a lot of people who have the same key attributes as we have, in wanting personal freedom. The kind of enthusiasm we had received in a place like Kochi was the same as in any metro," Prakash said.

There was a tremendous response when the company held the Harley Rock Riders concert in places like Shillong and Guwahati, he added.

Sounding bullish on the Indian market, he said the company will clock over 2,000 units by the end of 2012 as cumulative sales since it started selling its bikes in India in July 2010k.

When asked if Harley Davidson will assemble more models in India to bring down the price, he said: "Although there is no immediate plan for adding to our CKD line up, we will keep the option open for future in order to make our products affordable to customers."

The company will continue to adopt and invest in strategies that make its "products and ownership experience accessible to more enthusiasts and customers in India," Prakash said.

The latest model Fat Bob, which is powered by a 1,600 cc engine, is the sixth model assembled in the company's plant at Bawal in Haryana. It presently sells 13 models from its 2013 line up in India.

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