Covid-19 effect: Benelli India launch plans on the backburner

The Benelli TNT 600i might be the only refreshed model that will be coming in this year, with all other all-new two-wheeler launches deferred.

By:Updated: Apr 21, 2020 8:01 PM

Yes, it is no revelation. Most of the manufacturers right now might be having video conference calls on how and when to launch their BS6 products. Some are taking the digital route – Triumph India will launch the new Street Triple RS online tomorrow. At present, Benelli India is one manufacturer that doesn’t have a single BS6 product in its line-up. The Chinese-backed Italian motorcycle maker though has managed to sell all its BS4 stock. In fact, a source close to the development tells us that the motorcycles were sold without any outright discount. However, customers were offered free insurance and the like.

Benelli India, post lockdown should be ready to roll out the BS6 bikes. The entire line-up will move to BS6. Currently, the Benelli India range of products includes the TNT 300, TNT 600i, 302R, TRK 502, TRK 502X, Leoncino 250, 500 and the Imperiale 400. Most of these bikes were launched last year. Benelli India had big plans for launching all-new products in India this year. However, the current COVID-19 pandemic has wreaked it. The 600i, in its refreshed avatar, though can be expected to be here this year as this model has already been launched in China a few weeks ago.

At present, as China seems to be recovering from the pandemic, there is still no communication as to how to go ahead. The Benelli products available in other markets too are mostly Euro-IV compliant or at best, Euro-V. This means the process of getting any new bikes to the Indian market will take longer. The source further tells us that the focus will be to first restart sales with the existing BS6 portfolio. For the new products, the market has to be studied and thereon launched, if found feasible.

Adhishwar Auto Ride India, a part of the Mahavir Group, currently is a partner in Benelli’s India operations. The company assembles the Benelli bikes at its factory near Hyderabad. The bikes come in a CKD format from China as well as Italy – both coronavirus hotspots.

Recently, there were leaked images of the all-new Benelli 600N, Imperiale 530 and other bikes. These are the ones that will not be coming to India anytime soon.

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