Honda's motorcycle sales have overtaken Bajaj to become number two player in the motorcycle segment by clocking 183,266 units as against latter's domestic sales of 161,930 units in April 2017.
While Honda's motorcycles sales rose by 22 per cent growth in April 2017, Bajaj reported 19 per cent drop in the sales.
According to Yadvinder Singh Guleria, senior vice-president, sales and marketing, Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India Pvt Ltd (HMSI) said factros such the launch of new motorcycles, expansion of dealer network and a smooth transition from BS-III to BS-IV vehicles were among the major factors that helped the company.
The apex court gave has asked OEMs to clear their BS-III stocks within three days while banning the sale of BS-III vehicles after March 31. According to the compnay, HMSI responded to the order by taking some quick action regarding its BS-III stock and their strategy worked.
“We were able to liquidate almost all of our BS-III vehicle stock. Since dealers were left with no inventory for most models, we refurinshed the products in the network quickly”.
As far as performance of products is concerned, 2016-17 was a great come back for Shine series, which retained its number one position in the 125cc two-wheeler segment.
In April alone, HMSI earned arpund 55 per cent of its sales from Shine. Livo and Hornet also helped to gain market share, said Guleria, while adding that Livo reported growth despite de-celeration in the 100cc market, contribution from which dropped to 50 per cent from 34 per cent.
According to industry sources, Honda's market share in motorcycle segment rose to 18 per cent as against Bajaj's 16 per cent in April. HMSI closed FY17 with a market share of 14 per cent in the motorcycle segment that is dominated by Hero with a market share of around 51 per cent.
To retain its position and to give tough fight to the market leader Hero, Honda is planning to expand its network focussing more on rural, to launch two motorcycles.
It may be noted, the market leader Hero is strong in motorcycle segment, which got better penetration in rural markets.
As far as reach is concerned, in FY17, HMSI fulfilled 70-75 per cent of target in tier-II cities and beyond. In FY18, it plans to add around 400-500 touch points, out of which 75 per cent will be in rural markets. Currently, HMSI has around 5,100 touch points across the country.