While Honda is one of the leading companies in India when it comes to scooters, the Japanese brand lacks in variety to compete with rivals in the motorcycle segment, especially in the rural market. To tackle this problem, Honda is planning to introduce an entry-level motorcycle to expand its product portfolio as well as reach in the rural areas where manufactures such as Hero MotoCorp and Bajaj Auto has a strong grip.
As per the latest report, to occupy a share in the rural market in the country, Honda is aiming to develop an entry-level motorcycle that will sit below the CD 110 Dream, which is the company's most affordable bike at the moment available at a starting price of INR 64,505 (ex-showroom, Delhi).
Speaking with ET Auto, HMSI's newly appointed President, CEO and Managing Director, Atsushi Ogata, said:
Unfortunately, we do not have a strong product for rural areas, therefore definitely we need a model to acquire such kind of customers because Honda philosophy is to supply affordable products to customers. It is our responsibility to provide a product that people in rural areas can buy. We don't have an actual product in this segment. Of course, we have CD 110 but it cannot penetrate such markets.
Details regarding Honda's upcoming entry-level motorcycle are a blur right now. The company is, however, conducting studies to understand the requirements of the rural market and develop a new product based on the findings. Regarding the launch, Honda has not shared a definite timeline but did say that it will take some time.
Currently, Honda has eight motorcycles in its Indian product portfolio which includes two superbikes. It will also launch a new motorcycle on 27 August which is likely to be the CB Hornet 200R. The Japanese company has also confirmed the arrival of the litre-class 2020 CBR1000RR-R Fireblade and Fireblade SP models in India.