Honda’s superbike this year
The thumping response to its premium bike ranges, Honda has planned to launch another superbike- 2010 VFR 1200F- this year. The bike has already seen its global launch last year and will be the so far costliest in the Honda range(Rs16.5 lakhs). It will be CBU from Japan thereby inviting high import duty of 110%. The cost of this bike in the US which is the largest world market for the superbikes, is $15999 (Rs7.51 lakhs). The bike will be twin-seater sports mode, with a bigger engine and more powerful than Maruti’s largest selling car Alto. The bike is fitted with 1237cc, liquid cooled V-4 engine to deliver 172bhp. The company wants to keep other information in reserve till its formal launch in December.
Honda Motorcyles and Scooters India is ranked as the fourth largest two wheeler company in India and is the most popular in scooter segment. The company’s brands include CBR 1000RR Fireblade(Rs13.36 lakhs) and CB 1000R (Rs10.21lakhs) and already 100 units of these two models have been sold in the country. Honda does not concern too much about the cost factor but the brand image to be pushed forward. The concept is to prevail in the highly competitive market in which Hero Honda, Bajaj, TVS are the key domesti players apart from the Japanese Yamaha and Suzuki. The Japanese companies are marking their presence by the superbikes, Yamaha sells three models and Suzuki deals two models. They too are interested in promoting more superbikes and gearless scooters.
The launches of superbikes are likely to increase the company’s brand image as well the sale volume to double digit in every month. The domestic market has found the entry of other global players like Ducati, Harley, Austria-based KTM Power Sports AG and Kawasaki with their mighty superbikes. However, the market share of this is small compared to the global markets such as USA, UK, China, Germany and Japan. India seems to provide a better platform for these companies to increase the net sale volume. With the launch of superbike from Yamaha in 2008, the volume was 180 units per year, but it increased to 500 in 2009. the demand, as revealed in the bookings, indicate that the figure may cross 1000 units this year.