Aprilia motors are considering introducing sub-400cc bikes in India to take on the counterparts from TVS, KTM, Kawasaki and Benelli. The company has provided no information whatsoever about the bikes which is suggestive of the fact that this project is still in its very early stages.
It eventually means that it will take some good time before this made in India project motorcycle hits the dealership. As the bike is still in its nascent stage, we can expect a time period of three-four years before it is finally launched.
300-400 cc segment more juicy
Company's chairman and MD, Diego Graffi confirmed that the brand was evaluating a bike in the 300-400cc segment as it 'looks more juicy'. He confirmed the development of a new bike on the sidelines of Vespa Racing sixties launched recently.
This essentially means that the company's plans for developing smaller displacement motorcycles like the Aprilia RS 150 Tuono 150 motorcycle will be put on hold temporarily. Though these bikes grabbed eyeballs at Auto Expo 2018, the company seems to have made up its mind to exploit the higher displacement segment bikes.
Expectations from the bikes
It will be too early to jump into conclusions since there is no official information whatsoever. However, we still believe there is a little scope of pitching in the speculations. The bikes may arrive sometime around 2022-23 and can be faired and naked machines.
The bikes will be manufactured in the company's production facility located in Baramati, Maharashtra. It will not only help the company in using the plant more effectively but will also help the company in expanding export operations.
It will be too early to talk anything about engine displacement and features that might be offered or the underpinnings but we believe the Aprilia motorcycles will feature a single-cylinder engine to keep the costs under check.
The segment consists of some really worthy performers. It is needless to say that creating its own space will certainly not be easy for Aprilia. Currently, the 300-400cc bike segment sales are dominated majorly by the Royal Enfield bikes.
However, RE will not be a direct competitor and the upcoming Aprilia bikes will primarily lock its horns against KTM 390, even the Husqvarna with the upcoming Svartpilen 401 and Vitpilen 401 are expected to jump soon into the competition.
Apart from KTM and its cousin sister, The upcoming Aprilia bikes will take on the likes of TVS Apache 310, its german cousin BMW G 310 series, Benelli 302R (and upcoming 302S), Kawasaki Ninja 300, and also Honda's CB 300R.
The arrival of global brands has opened up a wide array of opportunities for the auto industry to thrive and a world of options for the buyers seeking the most optimum return for every buck that they spend. Though the bikes are still in its very early stages, it is an exciting project.
Aprilia is renowned for its performance-oriented offerings and the fact that manufacturing operations will take place in India, it will be a good boost for companies operations in the country, which haven't quite taken off yet due to a pretty limited product line.