Apparently the biggest two-wheeler manufacturer in India in terms of sales by a large margin over its competitor Bajaj Motorcycles.But are the figure ‘s going to stay continued over the coming years ? Many would have thought that after the separation of Honda from Hero Honda joint venture that the sales of Hero will decrease but to their surprise Hero posted a growth of 48 % in quarter 4 2011.
But one thing is sure for a debate over the future Hero group owned by Munjals.The question here is While the Indian buyers are looking for more high performance premium sports bikes as we see the recent trend and many people are opting to go for the 150 cc and up to 250 cc bikes.These certainly shows the current trend is for the higher displacement bikes in India in the recent past.But most of the 150 cc and above category bike sales were not as anticipated when compared to Bajaj. Bajaj is leading in the 150 cc and above displacement bike categories.Hero’s recer auto show bikes include the 125 cc bikes but no signs of bigger displacement bikes.Hero Moto Corp at present has three 150 cc bikes the CBZ Extreme,Hunk and the recently launched Impulse.Of the three 150 cc bike CBZ Extreme is the leader in sales in this class for Hero moto Corp. Impulse was well received because of the Tv commercials but it didnot quite convert well in to sales.All te three 150 cc bikes have the same engine.And after the 150 cc bikes Hero has two 220 cc premium bikes Karizma R and Karizma ZMR both the Karizma R and Karizma ZMR have the same engine but the difference is Karizma ZMR is PGM-FI which means Programmable Fuel Injection which is patented Honda technology.Karzima ZMR had failed to impress the youth and Karizma R was Sold more than ZMR.But both bikes failed to gain a market share for Hero in the above 150 cc class.Both the bikes are designed by japanese auto maker Honda.The time has come for Hero to invest in its R&D like Bajaj and TVS did a long time ago.It needs a major revamp for its bikes in the 150 cc and above class.The buyers just doesn’t need cosmetic upgrades which are seen every year on Karizma R to attract buyers Hero needs to upgrade its bikes with more power and Hero need to bring up some new premium sports bikes to compete with in the sports bike category.Hero Must rethink their strategy about sports bikes and introduce bikes with power combined with stylish looks and ine must remember Honda and other Japanese auto makers have the power to capture the market they enter like in America where Japanese car makers Toyota and Honda rule over the Detroit big three General Motors,Ford and Chrysler which are before the entry of Japanese were selling in record numbers.Take for instance Legendary bike maker Harley Davidson which was beaten by Japanese Manufacturers.One may heat up the argument that Japanese bikes are superior and offer better ride quality and build quality and also cheaper price.Already Honda in India has a strong scooter market and recently they have been very active in releasing smaller displacement bikes to compete with indian Motorcycle manufacturers.So the alarm bell must be ringing on Indian Companies.Bajaj already through a Tv commercial indirectly stated that there competitor is not Hero But it is Honda by revealing in the commercial that Pulsar more than five times that of Japanese bikes.Bajaj releasing new pulsar range in 2012 in partnership with KTM in which Bajaj owns a 40 percent stake and is all set to launch the new range of pulsars outside India in the global market especially in Europe in KTM stores.TVS has a good Registry and Development Department.Japanese have a strong 150 cc segment sport bikes like Yamaha R15FZ,FZ-S and CB unicorn.
so one may think that where does te growth in sales come for Hero in Quarter 4.It is because of its most popular 100 and 125 cc bikes.Hero has to definitely invest in int Registry and Development to make their bikes upgraded bot just cosmetic but also powerful without loss in comfort,Handling and keeping other things in mind.