Suzuki, despite its long presence here in India, first with TVS and now as a standalone company, has not really captured the market the way Honda has, nor are they as aggressive! However, things have started to look real positive since Gixxer.
Since the sentiments are high and the brand has found acceptance among the masses, to take the graph up, the company is now trying various ways to catapult its sales. The new Access 125 has been recently launched and Hayate EP and fuel injected Gixxer SF are on the cards.
At the launch press conference of the Access 125 we spoke to Mr Suresh Babu who is the National Head, Marketing and Product Planning at Suzuki India. Rather than the complete conversation, we are presenting the key pointers of the interview…
- Total Sales Target: The company plans to hit sales volume of 1 million units by the year 2020.
- New Access Sales Target: Expectations with the new Access are pretty high. Suzuki targets to sell 20,000 units per month. Interestingly, overall sales target for all the automatic scooters is just 25,000 which means they expect other scooters like Swish, Let’s and older Access to sell only 5000 units a month combined! Just to give you an an idea, Suzuki sold 16,693 scooters in February 2016.
- Gixxer Sales Target: Hopes from the Gixxer family are realistic but we are not sure if they have been achieved yet! While in the last month both the Gixxer variants managed 6,461 units, the company intends to reach and stabilize at 10,000 unit per month in the future.
- Features: Suzuki’s Easy Start system (push button start and stop system) and SEP will be introduced in newer products.
- Gixxer SF FI Launch: The fuel injected Gixxer SF will be launched in the coming financial year, which means anytime from April 2016…
- GS150R Demand Drop: The GS150R is being exported and is experiencing a drop in domestic demand. The management understands that if there is no demand, there is no sense producing it. We have also done a detailed article on this.
- New GSX 1000R Indian Launch: The new GSX 1000R will come to India after it has been launched globally.
- Any New Let’s? Let’s would NOT get an update anytime soon and will continue to try and build steam with the existing dual tone paint scheme. Suzuki is hopeful that it will catch up in the coming months.
On Bigger Motorcycle Models
Regarding CBUs and the recent step of bringing the Hayabusa as a CKD, Mr Babu says localisation is an integral part of their future growth plans. He added…
“That is a manifestation for our Make in India programme and we would like to localise as much as possible. Localisation is not just about material but about transfer of technology.That is more important.”
They are working on increasing the general skill set of workers in India to make high capacity motorcycles.
On 250 cc
We are a regular at asking this question with Suzuki’s top brass. Here’s what Mr Suresh Babu told us this time…
“Too early in the day to talk about it. When the market requires it and there is a demand, we will definitely look into it. The market is growing and we are watching it.”
But a news snippet yesterday has quoted a Suzuki official confirming that a bigger Gixxer made-for-India is being readied. You can read its details here…