Quite evidently 150cc is the new 100cc in India; may not be in terms of volumes but definitely in terms of interest levels! All the top motorcycle manufacturers have two or more motorcycle models with the exception of TVS (which only has Apache 160).

Let us list the current models which were or are in production in this segment..

List of All 150cc Motorcycles in India

Hero Motocorp Achiever, Hunk, Xtreme (and Sports version)
Bajaj Pulsar 150, V15, Avenger 150 (Pulsar AS150 now discontinued)
Honda CBR150R, Hornet 160R, Unicorn 150, Unicorn 160
TVS Apache 160
Yamaha FZ range, Fazer, SZ-RR, R15
Suzuki Gixxer, Gixxer SF

This lists tells us how fiercely fought this segment is with each manufacturer trying to outdo its rival by offering newer features and differentiated products.

It is well known that Bajaj, with its Pulsar 150 and now Avenger 150 has been the largest selling motorcycle brand in this segment for over a decade and a half. Arch-rival Hero and Honda have fielded four models each. Similar is the case with Yamaha whereas Suzuki and TVS continue to fight with their popular models.

In this list of 17-18 models, which ones sold the least last financial year? Let us list the bottom five for you in descending order…

Fifth Spot – Honda Unicorn 160:

With sales of only 36,626 units, Unicorn 160 is facing a steep task to live upto the expectations set by its predecessor Uni 150. Situation went so bad that Honda has to relaunch Unicorn 150 to hold onto its falling market share in this segment.

Just to give you a reference, Uni 150 has sold more number of units in last three months than Uni 160 in the complete year. Sales touched a new low for the 160cc motorcycle in October 2016 when it could manage only 26 units. With Honda pumping in newer energy into the brand with its BS4 variant and new colours, it remains to be seen for how long will Unicorn 160 hold its stay in the market.



Fourth Spot – Yamaha SZ

Yamaha’s SZ was introduced as an entry level motorcycle in this segment. However, when that strategy did not click, Yamaha promoted it as an executive 150cc but it appears that they have understood it will always play second fiddle to the flagship FZ range.

The motorcycle managed an average of 2000 units, only to register massive falls during demonetisation months.

Third Spot – Hero Xtreme 150 (& Sports)

It registered combined sales of only 19,735 units which is dismal for a brand with such a massive dealership network. Xtreme, ever since its fall midway, has never been able to fight back in the books of potential buyers in this segment despite offering one of segment-best power figures (on Xtreme Sports).

I expect to see it again in the lowest selling charts for this year, if Hero continues with it.



Second Spot – Hero Hunk

Hunk is the lowest selling mainstream commuter 150cc in India! With sales of only 15,168 units in all, it is evident that this muscular motorcycle is going down the interest points of buyers because of the maker’s reputation.

The update which lent it the higher powered engine has not helped a zilch and considering the last five months of sales, it appears that the motorcycle will soon be ditched, just like Impulse!

First Spot – CBR150R

With 5,466 units, CBR 150R is the lowest selling 150cc in India. Considering its steep price and the sports segment it is placed in, it is bound to get lower (than mainstream commuters) sales but once you factor in its chief rival Yamaha R15 (with a similar price tag) which outmatches these 12 months figures in only 1.5-2 months you begin to understand that a lot is wrong with Honda’s policies. Keeping the model absolutely untouched since its inception has clearly taken a toll on the motorcycle’s sales.

Honda has taken the motorcycle off from its website and it is not known what future does it have in India in the coming months.

Lowest Selling 150cc Motorcycles in India

Ranking Model Brand Total Sales (in FY2016-17)
1 CBR150R Honda 5,466
2 Hunk Hero 15,168
3 Xtreme Hero 19,735
4 SZ Yamaha 23,652
5 Unicorn 160 Honda 36,626

*List comprises of motorcycles which were in continuous production for the last financial year according to the official SIAM sales data 



Hero walks away with one of the lowest selling 150cc motorcycle manufacturers tag despite the presence of four models in this segment. It is their lack of interest in the segment which is causing them all the harm. They resurrected the Achiever and it has started to do fairly well. A similar push, with all new models, is required if Hero wants to break into this segment successfully.

Also Read: Now Honda Beats Hero as Third Largest 2-Wheeler Exporter

Honda has already announced a new motorcycle in this 150-200cc space and rumours are abound of a faired motorcycle. They appear better placed than their arch-rival in this segment.

What do you think are the reasons of these motorcycles not doing well in India – Is it that they lack potential or is it because of the manufacturer’s lack of interests in them?

Next Read: R15 vs CBR 150R: a Battle That Never Was

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SOURCESIAM Sales
Saad
An avid biker, I moved out of the software world to work completely on following the automobile scenario in India. With BikeAdvice, I try to share my small learnings with my brethren out there. You can follow me on Facebook.

1 COMMENT

  1. Quite an interesting comparo. People know Honda for Activa and Unicorn 150. These models are time proven and known for reliability. 7/10 people go with reliability as first priority. This is where Honda new models and Hero all models are failing. Bajaj managed it just in time because when they launched Pulsars, it did not have competition. Otherwise they were more notorious for least lasting machine parts.

    Why dont these manufacturers understand frequent changes in commuter bike model sends a signal as unreliable. If they have to manage good sales with new one they have to ensure (a) The product is really very good with no niggles and vibrations for next 4 years (b) Good marketing campaign for initial hype (c) Excellent after sales network eith well trained technicians across service centers.

    Hero Honda had all these boxes ticked and were most reliable bike brand. Both seperated and they lost (a) and (c) respectively.

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