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Talk of Harley-Davidson and the next company that comes to mind is Royal Enfield. The two companies have a lot in common too, as they both are one among the oldest motorcycle companies in the world, both produce retro bikes, and both are considered iconic makers in their home market. Not to mention that the makers also infuse modern technology in the retro bikes they make. Till now, there was one distinct fact that separated the two brand, while the Royal Enfield made single-cylinder engine retro bikes aimed at the affordable segment of the market while Harley made big bulky twin-cylinder engine bikes that was aimed at the more premium segment of the market. However, Royal Enfield has now launched their all-new parallel-twin engine bikes in the market – the Continental GT and Interceptor. This means that the Indian maker is now eyeing the market share of Harley.
Not to be backed into a corner, Harley-Davidson is also making strides to breach Royal Enfield territory as the US maker is planning to bring out products aimed at the price conscious Indian market. These products will be aimed at the potential customers of Royal Enfield. Under their “More Roads to Harley-Davidson” strategy, brand will launch more and more affordable bikes in the developing nations like India.
Harley-Davidson’s President and Chief Executive Officer Matt Levatich stated the following about the brand’s strategy in coming times,
More Roads progress in Q1 included steps towards a partnership for a premium small displacement offering in Asia, to expand our reach in that region. We are just over a year away from launching our first model that will help provide access to millions of customers in emerging markets in the region.
Harley-Davidson’s bike range in India starts from 750cc bikes as of now but the global markets also see the sale of Street 500, which is the entry level model in the global markets. Coming back to the aforementioned lighter bike from Harley, the new bikes will be developed in partnership with an Indian brand. Something, that Indian market has already seen in the form of several partnerships. Although these is no news as of now regarding what partner will the US bike maker choose for its affordable bike for India.
The brand is looking to enter the 250-500 cc segment of bikes in India and aims to launch bikes that will cater to the youth of the country. The idea of the brand behind launching these bikes is to get the Indian youth acquainted with the legacy of Harley without being a burden on their pockets. Although details of the bike remain scant as of now, there are rumors that the bike may be launched in India as early as 2020.