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CHINA INTERESTED IN INDIAN YAHMA.

NEW DELHI -- In perhaps the first instance of a major made-in-India auto product making its way to the dragon land, Yamaha is set to drive in locally-manufactured low-cost motorcycles and scooters to China that would be the company's lowest-priced vehicles in the country.

The Japanese two-wheeler major is planning to make India a hub for development as well as manufacturing of lowcost products and plans to launch a sub- $500 (under Rs 27,000) scooter and motorcycle , which would be its cheapest two-wheeler globally and sold across volume-laden markets such as China, Africa and Latin America.

"We are in the process of developing low-cost products from India and these would be sold across major markets, including China," Yuh Motoyama , Yamaha's senior GM (engineering section - motorcycle business operations ), told TOI here. Motoyama said the products are currently under development and the Indian R and D is playing the lead role in this, with assistance from headquarter Japan.

"The idea is to develop a low-cost scooter and motorcycle , and these would be the lowest-priced globally in the Yamaha stable," Motoyama said. Currently, the company sells its lowest-priced two-wheeler in China which is priced at $700 (Rs 38,200).

The company announced the establishment of a new motorcycle R and D set-up at Surajpur in Uttar Pradesh and this is Yamaha's fifth overseas research centre on the lines of similar ones in Italy, Taiwan, China and Thailand.

Asked why the company had chosen India for developing the low-cost models, Motoyama said the products will have a big potential in this market. "India is very, very important for Yamaha and is a growing market - one of the biggest in the world. The reason for developing the products here is to be near the market to catch customer response better and also to respond faster."

He said apart from international markets, the new lowpriced products would be sold across India that would help Yamaha grab a bigger share of the market. The company's local subsidiary, India Yamaha Motor (IYM), is looking to sell 7.1 lakh units of motorcycles and scooters this year, including 2.1 lakh of exports. IYM had sold a total of 4.9 lakh units in 2012. "Our long-term target is to sell a total of 28 lakh units by 2018. We are aiming to sell 10 lakh units in 2015 that will include exports ," IYM CEO and MD Hiroyuki Suzuki said.

In the medium term, the company is eyeing a market share of 10% by 2016, when overall industry volumes are pegged to be around 18 million units. "By 2020, we expect scooters to be half of the two-wheeler market in India. Our aim is to introduce a scooter model each year to help us achieve overall 10% market share by 2016," he said, adding that IYM would launch scooters targeted at men and for family usage.

At present, the company has a lone scooter model, Ray, which is targeted at women customers. On motorcycles, Suzuki said the company will continue to offer new models both in performance and commuter segments, though refusing to give details.

RAMPING UP BIZ

Yamaha will sell the locally-made low-cost scooters and motorcycles in China, Africa, Latin America At present, the Japanese co sells its lowest priced bike for $700 in China The two-wheeler giant plans to set up a development and manufacturing hub for such low-cost products in India It has set up its fifth motorcycle R and D centre in UP, on the lines of ones in Italy, Taiwan, China and Thailand.
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Publication:Pakistan & Gulf Economist
Date:Apr 21, 2013
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