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Old 24th November 2016, 11:45   #1
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Default Rumour: Bajaj Chetak to return

Bajaj Chetak to return as a premium automatic scooter

At this stage, there is absolutely no word on the engine, but it would be a fair estimate to put its cubic capacity roughly between 125-150cc. We donít expect this engine to really break the mould in this segment, and guess that itíll be an air-cooled, single-cylinder mill running a carburettor setup, but this motor could feature the companyís patented DTS-i tech. And while the Chetak of the past always featured a manual gearbox, this one should be equipped with a variomatic transmission, just like most modern-day scooters.

At this stage, itís a little too early to say when the scooter will be launched or at what price. However, from what we understand, the launch might happen sometime as early as 2017 and knowing Bajaj, it's sure to undercut its competition when it comes to pricing.

Source : http://www.autocarindia.com/auto-new...er-403606.aspx
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Old 24th November 2016, 12:22   #2
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Default re: Rumour: Bajaj Chetak to return

Rumour: Bajaj to re-launch Chetak scooter brand in India

Bajaj Auto is reportedly planning to re-launch the Chetak brand in India to compete in the gearless scooter segment. Though the automaker has its bikes in a wide range of segments, Bajaj doesn't have a contender in the country's gearless scooter market. The Chetak will most probably be introduced in the premium scooter segment space. It is thus expected to compete with the Vespa range and the recently launched Aprilia SR150.

A set of images has surfaced on the Internet that showcases the new Chetak's design. Reports suggest that the new Chetak will be a contemporary scooter that will be equipped with modern suspension components, brakes and engine. Deeper details about the specifications are not known, though Bajaj will most likely be offering the Chetak with an engine in the 125 cc - 150 cc range.

Source: GaadiWaadi

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Old 24th November 2016, 12:38   #3
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Default re: Rumour: Bajaj Chetak to return

If the news is true then it looks like its time for Mr.Bajaj to eat the humble pie. Actually 2016 is the year several manufacturers have gone against everything they've said about 10 years ago.
The European motorcycle marquees would always give interviews here and there stating that they do not believe in creating 250-300cc or lower capacity motorcycles because they have a certain brand value to maintain. And voila, the G310R arrives, Triumph begins R&D on a 250(now abandoned project) and other manufacturers are running around to get a piece of the large pie that's been growing in the last 5 years.

By the way if anybody forgot, this is what Bajaj said last year when asked about a scooter market return.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bajaj
the Chetak will not be making a return and that Bajaj has no plans to re-enter the scooter segment. Bajaj states that the brand is a specialist motorcycle manufacturer and wants to maintain that focus.
Here's the link:
https://www.team-bhp.com/news/rajiv-...rn-possibility


Frankly, it was really stupid of Bajaj to ignore the potential of the scooter market that now commands a large chunk of two wheeler sales in the country. Every other manufacturer has jumped into the scooter market(even Aprilia for goodness sake) except for Bajaj.
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Old 24th November 2016, 16:34   #4
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Default re: Rumour: Bajaj Chetak to return

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nithesh_M View Post
If the news is true then it looks like its time for Mr.Bajaj to eat the humble pie.
=======
Every other manufacturer has jumped into the scooter market(even Aprilia for goodness sake) except for Bajaj.


This is because the market itself is very huge. Honda sells close to 1.5L activas every month on an average. The revenue figures are mind blowing for the scooter market. This holds true for 100-250CC Motorcycle market as well. If addressed correctly, this market can open up a huge revenue stream for firms like BMW, Triumph. The October Sales Analysis (October 2016: Two Wheeler Sales Figures & Analysis) shows this beautifully and a single excel sheet is enough to prove my hypothesis.

Ranking of Two Wheeler's by Revenue from October Sales Thread

Rumour: Bajaj Chetak to return-ranking-revenue.jpg

These firms have the tech know how and they lack the experience of playing in the 100CC-250CC motorcycle market. They would have to compete with established players like Honda/Hero/Bajaj/TVS etc, which is difficult but not an impossible task.

From an enthusiast's perspective, this is a win win scenario for us all. We get better products from BMW/Triumph etc and in turn Bajaj/TVS would also invest more in R&D for coming up with better products.


I stand to be corrected- IIRC McKinsey were the consulting firm who advised Bajaj to quit scooter market.
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Old 24th November 2016, 23:27   #5
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Default re: Rumour: Bajaj Chetak to return

The senior Bajaj viz. Rahul was always against exiting the scooter segment. It was the Bajajsons decision to have a full motorbike range and exit scooters, that the ageing erstwhile scooterking of India was humbled to accept as fait accompli.

When they say premium segment in the Vespa category, I have my own doubts as to whether Bajaj will be able to provide the fit and finish and quality of components that befit this segment. The company is known to be still a bit casual with its quality control and fit and finish is nowhere near the international competitors.

Anyway, let us only hope for the best for the homegrown two wheeler maker.
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Old 25th November 2016, 09:16   #6
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Default re: Rumour: Bajaj Chetak to return

I have been hearing this rumor for atleast 5 years now. Will wait for confirmations from Mr. Rahul

However the renderings show just another gearless scooter. I am hoping the new Chetak will be more retro styled.

Quote:
Originally Posted by anjan_c2007 View Post
When they say premium segment in the Vespa category, I have my own doubts as to whether Bajaj will be able to provide the fit and finish and quality of components that befit this segment. The company is known to be still a bit casual with its quality control and fit and finish is nowhere near the international competitors.
The V bike has great levels of fit and finish. So if they do launch I am confident it will be good.
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Old 25th November 2016, 09:49   #7
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Default re: Rumour: Bajaj Chetak to return

Quote:
Originally Posted by anjan_c2007 View Post
When they say premium segment in the Vespa category, I have my own doubts as to whether Bajaj will be able to provide the fit and finish and quality of components that befit this segment.
The Pertinent question is;

"Would just World Class Levels of Fit, Finish and Quality be the reason why the scooter customer would be ready to look beyond the Honda Activa?"

Why should anyone look beyond the Honda Activa? If one doesn't a Honda, scores of other options are already available in the market. Retro style - Vespa is already here, Sporty - Aprilia is here, so are Hero, TVS, Suzuki, Yamaha... even Mahindra.

What would be the Chetak's differentiating USP, one that is valuable to the Customer. One that makes the customer look at the Chetak favourably when Activa is there as an option.

Just World Class Levels of Fit/Finish/Quality would not be enough IMO.

Case Study:

EVERY Bike Maker trumps Royal Enfield in Fit/Finish/Quality.... but we all know who laughs all the way to the Bank every Month.

Last edited by GTO : 25th November 2016 at 16:47. Reason: Typos
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Old 25th November 2016, 11:56   #8
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Default Re: Rumour: Bajaj Chetak to return

Hopefully Bajaj can come up with a Pulsar like blockbuster in the automatic scooter segment and they are capable of doing that. Looking at the price of some of the products in this segment (Rs.70000 for an Activa 3G on road!), more competition in this segment is always welcome.
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Old 25th November 2016, 12:08   #9
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Default Re: Rumour: Bajaj Chetak to return

Quote:
Originally Posted by payeng View Post
What would be the Chetak's differentiating USP
Great point! Activa is a great scooter but has its shortcomings too. The original Chetak was a no nonsense scooter requiring very little maintenance and could carry substantial loads in roads that were far from ideal. The Activa is primarily suited for urban roads, and cannot really withstand the abuse that the Chetak could handle.

Of course, I'm quite certain that the new Chetak would be a far cry from the original Chetak (and for valid reasons), but perhaps, the Bajaj's should target a more rural market with a robust variant in addition to the Urban variant.

Last edited by GTO : 25th November 2016 at 16:48. Reason: Trimming quoted post
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Old 25th November 2016, 12:27   #10
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Default Re: Rumour: Bajaj Chetak to return

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lalvaz View Post
The Activa is primarily suited for urban roads, and cannot really withstand the abuse that the Chetak could handle.
Well I have a 2002 Activa and its main purpose is to transport goods from farm. It carries load not less than 100KG multiple times per day and even after 10 years of ownership I am yet to find a way to break the scooter. It has clocked 60K+ KM's and seems indestructible. The engine sounds brand new even after so much abuse.
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Old 25th November 2016, 12:40   #11
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Default Re: Rumour: Bajaj Chetak to return

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lalvaz View Post
... perhaps, the Bajaj's should target a more rural market with a robust variant in addition to the Urban variant.

Theoretically a RURAL Focused Scooter is definitely a Differentiating Idea with a clear USP.

But realistically I have doubts whether there exists a market/demand for such a product in present India.


By the way TVS already caters to the Rural Folk with its "almost Iconic/legendary" XL Super Moped for eons now.






Last edited by payeng : 25th November 2016 at 12:42.
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Old 25th November 2016, 16:57   #12
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Default Re: Rumour: Bajaj Chetak to return

Quote:
Originally Posted by timuseravan View Post
I am hoping the new Chetak will be more retro styled.
The Chetak's return definitely has a lot of potential. For one, there's the immense brand recall & fan following. Second, Bajaj might have an opportunity to differentiate it with some retro styling & pizzazz. Yes, the Vespa is there, but it's very expensive. The Chetak will surely be VFM-priced (as most Bajaj products are).

Even in terms of distribution, it's guaranteed presence in showrooms across India.

If Bajaj can make the Chetak 'cool' (like Mahindra has done with the Thar), there are enough lifestyle customers who'd want a li'l more design flair than the Activa.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nithesh_M View Post
Actually 2016 is the year several manufacturers have gone against everything they've said about 10 years ago.
Hahaha - well said! Even downsizing engines is going out the window.

Quote:
Frankly, it was really stupid of Bajaj to ignore the potential of the scooter market that now commands a large chunk of two wheeler sales in the country
That was a true shocker. They practically handed the scooter market to others on a silver platter. Similar to how Tata abandoned the UV segment for Mahindra to dominate.
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Old 25th November 2016, 17:06   #13
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Default Re: Rumour: Bajaj Chetak to return

Quote:
Originally Posted by LordSharan View Post
I stand to be corrected- IIRC McKinsey were the consulting firm who advised Bajaj to quit scooter market.
Ha ha ha
McKinsey were also the ones who had advised against the Pulsar way back in the early 2000s. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bajaj_Pulsar)

Rajeev Bajaj did well not to listen to them then. He shouldn't have listened to them on exiting the scooter market either.

Here's hoping that the venerable Chetak makes a return. I loved the legend of Chetak (the horse) ever since childhood and have always felt that this was a fine Indian name for an automobile.
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Old 25th November 2016, 18:56   #14
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Default Re: Rumour: Bajaj Chetak to return

Bajaj's strategy at the low end of the market seemed to be going no where a couple of years ago. I daily ride is a Discover 100T which I like to consider a limited edition, whereas it was phased out as it was considered too premium for a 100cc motorcycle to have 5 gears and 10.4 HP.

I hope they have a well thought out strategy with the Chetak. Bajaj has immense trust among the people, and they can sell some serious volume if they deliver a quality product.

Last edited by landcruiser123 : 25th November 2016 at 18:58.
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Old 25th November 2016, 19:13   #15
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Default Re: Rumour: Bajaj Chetak to return

Quote:
Originally Posted by landcruiser123 View Post
Bajaj's strategy at the low end of the market seemed to be going no where a couple of years ago. I daily ride is a Discover 100T which I like to consider a limited edition, whereas it was phased out as it was considered too premium for a 100cc motorcycle to have 5 gears and 10.4 HP.

I hope they have a well thought out strategy with the Chetak. Bajaj has immense trust among the people, and they can sell some serious volumes if they deliver a quality product.

Lack of Patience, according to me has been the culprit for Bajaj.

Aveneger and Pulsar 220 were spared over the years... and look at the situation now. Bajaj is reaping the beneifts with both the Pulsar 220 and the Avenger (220 + 150) doing handsome numbers.






Last edited by payeng : 25th November 2016 at 19:14.
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