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Old 12th December 2008, 16:29   #1
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Default Bajaj Loses Number Two Position in Two Wheeler Market to HMSI.

I came across this news and sharing here. I tried searching, but could not get a thread.

The news is that due to very big fall in sales, Bajaj Auto is no longer the second biggest Two wheeler manufacturer in Indian market by volume. Bajaj Auto is left behind by " Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India " i.e. HMSI. Honda and Hero Honda must be celebrating this.

Source : http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/B...ow/3820759.cms

Article :
Quote:
NEW DELHI: Slowdown bug seems to have caught up with ‘Hamara Bajaj’, one of the country’s best-known two-wheeler brand. After losing the top
position to Hero Honda
in 2001, Bajaj Auto has slipped further, going down to the third position (in terms of monthly domestic sales), now losing to Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India (HMSI).

Bajaj, which is constantly losing numbers over the last few months, managed to sell a poor 82,919 units in November, degrowing by a massive 53% year-on-year. HMSI, on the other hand, rode the revival in scooter sales and saw its sales grow 35% in the same month which stood at 94,222, over 11,000 more than Bajaj. While some may dismiss this as just one-month ‘aberration’, an analysis of sales numbers presents an ominous picture for Bajaj.

Sales over the last three months, as provided by Siam shows that Bajaj has been declining constantly just when HMSI’s has been growing. While in September, Bajaj was ahead of HMSI by as much as 72,262 units, the lead narrowed down to just over 10,000 units in October. And in November, HMSI beat Bajaj. For Bajaj there has been a constant decline in year-on-year numbers. In September its sales were down 3% in the domestic market which dropped to a big 50% fall in October and further to 53% in November.

Bajaj Auto MD Rajiv Bajaj was quick to dismiss the trend as “premature”. “Corporate sales ranking is never done on a monthly or quarterly basis. Its always on an annual basis. As of now, we are number 2. In my view for this financial year a verdict is premature before April 1, 2009. As for the next year, let’s see who is ahead on May 1, 2009,” Bajaj told TOI.

Honda was elated, particularly as both its two-wheeler companies — Hero Honda and fully-owned HMSI — now rule the Indian market. “The fact that HMSI has emerged Number 2 in November shows that our efforts to reach out to customer are paying off... HMSI has been in India for six years now and we have been expanding our dealer network to reach more customers in smaller cities. Our increased supplier network has also helped us deliver superior products at reasonable price,” M Takedagawa, head of Honda’s south west Asia operations, said.

On whether it was a one-month phenomenon, he said, “I am sure November is not a one-off and HMSI will continue to strengthen its position in the market with good products.”
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Old 12th December 2008, 16:35   #2
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As the headline in a popular business mag very apty put it:

Bechaara Bajaj!
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Old 12th December 2008, 16:41   #3
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that is sad.atleast bajaj is a fully indian company with their own R&D(yeah,...I know )
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Old 12th December 2008, 17:33   #4
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Bajaj has to come with some very exciting products to regain their position. They are just concentrating on the 'commuter' 125CC, which neither look great nor perform well.

Most of all they have to come up with a new Pulsar line up!!
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Old 12th December 2008, 18:42   #5
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We aint seen nothing yet! Just wait till HMSI comes out with their 100 cc offering.
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Old 12th December 2008, 19:07   #6
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What is indeed surprising is the number of bikes\scooters that Bajaj & Honda have.

They only launched CBF stunner this year while Bajaj launched Discover 135 & XCD 125 & have the entire Pulsar range against Honda's Unicorn\Shine\Activa\Dio
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Old 12th December 2008, 19:56   #7
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As we are with this news, as a previous Bajaj owner, I will like to add a few reasons that IMHO, can play a role in falling sales apart from economy.

1) It starts at the dealership itself. Not very good experience. HMSI ( I went there when deciding between Zeus and Shine ) was also bad as the person with whom I was talking was telling me " thank you " very quickly and wanted to end coversation. But they were way more honest.

2) Servicing experience. In short I can say that it was worst of my experience. Anybody is better than them.

3) 4) New products that are not all conquering middle of the line approach. Take for example, the Peugeot 307. It won European Car Of The Year 2002. Was it the best everywhere ? NO, but in the segment which it was, the customer wanted an average car that wont do everything perfectly. Just being average or a bit above average is fine.

In case of Bajaj, products upto 125cc are flawed. CT100 was gathering sales and selling well, and they stopped it. While the risk is appreicated as they were offeirng new motor, it was/is not what the consumer wants. A nice 100cc bike like CT100 is an absolute necessacity. In the 125cc segment, the XCD was too small a bike for a person of typical Indian built. Also it was not really solid. No wonder it did not give good results despite having a very fuel efficient motor. That is the reason for Platina 125cc coming up.

In case of 135cc Discover, they have got almost everything perfect. But above that the scenario from bajaj is equally messed up. Yamaha R15 is not a launch out of the blue, neither is FZ16. Bajaj was at the top of 150cc segment and that means the maximum chances losing as more competetiors are looking at you. Bajaj P150 had not seen a new variation since long. It was also no longer exciting. Then came FZ16, attacking the real enthusiast segment, which till now p150 was heading. The final blow was from R15. Bajaj was not prepared for this.

Apache 160 FI gives good performance that is almost at par with P180. Bajaj have lost here. P200, well its OK, but then again the R15 becasue of its performace and value has hit the entire Pulsar range. Pulsar had the image of high performace bike and R15 has now taken over that image.

These factors, coupled with the point 1 & 2 are the main reason IMHO for Bajaj losing and Honda gaining even in tough economic conditions.

Now what I believe can help them achieve the lost glory.

4) Improvements in the above two points. This can be quick as the products are not very complex as cars.

5) Come out with a bashing P150FI, P200FI and P225FI ( yes much better than the current bike ). And the naked versions of P150 and P200. Just like Yamaha. This would see Bajaj gain in volumes.
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Old 12th December 2008, 21:44   #8
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Very well said aaggoswami!

Bajaj have been trying to milk the whole Pulsar and DTS-i cow for too long now. High time they learnt a lesson or two from Yamaha and threw in a couple of new and fresh bikes to stir things up in that segment again.
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Old 12th December 2008, 22:48   #9
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Yes, a naked version of the P150 and P200 would definitely be a welcome.
Also they should not try to have a product which has everything but nothing great, I think.
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Old 12th December 2008, 23:01   #10
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bajaj was selling close to 2 lakh because of the schemes that they were offering like "pay just 999/- and ride away" and "pay just 1999/- and ride away" etc etc and not on the strength of their product line up. and now that all that has dried up due to banks stopping 2-wheeler finance, bajaj sales are now at what they actually should be. basically they have shot themselves in the foot.

hero honda and hmsi never resorted to such ridiculous schemes to sell the ir products. rather they let the ir trouble free products do the talking and it is now bearing fruit. all those 1000s of people who were buying bajaj and tvs only because of the super attractive schemes have shifted to hero honda and honda because there are none availabe now. and now that no schemes are there, they rather buy a good product than the scheme.

bajaj grew too fast and it has gotten to their heads because if not they would have brought out a new pulsar by now. they thought that it will continue to sell well and so put all their money into an impossible array of entry and executive segment bikes that has left everyone confused.

ct1oo, ct100 dlx, platina, platina variant 1, platina variant 2, platina variant 3, discover, discover dlx, discover 135, discover dtsi etc etc etc with prices overlapping and criss-crossing performances, economies, colours. basically anyone who goes to their showroom used to come out confused but with a product purchased based on an "offer" or "scheme". but now they go there get confused and find that there is no scheme and then they leave and go to hh or hmsi where each product is clearly differenciated with respect to price, performance and economy.

my predicition for 2011....
1. HMSI
2. HH
3. Suzuki
4. Yamaha
5. any of the others.....anyway nobody would care by then

and i say this because there is only so much technology one can buy and implement. the japs have that technology inhouse and also do have lots of money.
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Old 12th December 2008, 23:10   #11
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No, it shall rise again. Beating the japs in their own game.
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Old 13th December 2008, 00:49   #12
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I would like to see Yamaha steadily raise their stake in India with some more powerful bikes.
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Old 13th December 2008, 11:07   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steeroid View Post
As the headline in a popular business mag very apty put it:

Bechaara Bajaj!
OT: The article too was very Bajaj like - below par.

No offense meant to any Bajaj fans, I give all the respect to Bajaj for standing up to the challenge and resurging back when the 100cc moto-misers era dawned, given that they were predominantly known for their Scooters. The way Bajaj shrugged off it's 'Scooter maker only' tag with the 'Pulsar' twins and the 'Boxer' series of motorcycles was an achievement in itself.
But, in pursuing out and out growth, they probably missed a trick or two to plan about 'sustained growth'. Now, that the markets are slump, they cannot ask for a better opportunity to re-emerge strong. Don't count Bajaj outta the game as yet.
As an Indian, I always feel proud when our desi manufacturers take it up to the Japs. Another Indian manufacturer on who I really hope is TVS motors. It has proved its presence with it's Apache/RTR/eFi. They have a solid support of their Racing team to help with valuable inputs.

Anyways, good show by HMSI, even if it were to be a 'one off' feat.
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Old 13th December 2008, 11:35   #14
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As a bajaj owner i would say the their bikes deteriorate too rapidly . The performance of my 180 is down considerably despite being serviced every 2.5k- 3k kms. It hardly performs.It cannot be compared to the quality of unicorn.Also average maintenance cost is high.Their machines dont have life except the good old chetak.
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Old 13th December 2008, 12:19   #15
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My two bits:-
1) I agree with Rajiv Bajaj that it is too premature to conclude anything out of this data (not sure I can call this a trend).

2) Good observation by hollywoodhogan. Bajaj's fortunes might be more proximately related to the condition of finance market. This developement might well be because of difficulties faced in there.

3) It would have been helpful if we could get data for their competitor's too.

+1 Hillram. I would also like to see good range of products from Yamaha. And somebody has rated it below Suzuki in this thread :-( I hope the reality is otherwise.

Disclaimer: I am not for or against any manufacturer though I have a soft corner for Yamaha
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