Japanese car maker Honda, on Monday, said it was hopeful of becoming the leader in the two wheeler segment by 2015-16, if the industry remained at its current size. “Today, the (two-wheeler) market is almost 1.4 crore (units) in India. There isn’t much growth… If it remains at the same level then we may become number one in 2015-16,” Honda Motor Co Operating Officer Shinji Aoyama told reporters here.
The company had earlier aimed at toppling current market leader Hero Motor Corp by 2020. Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India (HMSI), the Indian two-wheeler arm of Honda, presently occupy the second position in terms of sales in the country, followed by Bajaj Auto.
Honda is working on ramping up its production capacity in India, and aims to up the capacity to 4 million units by March 2014.
HMSI, which launched its 150cc bike ‘CB Trigger’ here on Monday , will launch more models in the current financial year to increase market share. It is also looking at locations for setting up a new plant.
“So far, our focus is to maximise Indian domestic sales. However, I believe India can be a hub for HMSI operations… not just exports but also in engineering for example,” he added.
Asked about erstwhile partner Hero Group, Mr. Aoyama said, “HMSI is gaining market share while Hero is losing its share,” and he expects this trend to continue.
On competition from other companies in India, he said, “If you see the numbers, Hero is number one. But I think Bajaj is very strong. Bajaj is also very good at creating alliances,” he added.
Though the pricing of the CB Trigger is yet to be announced, HMSI expects to sell about 1 lakh units of the bike in 2013-14.