As the Indian two-wheeler industry crossed the 2-million dispatches mark in October 2020, the 17 percent year-on-year boost has to be attributed to the motorcycle segment. Last month, OEMs upped the ante with 13,82,749 motorcycles (23.80 percent) delivered to showrooms. At 11,54,518 units, these Top 10 motorcycles contributed to 83 percent of total motorcycles sold in October. Here’s looking at how they fared.
Hero MotoCorp cements position at the top
Bajaj Pulsar displaces Honda CB Shine for the third spot
Royal Enfield sold 41,953 units of the Classic 350
Hero Splendor: 3,15,798 units
Hero MotoCorp, the world’s largest two-wheeler manufacturer had a strong month on the back of the Splendor, which is easily the world’s highest-selling motorcycle and product on two wheels. In October, the company dispatched 3,15,798 units to its dealers across the country, hoping to make the most of the festive season. That’s 35,548 bikes more than September’s 2,80,250 units and August’s 83,497 units. How many were actually retailed remains to be seen. One of India’s first BS VI-compliant two-wheelers, the Splendor range comprises three models – the Splendor Plus, Splendor iSmart and the Super Splendor. The Splendor Plus continues to be the most affordable with a starting price of Rs 59,600. The Super Splendor is the most expensive, starting at Rs 67,300. The Splendor iSmart is priced at Rs 67,100.
The Splendor uses a new engine, a 113.2cc, single-cylinder, fuel-injected unit which develops 9.1hp at 7,500rpm and 9.89Nm torque at 5,500rpm. India’s best-selling bike, which features Hero’s i3s start-stop technology, uses a 240mm front disc and 130mm rear drum brake as standard.
What’s driving demand for the Splendor range is the uptick from rural India which has seen a good kharif season. The coming months will see farmers increase their transport operations and demand for fuel-sipping commuter bikes will only grow.
Hero HF Deluxe: 2,33,061 units
The HF Deluxe is the second Hero commuter bike with sales of over 2,00,000 units in a month. October’s 2,33,061 units is marginally higher than September’s 2,16,201 units but substantially more than August’s 1,77,168 units.
Early in January 2020, Hero launched the BS VI HF Deluxe and priced the base variant at Rs 55,925 and the i3s variant at Rs 57,250 (both prices, ex-showroom, Delhi).
The updated HF Deluxe features a fuel-injected 100cc single-cylinder engine, which develops 7.94hp and 8.05Nm; Hero claims the new engine is 9 percent more fuel efficient and better performance, with 6 percent faster acceleration. The new HF Deluxe also features Hero’s i3s (idle start-stop system).
Bajaj Pulsar: 1,38,218 units
The Bajaj Pulsar, with 1,38,218 units in October has moved up from its No. 4 ranking in September (1,02,698). August sales were 87,202 units, which indicates the upswing for Bajaj Auto is rather strong. The company has reported the highest-ever monthly Pulsar sales this October, as well as exports.
The sporty Pulsar family is all of nine variants strong – Pulsar 125, Pulsar 150, 150 Neon, 150 Twin Disc, Pulsar 180F, Pulsar 220, NS160, NS200, and RS200 and what could have helped accelerate Pulsar sales was the rollout of the refreshed Pulsar NS and RS series on October 16. The Pulsar NS 200 and NS 160, which get new all-white alloy wheels, are available in four new colour schemes: Burnt Red (Matte Finish), Metallic Pearl White, Pewter Grey and Plasma Satin Blue. While the Pulsar NS 200 costs Rs 1,31,219, the Pulsar NS 160 is priced at Rs 1,08,589 (ex-showroom, New Delhi). They went on sale on October 23.
Honda CB Shine: 1,18,547 units
The CB Shine has slipped from third place in September to fourth in October, when it clocked 1,18,547 units, a little more than the 1,18,004 units in September and August 2020’s 1,06,133 units.
This Honda was among India’s first bikes to get the BS VI treatment. The same 124.73cc, air-cooled, single cylinder engine has been upgraded to BS VI-spec, which has seen the power figure rise from 10.31hp to 10.88hp. While the hike in power is marginal, the BS VI CB Shine features electronic fuel injection which results in crisp and smooth throttle response. The engine is paired to a 5-speed transmission.
Hero Glamour: 78,439 units
It looks like the Hero Glamour’s recent entry into the 125cc segment is giving it a new charge. This Hero is seeing an uptick, month on month. October saw 78,439 units compared to September’s 69,477 units and August’s 54,315 units.
It faces stiff competition in the form of some popular motorcycles like the Honda SP 125 and the Bajaj Pulsar 125 but clearly it is going places. While it displaces an identical 124.7cc, the single-cylinder engine powering the new Glamour is new but gets a 5-speed gearbox in place of the 4-speed unit on the older bike.
The Glamour is available in two variants – one with a drum brake at the front and the other with a disc brake – priced at Rs 69,750 and Rs 73,250, respectively, which is just Rs 2,300 more than their corresponding fuel-injected BS IV models. At the price point, the Glamour costs around Rs 1,500 less than the Pulsar 125 and a little over Rs 4,000 less than the Honda SP 125. For not a lot extra, Hero is giving more refinement and features, in addition to all that the Glamour previously had to offer, which is a pretty good deal.
Hero Passion: 75,540 units
With the motorcycle market leader going all out to stock its dealerships in the festive season, the fuel-sipping Passion clocked 75,540 units, compared to September’s 63,296 units and August 2020’s 52,471 units.
The Passion’s been around for two decades now and Hero has recently introduced the 2020 Passion Pro into the commuter bike arena. This machine now gets the updated BS VI 113cc engine from the Splendor iSmart and develops 9.15hp and 9.9Nm of torque.
Bajaj Platina: 60,967 units
Maintaining its seventh position as in September, this Bajaj commuter motorcycle totted up 60,967 units last month, improving on September’s 55,496 units and August 2020’s 40,294 units.
In early July, Bajaj added a new ES (Electric Start) Disc Brake variant to the Platina 100’s line-up, taking the total number of variants to three. This new variant is priced at Rs 59,373 while the KS Alloy Drum Brake and ES Alloy Drum Brake variants are priced at Rs 49,261 and Rs 55,546, respectively (all prices, ex-showroom, Delhi).
Powering the Platina 100 is a BS VI-compliant 102cc, single-cylinder engine with peak output figures of 7.9hp and 8.34Nm. This engine is mated to a 4-speed gearbox.
The Platina 100 is now one of the only 100cc commuter bike to feature a disc brake, though the additional money it demands puts it in the same price bracket as some 110cc commuters like the TVS Radeon, prices for which start at Rs 59,742.
Bajaj CT: 51,052 units
India’s most affordable motorcycle sold a total of 51,052 units, improving on September’s 45,105 units and August 2020 sales of 34,863 units. At a starting price of Rs 42,790, the Bajaj CT100 is a refined, good quality product and is a true representation of the affordable engineering that India Inc can deliver. It is actually surprising how the company manages to price it so low.
Royal Enfield Classic 350: 41,953 units
At ninth position is the Royal Enfield Classic 350 with 41,953 units and the mainstay of the Royal Enfield range, which has recently been expanded with the launch of the new Meteor 350. The 41,953 units in October better September’s 38,827 units and August 2020’s 34,791 units. The Classic 350 is Royal Enfield’s most popular motorcycle and FY2019 saw the company sell 6,56,651 motorcycles with the Classic 350 accounting for 60 percent of them.
In BS VI form, the Classic 350 gets a fuel-injection system that develops 19.8hp and 28Nm of torque. With prices starting at Rs 1,78,000, the new Classic is about Rs 11,000 more expensive than it was in BS IV spec.
TVS Apache: 40,943 units
TVS Motor Co’s flagship motorcycle and premium bike brand Apache continues to see an uptick in sales. In October, the Apache range comprising five models – Apache RTR 160, RTR 180, RTR 160 4V and RTR 200 4V, clocked 40,943 units. This is an improvement over September’s 37,788 units and August’s 33,540 units.
On October 12, total Apache sales rode past the four million unit sale milestone, globally. This premium brand was launched in 2005, and the ride from zero to 4,000,000 units took 15 years. Interestingly, the last million or 10 lakh unit sales have come in just two years. The TVS Apache crossed the three-million-sales milestone on September 10, 2018.