Royal Enfield targets 1.50 lakh units annually

Royal Enfield targets 1.50 lakh units annually

Royal Enfield targets 1.50 lakh units annually

Cruiser motorcycle company Royal Enfield (RE) has decided to expand its footprint countrywide, with a ramp-up of production as well as by appointing more dealers across regions, even as the maker of the legendary Bullet cruiser plans to manufacture around 1.50 lakh motorcycle units annually.

The company, which is claimed to be the oldest motorcycle brand in continuous existence since 1901, has increased monthly sales out of the production line at its lone Tiruvottriyur plant near Chennai from 7,000 to 10,000 units in the last three months.

Referring to the company’s 50 per cent year-on-year growth, Royal Enfield Chief Executive Officer Venki Padmanabhan said on Thursday, “Owing to a spurt in demand for our products, as also enquiries from customers, we plan to increase our production. Apart from our existing (Tiruvottriyur) plant, we have also begun work on a new facility at Oragadam, which will open shop in the first quarter of 2013.”

The company got the go-ahead from Tamil Nadu government in February for the new facility which will be spread over 50 acres. Once complete, both plants will roll out 1.50 lakh motorcycle units per annum. Padmanabhan said that Rs 150 crore has been invested towards the realisation of these plans.

Sales of Royal Enfield for the January-December period last year which touched 75,000 units, are expected to touch 1 lakh units by the end of this year and 1.50 lakh by the end of 2013.

With RE vieing for more clientele, it has appointed more dealers in the last few months -- 237 in total --, from the earlier 140. “In Karnataka, currently we have 16 dealers from the earlier eight,” Padmanabhan said.

A company associated with rugged, macho motorcycles, RE also launched the Thunderbird 500 on Thursday. The new Thunderbird is backed by a powerful 499-cc Unit Construction Engine, dishing out power of 27.2 bhp. Touted to be a highway cruiser, the company claims it has a riding distance range of 500-600 km for every full-tank refuel of 20 litres.

The motorcycle comes with a host of new features and innovations, designed for long distance pleasure riding and tours. Available in three distinct shades of black, the Thunderbird 500 is priced at Rs 1,86,622 (on-road Bangalore).

The company is also entering the bike accessories market. It will come out with a range of merchandise targeting avid bikers and enthusiasts, company officials said. They however did not give an exact date for the launch of the accessories.