Unlike its earlier plan to launch the bikes outside India first, the company may now be planning to simultaneously launch it worldwide
Swaraj BaggonkarMoneycontrol News
Royal Enfield will start taking bookings for the Interceptor and Continental GT in November this year after having deferred doing so by a few months.
The Eicher Motors-owned cruiser and touring bike specialist has ironed out some production ramp-up issues pertaining to the two bikes, which it had showcased in November last year at the EICMA show in Milan, Italy.
Unlike its earlier plan to launch the bikes outside India first, the company may now be planning to simultaneously launch it worldwide.
"Bookings of the two bikes to start in November and deliveries after that. Media drives to happen in California in September. The launch will happen in India and rest of the world," Siddhartha Lal, MD and CEO, Eicher Motors, told analysts.
Ready units of the two bikes will be in limited numbers to start with as a full ramp-up of their production is expected only four months later. The company is already running its production at full capacity.
"The production ramp up will happen in a phased manner. By the end of this financial year we will be in most of the important markets around the world. We won't have any capacity issues with the twins. The ramp up will be slow. By March 2019 we will be able to deliver what the market requires," Lal said.
Both the Interceptor and the Continental GT are powered by 650cc, twin-cylinder, fuel-injected motors that deliver a peak power of 47 ps. While price details are not out yet, market sources believe they should priced at around Rs 3.5 lakh.
The two bikes will be the costliest and most powerful in the Royal Enfield stable. While the Interceptor is a new bike, the new Continental GT is a replacement of the now-phased-out Continental GT, which was powered by a 535cc engine.
Prospective buyers of Royal Enfield bikes can expect a delay in deliveries during the festive months of September, October and November as the company's production lines are fully utilized at present.
"In the last couple of months we are tending to demand-supply getting closer. But all our plants are running at peak capacity. As we get into September, October and November demand will rise higher but not the supply," Lal said.
The company also said that demand for the newly-launched Thunderbird X and Classic Gunmetal Grey has been far more than was earlier expected, and as a result, the waiting period for them is higher than for other models.
"We are able to convert more of the bookings in the same month but there are some models we are not able to do that at all. Like the newer and premium models where we under estimated the demand. We are ramping up on Thunderbird X and Gunmetal Grey models. More than half of the order book is for the premium variant that is something we had not anticipated," Lal said.
Royal Enfield has said that it expects to end the current financial year with sales of 950,000 units, 13 percent higher than the 840,000 units sold last year. Lal said that the company might to able to stretch the monthly run rate to a maximum of 84,000 units.With Phase-II of the Vallam Vadagal plant coming on stream only in the second half of the next financial year, and the growth during April-July being 19 percent, the waiting period for in-demand models is expected to rise in the first half of the next financial year.