KTM AG, the street and dirt bike specialist, will move production of two Husqvarna motorcycle models from their current address in Austria to Bajaj Auto’s Pune facility, which will be the only factory in the world to produce them.
This will be the sixth and seventh model that Bajaj Auto will exclusively produce domestically to serve the global markets, but a first under the Husqvarna brand. Presently, the KTMs produced at Chakan, Pune are exported to US, Europe and several other regions.
Production of Husqvarnas from India are slated to begin in late 2018 or early 2019, a note from KTM stated. These bikes will be ‘rolled out globally’, it further stated.
Bajaj Auto, India’s fourth largest two-wheeler maker, owns 48 percent stake in Austria-headquartered KTM. Stefan Pierer, the chief promoter of KTM, owns Husqvarna through a company Pierer Industrie AG.
“The Husqvarna Motorcycles will be rolled out across the global with e view to generating a significant increase in sales. The first models Vitpilen 401, Svartpilen 401, Vitpilen 701 are being produced in Mattighofen and were launched in the market at the beginning of 2018”, said KTM.
Both the Husqvarna bikes due to start production in Pune are powered by the same 373cc, 44bhp, single cylinder engine that powers the KTM Duke 390 and the KTM RC 390. Both these KTM bikes are among the six produced by Bajaj Auto from India.
“The production of Hasqvarna Vitpilen 401 and Svartpilen 401 models to be sold worldwide will be transferred to Bajaj (Auto) in Chakan, India in late 2018 or early 2019. Extending the cooperation to the Husqvarna Motorcycle brand will raise the partnership between Bajaj and KTM to the next level”, KTM added.
KTM and Bajaj had said earlier that Husqvarna bikes will also be launched in the Indian market with the two locally produced models to be the first of the several planned launches for later periods. Both the Husqvarna models are designed on the design language of ‘modern retro’.
The average price of a KTM bike sold in India is around Rs 1.5 lakh with the Duke 390 costing more than Rs 2.2 lakh. The Husqvarna range is expected to start at around the same price band as the Duke 390.
Later this year Bajaj will add one more KTM model to the production line when it will take the covers off the Adventure 390, a touring bike to take on the Royal Enfield Himalayan and the BMW G 310 GS (to be launched).
Worldwide sales of KTM climbed 17 percent to 238,408 units last year as against 203,767 units sold in 2016. Bajaj Auto manufactured 41 percent (98132 units) of KTM’s total product sold last year globally.