Bajaj Auto Ltd, India’s second largest bike maker, on Thursday said it will target the premium 100cc bike user with the September launch of Exceed, a new 125cc bike with a twin spark plug engine designed to give better mileage.
About two-thirds of the 6 million bikes sold annually in India are 100cc ones, considered the most fuel-efficient. And half of the 100cc bike segment, roughly 2 million, is the premium category, priced Rs40,000 and above. It is this market that Bajaj Auto is targeting with Exceed.
“We are not targeting the lower end of 100cc segment as we are not making any profit in it and that is not our strength,” said Rajiv Bajaj, managing director, Bajaj Auto.
The firm has about 50% market share in the 125cc and greater engine capacity, with bikes such as Discover and Pulsar. It is the second largest player in the 100cc segment, with a 27% market share.
The company launched its digital twin spark ignition (DTS-I) engine in 2003. The twin spark plugs offer better fuel efficiency than engines with single spark plugs. For the Exceed, Bajaj Auto has improved it, developing DTS-swirl induction technology for even better mileage.
The company claimed that in test conditions, Exceed gives 109km per litre, the highest in the industry. “We are expecting around 40% demand from our existing customers,” said S. Sridhar, CEO (two-wheelers), Bajaj Auto.
The Bajaj Auto share ended Thursday at Rs2,290.90 on the Bombay Stock Exchange, down 0.85% on a day the benchmark Sensex lost 1.36%.