Home / Auto News / Hero Moto rolls out Xoom to challenge rivals Honda, TVS

Amid dwindling entry-level motorcycle sales and a declining market share for scooters, Hero MotoCorp is expanding its portfolio to take on rivals Honda, TVS and Suzuki in the 110cc segment, comprising nearly 60% of the scooter market.

While Honda’s Activa is the segment leader, the company has its own set of challenges in view of the rising competition from electric two-wheelers.

Hero MotoCorp on Tuesday launched a 110cc urban adventure-focused scooter, Xoom, at a starting ex-showroom price of 68,599. Its aggressive pricing positions it between Hero’s compact scooter Pleasure Plus and family scooter Destini, and will also compete with Maestro Edge in the same segment. Xoom will also take on rivals like Honda Activa Premium and Dio, as well as TVS Jupiter and Zest, to arrest its falling market share in an expanding scooter market, especially in the 110cc segment.

The price point is attractive considering all the features the scooter offers, said dealers and analysts Mint spoke to.

The Xoom is equipped with industry-first features such as the Hero Intelligent Cornering Light (HiCL), which illuminates the road in the direction the scooter leans for the top-end ZX variant, a feature particularly useful for adventure riding in the dark.

Hero MotoCorp will further expand its scooter range, alongside its premium offerings in the market.

“It (Xoom) will make people re-evaluate their options for sure. We believe the introductory price will be very interesting to consumers," said Ranjivjit Singh, chief growth officer, Hero MotoCorp. “We are on the path of bringing in a unique value proposition that the market appreciates as we have been able to think radically for Xoom in terms of the design language, and industry- and category-first features like wide tyres, corner bending lights, unique ergonomics and consumer value proposition, fastest acceleration and sporty styling—all this deserved a new name plate."

Singh said the company saw an opportunity in the 110cc sporty segment of scooters as it is the fastest-growing category at present, as a section of customers upgrades themselves to 125cc scooters.

Japanese rival Honda overtook Hero MotoCorp as market leader briefly last year, as urban customers’ demand for scooters remained strong even as motorcycle volumes struggled to keep up. To fortify its position, the company is betting on a three-pronged strategy—premiumization, scooters and the 125cc motorcycle segment.

“We’re talking about premiumization of portfolio across our range. We are putting in extra technology wherever we have seen the highest uptake with our customers. This is the path we are on," Singh added.

Hero MotoCorp’s market share in scooters dropped to 7.08% in the first nine months of FY23, from 7.51% in the last fiscal year, at a time despite a challenging environment scooter volumes are rising. In FY22, total scooter volumes stood at 4.073 million, while sales in April- December 2023 are already at 3.985 million units. Hero MotoCorp’s share in scooter was at 13.15% in FY18 and 10.73% in FY19, when two-wheeler sales were at a pre-covid-19 peak.

In April-November of FY23, scooters contributed 32.9% to total two-wheeler sales in the domestic market, compared to 29.8% in fiscal year 2022, and 29.6% in FY21, hinting at rising penetration of scooters.

Alisha Sachdev
Alisha Sachdev is an assistant editor with Mint based in Delhi. She reports on the auto and mobility sector, with a special focus on emerging clean mobility technologies. She also focusses on developing multimedia properties for Mint and currently hosts the 'In A Minute' series and the Mint Primer podcast. Previously, she has worked with CNBC-TV18 and NDTV.
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