Back in 2012, our very own ‘Hamara Bajaj’ and the Japanese green team Kawasaki joined hands to market mobikes globally across developing countries, including Asia and South America. This tie-up not only helped Bajaj spread its wings, Kawasaki too started selling and servicing their 650cc and below products in the Bajaj operated pro-biking showrooms in the country, which also happens to see the Austrian KTM motorcycles sharing spaces. Kawasaki also assembled their CKD motorcycles, at the Bajaj Auto’s facility in Chakan.
Four years after this successful partnership, both Bajaj and Kawasaki want to part away for reasons not made official to us. But MotorBeam speculates that this could be because of two reasons. One, Kawasaki has been busy setting up its own dealer network and it is on its way to set its foot firmly in the country. The other could be KTM’s more affordable offerings under the same roof affecting sales for the Japanese.
Kawasaki will move all its sales to its dedicated showrooms selling all their motorcycles in the Indian product line-up. Although, assembly of their CKD products will still be undertaken at Bajaj’s new facility at Akurdi. But, will be handled completely by India Kawasaki Motors, a 100% subsidiary of Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Japan.
Coming to Baja’s point of view, it is an obvious rationale that KTM’s sales gave Bajaj a better financial stability that the Kawasaki’s expensive options. Moreover, Bajaj-KTM have a stronger bond with respect to partnership compliance and KTM is all setting up to bring its premium Husqvarna motorcycles to the Indian stride.
As the KTM Duke series is manufactured in India for global consumption, Husqvarna will also manufacture their models at Bajaj’s Chakan plant near Pune and call India their home. They will hit the showrooms in the first quarter of 2017 across the globe and will be expected to be priced slightly above the KTM Duke 390.
And this break-up is going to benefit both Bajaj and KTM to have more office space to showcase the upcoming offerings and the Husqvarna brand of motorcycles.
This will benefit new Kawa customers as it will make Kawasaki drop a few thousands on their CKD products as Bajaj will no longer take any profit on their sales. You can expect all their bikes at dedicated Kawasaki showrooms including their CBU imports, like before. Ninja ZX-14R and Ninja ZX-10R will continue in those showrooms alsong with the 300 cc and 650 cc bikes. All said, Kawasaki has a huge mountain to cross before it can start competing furiously at the niche segment.
Overseas however, both these brands will still be going strong by selling the Kawasaki Bajaj badged Pulsar through the Kawasaki network in Asian countries and will be doing the same in Brazil as well.