May 19, 2011

Bajaj plans to launch Duke 125 by December 2011

Bajaj Auto is gearing up for the launch of the Duke 125 by December this year. The bike which is being manufactured at Bajaj’s Chakan plant is currently being exported to other markets. Come December, the bike will be available in India as well. The 125 cc bike has been developed as a collaboration with Austrian bike maker, KTM. Bajaj Auto owns almost 36 percent stake in the Austrian firm and is looking at products including a 200 cc bike for India.
“Duke is 90 per cent localized. We have exported 1,700-1,800 Duke bikes so far to Austria and some European countries. The set target of supplying the bikes to KTM during the FY12 is 11,000.”
The KTM Duke 125 has a 15 bhp four stroke engine and is solely manufactured for exports at the moment. Bajaj also plans to export the Pulsar and Discover to markets in Brazil depending upon the how the customers respond to the Duke 125. 1700-1800 units of the KTM Duke bike have been exported to Austria and other European countries untill now. Bajaj also plans to expand to Brazil which will include setting up dealerships in the South American country.
KTM Duke Bike
KTM Duke Motorcycle at Aut Expo 2010
In addition to expansion plans overseas, Bajaj is also strengthening its hold over the local market here in India. Targeting the rural sector is of priority at the moment and hence the company has brought out the new Boxer which has been tweaked taking in consideration the needs of the people in rural India. The Boxer will now have a 150 cc engine and would be completely focused at semi-urban areas of the country. The new Boxer is expected to be launched by September this year.
“We plan to launch a modified Boxer bike which is specially designed for semi-urban and rural markets by September this year. The bike with 150cc engine will have its complete focus on rural market. It is a product for Bharat and not for India”
Now, a 200 cc Duke is also rumoured along with the 125 cc bike. The 200 cc version could have close to 20 bhp on tap from a four stroke, liquid cooled, DOHC with four valves. The bike could be priced in the premium end of the segment above the Pulsar and will rival the Honda CBR250R. Bajaj is also mulling a powerful version of the Pulsar that will priced in the under Rs 1.2 lakh bracket thus taking the fight right up Honda’s doorstep.

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