Royal Enfield has enjoyed a free reign in the Indian two-wheeler market. With its classically styled motorcycles and cruisers, the iconic bikemaker has set the sales chart on fire and has been registering tremendous growth with respect to sales while other manufacturers have struggled. This supremacy has prompted other two-wheeler giants to jump into its territory and its first rival was Bajaj with the Dominar 400.
Now, Honda seems to be gearing up to battle it out with Royal Enfield. At a press conference, Noriaki Abe, president & CEO, Asian Honda Motor Co Ltd said that they were working on developing a new motorcycle to compete against the Royal Enfield Classic 350. For this purpose, the Japanese two-wheeler giant has also formed a special team of engineers from Thailand, Japan and India. The new middle-weight motorcycle will be a global product and will most likely be designed and developed in India by Honda. No details about the motorcycle is available as of now but we speculate it to be a classically styled bike with around a 300-350cc, single-cylinder liquid-cooled engine.
Royal Enfield products aren’t know for their refinement or reliability; something which the Japanese bikemaker is renowned for and this aspect could work in its favour. Honda also said that they might also export the upcoming motorcycle from India to global markets including Japan. Royal Enfield bossman Siddhartha Lal has focused his attention on international markets where the demand for easy-to-ride, retro-styled middleweight bikes has seen a steady growth. Royal Enfield has set itself a target of being the global leader for motorcycles between 250cc and 750cc and is also developing a parallel-twin engine that is set to make its debut in 2018. Honda officials are tight-lipped about this new global product but we can expect some details or maybe a concept to be unveiled at the 2018 Auto Expo.
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