Honda narrows gap with Hero for #1 spot in two-wheeler space

作者:Diana 日期:2018-05-05 標籤: 分類:閱讀:102

Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India is now snapping at market leader Hero Motocorp's heels for the top slot in the domestic two-wheeler space, after narrowing the gap considerably last month.

Hero Motocorp’s lead over its former technology partner in terms of vehicles sold, was down to just 41,491 units in April. Hero sold 677,792 units in April, and Honda sold 635,811 .

This is the second time that Honda has come so close to the market leader. Same month last year the volume gap between the two companies was down to slightly under 34,000 units. While this may seem as a one-off aberration a look at sales data for the last five years shows that Honda has managed to significantly close the gap with Hero.

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From a gap of 2.55 million in 2013-14 Hero’s lead over Honda was down to 1.6 million at the close of last financial year, as per data supplied by the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers, the apex lobby body of the auto industry.

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Sales volume data for the last five fiscals shows that Honda Motorcycles & Scooters has managed to significantly close the gap with Hero MotoCorp.

Honda is riding high on the Activa, which remained as the country’s largest-selling two-wheeler for three years in a row beating Hero’s long-time best-seller Splendor. The Japanese giant even set up a scooter only factory in Gujarat which ran out of capacity less than eight months after it was commissioned.

Honda’s other best-seller is the Shine motorcycle, a 125cc four-stroke bike that has now become the top-seller in its category. Hero is still the leader in the budget bike (100-110cc) segment led by the Splendor and HF Dawn.

Led by the two models Honda gained leadership position in 17 markets, including 15 states such as Maharashtra, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Kerala. Hero is still the leader in states like Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, West Bengal and Bihar which has allowed it to remain in the lead. Improved road conditions in rural markets and greater acceptability towards scooters has allowed Honda to make rapid inroads into India’s hinterlands.

However limited expansion capability at Honda will likely play a major spoiler in its plan to secure the numero uno position in India. The company is running its plants at an average of more than 90 percent utilization at all its four plants and does not plan to add any more factories till the middle of 2020.

Hero, meanwhile, is pumping in Rs 2,500 crore towards new products, expansion of an existing facility in Gujarat and setting up of a green field facility in Andhra Pradesh. This will significantly boost Hero’s production capabilities thereby allowing it remain in the lead at least for the next two years.

「While we envisage Hero Motocorp to benefit from recovery in rural demand in FY19, long-term market share gains look challenging given weak franchise in fast-growing scooter and premium bike segments. Management intends to focus aggressively on these two categories spearheaded by product launches and brand building」, stated a note from Edelweiss Research.



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