Triumph Motorcycles have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Karnataka government to set up a bike assembly plant in the state within a year.
The renowned UK-based bike-makers were on the lookout for a location for their facility close to a port, so that they could import completely knocked-down (CKD) units and, in the future, also export the bikes manufactured in India. They have now zeroed in on Narasapur in Kolar district, on the Bengaluru-Chennai highway, about 50 km away from Honda’s upcoming motorcycle plant.
After the UK and Thailand, India is the third country where the company is going to set up its manufacturing facility. The new facility will help Triumph price their motorcycles competitively in the world’s second largest two-wheeler market. It may be recalled that last year Harley-Davidson started similar operations at a facility in Haryana.
Triumph had announced that they would be assembling the Bonneville, Street Triple, Speed Triple and Daytona 675 models locally. The company is already working on a smaller capacity motorcycle, around 350 cc, which will ensure the numbers to justify the setting up of the facility. Later, the company might consider full manufacturing as well. The plant will take about a year to reach completion, but the bikes will be launched before that via the CBU (completely built-up units) to generate initial brand awareness. The introductory prices will also be kept low, keeping in mind the plans of local assembly, which will help the company avoid import duties.
Triumph’s head office will be based in New Delhi. They will appoint four dealers this year and another 12 over the coming three years.