Blazing a Trail of Success
The Auto Expo, which was to have been held last year, took place last month. The restrictions imposed by the outbreak of the pandemic resulted in this event being postponed by a year.
The response by the mainstream two-wheeler manufacturers, however, was lukewarm as most of them stayed away. The only internal combustion engine (ICE) exhibit was from Adishwar Auto Ride India of Hyderabad who showcased Italian brands made in China. Otherwise, most of the exhibitors were start-up electric vehicle (EV) manufacturers.
These EV start-up manufacturers face a truly uphill task because they have neither any experience in the manufacture of two-wheelers, nor R&D experience or facility. They are also not likely to be familiar with how much endurance testing is done before a two-wheeler is launched. The mainstream manufacturers with years of R&D experience behind them find it difficult at times to get a new two-wheeler right at first attempt. It is after months, sometimes even years, of endurance testing that they get the product right.
The problem here is that some of the EV start-ups import their kits from China and assemble them here. The quality tends to be quite substandard. Some of them are here today and gone tomorrow, which leaves the buyer in a lurch because there is no service back-up for such two-wheelers.
The jury round for the Indian Motorcycle of the Year (IMOTY) Award was held on the 10th of last month at the Buddh International Circuit in Noida. There were 17 contenders in all and they were further shortlisted down to 10 motorcycles for the jury round. All the 10 were strong contenders. The winner for 2023 was the Royal Enfield Hunter. The trophy was presented by Dr Raghupati Singhania, CMD, JK Tyres, to Siddhartha Lal, MD, Eicher Motors Ltd. JK Tyres, the IMOTY sponsors, organised a great show.
Now it looks like Royal Enfield are making a habit of winning the IMOTY Award, this one being their third in the last five years.