ACCORDING TO SHIRISH KULKARNI, CHAIRMAN OF DSK BENELLI, THEY WILL LAUNCH A RETRO CLASSIC, AN ADVENTURE AND A SCRAMBLER BIKE BY MARCH 2018
At the recent launch of the Benelli 302R, Shirish Kulkarni, Chairman of DSK Benelli, spoke about his vision of expanding the brand into different segments. For this, he plans to bring in a sub-500cc retro classic, a 500cc adventure tourer and a scrambler this year.
Benelli has been eyeing the sub-500 cc classic bike segment as it is quite lucrative and manufacturers like Royal Enfield have been doing well in this segment. They plan to enter that segment with a classic bike that they plan to launch this year. There are ongoing discussions about the possibility of a 250cc Leoncino coming by the end of 2018.
Benelli was planning to get the TRK 502 to India but instead of the one showcased, a more off-road-oriented variant will come to India. Benelli is currently working on it and the bike can be expected to be launched in the forthcoming Auto Expo.
If everything goes according to plan, Benelli plans to launch the Leoncino at IBW this year. If not, the Leoncino should make its debut at the Auto Expo in February.
While the Benelli TNT 899 and TNT R were discontinued, Sirish said that they will be re-launching the bikes updated with Euro IV engines. The bikes will come by the first half of 2018.
2016-2017 was a good fiscal year for Benelli, with 4500 units sold and a major chunk of them being the TNT 300 (around 120 units per month). The newly launched 302R is expected to add another 60 to 80 units per month to that figure. Benelli expects to sell around 6000 bikes this fiscal year taking into account the 302R and the Leoncino.
They also plan to bring their dealership count up to 40 by the end of this fiscal year. They currently have 26 dealerships across India. New dealerships will first come up in Kolhapur, Dehradun, Mangalore, Shillong, Guwahati and Aizawl.