Bajaj Auto’s Discover motorcycle brand has overtaken market leader Hero MotoCorp’s Splendor in September. It sold 122,968 units last month as against 121,018 units of the Splendor, according to Bajaj Auto. It is a thin margin, but the first-ever lead over Splendor is a big milestone by Bajaj Auto, since it has achieved this landmark after multiple attempts to do so over the years.
“(Bajaj) Chetak was not killed by a Chetak. It was killed by a Splendor. The Splendor will not be killed by a Splendor. It has to be killed by another being, maybe a Discover, we feel,” said K Srinivas, president of Bajaj Auto’s motorcycle business.
During the first half of the current financial year, the Splendor has a lead of over 530,000 units with sales of 12,33,572 units versus the Discover’s 702,096 units. It is to be noted that the newest model in the Discover range – the Discover 125 ST – is only a few months old and sold 35,000 units last month. The Discover ST, along with the other Discover 125cc, sells around 60,000 units monthly, which is equal to the combined sales of the four-speed and five-speed variants of the Discover 100.
Meanwhile, Bajaj Auto will add a new 100cc bike to fight Hero MotoCorp and other rivals. The new bike is expected to be launched in December this year. The company claims it will be the most technically advanced as well as the most expensive 100cc motorcycle in the market. “We will make a Swatch for people who are used to buying HMT,” said Srinivas. According to Srinivas, Bajaj Auto currently has a 35 percent share in the motorcycle market, while Hero MotoCorp has a 39 percent share.