Rajiv Bajaj: We want to return the favour to Hero, Honda with the Freedom

    Bajaj looks to regain market share that it lost decades back to more fuel efficient motorcycles.

    Published On Jul 08, 2024 02:10:00 PM

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    Rajiv Bajaj: We want to return the favour to Hero, Honda with the Freedom
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    At the launch of the Bajaj Freedom 125 CNG bike, Rajiv Bajaj shared how he believes this bike could make a milestone moment in the Indian two-wheeler industry.

    “Sometimes a particular event takes place, as it did in 1993, when fuel prices went through the roof and Hero Honda was present to take advantage of the situation with the four-stroke motorcycle. In the same way, ten years later, the Supreme Court mandated CNG in Delhi for commercial vehicles and Bajaj was present and we have taken advantage of that. The question is whether that is about to happen again with people being hurt by very high fuel prices. This bike can halve the running costs, so the question remains whether this is another milestone moment. Maybe we have a real opportunity for change. We are very confident and hopeful that we are at the right place at the right time with the right product.”

    Also See:
    Bajaj Freedom 125 CNG bike launched at Rs 95,000

    Bajaj shared how three to four decades back, 70 percent of the Indian two-wheeler industry was owned by scooters (of which Bajaj controlled a huge share), but that changed dramatically with the advent of more fuel-efficient four-stroke Japanese motorcycles.

    The Bajaj Auto MD further explained in his inimitable style, “In the late 80s and early 90s people went from a 40kpl scooter to an 80kpl motorcycle. That means the fuel bill was halved. The proposition today is exactly the same, that we will halve your fuel bill. Now we are not saying that this bike is only about that; as we have shown, the Freedom is a very good looking motorcycle, and it has a lot of environmental benefits as well. There are many good things about it. So the favour that Hero Honda did to us in the 80s and 90s, we would like to return that favour 30 years later.”

    To recap, the Freedom 125 is priced between Rs 95,000-1.10 lakh (ex-showroom) and is available in three variants. The Freedom is powered by a new sloper mill making 9.5hp and 9.7Nm of torque. At 149kg, it is on the heavier end when it comes to 125cc commuters, and the 825mm tall perch is also on the taller side of things.

    We will be testing the Bajaj Freedom this week and our reviews go live on July 14. Keep an eye out to see if this bike really has the potential to disrupt the market.

     

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