As first reported by Autocar India as early as Jan 2013, Bajaj is working towards making a reentry into the scooter market. It’s a long overdue move, with Bajaj having previously shifted focus from this now markedly resurgent segment of the market. Even as Bajaj has done well to cement their position as a significant motorcycle specialist, with grand success stories including the marriage with KTM and making of their iconic Pulsar bikes, they lack a scooter presence, which put in place will help them gain healthy sales volumes. India was for long a scooter dominated market ruled by Bajaj for decades, which turned into a predominantly geared motorcycle market and is now tilting back towards its roots with shifting market dynamics. A dismal lack of adequate public transport from the Government makes our roads continue to get further congested, lending more steam to the gear free scooter cause.
As India’s most successful two-wheeler player post independence, Bajaj knows the Indian market inside out, and bringing the famous Chetak back is a masterstroke that was always waiting to happen. We’ve heard Rajiv Bajaj state his company could explore and ride the scooter road once again, as and when the market demands. And the market certainly is now ready, with the scooter sales wave outreaching bikes, with no signs of any slowdown.
It’s still early days, and no details are presently available about the upcoming new Chetak, which we guess should be seen by around the Indian Auto Expo 2016. Do however look forward to the highlight of distinctive retro styling, with plenty of the old Chetak seen in its modern new guise. Also expect the born again Chetak to offer scooter typical convenience including comfort and storage, together with modern day suspension and brakes, all packed into a more modern frame.
We expect Bajaj will power the new Chetak with a four-stroke, single-cylinder and air-cooled engine, displacing somewhere in the region of 125-150cc. The new Bajaj powerplant can be expected to offer gearless ease, unlike old Chetak scooters.