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Polaris may go BMW, Harley way in India

Friday, 28 February 2014 - 9:00am IST | Place: Mumbai | Agency: dna

Maker of iconic Indian Motorycle brand exploring manufacturing possibilities with Eicher Motors

US-based Polaris Industries, which recently launched premium bike brand Indian Motorcycle, is exploring possibilities for making low-cost bikes in India with Eicher Motors, the maker of Royal Enfield bikes.

Polaris already has an equal-stake joint venture for manufacturing personal vehicles with Eicher Motors with a plant based in Jaipur.

"Right now we have decided to go direct with Indian Motorcycle. But in future may be we can consider as one of the options (making bikes in India). In future when we have to do something on the lines of what BMW or Harley or other people have done, at that stage, then may be we can look at that option," said Pankaj Dubey, managing director, Polaris India.

India is emerging as one of the hottest destinations for global bike companies to manufacture low-cost models. The US manufacturer Harley Davidson recently started making its Street 750 bike in India, while some of the premium brands like KTM and BMW Motorrard have formed partnership with Indian bike makers Bajaj Auto and TVS Motors, respectively.

"Its right now too early. We (Polaris and Eicher) are partners and we would see at it comes. We cannot comment whether we are talking or not. But nothing has been done as of now which is worth sharing," he said. The company is currently in the process of establishing the market for its premium bikes, and is looking to set up three dealerships this year. It is also studying the market for introducing its Victory brand of motorcycles.

"India is going to be a big market for Polaris globally. We have established a market in off-roaders, launched motorcycles and have a JV with Eicher. Globally, India is seen as one of the biggest potential markets for us, where we can establish a strong base. Our operations here are in line with what we are globally in India," said Dubey.

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