Harley-Davidson Goes the Whole Hog, to setup manufacturing plant in India

Harley-Davidson Goes the Whole Hog, to setup manufacturing plant in India

The Four largest motorcycle markets in the world are India, China, Indonesia and Vietnam. In fact in 2002, India ranked top in the world, with an estimated 37 million motorcycles and mopeds.

Indian bikes are built to negotiate tough road conditions, erratic drivers and often unforeseen obstacles, such as the errant stray cow, for whom traffic holds no sway. The Indian biker traditionally has been a commuter, not a sportsman. But as traffic conditions change and rural areas get developed, newer highways and roads are built, and a new breed  has emerged as a sporting enthusiast, seeking faster, stronger machines with brand names to boot.

India already imports motorcycles such as the Suzuki Hayabusa, the Kawasaki Ninja and the Yamaha YZF R1, each of which come with a large price tag and sometimes  a wait time. But now, there may be a solution to that. Harley – Davidson recently announced that they will establish  manufacturing facilities in India. This includes a mother plant which will be the first of its kind for Harley-Davidson, outside of its manufacturing facilities in the US.

As the bikes get churned out, Harley plans to sell them to developing countries, at a more affordable price. So everyone benefits – Harley-Davidson with its cheaper labor, Indians who will have Harleys rolled out to their doorstep, and emerging bike markets, who can afford to buy a cheaper produced bike.

This might also be the answer to Harley’s flagging American sales (Harley dealerships have struggled to stay afloat in the economic downturn, and it’s reported that 36 American dealers closed shop in 2010)

However at a starting price of about $13,000  for the Superlow 883 and about  $14,000 for the Iron 883, I don’t foresee this becoming a bike the average Indian can afford. Harley will still retain its exclusivity and appeal to the rich few.  I will be intrigued to see if the rural rich embrace the Harley for its sturdiness or if remains the domain of the upwardly mobile urbanite, looking to show off their latest toy.

Takeway: There is a market for any product at any price in India. Local manufacturing by Harley will reduce the import duty load. It is not surprising that India is the first company that they chose to build a manufacturing plant. Many peers in other industries have done things in India, that they did not do anywhere else.

Image  from


About Amritt

Who We Are

Small or big, your business will love our financial help and business consultations! We are happy when our clients are too… Actually, this is quite simple to achieve – because each time we help them in sorting out different accounting intricacies or save the day before filing the taxes, they are happy indeed! And so are we.   

We have over Twenty years of experience helping our clients succeed in India
Generic selectors
Exact matches only
Search in title
Search in content
Post Type Selectors
India Business Guide
White Papers
Case Studies
Companies In India