Not worried about being late in launching e-scooter: Yamaha India Chairman Leave a comment





will launch its first electric scooter in India “within a few years” and isn’t worried about making a late entry into the country’s growing electric vehicle market, as it wants to ensure quality and safety, said its India Chairman Eishin Chihana.


The number of sold in India in October stood at 111,971 units, or 184.7 per cent more than the October 2021 figure, according to the Federation of Associations (FADA). About 70 per cent of all sold in India are scooters.


“I am pushing my engineers both in Japan and Chennai to launch an electric scooter in India,” Chihana said in an interview with Business Standard. has already launched e-scooters in Japan, Taiwan and Europe.


“I know that more than 40 companies, including established ones, are rushing to introduce new electric two-wheeler models in India. Some of them fail, some are partly successful and some are going to be successful,” Chihana noted.


Some of these companies are getting a head-start, but it is not difficult to catch up, he said.


“Even if we are a bit late, I am not worried because in the end, the consumer in India will choose the most reliable model with good quality. At that time, would be one of the choices,” he added.


So, does he want to ensure quality even if it takes some time? “Yes. Quality and safety,” he replied. The first electric scooter will be launched in India “within a few years”, he added.


Chihana said that the company has not decided if it wants to launch a “motorcycle-type electric vehicle” after launching the e-scooter in India.


The company sells internal combustion engine (ICE)–based such FZS 25 and R15S in the country. These are in the 150-250 CC premium segment. It also sells ICE-based scooters such as Aerox 155 and Rayzr 125, which are in the 125-155 CC premium segment.


Chihana said that during the next 2-3 years, the company will continue to focus on branding and marketing 150 CC-plus engine to the young generation in urban and semi-urban cities.


“In mid to long term, we certainly have a plan to introduce 300 CC, 700 CC and 900 CC . Yamaha already has these models globally, so we plan to bring them to India in accordance with the demand,” Chihana noted.


sold 220,000 scooters in 2021. In comparison, it has been able to sell only 180,000 scooters in 2022. This was largely due to chip shortage.


He said “intentionally” reduced the production of scooter units in 2022 because it has focused on utilising the limited number of semiconductor chips available mainly in motorcycles instead of scooters.


“Our motorcycles are much more profitable than scooters. Also, motorcycles such as R15 and MT15 have more than one month of back orders (waiting period) since the beginning of 2022,” he explained.


When does he think this semiconductor chip shortage issue would be resolved? “I want to know too (laughs). We hope that by the middle of next year it should be resolved.”


In February this year, Iwata-based Co issued its medium-term management plan in which it stated that the company will aim to double the number of premium sport models sold in the Indian market.


Chihana said the firm “is confident” it would be able to double the sales of its premium models between 2021 and 2024.


“I am 100 per cent sure, but it depends on semiconductor supply. If the chip is available, we will be easily able to achieve the target,” he added.


Yamaha India’s unit sales over the years









2018

2019

2020

2021

2022*

Motorcycles

340000

300000

250000

300000

350000

Scooter

360000

280000

260000

220000

180000

Total

700000

580000

510000

520000

530000




*till November 2022

Source: Company





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