TVS Motor Company, India’s third largest two-wheeler manufacturer, has had an impressive run during FY2017-18 when it recorded its best sales performance in the motorcycle as well as the scooter segments. The company’s scooter sales breached the million-unit mark for the first time in its history. That said, Autocar Professional forecasts that its domestic motorcycle sales, in all likelihood, will breach the million-unit mark for the first time in the ongoing fiscal – FY2018-19.
TVS Motor Company is now the only two-wheeler major to have posted growth in market share in both motorcycle as well as scooter segments (FY2018), unique considering all other major OEMs have grown market share in one segment and dropped in the other.
The company has recorded total domestic sales of 1,099,135 scooters (up 33.01 percent YoY) and 916,811 motorcycles (18.58 percent YoY) during FY2018, a robust performance that has boosted its market share in both segments. TVS now has a share of 16.36 percent in the scooter segment and 7.27 percent in the motorcycle segment for the last fiscal, as per latest SIAM industry sales data.
It is to be noted that while TVS’ current market share in the domestic motorcycle segment is its highest over the past eight years, its scooter market share isn’t its best during the same period despite impressive sales growth YoY. A look at earlier years' sales data reveals that TVS Motor’s scooter market share in FY2010-11 stood at 21.16 percent.
What does this mean? This clearly underlines the rapid expansion in the scooter market during these years. The scooter boom included entry of new players such as India Yamaha Motor and Piaggio Vehicles India, and portfolio consolidation by existing players (Honda, Hero MotoCorp, Suzuki Motorcycles). Nevertheless, given its growth momentum, TVS Motor appears to be geared up to recover its share in the scooter market while gaining more on the motorcycle front during FY2018-19.
Best months in FY2018
Interestingly, the company’s monthly scooter sales in FY2017-18 crossed the 100,000 unit mark thrice: August (1,09,465 units), September (1,18,174 units) and October 2017 (1,03,020 units). These were the months building up to the festive season of Dhanteras and Diwali.
September turned out to be the best month for the company, which had reported sales of 104,052 motorcycles too. Undoubtedly, the 110cc Jupiter and the premium Apache brand were the top contributors with retail of 93,573 units and 39,526 units to TVS Motor’s scooter and motorcycle sales respectively that month.
Hot and happening Apache 310 RR has given a new surge to TVS motorcycle sales, even as the company expands the Apache range.
Last fiscal saw TVS Motor launch a slew of new products along with updates of the existing models. This included a major boost to its flagship Apache motorcycle brand along with an all-new premium 125cc scooter.
Since December 2017, the company has launched its flagship Apache RR 310 motorcycle, which sits at the top end, and a thoroughly re-engineered Apache RTR 160 4V, along with adding a dual-channel variant and a Race Edition 2.0 to its RTR 200 4V model. The latter also introduced slipper clutch technology on the 200cc motorcycle, a segment first. During the same period, the company had rolled out the updated 110cc Victor commuter model and had launched the premium TVS NTorq 125 scooter.
While the Jupiter continues to be its best-selling scooter, TVS is targeting sales of an additional 200,000 units of its NTorq 125 between February 2018 to January 2019.
Notably, it has also made investments in a Bangalore-based electric two-wheeler and energy infrastructure start-up called Ultraviolette Automotive. TVS Motor has bought 14.78 percent in the same, and this clearly indicates its direction of consolidating efforts on the electrification front. Autocar Professional learns that the company has at least two electric / hybrid two-wheelers in its pipeline.
Flashback: TVS scooters overtook bike sales in FY2014-15
The detailed chart depicted below also indicates how decisive FY2015 was for TVS Motor, which had recorded its best YoY performances in both the scooter (48.79 percent YoY) and motorcycle (15.31 percent YoY) segments. That was also the year when the scooter sales dominated that of the motorcycles for the first time ever. Scooter sales continue to dominate motorcycle retails for the company in the domestic market.
With a sharper focus on technology-oriented and value-for-money products, TVS Motor Company appears to be in a much capable position that ever before to take on the cut-throat competition from its arch rivals in the domestic market.
Stay tuned as we bring you more details on just what the Chennai-based manufacturer, which has embarked on an aggressive growth game-plan, plans to do in FY2019.
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