This country does not produce many classical motorcycles, in the usual understanding of these words. There are very few of those ones among them, which the Indians design themselves.
However, foreign motorcycle manufacturers (for example, Japanese, English, Austrian ones) came to this large South-Asian territory with one billion population.
Indian motorcycles brands
Indian motorcycles are of a small cubature, except for the mcies of the make Enfield and something much bigger in storefronts in the city centers. The volume of engines of Indian mcies is usually 150 or maximum 180-200 cubic meters.
In the middle of the 50s of the XXth century, the government of India decided to equip the police and the army with motorcycles. The British Royal Enfield Bullet was singled out for the purpose. It was a solid and hardy item with a one-cylinder upper valve motor. Already in 1957, India mastered the complete production cycle of those mcies. In the late 80s, when the style “retro” came into fashion, the serious expansion of those motorcycles to Europe began. The model with a small diesel engine appeared in the middle of the 90s. The Austrian engineering company AVL modified the traditional 350-cube engine of the “Bullet.” The unit with such an engine is concurrently produced with the old “Bullet” since 1998 under the name of Machismo A350.
Bajaj Auto is another largest Indian producer of motorcycles. The annual volume of its production reaches 4 million units. This brand belongs to the diversified holding company Bajaj Group founded in 1926. In 2014, Bajaj Auto, according to Research & Markets data, took the third place among motorcycle companies and occupied the 97th line of the top-100 biggest companies of the world by the version of Forbes. Some models of Bajaj are created on the base of motorcycles of KTM (Austria) or Kawasaki (Japan).
Modern market of Indian mcies
Now Indian Enfilds find buyers even in England, Germany, the USA and Japan.
In 2015, the manufacturer Bajaj Auto exported 1,5 million motorcycles to 55 countries – it is 62% of the entire export of motorcycles from India.
It is interesting that Indian “retro” often serves as the basis for the work of the European styling companies, which create modifications in the styles “custom vehicle”, “scrambling” and “cafe-racer” on its basis.
The concern Bajaj was founded in 1926. Everything began with the import of European motorcycles, and after the acquisition of a license for production of the own facilities, the concern began to manufacture them on its own. The very first motor scooter model of 150-cube of the volume was produced in 1946, it is still in production and has great popularity in India. Further, there was a gradual and intentional development of the company, which now produces a broad range of different motor-operated facilities. The concern made great progress, and there is a unique style and innovative models in its range.
The company Hero Honda was founded in 1984 from 26% of Honda investment and 26% of investments of partners for the development of the motorcycle market in India. The production began in 1985. Since those times, Hero Honda attained an incredible development level. For example, in 2009, the company sold 4.32 million transport vehicles in India. However, there are rumors about a new contract with Honda, in accordance with which Hero Honda will continue to produce, sell and serve current products. It will only have to change the name of Hero Honda to the new one.
Originally, the make of Royal Enfield is British. In 1954, the motorcycles manufacturing plant on the license of English Firm Royal Enfield was launched in Madras. It produced mcies for the Indian army. Despite the fact that English company Royal Enfield bankrupted long ago, India continues to produce its motorcycles in almost intact form. These “living classicists” are desirably bought even in the picky markets of the US, Western Europe and even of Japan.