Vespa LX 125 to be launched in India - Dancewiththeshadows.com
Vespa is planning to start its third innings in India as the brand’s parent company; Piaggio is in final stages of building scooter manufacturing plant at Baramati in Maharashtra. It will reportedly launch a Vespa LX 125 as its first scooter. But why we call it the third innings?
Vespa in India
The production of Vespa scooters was first licensed by Piaggio to Bajaj Auto in 1960s. Vespa later sold as LML Vespa in partnership (from 1983) with Lohia Machinery Limited (LML) based in Kanpur. The partnership ended in 1999 after a long dispute between LML and Vespa. Hence, now, through Piaggio, the parent company’s strong market presence, Vespa is planning a strong footed third innings this time.
Vespa versus Competition
The automatic-geared scooter segment in the country is currently led by Honda (Activa) and TVS (Scooty). Further, the world’s 4th largest two-wheeler maker, Piaggio, is taking Indian two-wheeler market seriously and will launch its entire Vespa range apart from premium sports motorcycles such as Aprilia (RSV4 Factory) and some of its other brands including Derbi, Gilera and Moto Guzzi.
Piaggio and its plans for Indian market
Piaggio unveiled two of its iconic brand two-wheeler products in India on Thursday. They were the Aprilia RSV4 Factory superbike and Vespa LX 125 scooter. Ravi Chopra, CMD of Piaggio Vehicles India told Times of India, said, “Aprilia will give Piaggio the visibility and branding in the two-wheeler market and help us showcase our technological advancement.” He added that Aprilia will be a niche product and Piaggio plans to sell the bikes through dealerships in cities like Delhi, Mumbai, Pune, Hyderabad, Bangalore and Chennai.
Talking on the upcoming Barmati plant which will have an initial capacity to manufacture 150,000 units of scooter per annum at an investment of 30 million euro, Chopra said that Piaggio is gearing up for Vespa’s launch and plan is to have around 70 dealerships by the end of this year. Piaggio plans to pitch Vespa LX125 as a value-for-money offering into the market.
Interestingly, since customers are price conscious, 100% localization is the key to price the products competitively and Piaggio will do the same with its Vespa LX 125. The company has already tied up component suppliers for this, and the plans are on schedule. Hopefully, the Vespa would come in around the first quarter of next year, according to Chopra.
Piaggio Vehicles Private Limited is a fully-owned subsidiary of Piaggio, Italy. The company has 760 sales points pan-India and besides the investing for manufacturing Vespa scooters, Piaggio is also setting up a facility to manufacture diesel and petrol engines at Baramati at an investment of 60 million euros.
Vespa is a cult brand in European countries. The success of Vespa resulted in the formation of the Vespa World Club in 2006, bringing together 35 international Vespa clubs and 685 Italian Vespa clubs. Currently, Vespa is produced at Piaggio’s plants in Pontedera, Italy; Vinh Phuc, Vietnam and soon at Baramati from 2012 onwards. So far, over 17 million Vespas have been sold worldwide.
Vespa 125cc LX 124 scooter will be Piaggio’s re-entry vehicle into India
Piaggio, who owns the Vespa brand of scooters, is all set to make a comeback to the Indian two-wheeler market as early as 2012.
This was disclosed after the company’s board meeting held in Milan recently. The first Vespa scooter to roll out of the factory will be the Vespa LX 125, which has been specially designed for India keeping into mind the various conditions here.
Piaggio plans to start production of the Vespa LX 125 in India according to Roberto Colaninno, Director, Piaggio & C. S.p.A.
Vespa brand of scooters have always had a special place in the hearts of millions. These scooters are known for their design, grace and simplicity. In fact, it is for Vespa that scooters have become famous around the world.
Piaggio plans to set up a new facility for its range of two-wheelers which would also be supported by Piaggio’s three-wheeler commercial arm in India, Piaggio Vehicles Private Ltd.
The total investment to setup the new plant is said to be in the region of 30 million Euros and would be invested in planned phases in the year 2010 and 2011. The new Piaggio plant would have a production capacity of 1,50,000 units annually and it will be fully operational by the end of 2012 when the LX 125 is launched. According to the plan, Piaggio will plan to sell 1,10,000 scooters by 2015.
India happens to be the second largest two wheeler market in the world after China, and the Indian market has grown nearly 7% in the last five years. This would be surely interesting the Italian two wheeler giant who was earlier in the Indian market along with LML. Piaggio is already in the Indian three wheeler market, and is one of the big players here. Hence that knowledge and experience would surely help in a big way for this re-entry into the Indian two wheeler market.
So far, there is no information on the pricing on the Vespa LX 125 when the company would launch it in India.Source -