Piaggio re-enters Indian market with Vespa scooterJanuary 6th, 2012 - 10:00 pm ICT by IANS
New Delhi, Jan 6 (IANS) Italian two-wheeler maker Piaggio Friday showcased the gearless Vespa scooter targeted at a niche segment. It will hit the roads in April and will be available in 35 major cities.
“Our foray into the Indian market activates a whole new segment of style and fashion conscious consumers who are looking for a premium, exclusive lifestyle offering that reflects their personalities and attitudes,” Ravi Chopra, managing director and chairman, Piaggio Vehicles, said, unveiling the product at the Auto Expo here.
“We would like to leverage this sizeable untapped market segment that shows tremendous potential for growth in the coming years.”
Chopra did not divulge the price of the vehicle.
The company plans to produce the scooter at its Baramati (Maharashtra) facility with an initial capacity of 1,50,000 units.
Vespa will also have its own club that will allow two wheeler enthusiasts to be a part of an exclusive fraternity. There are 685 Vespa clubs in the world now.
The company said it will set up an exclusive dealers network in major cities and then span out to other places.
Vespa had a chequered run in the country. It ruled the Indian roads for 20 years in collaboration with the Firodias, but the Indira Gandhi government declined to renew its licence in 1971. The famous Bajaj Chetak was an outcome of that decision.
The company made a re-entry in 1983, this time in collaboration with the Lohias of the LML group but had to leave the shores again in 1999 after a protracted battle with its Indian partner.
Invented in 1946 as the world’s first scooter, Vespa is currently available in more than 100 countries with over 17 million units of sale.
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