Japanese-motorcycle giant Kawasaki has already begun its post Bajaj era in India with some exciting new launches in the past couple of months well, despite being in the news for the split with Bajaj. The company is hogging the limelight yet again in India, this time the matter is about the local assembly of its engine lineup in India.
There were rumours that the company is set to mull localizing engines of models between the 300cc and 650cc range, which power about 5 of the 15 models on-sale here. The models include the Z250, Ninja 300, Ninja 650, Versys 650, ER-6N and the new Z650, which is said to have up to 40% localisation compared to 25-30% for all other models mentioned here.
Since the denial of Kawasaki’s intention to localize these engines, the company claims that it is benefiting the customers by the affordability and value of the bike, not to mention the respect given to the brand here. These motorcycles come in the form of CKD (Completely Knocked Down) Kits from Thailand and are assembled here in India. These are not applicable to models over 650cc, like the Z800.
Kawasaki is trying hard to revive its sales in India, which at the moment is pretty flat. The move of localisation, which was recently denied by the company, could have given cross-town rivals like the Yamaha YZF-R3 and the Honda CBR 650F a run for their money. Have Kawasaki missed a trick? In my opinion, they certainly might have.
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