Suzuki''s non-geared scooters to commence sales in October

New Delhi: Suzuki Motor Corp''s Indian bike unit will begin selling its first scooter in mid-October.

According to Atul Gupta, vice president, sales and marketing, Suzuki Motorcycle India, automatic scooters have shown growth, whereas motorcycles have shown otherwise in recent times. Reportedly, motorcycle sales in India fell 14.4 per cent to 2.17 million units in the April-August period from a year ago. However, sales of cheaper scooters rose 19 per cent to 435,164 units.

Also, with interest rates going up five times since June last year, rates on auto loans went up by an estimated 300-350 basis points.

Dilip Chenoy, director general at the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers attributed positive scooter sales to new products, lower cost and better financing opportunities.

Honda Motorcyle and Scooter India Pvt Ltd presently dominate the domestic gearless scooter market, which is a subsidiary of Honda Motor Co.

Suzuki plans to infuse Rs1.5 billion into its Indian operations by August 2008, mostly to address expanded capacity and marketing. The company plans to double its dealer network to 290 by next year.