Yamaha launches SZ, SZ-X and YBR125 motorcycles

Japanese two-wheeler major Yamaha today said it was planning to enhance India's share in its global sales to 10 per cent in the next 3-4 years, as the company posted a net loss of 216.15 billion (about Rs. 11,678 crore) in 2009 amid declining worldwide demand.

The company notched up global sales of 558.5 lakh units last year but remains a marginal player in the 94 lakh units Indian two-wheeler market. It could gross only 2.2 lakh units in India in 2009, but is now targeting 10 lakh units in the next 3-4 years.

To realise the target, it is planning to invest more money on the launch of new models and expansion of its sales network and as a component of the strategy, India Yamaha the firm's wholly owned Indian arm, launched three commuter segment bikes within the Rs47,000 - Rs. 52,000 (ex-showroom, Delhi) price range.

According to Yamaha Motor Co director and managing executive officer (motorcycle business operations) Yoshiteru Takahashi, last year, the motorcycle market was down worldwide and demand dropped 20-30 per cent, mainly due to the US. He added that Yamaha is now concentrating on the Asian market for growth. He said India is the most important market for the company.

Apart from India, the company's operations in other Asian nations including Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, China and the Philippines, have registered encouraging growth.

Yamaha had posted a net loss of 216.15 billion last year against a net income of 1.85 billion in 2008 with its net sales declining by 450.24 billion from the previous year to 1,153.64 billion in 2009.