The Italian superbike makers Benelli is considering to set up its India Plant in two years and is still in discussion to decide the location. It has already appointed two consultants to decide upon the nitty-gritty of the plan, including the various bikes or scooters which can be made at the proposed unit. The states under consideration are Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Gujarat, Maharashtra, and Noida. However, it has taken a temporary halt as elections are near.
The company requires 50 acres of land for the plant and a localized manufacturing facility would provide Benelli greater control over procurement and parts. Moreover, the bikes, which are currently imported and then assembled in India, can also be tailored to meet Indian conditions. Benelli also plans to set up a research and development facility in the country. It will also export India-made 200 cc bikes from its plant to South East Asia and Africa, and bikes above 250 ccs to Australia and Europe.
Although the company is keen on Indian manufacturing, bikes with higher engine capacity will continue to be imported. With 5,800 Benelli bikes already sold in the country since its inception, Benelli has a target to sell 1,500-2,000 units in 2019, with a selling price of Rs 4.5 lakh on an average, while in 2020, the target is to sell more than 3,500 units at an average price of Rs 3-3.5 lakh. Based on the success of the Imperiale, Benelli has targeted to increase its outlets count in the country to 100 by 2020, from the current 40.