June 25: Earlier this year, Harley Davidson had announced that they were looking for a partner in Asia who will help the company develop cheap, entry-level motorcycles. The rumors were that the Asian partner of the company will be Hero MotoCorp. Contrary to the rumors, the motorcycle manufacturer has partnered with the Chinese bike maker Zhejiang Qianjiang Motorcycle.
It is to be noted is that Zhejiang Qianjiang Motorcycle owns Benelli and Geely, the owner of Volvo Cars has sizable stake in Zhejiang Qianjiang Motorcycle.
By the end of 2020, the American- Chinese duo will launch a 338 cc motorcycle. Initially, the bike will be launched in China and later it will hit markets including India, Australia, Japan, Malaysia, Philippines, Vietnam, Thailand and Indonesia.
Details about the upcoming bike were not revealed by the company. There is news that the Harley Davidson 338 cc motorcycle might be christened Harley Davidson Street 350. It will come under the Street 500 and Street 750 in the company line-up.
The engine is likely to be a single cylinder unit generating power in the range of 30 PS and 30 Nm. When it comes to the design, the motorcycle will be similar to the Street 750 and Street 500. The upcoming bike will be manufactured at the company plant in India at Bawal, Haryana. Both Street 750 and Street 500 were manufactured here.
Many Harley Davidson users had advised the company not to market cheaper vehicles but the company is all set to launch its new product at a cheaper price. The company’s latest move is because of low sales and a decrease in profit.
The demand for the company vehicle declined in markets including China, India, Thailand, and Indonesia due to the lack of small/affordable motorcycles in the line-up. Considering the same reason, the company launched the Street 500 and Street 750. The Street duo brought a gradual increase in sales.
The rivals that market smaller capacity motorcycles are increasing. In sales, KTM overgrew Harley Davidson for the first time in 2018.