Saturday, May 20, 2017

Motorcycles: MODENAS Finally Enters The Street Bike Segment After A While - BAJAJ Auto are the new partners - Launches PULSAR NS200, RS200 & V15 Models

MODENAS has finally launched some motorcycles that the Malaysian public have been asking from them. Three motorcycles - the MODENAS PULSAR NS200, PULSAR RS200 and the V15 has been launched. These models are bikes from Bajaj Auto of India and they are now on sale here in Malaysia.

Bajaj has a range of motorcycles which are sold across 74 countries.  DRB-HICOM and MODENAS believe that they ahve found a strong and significant partner in them. Basically Bajaj and DRB-HICOM can leverage on each other’s strengths and experience, encompassing vehicle design and development, manufacturing of components and vehicle manufacturing, assembly and importation, to vehicle inspection, distribution, sales and after-sales activities. 

From what I see, it is a good thing. MODENAS needs new product sand Bajaj needs a new market. What better way to go about things and find a common goal. 

In terms of market share in the Malaysian automotive industry (which is the main reason I am now covering some stories about motorcycles), the street bike segment market share has stood at 4% from 2014 to 2016. The highest annual volume in this period was 25,606 units achieved in 2014, from the total industry volume of 541,332 units. According to automotive analysts, this street bike segment is expected to register a positive growth for the next five years with an average annual increase of 5%. It is a growing market.

Since the establishment of MODENAS, twenty years ago, the company have been producing underbone type of motorcycles/mopeds which we call 'kapcai' in Malaysia. Now the kapchai market has actually stagnated in terms of volume. There are more people actually buying larger 150cc to 300cc scooters and full frame motorcycles. 

There have been requests from the market for MODENAS to produce bigger capacity motorcycles such as street bikes. The thing is, MODENAS did produce a cruiser bike, the Jaguh 175 in 1999 and it soldiered on for a few years. Not very nice looking due to its small sized but there was a following. Especially those that wanted a very affordable over 150cc sports bike. Somehow, MODENAS did not come up with a replacement for it or a big cc bike after that. Well, till now that is.

Of course, loyal customers’ cries have been answered in terms of the company coming out with larger capacity street bikes. Malaysians can now get affordably priced street and sports bikes from MODENAS, based on proven Bajaj models (which should be very suitable for our climate due to it being designed to withstand road conditions in India), assembled in the MODENAS factory in Gurun, Kedah. 

I personally believe that this is definitely a positive move for the company. I can see all models being receptive by the motorcycle riding crowd. I predict we will see a lot of the 150cc V15 (above). It comes in at under RM6,000 (with GST). This is very tempting to a lot of motorcyclists that want to graduate into something that looks larger at a very affordable price. It also has that retro street bike look that is in trend now. Actually the V15 is so easy to make into a cafe-racer type of bike. This is will make it a popular one to have in the near future.

The NS200 (above) and RS200 (below) will cater to another niche higher up. The NS200 comes in at under RM9,300 whilst the RS200 comes in at RM11,350. Both prices with GST. Still priced right and with all the look of a naked bike and sports bike that is also popular among the biking crowd. The RS200 also comes with ABS equipped brakes. Which explains the price increase over the NS200. More details of all three bikes in the press release below.

After launching a few scooter models (the Modenas Karisma 125, Elegance 250iand a new underbone motorcycle (the Kriss MR2), MODENAS have now come out with some sports bikes that should allow them to reach their 22% market segment target within a period of 12 months. 

I find it comforting to know that these bikes have been launched, and Bajaj as a collaborative partner makes a whole lot of sense. There could be a quick revival in the fortunes of MODENAS with this. Now let's hope the upcoming PROTON strategic partner search ends up with something that is as strong as this. Fingers crossed!





New products poised to capture 22% market segment share within 12 months

From left: Dato’ Tan Tien Chye (Vice President of Malaysia Motorcycle and Scooter Dealers Association (MMSDA), Dato’ Abdul Harith Abdullah (Chief Operating Officer of Automotive, Distribution and Manufacturing & Engineering, DRB-HICOM), Amirudin Abd Kadir (Chief Executive Officer of MODENAS), Brigadier General (K) Tan Sri Dato' Sri (Dr) Haji Mohd Khamil bin Jamil (Chairman of DRB-HICOM), Rakesh Sharma (President International Business of Bajaj Auto Limited) and Sameer Deshpande (General Manager, International Business of Bajaj Auto Limited)

Kuala Lumpur, 19 May 2017: Motosikal Dan Enjin Nasional (MODENAS) expects

its latest street bikes and cruiser sport offering to increase its overall market share in

the segment by 22 percent in the first year of introducing its latest products.

According to Dato’ Abdul Harith Abdullah, Chief Operating Officer, Automotive

Distribution And Manufacturing & Engineering at DRB-HICOM, the collaboration with

Bajaj Auto Ltd (BAL) is a natural phase for MODENAS as one of the major

motorcycle manufacturer in the region, as the company is well known for their

differentiated product lines which have been backed by an innovative R&D team and

rigorous product testing.

“I am especially happy with this latest collaboration with Bajaj Auto Ltd (BAL) as it

has given us the opportunity to penetrate into a fresh segment which is booming and

continue to grow stronger in years to come. We strongly believe that this

collaboration would be the driving factor that gives MODENAS the edge to achieve

its aspiration”, Abdul Harith added.

MODENAS is confident of replicating the success achieved by the popular PULSAR

NS200 (naked street bike), PULSAR RS200 (race bike) and the V15 (Cruiser Sport)

models here as it has proven acceptance globally, being leaders in their respective

segments across 74 countries spanning Latin America, Middle East and South Asia

This confidence is also backed by the steady demand for street bikes below 250cc,

which enjoys a five percent market share locally since the last three years.

MODENAS currently enjoys a stable motorcycle market share of eight percent from

the MOPED and scooter segment locally.

The collaboration will be initiated in stages including front end distribution and

development of a dedicated assembly hub in MODENAS’ plant in Gurun, Kedah.

These efforts will result in several new launches over the next few years and is

expected to redefine the street motorcycle segment in Malaysia. “Malaysians today

will have three new models to choose from MODENAS, along with the three bikes

we have launched in the past six months”, said Abdul Harith.

The Pulsar NS200 and RS200 are powered by a 199cc, SOHC, 4 valve, liquid

cooled, single cylinder fuel injection, digital triple spark ignition powered engine. Both

are offered with a six-speed gearbox, which boasts peak powers of 23.5 PS and 24.5

PS @ 9500 RPM and Torque is 18.6 NM and 18.3 NM @ 8000 RPM respectively.

PULSAR NS200 has been crafted to reflect an aggressive and muscular look and

feel, and comes in dual toned colours and graphic scheme, whilst the fully faired

PULSAR RS200 on the other hand is highly aerodynamic and meant for stability at

high speeds. It will be the first full-sized motorcycle in Malaysia to have a single-

channel Ánti-Lock-Braking system (ABS) which ensures safety and stability even at

high speeds.

The V15 on the other hand is a 150 CC digital twin-spark powered motorcycle

combining the best elements of neo classical styling, comfort and the right power &

torque to deliver the perfect ride. Peak Power is 12 PS @ 7500 rpm ,Torque: 13

Nm @ 5500 rpm.

Street bike enthusiasts are welcomed to get a feel of these bikes at the DRB-HICOM

Autofest 2017 which will be held from the 19-21 May at the EON Complex in

Glenmarie Shah Alam.


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