MUMBAI : Japanese two-wheeler major Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India (HMSI) plans to invest Rs 1,600 crore in 2017-18 for expanding capacity and developing new products, the company has announced. "The Indian market is going to change when the auto industry will migrate to BS-VI," HMSI's new President and Chief Executive Minoru Kato told reporters here on Thursday.
"The future is challenging but exciting. We are investing in an additional assembly line at our plant in Karnataka and by July 2017 our total capacity will go up to 6.4 million units a year. In 2017-18 our total investment will be Rs 1,600 crore," he said.
HMSI, which sold five million units in 2016-17 -- the most by a Honda subsidiary worldwide -- has set a target to sell six million units this year.
Till the last fiscal, the company had made a cumulative investment of Rs 7,800 crore and set up factories at four locations in the country -- Manesar (Haryana), Tapukara (Rajasthan), Narsapura (Karnataka) and Vithalapur (Gujarat).
Kato also said Honda plans to make India an export hub after BS-VI migration.
"After 2020, after the application of BS-VI, our products in India will be ready to export everywhere. That will make India an export hub. We expect India also to be the next export hub," he said.
The company plans to introduce four new models this year -- two scooters and two motorcycles. HMSI also started the trial assembly of its biggest 1,000 cc superbike the Africa Twin in India, it announced.