BMW will use Husqvarna to assault 'emerging' bike markets in Asia and India, according to Financial Times Deutschland.
Quoting BMW Motorrad boss Hendrik von Kuenheim, the newspaper says that the firm is eyeing potential partnerships with existing brands, presumably to give access to local production facilities, cheaper labour and a reduction or elimination of import duties.
By using the Husqvarna brand rather than the BMW name on small-capacity bikes, the firm would avoid the need to make low-priced BMWs. Husqvarna has a history of small-capacity bikes and no existing presence in the Asian market.
A link with a manufacturer from India or Asia would give Husqvarna parity with its Austrian rival, KTM, which is part-owned by India's Bajaj. The newly-launched Bajaj Pulsar 200, for instance, uses the same engine as KTM's Duke 200, and KTMs for the Indian market are made in Bajaj plants.
The western-market implications of the venture in the East will depend well how the project works, but access to cheaper production could encourage the firm to create more entry-level machines, rivalling KTM's Duke 125 and Honda's Thai-made CBR250R.––Paul DucheneBack to News