Automotive News Bulletin September 12, 2019

All the intel from the world of automobiles in a power-packed capsule

13th Sep 2019
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Royal Enfield working on a new Flat Tracker motorcycle

Royal Enfield Continental GT 650


The Chennai based manufacturer is working on a new Flat Tracker motorcycle originating from the Royal Enfield Continental GT 650. A prototype of the motorcycle was seen doing test runs at Leicester Speedway track. This test track is very close to Royal Enfield’s testing facility in the UK. The engineers have given several new upgrades to the Royal Enfield Flat Tracker 650. These include a new monoshock rear suspension and knobby tyres.


Besides that, the Royal Enfield Flat Tracker 650 will get a stiffer chassis which has been worked on by Harris Performance. These are the same folks which have worked on the stock Royal Enfield Continental GT 650’s frame. The exhaust system has been sourced from S&S.


Powering the Royal Enfield Flat Tracker 650 will be the same 648 cc oil-cooled parallel twin mill. In its present tune, the engine produces 47.5 PS of power and 52 Nm of torque. An official unveil is expected to be made sometime next year.


Mahindra ties up with Revv to offer cars via subscription model

Mahindra XUV 500


Mahindra and Mahindra today announced a tie-up with self-drive car rental company, Revv. After Hyundai, Mahindra becomes the 2nd manufacturer to offer its products on lease via Revv. Seven of Mahindra models from their Indian product portfolio will be available via subscription model. This includes products like the Mahindra Scorpio, Mahindra XUV 300, Mahindra Marazzo and even the Mahindra Alturas G4. Prices start from INR 19,720 per month, depending on the model and variant.


Car buyers can now subscribe to a car at zero down payment, no road tax and a fixed amount inclusive of routine maintenance cost. Besides that, buyers will have zero risk on resale value. One can even enjoy the flexibility to change the vehicle model after a minimum subscription period. Also, once the subscription has ended, customers can either return the vehicle or buy it from Mahindra. The subscription time period will range between 1 year to 4 years.


Mahindra’s domestic passenger vehicle volumes in August 2019 dropped by 32% to 13,507 units from 19,758 units in the same month last year. Their commercial vehicles business too dropped by 28% to 14,684 units.


Toyota Fortuner TRD Celebratory Edition launched in India

Toyota Fortuner TRD Celebratory Edition


To commemorate Toyota Fortuner’s 10 years in India, the company has launched a new Celebratory Edition. Priced at INR 33.85 lakhs (ex-showroom, Delhi), the SUV is priced INR 2.5 lakhs more than Fortuner 2.8D 4X2 AT.


Cosmetic changes in the Toyota Fortuner TRD Celebratory Edition include new bumpers, faux skid plate and all-black 18-inch wheels. The exterior has been painted in Pearl White with Attitude Black dual tone roof. Interiors get maroon and black seats with TRD badging. Besides that, the dashboard gets contrasting red stitching.


Powering the Toyota Fortuner TRD Celebratory Edition is a 2.8-litre diesel engine producing 177 PS of power and 450 Nm of torque. The gearbox is a 6-speed sequentially automatic unit which can be controlled using paddle shifters.


Toyota Fortuner was introduced for the first time in India back in 2009. Since then 1.6 lakh Indians have driven home a new Toyota Fortuner.


Kawasaki Ninja 400 gets 2 new colours in India

Kawasaki Ninja 400


The Japanese motorcycle manufacturer Kawasaki has introduced two new colours to the Kawasaki Ninja 400. These include Metallic Spark Black-Lime Green and Lime Green-Ebony (KRT edition). Limited to just 10 units each, the deliveries will begin towards the end of September. The new colours of the Kawasaki Ninja 400 is the same INR 4.99 lakhs (ex-showroom, Delhi).


Kawasaki Ninja 400’s new KRT edition is the same shade which was launched in Japan as a MY2020 model. The powertrain continues to be a 399 cc parallel-twin mill and gets slipper clutch. Coupled to a 6-speed gearbox, the engine can produce 49 PS of power and 38 Nm of torque.


Brakes include a 310 mm petal disc in the front and a 220 mm petal unit in the rear. The bike has a 14-litre fuel tank and has a kerb weight of 173 kg. Unlike the rest of the international market, the Kawasaki Ninja 400 continues to be sold alongside the Ninja 300. The latter has become a major volume grosser for Kawasaki ever since they increased the localisation of the Ninja 300.


TVS Jupiter Grande gains SmartXonnect Bluetooth system

TVS Jupiter Grande SmartXonnect


The TVS Jupiter Grande is now available with a Bluetooth enabled instrumentation console. This system was previously seen in the TVS NTorq. The Jupiter Grande is now India’s first Bluetooth connected 110 cc automatic scooter. The TVS Jupiter Grande SmartXonnect starts at INR 59,990 (ex-showroom, Delhi) which is roughly a premium of a little over INR 250 over the standard Grande Edition.


Colour option is limited only to a single glossy Tech Blue shade. The front fender gets a chrome accent while the seat gets a brown coloured cover. Besides that, the footboard gets a beige shade. The new SmartXonnect system misses out on navigation as seen in the NTorq but gets call alerts. Connecting to your smartphone, the TVS Jupiter Grande SmartXonnect displays call and text notifications, over speeding alert, helmet reminder and auto-reply SMS.


Other features include an LED headlamp and front disc brake. The 109.7 cc engine is unchanged mechanically and produces an identical 8 PS of power and 8.4 Nm of torque.


Bajaj V15 not to be discontinued anytime soon

Bajaj V15


Bajaj Auto has not sold a single unit of the Bajaj V15 since April 2019 in India. However, the senior management is not ready to discontinue the motorcycle. The company did plan to expand the Bajaj V’s portfolio but has so far chosen otherwise. Bajaj V15 was averaging more than 16,000 unit every month in 2016 which dropped to around 2,400 units in 2018.


The Bajaj V15 was a positioned as a commuter motorcycle which allowed Indians a chance to own a motorcycle made with the metal of INS Vikrant, India’s first aircraft carrier. This was possibly the first time a bike was marketed to sell by touching on India’s rising nationalism wave. Powering the bike was a 149 cc DTS-i engine producing 12 PS of power and 13 Nm of torque.

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