Hero Electric targets 250 pc hike in sales

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Kochi, May 12 (UNI) Hero Electric, a 100 per cent subsidiary of the Hero Group, today said it would invest Rs 80 crore in its electric vehicles plant at Ludhiana, Punjab, to meet a targeted 250 per cent hike in sales at 70,000 units during 2008-09.

Addressing a press conference here, Hero Electric Managing Director Naveen Munjal said the company had sold 21,000 electric scooters during 2007-08.

The market for electric-powered two-wheelers was growing rapidly and about 70,000 units were estimated to have been sold last year.

The projected sales for this year were about 1,80,000 units, he said.

In view of the sharp hike in oil prices and concerns about environmental pollution, electric vehicles would be in greater demand. Already, certain State Governments had announced a subsidy on the use of electric vehicles, he added.

Hero Electric was also planning to increase its dealer network from the present 150 to 250 by the year-end.

It would also launch four or five new models this year, including two high-speed models with a maximum speed of about 50 to 55 kmph.

Youngsters, women, senior citizens and corporate and government offices were among the targeted market segments.

The company was also planning to export ten per cent of the volume, mainly to Latin America.

The price range of its current best sellers 'Hero Maxi' and 'Hero Ultra' was Rs 28,000 to Rs 30,000, he said.

To a question, Mr Munjal said the company had no plans to manufacture electric cars and would focus on the two-wheeler market.

UNI ARC SJ 1618

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