Can the storied brand reverse course?

Royal Enfield’s sales have declined for the 39th consecutive month in a row. Believe it or not, it’s still not all bad news—but times are certainly not getting any easier for the iconic Indian motorcycle manufacturer. Overall sales might be down, but in two areas, RE has experienced significant growth. 

August 2019 Royal Enfield sales dropped 24 percent year-on-year. For August 2019, the company sold only 52,904 units. This time last year, the company had sold 69,377 units worldwide. Domestic sales also shrank by an even greater amount, 28 percent. Just 48,752 units sold within India in August 2019, compared to the 68,014 sold in August 2018.

Exports, on the other hand, have improved significantly. Royal Enfield saw a 205 percent increase in export sales year-on-year, with 4,152 units sold internationally in August 2019, as compared to 1,363 sold in August 2018.

Breaking down their bikes into those 350cc and under and those over 350cc, we also see some interesting numbers. RE bikes over 350cc saw a sales rise of 124 percent in August 2019, with 8,210 units sold worldwide, as compared to 3,665 global sales in August 2018. Meanwhile, sub-350cc bikes experienced a 32 percent worldwide sales decline, sliding from 65,712 units sold in August 2018 to just 44,694 units sold in August 2019. 

Now, if you’re thinking that the rise in sales of bikes over 350cc must be due to the 650 Twins—you’d be right. In August 2019 alone, Royal Enfield shipped 4,150 of the Interceptor 650 and the Continental GT 650. That’s an increase of 205 percent as compared to the 1,363 units sold in August 2018. 

Can the introduction of those more affordable Bullet 350 variants make a difference? Will sales of the 650 Twins only continue to grow, or will they taper off? Stay tuned for the next update in the ongoing Royal Enfield global sales saga!

Sources: CNBC, Economic Times of India, India Today, NDTV