Piaggio Gets Euro 45mn Loan, Set to Re-Enter India

Thursday 29 July 2010, 00:00 AM by Payal Pathak

The age-old beloved Vespa is all set to re-enter the Indian market for the third time. The Italian auto maker Piaggio has received an affirmation from the World Bank arm IFC for a Euro 45mn loan to help it to expand production of its eco-friendly scooters, motorcycles and LCVs in Vietnam and India. The move will create more jobs and promote more environmentally friendly two-wheelers in the market.

Vespa has been virtually non-existent in the Indian market since past 15 years and this will be the third time that it will enter the Indian market. This time it will be positioned as a premium priced scooter which will be marketed by Piaggio India, a wholly owned subsidiary of Italy’s Piaggio SpA. The company will initially introduce the Vespa LX 125 scooter starting early 2012 at a new greenfield factory in Baramati. “A Vespa is a Vespa, its not a scooter..the Vespa will be designed for the Indian consumers’ tastes, something that offers them iconic value. It is a lifestyle product meant for the elite, for people who like to be distinctly known to possess something unique in nature,” chairman and managing director Piaggio India Ravi Chopra said.

The company is also working on the model so that the gearless scooter suits the average short height of Indian riders. This also means that it will be well-suited for women wearing sarees as their feet will be easily able to touch ground and getting on and off from the scooter will be extremely comfortable.

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