Norton 650_1000

The motorcycle market is in a lot of whirlwinds as the economy of every country is hit due to COVID-19.

Contrary to it, there’s Norton saga that started by the end of last year.

While at present, we know Norton Motorcycles is under administration, and there is a hunt for a suitable buyer.


It doesn’t seem as easy as there are various reasons for it.

Kinetic Motoroyale pulls out of Norton bid

We also know that the Kinetic Motoroyale Indian manufacturer has pulled out from the bidding process due to below.

  • After administration took over the Norton it is under £40m in debt. Which itself is not a small amount.
  • Another thing is anyone who buys Norton rights may not be able to get the Norton name or the brand logo. Although Garner did own the trademark, other companies do have licensing deals with Norton. Two of them are Andover Norton, along with its German parent company Norton Motors. Now, these two companies have to use the Norton name and manufacture/market spares worldwide.
  • Norvil and Unity Equipe are two other companies that own the rights of Commando, and Manx Norton. We don’t see names of the Kinetic, India, and Jinling and Zongshen from China about getting any manufacturing rights. So they are off the shelf.

Well, to talk more, Firework International had pushed Natwest for the remaining £600,000. However, they were not able to recover anything.

There were a lot of difficulties in financing and crowdfunding, as Norton was going to go bankrupt.

Let’s see how Indian Manufacturers fare and how they stand 

As per Motorcyclesdata Indias largest motorcycle manufacturers in 2019.

  • The market leader, the Hero, ended sold 6.78 million units in 2019, losing 1.1 million from the previous year record. The arch-rival.
  • Honda sold 4.9 million two-wheelers, dropping 16.7% or 1 million units, while the third.
  • TVS reported 2.82 million sales, down 8.9% after having closed the first half in positive territory.
  • In fourth place, Bajaj Auto, with 2.55 million sales, down 7.8%. In our Database, the KTM models produced in India by Bajaj are not included in these figures but reported separately under the KTM brand (which improved 27%).
  • In fifth place, Suzuki gained two-position establishing the new record with 707.468 sales, up a remarkable 12.5%.
  • Behind, Royal Enfield with 693.000 sales (-18.0%) followed by
  • Yamaha with 659.000 (-16.9%) and 
  • Piaggio with 189.362 (-9.8%).

TVS is going strong and ranks third when it comes to its sales in India.

Is TVS looking to buy the Norton?

  • There is information that TVS and BDO (Norton’s management company) have discussed the possibility of trading.
  • Under debate, TVS has not reached a final decision on whether to formally bid.
  • However, TVS and BDO didn’t comment on it.

Indian Players

  • KTM small displacement: Bajaj production
  • Royal Enfield: Eicher Motors
  • BMW 310R series: TVS production
  • Triumph new model (200-750cc): Bajaj production
  • Buell: Under Hero (although this is a past story)

Indian motorcycle manufacturers are world-renowned.

So maybe Norton might be a good TVS affiliate.

In that case, it does seem that a small displacement with a Norton name and a relative cost-effective model with the essence of Norton will be released in the future.

Source: Bloomberg

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