Young India Is Simply Funtastic
My friend’s son will be turning 20 next month and with every passing day he seems more excited about it. This time of the year, he is overjoyed not just about his birthday though. Besides winning some accolades in academics, he has also been a top performer in both the school and college football team. He also explored his passion for Rock Music and has formed a band that performs at various events around the city. All of which has earned him his parent’s pride who now want to reward him with something very unique.
He was with me last week and narrated an experience that got me nostalgic. About two decades ago, his parents would mostly commute on a two-wheeler to most parts of the city. His father could only afford a scooter back then but ensured that it was snazzy and the neighborhood’s envy. He loved to stand in front while his father would flick around the streets on their prized ride. The scooter accommodated the family and also managed to haul some decent luggage. Over time, the scooter was sold and a car came in. The love for a 2-wheeler lingered in the kid’s heart and ever since he has always dreamt of owning one of his own. I asked him about his birthday wish and how he plans to bring it in. His eyes twinkled with joy and he said “I am old enough to ride a bike, I shall have one too. One that will be FUNTASTIC”.
I am sure he is not the only one in our liberated country that breeds a genre of youth who wants to be free, unique, fun, colorful, vibrant, crazy, playful, dynamic, powerful, independent and everything positive that one can imagine. In the new millennium of Economic India it has been pouring motorcycles and scooters in virtually every street. There is a 2-wheeler for everyone’s budget and the customer is now spoilt for choice. We Indians need something new all the time and sometimes end up feeling restless until that need is settled.
Amongst all the chaos of product updates, new segments, better technology and the ilk, Honda Motorcycles and Scooters India Limited (HMSI) stirred this market frenzy at the recently held Auto Expo with a cross-over product. A product they felt should be new and give additional value to India. The engineers and marketing team must have muttered this a million times over and thus came the name “NAVI” which translates into New Additional Value for India. It is neither a bike nor a scooter, then what is it? , was the question asked by every visitor at the HMSI stall. The team unveiled it as India’s first Moto-Scooter powered by a petrol engine borrowed from their very successful Honda Activa. The plan was simple, Honda wanted to offer something fun and playful for the youth in India. It had to be funky, simple, affordable and extremely reliable like it has been the case for any of the models rolled by the brand in the country and worldwide.
The NAVI looks like nothing else, India has ever seen before. Its design is fresh and out of the box. It certainly carries the looks and has the engine that makes it both “Fun To See” and “Fun To Ride”. Honda has disrupted the two wheeler industry with this revolutionary product that creates a niche for itself. There is so much more to the NAVI than merely a scooter’s heart beneath. Besides the tried and trusted 110cc motor, the NAVI owners will also get multiple options to customize the ride. One can dress up the NAVI with grab rails, tank pads, visor, headlight guard and so much more. All of these in different colors that suits your mood. One can customize the bike the way he wants it to be. As for the model, the fun has only begun. Looks can be further customized to satiate the appetite of a street commuter, an off road enthusiast or even an off road junkie. That virtually gives one the feeling of riding and owning a new bike every day.
The response at the Expo has been overwhelming and can be further substantiated with the fact that the NAVI has already received over 1000 bookings. The bike is kitted with telescopic forks upfront with hydraulic spring load on the rear. This suspension will work well while commuting in the city. The Activa borrowed engine has been known to be frugal with actual mileage figures around 45- 50 kmpl. The NAVI will house a 3.8 liter fuel tank that should see fewer refills given the basic bike weighs around 101 kilograms. The automatic (V-Matic) transmission makes it is a breeze to ride and stopping duties will be managed by 130 mm drum brakes on both wheels. The very cute looking NAVI comes in attractive pastel shades of red, green, orange, white and black. One also gets to choose different themes to complement the shade.
Honda plans to offer the NAVI in 5 metros – Mumbai, Gurgaon, Bangalore, Chennai and Pune. They have also got the pricing right at Rs 39,500 (ex-showroom Delhi). With the NAVI coming in, we must say that Honda has come up with something truly FUNTASTIC indeed.