Royal Enfield Starts Production From its New Plant

Royal Enfield started commercial production from its new manufacturing facility at Oragadam, Tamil Nadu, India, this week. Spread over 50 acres, the Oragadam plant starts with a production capacity of 150,000 units in the first phase and will produce the full range of Royal Enfield motorcycles.

Rolling out the first motorcycle from the Oragadam facility, Mr. Siddhartha Lal, MD & CEO, Eicher Motors Ltd. said, “At Royal Enfield we have recorded a major milestone today with this plant at Oragadam becoming operational. Royal Enfield has witnessed a huge surge in demand in the recent past, recording a growth of over 50 percent for each of the last two years. We have been extremely successful in stretching the capacity of our existing 60-year-old plant to record levels—achieving production of over 12,000 motorcycles in the month of March 2013.”

Mr. Siddhartha Lal said the demand for Royal Enfield motorcycles has outpaced supply, which is why the new facility was built. A master plan has been created to take the eventual production to over 500,000 per year. The production target for 2013 is 175,000 motorcycles, with a second phase of expansion increasing the production capacity to 250,000 motorcycles in 2014.

“This new plant has been benchmarked to achieve the highest level of quality and productivity,” he said. “We have re-tooled many of the parts that make up our motorcycles—so that they are of exacting accuracy and finish. The substrate quality of the sheet metal parts, for example, is now at par with the best in the world; when these parts undergo the world-leading CED and paint process here at Oragadam, they will have a surface finish and life of the highest quality.”

The construction at the plant commenced in February 2012 and, with civil work continuing around the clock, it was completed in a record time of 11 months. In addition to increasing capacity, the Oragadam plant has been designed to optimize cost of production through relevant automation while retaining the human craftsmanship that is distinct to the iconic Royal Enfield motorcycles. Towards this, a new CED paint shop with a painting capacity of 600 motorcycles per day has been installed in the plant. Further, to ensure consistency and less waste, a robotic painting system and powdercoating system have also been added. At the same time, processes such as the legendary pinstriping continue to be done by craftsmen who lend that special human touch to each motorcycle. In addition, chassis dynamometers and a 1.4 kilometer test track within the factory premises allows for the motorcycles to be thoroughly tested before they are dispatched for customers.

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