Business Case Studies, Managing in Troubled Times Case Study, Japanese Motorcycles, Facing Challenges in China

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Managing in Troubled Times Case Study

Case Title:

Japanese Motorcycles: Facing Challenges in China

Publication Year : 2007

Authors: Supriyo Bose, Kumar Satyaki Ray

Industry: Automobiles

Region:Japan China

Case Code: TRT0064K

Teaching Note: Not Available

Structured Assignment: Not Available

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Despite controlling over 50% of the global market, with a cumulative world production of 38.9 million units in 2005, leading Japanese motorcycle manufacturers like Honda, Yamaha and Suzuki, failed to have a considerable market share in China – the biggest motorcycle market in the world. Local brands in China controlled over two-thirds of the market and foreign brands were continuously outdone on price. The Japanese bike manufacturers also faced stiff competition from pirated bikes, whose designs and manufacturing patterns were identical to the Japanese brands.

The case, while providing an overview of the Chinese motorcycle industry, discusses the broad challenges faced by the Japanese motorcycle manufacturers in China.

Pedagogical Objectives:

  • To discuss about the China’s motor cycle industry
  • To understand the restrictions imposed on Chinese motorcycle market
  • To discuss the challenges faced by Japanese bike manufacturers in the Chinese market
  • To debate on the survival strategy for the Japanese manufacturers in the Chinese market.

Keywords : China's motorcycle industry; Honda; Yamaha; Suzuki; Vehicular restriction; Tariff barriers; Piracy; Modularisation strategy; Managing in Troubled Times Case Study; Open architecture; Joint venture; World Trade Organisation (WTO); Intellectual property rights (IPR)


  • China's Motorcycle Industry: An Overview
  • Roadblocks in China
  • Challenges Faced by Japanese Bike Manufacturers

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