Superbike owner frustrated by long waiting period for Honda Goldwing

I booked the premium motorcycle in December 2021 by paying an amount of Rs 3 lakh.

BHPian Dippy recently shared this with other enthusiasts.

So it goes like this.

A very dear friend of mine, who is like an elder brother, booked a 2022 Honda Goldwing in December 2021 with an amount of Rs. 3 lakh at Honda Big Wing in Mumbai. Post that there is no sign of any concrete delivery date, nothing at all. Quoting here exactly what my friend has to say:

This is to bring to your kind attention of the complete incompetence of handling your premium customer.

We have booked your premium flagship motorcycle, the Honda Goldwing here at the Mumbai dealership at Honda Big Wing Mumbai.

Kindly note that I already own:

  • 1978 GL1000 Honda Goldwing
  • 2005 1800 Honda Goldwing

Apart from the above I also own:

  • Honda CB1100R 1982
  • Honda VARADERO
  • Honda CB 550
  • Honda CB 750
  • Honda FMX 650
  • Honda CB750 K
  • Honda CB250RS
  • Honda CR85
  • Honda MONKEY

The kind of treatment we have been given is atrocious and awful. I have been chasing the sales team to make the booking done for the said bike since December 2021 and ever since the chase has been ongoing.

Even after paying the booking amount of Rs. 3 Lakhs and the balance amount is kept ready for disbursement, the sales team is not giving concrete dates of delivery of the said bike and now the rains which are due in the next month. That translates to the bike being parked for 4 months even if delivered.

So the 2022 model which shall be delivered to us would ideally be made available to me by the end of the year.

It’s really shameful that for a customer of that stature who is willing to buy a bike worth Rs. 50 lakhs has been deprived by the Honda sales team in India to have a choice of the color, and I have given them an option that I am ready to pay an extra amount for the choice of color which I desire too. They are adamant that all bikes allocated will be black only.

This is so evident that the India sales team for Honda Motorcycles is not treating us Indians with the respect and we are getting discriminated against within our own country by Honda Motorcycles. I, therefore, pledge to make it a point to get to a stage wherein I will make people aware of how Honda Motorcycles is behaving in a market like India where the potential is so high!

I hope that the top management of Honda Motorcycles looks into this said issue and has a prompt response to the pleadings what we customers are going through.

My friend is extremely upset and wonders how Honda can treat a premium customer like this, considering he already owns 2 Goldwings apart from many other rare Honda bikes. If one is paying 50 lakh rupees, surely he can be given a colour choice and be imported for him.

For eg: If I place an order for Ferrari, they give me the option to choose any colour I want and any trim. Considering the Goldwing is the flagship model, why are we in India being discriminated against with choice of colour etc. If someone is willing to pay (my friend is ready to pay extra for the colour too), they should get what they want.

Thoughts? And any advice on what can be done?

Here’s what BHPian karanddd had to say about the matter:

This is only incidental to your question, but I am surprised by the tone of your friend’s email. It’s a strange thing to describe all the other (expensive) bikes he owns or write “customer of that stature willing to buy bike worth Rs. 50 lakhs,” as if he merits special treatment on account of the fact that he’s purchasing an expensive motorcycle. The implication seems to be that it’s fine if Honda treats someone buying a cheaper bike or someone who cannot brag about their garage (i.e. a person of lesser “stature”), but how dare they do that to someone with wealth.

At the end of the day, it seems pointless to plead with Honda or accuse them of “discrimination against Indians,” which is an altogether odd claim. If a manufacturer refuses to offer a certain product or configuration or colour of anything in India – which happens a lot and in every sector – does that make them discriminatory? Also seems pointless to complain about the fact that the bike would be delivered in the rainy season, as if it is Honda’s responsibility that a person won’t ride for 4 months because of rain.

All of this year we’ve had supply chain issues due to Covid and the Russian invasion, and many people are waiting for all sorts of things for many months. If Honda has only allocated black bikes for India, it’s their decision. If you don’t like that decision, you can go elsewhere and buy something else. They are unlikely to change policy or reallocate what they have (especially at a time of shortages) just because some person has Rs. 50 lakhs to spend and a sense of outrage.

Here’s what BHPian Red Liner had to say about the matter:

I can see some amount of entitlement petering into the content of the email above.

Maybe he should consider himself like any other buyer, and take his booking amount back and give it to another manufacturer who will deliver what he wants.

At the end of the day, selling is at the seller’s discretion. Ferrari enters into agreements with its customers essentially banning them from any kind of publicity which could put the brand Ferrari in a bad light. If the customer crosses this line, it doesn’t matter how many Ferraris they own – they are banned from buying any more forever.

Here’s what BHPian VellVector had to say about the matter:

Not sure where your friend has been getting such brilliant service for his extensive list of superbikes before, but with all the big bikes I own, I have come to the conclusion that owning a superbike in India means putting up with more hassles at the dealerships not less. So I’m unclear what “Premium” service your friend has been getting over that of a Honda buyer of “lesser stature” in the past.

Honda is known to have long and rather unpredictable wait times for its large bikes. In fact, when I was looking to buy a Goldwing the dealership in Bangalore categorically told me that they could not guarantee a delivery date and that generally deliveries only happen with the year-end stock towards December. I do not know what your friend was promised but it doesn’t look like his experience is out of the norm.

Coming to the colour, I find it extremely unlikely it has anything to do with discrimination against Indians more likely just uninterested / incompetent management at the company.

Instead of comparing this to a Ferrari, the ideal comparison would be to compare it to the top end car of a mass brand (Eg. The Accord to Honda cars), would you expect them to import a single car from any colour they offer globally? The Goldwing makes up such a decimal point of Honda India’s sales.

Finally, the only way to make a manufacturer behave is if the consumer votes with his wallet. Like I mentioned above I was looking at the Goldwing but settled on a large tourer from another brand that seemed to value me as a customer more. As long as there are people to keep running after their products, the company has no incentive to change.

I definitely sympathise with the situation your friend is in, but without knowing him or more about the situation, he also appears to be a victim of his own entitlement. There are other good options available for a large tourer, I would get my money back and go to someone who appreciates a 50L sale. I would never be able to put up with zero communication or commitments from the seller.

If you could share some more background, when was he promised delivery? Was he offered a colour choice when he made the booking? It would give a more complete picture of the situation.

Here’s what BHPian CrAzY dRiVeR had to say about the matter:

Believe the same is happening with all the premium Honda motorcycles.

Even a more common motorcycle such as the CBR650R (that carries a heavy premium of 12L on-road for a 650!) comes with no delivery expectation provided and a waiting period of a few months, if and when Honda decides to import the next batch. Same story with the Africa Twin.

I would say it is more understandable in the case of a niche import like Goldwing.

Check out BHPian comments for more insights and information.

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