Jakarta. Wijaya Karya, a state-controlled construction company and electric motorcycle maker, plans to introduce a cheaper two-wheeler than what the company currently produces, cementing its leading position in the nascent industry.
The company, also known as Wika, today makes electric motorcycles under the Gesits brand, which it claims controls 26 percent of the total market share of all-electric motorcycles in Indonesia.
"We will produce motorbikes that are cheaper than the current ones so that they can be achieved by the general public," Wijaya Karya's president director, Agung Budi Waskito, said on Tuesday.
A Gesits motorcycle is sold at Rp 28.7 million ($1,924) on the road in Jakarta, which is about a tenth of the province's annual per capita income. At that price, Gesits is more expensive than Honda beat, Indonesia's best selling gasoline-fueled scooter.
He said the company produces Gesits electric motorcycles through its subsidiary, Wijaya Karya Industri dan Konstruksi (Wikon). Agung said the electric motorcycle business has a bright future, so the company was committed to continuing its marketing.
"Yes, indeed, Gesits has strength, and I believe that in the future Gesits will have a good future. We have supplied supplies for state-owned enterprise offices and several government offices. We also market or distribute retail throughout Indonesia by cooperating with distributor agents," he said.
Gesits came from a collaboration of a local automotive company Garansindo and the Sepuluh Nopember Institute of Technology (ITS). The two entities joined forces and set up a joint venture called Gesits Technologies Indo (GTI) for motorcycle development.
In 2018, GTI and Wikon formed a joint venture called Wika Industri Manufaktur (Wima) as the principal manufacturer of the electric motorcycle. The joint venture constructed an assembly plant in Bogor, West Java, and started production in 2018.
Last year, Wikon bought out GTI's 10.66 percent shares in Wima for Rp 36.5 billion, taking full control of the company.
Today, electric motorcycles contribute only a tiny part of Indonesia’s motorcycle market. Total electric motorcycle sales in 2021 were only about 12,000 units or just 0.24 percent of last year's motorcycle sales.
The government has set a target to reach one million electric motorcycle sales in 2026, or about one-sixth of the projected market size.
The domestic manufacture of electric motorcycles is currently limited to local companies. The multinationals Honda and Yamaha, which account for 97 percent of Indonesia's motorcycle market, have not yet stepped into the nascent space.
Wikon's competitors include Smoot Motor and Viar Motor Indonesia, both backed by Southeast Asia ride-hailing giant Grab, and Ilectra Motor Group, backed by coal miner Indika Energy and venture capitals Alpha JWC Ventures, Horizon Ventures.