Oct 3, 2013

7 TVS Officially Discontinues Flame and Jive models

TVS removes the Flame and Jive models from its website..

So far nobody has noticed but TVS has removed its slow selling Flame and Jive models from it's lineup. TVS might have stopped supplying the models to its dealers some time back but removal from its website officially confirms that TVS has discontinued these two models.


The "Flame" that never started a fire

Guys who were following motorcycle in India in 2007 would remember that the Flame was a very ambitious model from TVS. It was for this model that TVS eventually discontinued it's first independently developed and India's first indigenously developed motorcycle the "Victor".

When photos of the Flame were first made public in Sep 2007, everyone including myself were impressed. The Flame really appeared Hot in the photos.

But TVS made a big gamble by including 2 spark plugs in the single cylinder engine of the Flame. Bajaj apparently had the patents to manufacture engines upto 250 cc with this twin spark setup. TVS therefore took the risk to infringe on Bajaj's twin spark turf.

TVS launched the Flame in Dec 2007 with fanfare but before they could sell the Flame in decent numbers, the court put a stay order on the model following the appeal from Bajaj.

The argument of TVS was that the Flame has had a 3 valve set up which was different from the 2 valve format of Bajaj. Nevertheless with the court verdict taking its sweet time, TVS was in no mood to wait. TVS re-launched the Flame with a single spark plug engine in March 2008.

I never got to ride the Flame with the original two valve set up. But the single spark Flame that I rode was extremely disappointing. The engine was extremely rough, even the styling which was eye catchy to look in the photos, it was not that impressive in the flesh.

Even if TVS eventually got the court's verdict in its favor and was able to launch the Flame with the 2 spark set up, the damage was done. The customer was no longer interested in the Flame. TVS probably took a big gamble by discontinuing with the Victor brand / lineup and banking so heavily solely on the Flame.


The "Jive" did not turn out to be totally effortless

The "Jive" was an effort by TVS at innovating. The Jive was India's first and only motorcycle with a clutchless transmission.

It was probably not very difficult for TVS to transplant the clutchless mechanism from its Step Thru models sold in Indonesia on a motorcycle.

But the customer in India who have been used to clutch found it awkward to ride without one.

This mechanism provided neither the clutchless & gearless convenience of an automatic scooter (since it still had gears to be slotted manually) nor the control of riding a motorcycle with conventional clutch-gears. The Indian customer wasn't too interested to "Jive" to TVS tune and eventually it also turned out to be a damp squib for TVS.

TVS is now trying its best to make a return with the new Phoenix model and there are some murmurs made of the Victor brand coming back. But the only question is, is it a bit too late for TVS?





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7 Comments:

Shaiju B said...

Whether the Victor is going to bring fortunes for TVS is a thing which we should watch and see. I think its not going to make a big positive impact as the brand Victor doesn't equate to any thing (for example Splendor is to mileage). It does had its own problems and eventually it died. The only thing is that its a brand which is known to the customers.

Anonymous said...

what tvs done good thing launching bikes with single spark plug,single spark engine of apaches are more refined thn twin spark of pulsar..longevity factor is good for apaches thn weak body pulsars...

Payeng said...

@Anonymous above,

Can't agree.. the Apache RTR's are very vibey machines.. than any bike in the market. Not saying that they are bad.. but they are full of vibes

Anonymous said...

@payeng agree with you regarding vibes on apache....but longevity apache scores better thn pulsars...

Payeng said...

@Above,

I have been though such comments/arguments for many years now.. and take my advice. It doesn't make any sense.

Just chill and ride

Vivek4mJH said...

Post Suzuki, TVS has always been a reacting company, never coming out with innovations, but merely playing catch up. All their other products have been launched after the segment was created/dominated by another manufacturer & hence have little chance to succeed. The Jive was not a new idea ... Hero Honda had, years before, introduced the Street with a similar clutchless thingy (& it too had flopped).

Their designs too are shameless rip offs of the hottest products in the market (the Victor took cues from the CBZ; the Centra from the Passion; the Apache from the Pulsars; their autos copy Bajaj's RE & their latest Jupiter copies the Activa). So long as Venu continues to shepherd his company down this path, their future doesn't seem too bright.

Anonymous said...

@payeng is taking my claims too personally...

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