THE COLLAPSE OF Norton appears to have been short-lived with a new owner emerging.
India’s TVS Motor has bought the company, pledged to double its workforce and launch more products. The factory does seem set to move from its Donington Hall home to new premises nearby.
TVS is India’s third biggest motorcycle manufacturer and already has close links with BMW, building the BMW 310R and using BMW engines in a TVS badged 300cc road bike.
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Norton was bought out of administration for £16 million soon after the company collapsed. TVS is reportedly set to invest tens of millions of pounds in Norton.
Customers who lost hope of ever seeing bikes they had paid for arrive might yet get their hands on their exotic twins and V4s after all.
Sudarshan Venu, TVS’ joint managing director, said Norton had “tremendous potential”.
He said production at Donington Hall would be restarted to fulfil outstanding customer orders, but that Norton would require a newer, larger factory within six months to begin its expansion plans.
Mr Venu told Indian publication Car and Bike: “The strong design team and assembly team is coming over to us, and we will look to leverage their strength and work with them to deliver more bikes of this storied brand.
“In Europe, the location is in Derby, in Donington Hall. We will move to another new location very soon, in the same region. The idea is to continue with this very talented team to get the brand back to its original glory, and take it into the future.”
John Russell, former boss of Harley Davidson Europe, has been named interim chief executive. Mr Russell was also MD of Manganese Bronze, producer of London’s black cabs from 2007 to 2013.
Classic bikers with long memories will recall Manganese Bronze as the company that owned Norton Villiers in the late 1960s and early 1970s.
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