Royal Enfield, the oldest motorcycle brand, plans to produce nine lakh motorcycles annually by 2018. As part of the plan, the company will set up its third plant in Chennai.

"The board at Eicher Motors accorded in-principle approval for additional capacity creation at Royal Enfield. The additional capacity will primarily come from the first phase of Royal Enfield's third manufacturing facility at Vallam Vadagal in Tamil Nadu," the company said in a statement.

"Royal Enfield continues to have a strong demand for its products and has a very strong order book. We are on track to produce 4,50,000 motorcycles by the end of this year," Siddhartha Lal, MD of Eicher Motors, the parent company of Royal Enfield. "By the end of the year, we plan to have 500 dealerships across India in a single unified retail identity," Lal said.

Currently, Royal Enfield has two manufacturing units in Thiruvottiyur and Oragadam near Chennai in Tamil Nadu. The third plant will enable the company to increase production, in line with its plans to make Royal Enfield a global brand.

Royal Enfield strengthened its presence in France and Spain by inaugurating the first exclusive brand stores. The Chennai-based manufacturer entered the Malaysian market and set up a direct sales subsidiary in the US, in August 2015. The company is currently setting up a technical centre at Leicestershire in the UK which will have a pivotal role in future motorcycles from its stable. It recently bought Harris Performance, a motorcycle design and engineering firm based in the UK. The company was behind most of the chassis engineering on the Continental GT.

In addition to this, Royal Enfield roped in Pierre Terblanche, the brain behind the design of some of the beautiful motorcycles of Ducati, Moto Guzzi and Confederate Motors. The first new product after his arrival - Himalayan adventure motorcycle - is getting readied and likely to be launched soon.

Royal Enfield  has been consistently growing in the past few months.  In October 2015, the company sold 44,522 units, registering 71% growth compared to October 2014. The motorcycle maker sold 44,491 units in September 2015, a growth of 59% compared to the same period last year.