Bikers have been told to brace themselves for sharp increases in new motorcycle prices from 2009.
Experts and manufacturers say the cost of producing bikes is soaring thanks to rocketing steel and aluminium prices and higher shipping costs driven by oil prices.
The weakness of the pound against the Euro and a dip in consumer spending following the credit crunch are set to heap even more pressure on manufacturers to raise prices in order to sustain profit levels.
Aprilia UK said there would be “January price increases on most models”.
A Ducati UK spokesman said: "The main selling season has been and gone and obviously the credit crunch is going to now have an impact. Just look at the retail shops announcing drops in sales.” He said the scale of the increases would be revealed after November.
Geoff Selvidge, motorcycles manager for Yamaha UK, said it was "almost inevitable that Yamaha prices will rise in 2009". He said the firm would seek to "minimise the impact as much as possible".
A spokesman for the Retail Motor Industry Federation said prices rises would continue into 2010. “Bikes that are in the market now were built using materials that were bought last year,” he said. “This will probably filter through some time in the next year and the year after that."
To find out how manufacturers may attempt to mask the price hikes, get MCN on sale August 6.