Global bike sales boom

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You might already know that China is the world’s biggest exporter of motorcycles. But which nation has risen to number two? Is Japan still up there? Italy or Germany perhaps? How about fast-rising India?

No – it’s Brazil. The South American nation’s bike industry hit record levels in 2004. Domestic sales hit 911,000, up 7.5% from 2003 – making it the world’s fifth biggest bike market. But exports rose 56% to 157,000 bikes to make the nation the second biggest exporter on the planet – after China.

Yamaha is banking on the global bike market continuing to expand – by 14 per cent by the end of 2007.

The Japanese firm aims to generate an extra 27 per cent in group sales to the end of 07 – racking up £7.5 billion in sales along the way, it revealed in a new three-year business plan.

Bosses are predicting the fastest growing markets will be in Southeast Asia – with a 23 per cent rise to 2007 in Thailand, Indonesia and Vietnam.

Yamaha will launch new models aimed at the region and 223 more dealers in Thailand alone in the next three years. It will double production capacity in the region.

And while UK new bike sales struggled in 2004, U.S. sales were strong. Triumph cashed in with 7500 sales in the U.S. alone in 04 – up 35% on 2003.

Harley says the U.S. boom is partly driven by a surge in women riders. In 1985 it reported just two per cent of its new bikes in the U.S. were sold to women. Now that figure has reached 10 per cent – accounting for 23,000 sales.

The bike industry in the States reckons that reflects the percentage of women now riding.

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MCN Staff

By MCN Staff