Welcome rebound for motorcycle sales
After a rough 2017, motorcycle sales have shown promising gains in new statistics released by the Motorcycle Industry Association.
Total registrations excluding scooters surged by 12.9% year-on-year to reach a total of 5,006 machines. The biggest gains were made by naked machines (23.3% up), trail/enduro (33.1%) and Touring machines (48.8%).
Last year saw choppy conditions for bike sales and double-digit percentage drops from 2016 after shocks to consumer confidence from the Brexit vote and other factors depressed trade. However, conditions may not have been as tough as they first appeared. The introduction of the Euro 4 regulations on emissions in December 2016 led to a surge in registrations as dealers attempted to get machines that would not otherwise pass the new standards in before the deadline. This led to the market being artificially oversupplied by late 2016 and so caused a distortion in the statistics.
Speaking to Visordown, Neil Richardson of Close Brothers Motor Finance welcomed the news, saying: “January’s figures show promising signs of improvement. We saw a cold and wet winter which tends to have a negative effect on purchase numbers, but the turn of the New Year and Christmas spending money have clearly made the difference.
“As the cost of running a car spirals and public transport prices steadily climb, motorcycles offer an affordable and efficient alternative. I’m looking forward to 2018, and optimistic that spring will bring a boost in consumer confidence and demand.”