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www.britishdealernews.co.uk British Dealer News

key business information for the UK motorcycle and scooter industry

Key business information for the UK motorcycle and scooter industry • February 2021

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Triumph Dorset Boarded up borders? Tests increase Riding through the plague

CENTENNIAL CELEBRATIONS Crewe Honda and Hatfields of Crowthorne break out the champagne, celebrating 100 years in business. Full reports on pages 12 and 28

New EICMA dates announced Used bike data A new dawn for Fantic Peugeot Vietnam DfT & MCIA data on new registrations

2020

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Contents

Contents February 2021 : Issue 235

contact us

the news

HEAD OF CONTENT Andy Mayo: editorial@dealernews.co.uk tel 01237 422660; 07780 857693

4 6 8 10 12 14 16 18 20 22 24

FINANCIAL EDITOR Roger Willis: motobusiness@icloud.com PRODUCTS EDITOR / DESIGN MANAGER Colin Williams: design@dealernews.co.uk DESIGNER Maurice Knuckey: creative@dealernews.co.uk WRITERS Roger Willis; Adam Bernstein; Dan Sagar; Brian Crichton; Suzanne Potts; Rick Kemp; John Featherstone; Frank Finch; Alan Dowds

Triumph Dorset Riding through the plague Tests and pass rates increase Peugeot Vietnam Hatfields, 101 not out On the move – Covec bolsters its team Events update – EICMA dates announced Obituaries Trade on hold International news – Record result Off-road news – ORO2U optimism

ACCOUNTS MANAGER Mark Mayo: accounts@dealernews.co.uk ADVERTISING Alison Payne: tel 07595 219093 Paul Baggott: tel 07831 863837 adsales@dealernews.co.uk CIRCULATION circulation@dealernews.co.uk TAIWAN AGENCY Albert Yang, Pro Media Co: info@promedia.com; tel +886 4 7264437

12

the business 26 REACTION Off the Cuff

28 CREWE HONDA CENTRE 100th year celebrations

PUBLISHER Colin Mayo: editorial@dealernews.co.uk

30 THE BUSINESS ESSENTIALS Boarded up borders?

British Dealer News, 10 Daddon Court, Clovelly Road Industrial Estate, Bideford, EX39 3FH Copyright © Mayo Media Ltd: All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or part by any electronic or mechanical means without express permission is strictly prohibited. Mayo Media Ltd can accept no responsibility for the veracity of claims made by advertisers. Printed by S&G Print Group.

the knowledge

4

32 A NEW DAWN FOR FANTIC A name from the past with a bright future

copy deadlines

34 MARKETING MATTERS Don’t be selfish

• March Issue 10 Feb 2021

36 PRODUCTS Retail profit opportunities

• April Issue 10 March 2021

46 USED BIKE DATA From Auto Trader and Glass’s Guide 47 ON THE MONEY Roger Willis talks China 49 INTERNATIONAL SHARE PRICES A snapshot of global performance 50 NEW REGISTRATION DATA MCIA statistics, NMDA and BDN report

www.britishdealernews.co.uk

36 FEBRUARY 2021 3


Business news

Big boost for Royal Enfield technicians ROYAL ENFIELD HAS LAUNCHED a new RE Ignite technical portal – a web-based learning management system which provides dealer technicians with essential aftersales tool kits and know-how guides for Royal Enfield’s entire motorcycle model portfolio. This online knowledge shop is designed to increase dealerships’ capabilities to ensure the best service for customers. The portal is loaded with practical information for technicians and has been designed to be simple to access through an easy-to-use format and supportive HD videos. To further encourage technician engagement, RE has just completed an inaugural Europe-wide skills competition across its dealer network. This challenge initially involved testing participants with 50 technical questions. Then the top-five scorers in each country were asked additional questions and undertook online interviews to explore their skills and technical knowledge in more depth. UK victor was Gavin Chatterton of Preston Motorcycles in Lancashire. Adam Larvin of Bike Treads at Swindon in Wiltshire took the runner-up spot.

Triumph replaces Three Cross

T

he southern counties’ Destination Triumph dealer chain is to open a new Destination Triumph Dorset showroom in Stony Lane, Christchurch, filling a hole left in the brand’s network coverage by long-established Triumph representative Three Cross Motorcycles sadly going bust last April. Work is set to start on the new dealership site in January, with opening scheduled for later in the spring. What is described as a “significant investment” will return Destination Triumph, owned by Ian Sexton and Peter Parker, to being a triple solus trick across the region. The group also runs Destination

Triumph Solent at Fareham in Hampshire and Destination Triumph Washington in West

Work is set to start on the new dealership site in January, with opening scheduled for later in the spring Sussex. A third outlet, Destination Triumph Guildford in Surrey, shut down in October as part of a “mutually agreed realignment of

territories with Triumph UK”. The Guildford operation was supposed to transfer to much larger new-build Destination premises at Billingshurst in Sussex. But construction was delayed by the initial Covid lockdown and its status is now unclear. Commenting on this expansion, Sexton said: “We are pleased to announce the latest investment in the new Dorset site. We have a great deal of confidence in the Triumph brand, given our two existing dealerships.” Triumph UK & Ireland general manager Devron Boulton added: “We are hugely excited about the opportunity to bring a first-class Triumph dealer to Dorset and support local customers.”

NMDA urges dealers to follow new lockdown rules

T

he National Motorcycle Dealers Association has issued a statement urging its members to follow the latest lockdown regulations and guidance, and to contact the association if they need assistance or advice. “Throughout 2020 motorcycle dealers showed spectacular resilience, keeping the bulk of their businesses open for servicing, click-and-collect orders and deliveries to customers. We know our sector is understandably weary after many months of setbacks, but with the vaccines now being

4

FEBRUARY 2021

rolled out across the UK, there is daylight at the end of the tunnel”, said Paddy O’Connell, head of the NMDA. Since the 2021 lockdown passed into law on 6 January, the NMDA has been sharing updates with its members reminding them of the restrictions they face around their everyday business. Members also have access to the association’s helpline, giving access to legal, employment and general business advice. There are also a number of papers offering guidance, including information on what business support and grants may be

available during the current lockdown. O’Connell added: “The regulations can be confusing, and you may be missing out on some of the resources currently available to support businesses, both from NMDA as well as from the Government. “If you are unsure of what is and is not permissible in this latest lockdown and what support measures are currently available to you, please contact us.” National Motorcycle Dealers Association Member helpline 01788 538303 patrick.oconnell@rmif.co.uk

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Business news

Riding through TOTAL REGISTRATIONS 2019

During the past year, the UK motorcycle trade has learned how to cope with what could be likened to the nightmare script for some sort of disaster movie. BDN financial editor Roger Willis chronicles its triumph over that adversity

T

he Covid-19 pandemic’s sudden onset meant an unimaginable scale of disruption. Prior to that, in 2020’s first couple of months, the trade had actually been enjoying a modest 2.9% recovery, after the consistently negative final quarter of 2019. And then the new-plate month in March was shaping up very well. By the time a government lockdown edict shuttered showrooms on 23 March, almost 80% of a break-even registrations tally had been reached. But it was natural to assume the worst in these unprecedented circumstances. Most dealers simply locked their premises and went home, initially missing a crafty window of sales opportunity presented by workshops

remaining legally accessible to customers. So April was a commercial catastrophe, with the lowest monthly registrations in living memory. The doughty few who continued trading from behind closed doors managed to shift only 1623 new machines. However, moving into May, the trade began to wise up. The notion of remote selling by phone or online gradually emerged, with deal completion facilitated by either home deliveries or customer collection from service bays. Volume recovered to about half of break-even on a yearly basis. And, when sanitised and social-distanced showrooms were permitted to re-open in June, real growth returned in spades.

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec

5976 +9.5% 4473 +13.4% 16,682 +9.7% 9820 +7.3% 10,871 -0.6% 11,643 -11.0% 9916 +4.3% 6924 -7.4% 12,978 +3.9% 7126 -1.8% 6004 -2.4% 4995 -2.9%

Total 107,408

+1.5%

2020 6146 4607 13,075 1623 5394 13,361 14,070 9087 14,513 8856 5982 7898

+2.8% +3.0% -21.6% -83.5% -50.4% +14.8% +41.9% +31.2% +11.8% +24.3% -0.4% +58.1%

104,612

-2.6%

It has to be said, though, that our industry misjudged the consequences of what ultimately proved to be a short-term collapse in accessibility, rather than underlying demand. Manufacturers therefore slowed or interrupted supply chains to mitigate a potential surfeit of product. Being fair, pandemic problems were conflated by a looming Euro 4 endof-series deadline threat too, where any extended derogation was yet to be negotiated. Nevertheless, subsequent inventory shortages became an issue. It’s arguable that resultant lack of choice tempered the pace of otherwise

SELF-ISOLATION SOCIETY The most extraordinary phenomenon in the past year is how the potentially lethal risk of Covid infection has rejuvenated powered two-wheelers as an attractive mobility solution THE INHERENT LACK OF SOCIALdistancing space on public transport – trains, trams and buses – highlighted the far safer isolation available on small motorcycles, scooters and mopeds for commuters. Initially flagged up to the trade by BDN’s April issue just as the pandemic accelerated, this consummate advantage was subsequently promoted to great effect by an industry-led marketing campaign. Since then, figures speak for themselves.

6

FEBRUARY 2021

For the full year, registrations of scooter-styled machines including mopeds have risen by 10.5% to 28,093. The 51-125cc engine band added 14.8% to 38,897. And budget pricing has been to the fore, with Chinese brand Lexmoto heading the charge in that direction. Lexmoto’s bravery, re-stocking at speed to satisfy demand, has paid off. It’s now firmly on the high-volume map, behind Honda and Yamaha in third spot and growing rapidly, a position unaffected by those 1000-odd underogated bikes the company was forced to plate in December. Swift sell-through in the early months of this year is unlikely to be a problem. While many of the buyers in this booming market will be returnees with dormant

motorcycling qualification on their licences, the most interesting data on CBT course uptake has yet to be revealed. If, in due course, this shows substantial accrual of new riders, we could be looking at a game-changer. Ride-to-work demand hasn’t faltered, as Covid rampages on. And the combination of returnees and new recruits will almost certainly deliver repeat sales going forward.

2020 TOP SIX BRANDS Brand

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.

Honda Yamaha Lexmoto BMW Triumph KTM

Registrations

16,982 10,332 10,222 7664 7052 6626

Change

-19.4% -6.6% +54.5% -17.7% -12.9% +2.5%

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would have grown by 22% – and that prediction rampant progress later in the year. And progress there certainly was. Across the probably stands with the benefit of hindsight. Factoring in unsold but preregistered bikes third quarter, registrations rocketed, 26.3% up against the same period of 2019. October delivered an alleged quarterly 26% gain and the almost reached a similar improvement too. But MCIA’s full-year claim of a mere 2.6% market reduction. Realistically, in many ways, November’s that represents actual slight 0.4% retreat was And progress sales about 6% or more in the most impressive, set arrears. There’s no point against a background there certainly in being pedantic about of another month’s the difference, though. anti-Covid lockdown was. Across the This achievement has still throughout England. third quarter, been astounding, given Having clearly absorbed the challenges. the click-and-collect lesson, registrations There is a firmer dealers shrugged off having their showroom doors rocketed, 26.3% up downside, of course, in as much as profitability locked compulsorily once against the same has shrunk by a again and traded straight period of 2019 painful degree. Annual through this obstacle. registrations in the more Final-quarter numbers were eventually queered by fake news, as a lucrative 126cc-plus arena fell by 13.9% to surge of underogated Euro-4 pregistrations 57,503. Worst afflicted were 651-1000cc intervened during December. How many and over-1000cc bikes in the higher price is open to question. Lexmoto alone was ranges, respectively losing 15.3% and 15.9%. responsible for more than a thousand. Just Impressive growth of 15.9% to 47,109 in before the year’s conclusion, I reckoned the cheaper 0-125cc sector obviously won’t genuine second-half registrations in total compensate for that shortfall.

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2019 Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Total

2182 1805 3815 2742 3273 3329 3306 2774 4101 2666 2403 1478

+15.9% +7.6% +13.0% +1.7% +7.0% -12.7% -2.3% -4.5% -3.1% +1.3% +3.1% -17.9%

33,874

+0.2%

2020 2055 1815 2920 775 2403 4881 5371 3991 4957 3793 2464 3472

-5.8% +0.6% -23.5% -71.7% -26.6% +46.6% +62.5% +43.9% +20.9% +42.3% +2.5% +134.9%

38,897 +14.8%

SCOOTER REGISTRATIONS 2019 Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Total

1734 1470 2854 2236 2367 2252 2286 1898 2943 2183 1837 1394

+23.2% +16.6% +5.1% +14.0% +13.3% -9.9% +2.1% -9.1% +4.3% +7.5% -9.9% -0.2%

25,435

+3.7%

2020 1657 1354 2443 615 1762 3221 3576 2650 3616 2866 1757 2576

-4.2% -7.9% -14.3% -72.4% -25.5% +43.1% +56.6% +39.5% +23.0% +31.3% -4.5% +85.3%

28,093 +10.5%

FEBRUARY 2021 7

Business news

the plague

50-125cc REGISTRATIONS


Business news

Bike broker buys into artificial intelligence

M

anchester-based specialist motorcycle broker Principal Insurance is rolling out realtime speech and text analytics software, powered by artificial intelligence, across all areas of its business operations. The insurer has signed a contract with technology solutions company Avoira for the provision and implementation of Xdroid speech analytics. Principal’s head of distribution Matt Byrne describes the capabilities of this cloud-hosted technology as “game-changing”. “Xdroid can capture, analyse and transcribe every customer communication, flagging keywords and detecting a range of emotions such as displeasure, uncertainty, disappointment or happiness. The software then delivers on-screen prompts which steer advisors to engage in specific actions to take the call to the business’s desired outcome.” The speech analytics can also analyse every call on completion and report the performance of agents and departments. It also monitors adherence to compliance statements, identifying the reason for the call, tracking first call resolution and both the customer and agent experience. Avoira has already tested Xdroid’s capabilities live on Principal’s systems and the technology is now in learning mode in preparation for a live launch in the spring.

Theory tests and pass rate increase L

atest figures released by the Department for Transport and the DVSA highlight an increase in the number of motorcycle theory tests being taken, which could lead to higher demand for practical tests in 2021. Statistics showed a year-onyear increase in motorcycle theory tests of 38.6% compared to the same period in 2019. A total of 28,595 tests were conducted in Great Britain with a pass rate of 76%, up almost 5% year-on-year. In contrast, there was a decline in the number of PTW practical

tests taken between July and September 2019/20. Module 1 tests were down 22.3%, while Module 2 tests reduced 31.7% over the same period. The statistics cover the challenging period after the first lockdown, where there was economic uncertainty for many consumers. Unfortunately, with the imposition of lockdown 2 in November, training and practical testing had to stop again. Paddy O’Connell, head of the NMDA, said: “The statistics do send a message of good news for

dealers, indicating a potential growth in the market as we look forward to 2021. “It is interesting to see that the pass rate for Module 1 and 2 tests increased by 4.9% and 4.7% respectively. This could be an indication of car drivers, with existing road awareness, turning to PTWs to remain ‘Covid safe’ on their commutes. “The NMDA continues to prom ote its Covid Safe To Ride campaign to encourage the use of motorcycles as an ideal alternative to public transport.”

Dealer expansion backed by DF Capital DF CAPITAL HAS HELPED DUCATI MANCHESTER Group (DMG) acquire Ducati and Triumph stores in Glasgow. Over the past 20 years, Ducati Manchester has gone from strength to strength, opening further showrooms located in Preston, Stoke and Worcester. And now it has a presence in Scotland. DF Capital has provided DMG with an inventory finance facility since 2017. And, to coincide with the Glasgow acquisitions, that facility has been increased to support expansion of the business. Commenting on this relationship, DMG head Chris Booth said: “I used to work with another lender but it wasn’t willing to support my growth ambitions. Then I

was introduced to Andy Stafferton and Paul Evans from DF Capital, who were a breath of fresh air. They saw the potential and came up with a number of great solutions to help me expand and grow DMG’s footprint. Without the DF Capital team, I would never have been able to achieve this level of success.” Stafferton, chief commercial officer and co-founder of DF Capital, added: “It’s a pleasure working with Chris. He has such drive and a razor-sharp focus that enables him to identify opportunities and act on the ones most likely to succeed. Our partnership with him is very much a two-way street. He’s also helped us to grow, by championing us to other distributors and dealers.”

Maxxis signs up to Parts Europe

M

axxis will join the Parts Europe portfolio of ATV and motorcycle tyre brands. The brand is a global leader in the ATV and quad sport market with a 70% share of OE supply, and it is also an OE provider to KTM and

Husqvarna in the motocross and enduro segment, as well as OE choice for KTM’s 790 Duke road bike. Parts Europe sales manager Xavier Williart said: “Thanks to the ultra-modern logistics centre at our headquarters in Wasserliesch,

dealers can profit from high stock availability and fast delivery. More and more dealers see Parts Europe as a reliable partner which supports them in running their own business model in a successful way.” www.partseurope.eu

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Business news

Peugeot starts in Vietnam

A

new joint venture by formerly French scooter brand Peugeot, now owned by Indian automotive giant Mahindra, has been established in Vietnam. Well-known UK industry veteran Mark Franklin, who has been acting as a consultant to Peugeot in South-East Asia, reports for BDN. It’s taken two years and the unwelcome intervention of Covid-19 causing some serious challenges. But finally the Peugeot partnership with Vietnam’s second-largest industrial enterprise, Thaco Group, has come to fruition with the completion and launch of its new factory in Chu Lai.

Thaco, which currently builds cars, coaches and specialist vehicles for Kia, Mazda, Mercedes and other automotive brands, has now started production of Peugeot Django scooters. These will be supplied to the 23 Vietnamese domestic outlets Peugeot has ready for the launch, before embarking on national and regional expansion in 2021. The next step will be to use tariff rules that apply to manufacturing in the ASEAN free trade area, of which Vietnam is a member. This will give Peugeot a greater strategic export footprint in markets such as Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia. It will be able to enter

the premium Taiwan scooter market as well. Commenting on his own involvement, Franklin added: “It’s another successfully completed project over the line for me. I’ll hand the baton to a new regional director for Peugeot, whose appointment we will announce shortly. And I will stay on in an advisory role in the short term, to ensure smooth implementation as Peugeot products reach across South-East Asia for the first time.”

Say hello to Zeeho

C

hinese motorcycle manufacturer CFMoto’s separately branded electric vehicle division Zeeho has launched a debut concept model. The 10kW Zeeho Cyber Concept scooter was unveiled by CFMoto chief executive Lai Minjie and features acceleration to 30mph in less than three seconds, top speed of about 70mph and a range of more than 80 miles.  It is fitted with Pirelli tyres, Brembo brakes and Bosch-powered stability control, which is managed via Zeeho’s own Just Ride system with a choice of Eco, Street and Sport modes.

The battery management system, developed in-house, has a 2500-cycle lifespan, or eight years and up to 180,000 miles, combined with an operating temperature range of -20C to 55C. Range anxiety is resolved with fast-charging that allows for 80% to be recharged in half an hour. Commenting on the launch, CFMoto UK managing director Freddie Hinkley said: “The new Zeeho brand and Cyber Concept scooter reflect the exciting future ambitions for CFMoto. We expect to see this develop into models that will be available in the UK in the near future.” www.cfmoto.co.uk

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Business news

SHORT CUTS PYRAMID PLASTICS

UK BODYWORK SPECIALIST, PYRAMID PLASTICS, has partnered with GBRacing to include an extensive range of chainguards, crash protection, dash protectors, engine covers, fork protectors, lever guards and swing arm protectors. www.pyramid-plastics.co.uk

Hatfields 101 n

BENNETTS

BENNETTS IS GIVING AWAY 90 FREE Compulsory Basic Training (CBT) courses as part of its new Ride Free campaign to support new riders interested in getting their motorcycle licence. Celebrating its 90th anniversary year in 2020, Bennetts has launched a dedicated online portal where the free CBT places can be applied for, as well as it being a place to access useful advice. The Bennetts Ride Free initiative is part of a proactive move from Bennetts to enable and encourage more people to experience the benefits two wheels can offer. Ride Free is supported by Bennetts Rewards and access to Bennetts Rewards is free for all riders who purchase insurance directly with Bennetts or also available as a paid for 12-month membership. www.bennetts.co.uk/RideFree

GBRACING

BARNET FIRM GBRACING HAS BEEN AWARDED A new Quality Product Label by the Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme (FIM), international motorcycle sport’s governing body, for its crankcase protection engine covers. This new standard replaces an earlier FIM approval scheme with which GBRacing crankcase protection has complied for the past 11 years. The award follows constant product development working alongside teams in World Superbike, Moto2 and World Endurance racing. Commenting on the accolade, GBRacing founder and MD Graham Banks said: “This is a great reward for the team, who put in so much hard work behind the scenes. It is a great honour to continue our long association with the FIM.”

MCE INSURANCE

INTERNATIONAL LAW FIRM DAC Beachcroft has been appointed by MCE Insurance to manage its £40m claims portfolio. As sole claims advisor, DACB will handle all of MCE’s credit hire, fraud and catastrophic injury claims across the UK and Republic of Ireland. Julian Edwards, chief executive officer at MCE, commented, “We are delighted to be working with DACB, and are committed to building a dynamic and sustainable partnership for the long term. DACB’s expert knowledge and experience of defending injury claims made it a clear choice to become our legal advisor on claims. Our teams have now completed a successful integration and DACB is working with a delegated authority. This is a true testament to all involved.”

12

FEBRUARY 2021

A

fter the remarkable recovery of two-wheel sales in the months since the first lockdown, there now seems to be a host of circumstances clouding the horizon. Ongoing Coronavirus restrictions, lack of desirable stock, too much “difficult” stock, Euro 5 complications, Brexit uncertainty and the general winter gloom are all taking their toll on the enthusiasm of both retailers and customers. In amongst all this, however, there are glimmers of hope and optimism, such as the continued success of the longstanding Honda family business of Hatfields of Crowthorne, in Berkshire. It was 101 years ago, in November 1919, when Hatfields of Crowthorne officially opened. The founder of the company, H G Davis, who was the current owner’s great grandfather, actually began trading as a motor engineer in 1900. However, it was another 19 years before he relocated to the current premises in Crowthorne High Street. Initially the main activity of the business was car, motorcycle and cycle repairs, along with a car rental service and a petrol pump. In the years following World War One, the business diversified into selling fishing tackle and field sports accessories. Then, as Mr Davis was a keen cyclist, it wasn’t long before a range of bicycles were offered to the people of Crowthorne. Tom Hatfield joined his father-in-law’s business in the 1930s and, as he and his wife Phylis were keen motorcyclists, more emphasis was placed on the sale of these. Tom’s son, Keith Hatfield, joined the family business in the early 1960s and it was at this time that the first Honda motorcycles were sold well before Honda UK even existed! Over the next 20 years, other brands sold by Hatfield included Yamaha, Mobylette, CZ, and NVT. In the 1980s, a decision was made

Keith and Phylis Hatfield

to concentrate on the Honda brand and Hatfields became a dedicated solus dealer. Keith was keen that the fourth generation should be given the opportunity to pursue pathways outside of the family business, so son Martin (one of the current owners) was encouraged to study for a university degree and travel the world. Eventually, circumstances dictated a return for Martin to Hatfields, “just to help out” and, thirty years later, he’s still there. A few years later he was joined by his sister Fiona, and the pair now work together looking after the day-to-day running of the business. The success of Hatfields is the result of a combination of various factors, including the hard work and dedication of the owners and employees, an unrivalled reputation and desirable products. The experienced team at Hatfields have a wealth of knowledge, not only within the Honda brand and its processes, but of motorcycles in general. In fact, they have all spent the majority of their working lives around motorcycles. Add this knowledge to a desire to keep customers happy and you have a recipe for success. “The ongoing effects of the

Martin Hatfield

pandemic have altered the way we have traded over the last year and will no doubt influence our future decisions”, said Martin Hatfield. “There has been a distinct change in customer behaviour during the last year, with less footfall and more deals being completed without customers even visiting the shop. I now feel that having a great website and a strong online presence is just as important as an impressive showroom. The majority of customers research online before making a purchase decision and only tend to visit the store to finalise a deal, or collect their new bike.” Asked what he enjoys about the industry Martin replied; “It’s really important to remember that

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Business news

1 not out! the excitement and enjoyment of riding is at the heart of our business. There are so many great bikes out there, from run of the mill scooters, to top end sports bikes. We need to convey this enthusiasm to our customers and encourage more people to get onto two wheels. Not only will this help to reduce congestion on the roads, it will also improve the riders’ mental well-being”.

and a declining number of “traditional” customers. A new core of potential motorcyclists will need to be targeted by offering exciting products that embrace new technologies and new modes of personal transportation. The fifth generation of the family are waiting in the wings for their opportunity to make their mark in a trade that is due to undergo a significant transformation.

Company founder, H G Davis

There has been a distinct change in customer behaviour during the last year, with less footfall and more deals being completed without customers even visiting the shop Another side of the industry that Martin values is the professional and personal relationship with other dealers.” I am always astounded by the camaraderie of the dealer network. If you’re having a bad day you can always call another dealer for a chat and soon realise that we all share the same challenges.” Martin concludes: “Over the next decade, in order to grow our business, we will need to diversify due to changing customer demand

My hopes are for a future motorcycle industry that embraces alternative two-wheel technology, freedom and individuality and to work alongside dealerships that have core values of congeniality and honesty. We look forward to the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead and we are confident that with our business acumen, passion for the industry, and our wealth of experience, the continued success of Hatfields of Crowthorne is assured.”

www.britishdealernews.co.uk

FEBRUARY 2021 13


Business news

Bristol dealer closes down

M

ulti-franchise dealership Avon Motorcycles of Brislington in Bristol was obliged to cease trading in early December last year. The business represented a host of brands – Brixton, FB Mondial, Herald, Keeway, Lexmoto, Lifan, Peugeot, Rieju, Super Soco, SYM and UM. Avon Motorcycles proprietor Alan Skinner called in insolvency practitioner Parnells and a voluntary winding-up decision was taken on 13 January. Lisa Alford and Chris

Parkman from Parnells were appointed as joint liquidators on the same date, charged with consigning the operation to history. Documents since lodged with Companies House by the liquidators show an estimated realisation of assets available to creditors amounting to £62,499. Preferential creditors will account for £18,211 of that. An estimated surplus of £44,288 remains for unsecured creditors, who are owed £371,449. The shortfall in recoverable funds equates to £327,161.

Covec bolsters team ERIC AND KAREN MACFARLANE HAVE JOINED COVEC, UK BRAND owners of Bull-it jeans. Eric joins in the role of international sales manager and Karen as USA country manager. Covec director Keith Bloxsome welcomed the husband and wife team on board by saying; “Having worked with Eric and Karen for 18 years in various capacities, I knew they would be a perfect fit for the Bull-it brand, capitalising on their US relationships and knowledge. Both Eric and Karen have worked tirelessly to create supply channels to bricks and mortar dealers and the faster growing online sector in the US since 2012.” Both will have international responsibilities outside the already strong Bull-it global network. eric@covec.co.uk; karen@covec.co.uk

Unsecured trade creditors include MotoGB, MotoMondo and Oxford Products. HSBC Bank will take the biggest haircut.

Susie commits to MCA

S

usie Ellison is joining husband Dean Ellison in a full-time role running their MCA clothing and accessories Leicester store and online business. Many dealers will already know Susie through her work at McAMS over the last six years. Ellison felt the time was right to go ‘allin’ with MCA: “It’s always been my goal to be more involved with our own business, but that’s impossible with a full-time job, so although we’re in uncertain times, we have never been more certain that now is Susie and Dean Ellison the right time to go for it!”

Interim leadership in place at Polaris

J

ust ten days before outgoing Polaris supremo Scott Wine was due to step down from his chief executive and chairman roles at the US off-road vehicle and motorcycle manufacturer, the company’s board of directors drafted in temporary replacements from within its own ranks. While the search for Wine’s permanent successor continues,

FROM ONLY

14

current Polaris chief financial officer Michael Speetzen took over as interim chief executive on 1 January 2021, with lead independent director John Wiehoff becoming non-executive chairman at the same time. Polaris senior vice-president of corporate development and strategy Bob Mack, who is also presides over two of its divisions, has been

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appointed as interim chief financial officer to cover Speetzen’s desk. “We appreciate Mike and Bob taking on these expanded roles while we progress our CEO search,” said Wiehoff. “They have made significant contributions to our success during their respective tenures. We are confident that they will enable a seamless transition during this interim period.”

Polaris chief financial officer Michael Speetzen

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Business news

SHORT CUTS MORTONS MEDIA

EVENTS ORGANISER MORTONS MEDIA HAS announced new dates for two of its biggest shows in a bid to beat Covid-19 restrictions. Given the uncertainty over the immediate future of events with indoor content, Mortons says it believes the best way to ensure that its events can go ahead is to run them later in the year. The Bristol Classic Bike Show, traditionally held in February at the Royal Bath & West Showground in Somerset, now has a new summer date for 2021 and will be held at the same venue on 24/25 July. Another usually-February held show, the Classic Dirt Bike Show at Telford, will switch weekends to 15 and 16 May. For information see www.bristolclassicbikeshow.com and www.classicdirtbikeshow.co.uk

MCN SHOW

BAUER MEDIA HAS CONFIRMED THAT THE 2021 MCN London Motorcycle Show will not be taking place. Despite the efforts of the show team to find alternative ways to run the event successfully and safely, the latest government guidelines and lockdown regulations have proved impossible to circumnavigate. Tickets sold for the 2021 event will be honoured for the planned 2022 event (dates yet to be confirmed) or will be refunded. www.mcnmotorcycleshow.com

New EICMA 2021 dates announced

A

gainst all odds, Italian bike industry association ANCMA says its annual EICMA trade fair at the Fiera Milano exhibition venue will go ahead this autumn, now rescheduled for 23-28 November. The first two days will be exclusive to trade professionals and press only. Originally planned for 9-14 November, the event has been postponed to these later dates

“due to requirements linked to harmonising the calendar of the trade fairs programmed in the exhibition grounds”, according to ANCMA chairman and EICMA chief executive Paolo Magri. In theory, this will cause a direct rostering clash with the UK’s Motorcycle Live show at the NEC in Birmingham, currently set for 20-28 November. But, given there is currently no real end in sight for the Covid-19 pandemic,

whether either event will actually happen has to be questionable. Commenting on this decision and claiming enthusiastic support from exhibitors, Magri said: “In light of the strong interest we have already received, EICMA 2021 acquires a great symbolic value of confidence for the twowheel sector, for the mobility industry, for our general public and for the trade fair system with all its satellite activities.”

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Business news

OBITUARIES

Bryan ‘Badger’ Goss

Ernie Merryweather

1940-2021

1934-2020

Badger Goss on the microphone at the 2020 Telford Off-road Show where he was guest of honour

L

eading off-road dealer, Maico importer, and 1970 British MX champion Bryan ‘Badger’ Goss died at Yeovil Hospital, Somerset, on 7 January aged 80. Born in Dorset, Goss took up grass track in 1957 aged 16, moving to motocross in 1959. His talent and determination soon led to works rides with Cotton and Greeves. He became a household name in the days when motocross was a major sport, with regular TV coverage and crowds of 100,000 at some world rounds. In 1966 on a private 250 Husqvarna he won both legs of the leading international Trophee de Nations event at Brands Hatch. His inspired riding that day passed into legend. Capitalising on his fame in 1964 he opened a motocross business in Yeovil, Somerset. In 1971 he secured the German Maico importership. From 1979 to 1982 he annually sold more than 1000 bikes. Sales turnover was £2.5m for each of those four years.  Eight years ago he retired from running Goss MX full-time, but attended every day helping son Jeff, daughter Debbie, and Jeff’s wife Sophie. The family business specialises in off-road clothing, MX parts and accessories.  Badger Goss leaves a deep imprint in the history of motocross and UK off-road business. In 2024 Goss MX will celebrate 60 years and is possibly the country’s longest running MX business.

Joël Robert

O

18 FEBRUARY 2021

Ernie Merryweather at Northants Classic Bikes, Rushden, in 2014

but remained as a consultant, attending two days a week at Rushden, Northamptonshire, where new owner, Steve Hasler, time served in the motorcycle trade, set up shop. Ernie Merryweather’s calm, down-to-earth manner and deep knowledge of British classics gave buyers confidence and anchored a business that has proved enduring. He died in December aged 86 and was riding his beloved 500 AJS twin until going into hospital following a heart attack.

Peter Williams 1939-2020

F

1943-2021 ne of the most supremely talented riders motocross has ever seen, Belgian Joël Robert, died on 13 January in hospital at Charleroi, Belgium, following a heart attack and coronavirus. He was 77. He became the sport’s youngest World Champion, winning the 250cc title aged 21 in 1964 on a private CZ. He won the 250 world crown five more times (19681972) on works CZs and Suzuki’s. He gave Suzuki its first MX world title in 1970 (250), his first year with them. He won 50 GPs, a record not eclipsed until 2004. In 1971 he was the most crowned champion so far in the sport. A flamboyant rider, he would occasionally come to a halt in the middle of a race because he was so far ahead. He enjoyed playing with the opposition and

E

rnie Merryweather created what remains one of the country’s longest running classic bike dealerships – Northants Classic Bikes (NCB) – which is due to celebrate its 40th anniversary next year. A car dealer and workshop repair specialist based in Irthlingborough, Northamptonshire, Ernie added classic bike retail in 1982. A former road racer with a deep love of British classics he could see the nostalgia wave sweeping the country. In 1987 he moved to bigger premises, letting the car side erode to concentrate on bikes. A leading member of the AJSMatchless Owners Club he took on the club’s spares scheme in 1989. When AMOC opened large industrial estate premises in Kettering, Northamptonshire, in 2000, Ernie agreed to run NCB and the spares scheme there. In 2002, aged 68, he cut down on responsibilities by handing spares over to the club. Two years later he sold NCB to look after his ailing wife,

playing to the crowd. Following retirement he ran his father’s motocross shop in Chatelet and stayed close to offroad sport becoming Belgium’s MX des Nations team manager and helping young riders. Deteriorating health including diabetes resulted in a foot being amputated in 2018. He also suffered lung and heart problems.  In 2020 he was named FIM MX legend and is regarded as the Godfather of motocross in Belgium and will probably be remembered as the most colourful rider the sport has ever known.

ormer Southampton Kawasaki dealer (19761982) and Norton Villiers development engineer and works rider (1969-1974) Peter Williams died in a Shepton Mallet, Somerset, nursing home in December aged 81, leaving wife Pam, son Jack and daughter Mimi. The finest post-war UK combination of riding skills and engineering talent, Peter won a Grand Prix (1971 350 Ulster – MZ) and an Isle of Man TT (1973 F750 – Norton), the TT win on the radical monocoque Norton he designed. In 1969 he had been the first to design and use cast wheels in road racing For Norton he worked on the development of the successful Norton Commando race models but a serious crash in 1974 ended his race career. Norton made him redundant in 1975 so he tried his hand as a dealer starting in 1976. But business was never his forte, so after his Kawasaki dealer years

An engaging personality with good manners, schoolboy swot looks and an ever-active mind, Peter Williams in 2010

he went back into employment working for Cosworth, Perkins Diesels and Lotus. He designed a ‘shell’ motorcycle chassis in conjunction with Kingston University for the 2010 Isle of Man electric TT. He failed to get backing to develop the design commercially but was backed to produce replicas of his 1973 monocoque Norton. Starting in 2014 five of the £65,000 replicas were built. Peter had hoped for a planned run of 25 examples.

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Business news

Trade on hold

W

ith the ending of the post-Brexit transitional period and a lastminute trade agreement, the hope was that apart from minor irritants UK-EU trade would generally run smoothly. The reality is somewhat different as a number of firms have found out; and some have stopped trading with the EU entirely. John Lewis, according to the BBC, has permanently stopped overseas deliveries. Up until the end of December, it was offering to serve EU customers. The company claims that Brexit had no bearing on the move; instead, it wanted to concentrate on its UK market. But as the BBC report also notes, upmarket food emporium Fortnum & Mason is no longer selling to Northern Ireland or the EU, and fashion retailer ASOS isn’t serving France, Germany and Italy either for the moment. The reasons for the changing landscape are down to a number of factors. First, many firms are choosing to not ship across borders, preferring instead to wait for new cross-border processes to bed in. In December of last year, Honda suspended production of cars for a few days because of parts shortages following port disruption. At the start of January, the company put in place a second suspension because of more “transportrelated parts delays”. To be fair, though, coronavirus restrictions aren’t helping. It’s entirely possible that some firms are

being overly cautious here though. According to a report on Reuters, there has been no congestion at Dover or Calais, “and goods seem to be moving smoothly, officials and trucking operators said.” But there is another cause for trouble – pure bureaucracy. The point is well illustrated in EU countries, where a Marks & Spencer branch in Paris found itself running short of ready meals

The British Retail Consortium reckons that more than 50 large British retailers have been caught out by this rule as were the company’s stores in Ireland. In this instance post-Brexit trade rules disrupted deliveries because of red-tape, tariffs and what is termed “rules of origin” that affects goods made primarily outside of the UK and the EU, China being a perfect example, which are then resold by British firms to customers in the EU. The British Retail Consortium reckons that more than 50 large British retailers have been caught out by this rule. And to pour salt on the wound, a bicycle saddle maker based in the Midlands, Brooks,

has stopped all orders to UK customers because, and this illustrates how peculiar some supply chains are, its finished products are sent to a distribution centre in Italy before being sent to customers around the world, including the UK. While the trade agreement signed by the UK and EU appeared to deal with most issues that could arise, it’s the fine print that is causing mayhem. There are, for example, varying limits on the percentage of a product that can come from outside the EU but still qualify as a non-tariff product under the free trade agreement. And there are also rules around “transformation” which covers what is required to turn something that contains, for example, three products from countries outside the free trade area into one UK product. The process is also throwing up a number of issues relating to VAT and import duties and customs documentation. Parcel delivery firm DPD has paused its European Road Service due to the “increased burden” of customs paperwork for packages heading to the EU, including the Republic of Ireland. It said that 20% of parcels had “incorrect or incomplete data attached”, which meant they had to be returned. The net effect of the changes is that firms with much of their supply chain outside of the EU will have had their competitiveness, in the short term at least, restricted.

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www.britishdealernews.co.uk EBC Brakes 13/01/2021 12:59


,

12:59


International news

International news with Roger Willis, BDN Financial Editor

Pierer claims record result

K

TM, Husqvarna and GasGas parent Pierer Mobility has teased investors with some key figures in advance of a full 2020 results presentation. The Austrian group says that annual revenue rose by 0.7% to ÂŁ1.36bn, following an energetic recovery during the second half of last year from the Covid pandemic’s earlier impact. This stands as a tenth consecutive record turnover increase. However, global sales for its three motorcycle brands were 3.5% down at 270,407. Shipments to dealers in Europe accounted for “around 100,000â€? of these, with the bulk sold in overseas markets, notably North America, India and Australia. Pierer’s e-bicycle division, featuring the Husqvarna and Raymon brands, posted muscular 33.5% volume growth, shipping 56,064 pedelecs to European dealers. Recovery also included 218 new employees joining its 4586-strong workforce.

Remarkable retail result for BMW Motorrad DESPITE SIGNIFICANT CHALLENGES FROM the Covid pandemic, BMW Motorrad posted the second-best global retail sales figures in its history during 2020. The brand’s annual deliveries to customers worldwide were just 3.4% down at a total of 169,272 motorcycles and scooters. And in the final quarter of 2020, its retail bike sales actually grew by 3.4% to 39,673. However, performance in the UK was considerably weaker. According to MCIA data, fullyear British registrations declined by 17.7% to 7664. In a statement, the company said: “This achievement underpins BMW Motorrad’s successful growth strategy. Guarantor for the positive result was the market launch of thirteen new models, as well as our strong product portfolio.�

Ducati down but not out

D

Commenting on these figures, Ducati chief espite an unavoidable hammering from the Covid-19 pandemic’s executive Claudio Domenicali said: “2020 first wave, Ducati mounted a rapid was a complex year in many ways and a whole recovery in the second half of 2020 to finish new challenge for everyone in the world. with its annual worldwide retail sales falling by Inevitably, it ended in a different way than we would have liked. 9.7% to 48,042 bikes. “But Ducati was able to make the most of the Markets were wildly divergent, though. In Europe, Germany actually contributed 6.7% recovery trend of the two-wheel market that growth to 5490 machines sold. But the brand’s began in June, achieving an excellent second half Italian domestic market plunged by 27.2% of the year with a result that was better than we had expected back in March. to 7100. China provided the brightest news, “By redefining working 26.3% up to 4041. methods and processes we Some 5730 managed to maintain the examples of the new safety of our employees, Streetfighter V4 to stay close to took best-selling the fans and to model status. consolidate the Largest style Ducati brand segment was the in the world Scrambler subby growing in brand, albeit some markets declining by 22% Streetfighter V4 such as China.� to 9265.

             

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                                www.britishdealernews.co.uk    


International news

Big plans Harley goes from Rewire to Hardwire for Bajaj

H

arley-Davidson has completed The Rewire – a critical overhaul of its business. This has, it says, set a strong foundation for The Hardwire, the company’s five-year strategic plan designed to deliver profitable and desirable long-term growth, and shareholder value. Harley intends to reveal details of this plan shortly, along with 2020 fourth-quarter and full-year financial results. “I am confident the substantial changes we made with The Rewire have set us up to successfully execute our strategic plan,” explained Harley’s chairman and chief executive Jochen Zeitz. “We are now a leaner, more aligned organisation, and we are making decisions faster. The right structure, leadership and principles are in place, and we are ready to continue our cultural journey to become a high-performing company.” As a result of The Rewire, Harley claims to have reduced complexity and increased speed, with a new operating model and organisational structure across every function, to provide simplicity, agility and efficiency. Its global business has been reset, carburator-repair-kits-210x76-ALT.pdf 1 18.08.2020 14:33:07 resourcing and prioritising markets with

the highest potential. And business focus has expanded beyond motorcycles, with a strong commitment to newly-established business units for parts and accessories and general merchandise. Streamlining the product portfolio and rebuilding go-to-market efforts for maximum impact are also Rewire achievements. The company has enhanced and protected the value and desirability of its products too, by changing the approach to supply and inventory management with a focus on a powerful and profitable dealer network. Rewire actions are expected to deliver ongoing gross cash savings of approximately £85m, starting in 2021. Harley will now move on to Hardwire strategy – “grounded in desirability and guided by a vision to build its legend and lead the motorcycle industry through innovation, evolution and emotion. This will be focused on “reigniting the spirit of Harley-Davidson and returning to winning, delivering the timeless pursuit of adventure and freedom for the soul for riders around the world”.

SECOND-LARGEST INDIGENOUS INDIAN motorcycle manufacturer Bajaj Auto, the country’s biggest bike exporter, has invested £65m in the construction of an additional factory on its Chakan production site – about 90 miles from Mumbai in the Pune district of Maharashtra State. This plant will increase annual capacity at Chakan by a million units to 2.2 million, taking Bajaj’s overall capacity to 7.5 million. The whole facility will then be primarily dedicated to higher-priced models, for both global markets and domestic consumption. At the forefront of these will be the growing number of KTM and Husqvarnabranded machines it builds for Austria’s Pierer Mobility. Bajaj is currently developing a new twin-cylinder KTM 490 platform for Pierer, extending from a current 125-390cc singlecylinder involvement.  The company will also use the new plant to spearhead a move towards electrification, as well as cementing a recently-established contract design and production relationship with Britain’s Triumph Motorcycles. Chakan is to make larger-capacity premium Bajaj models too, derived from Pierer technology.

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Off-road news

The UK’S TOP SELLING OFF-ROAD RACE WEAR 01900 873456 www.wulfsport.com

Off-road news

with Rick Kemp

Polaris shock revelation

SHORT CUTS TRIALS CANCELLED

EDINBURGH AND DISTRICT MC HAS TAKEN THE decision to cancel the 2021 SSDT and the Pre ’65 Scottish trials. The club admits that this will be a disappointment to many, however, it wanted to give fans and everyone involved in the event as much notice as possible. Competitors who have entered the events will be contacted shortly after the two organising committees have met to decide on the way forward.

P

ISDE STILL LISTED

THIS YEAR’S ISDE IS STILL LISTED IN THE FIM calendar for 30 Aug to 4 Sep, to be held in the Lombardy/Piedemonte region in Italy, the same place as was scheduled for 2020. Anyone interested in sending a team across to compete should contact Mary Kerr at the ACU office: 01788 566 403; mary@acu.org.uk

ATV SKID PLATES

ATVS ONLY HAS SIGNED A DISTRIBUTION agreement with Estonian skid plate manufacturer Iron Baltic – one of the largest manufacturers of ATV skid plates in Europe. Currently, the Iron Baltic range includes more than 200 model-specific products as well as an ever-expanding line of universal products. ATVs Only has already taken delivery of the first load of skid-plate sets – both alloy and PHD plastic – which are suitable for large 4x4 models such as the Honda Rincon, Polaris Scrambler, Can-Am Outlander/Renegade, etc. Retail prices start at £399.99. Contact: 01280 848426; sales@atvsonly.co.uk

Steer Sherco sponsor

SHERCO UK IMPORTER MALCOLM RATHMELL SPORT (MRS) HAS announced that it will be sponsoring the Steer Sherco team for 2021. Steer Commercials’ CEO Tim Reynolds has had a long standing relationship with MRS going back to the early days of Graham Jarvis’s enduro career. He then went on to sponsor Michael Brown and Lee Sampson in the MRS Trials team. Since then, Reynolds has been one of MRS’s most loyal sponsors/riders. The Steer team hopes to attend the Ertzberg Rodeo in Austria and, if all goes to plan, to ride as many of the World Extreme events as possible. The aim is to compete in all the British Extreme Enduros in 2021 and to compete regularly at Raw, Fast Eddy, WOR and Edge Events.” Reynolds commented. “I wanted to take a step back from competitive racing myself, but still wanted to be involved with the sport and support riders who are already at the top of their game as well as younger riders just starting out on their journey. By having a mixed age and ability group I am hoping the more experienced riders will help and guide the less experienced ones, and they will learn new skills from each other. “We are delighted to gain the sponsorship from Malcolm Rathmell Sport with Sherco and the other brands they represent. We have also received sponsorship from ACE Suspension for the season and we’re extremely grateful to both parties.”

olaris has introduced a variety of special editions to its Sportsman 570 model, one of which is the Sportsman 570 EPS SP Öhlins Edition developed for markets in Europe, Middle East and Africa. The special edition features Öhlins shock absorbers front and rear, acting on Dual A-Arm suspension designed to maximise ground clearance and delivering 20.8cm suspension travel on the front, and 24.1cm on the rear. To look the part, the new edition has Turbo Silver painted plastics with matt black 14in alloy wheels and springs in signature Öhlins yellow. Extra equipment includes black handguards and front brush guard, electric power steering and an engine braking system, which for 2021 gets a new clutch for smoother engagement at low speeds.

www.polaris.com

Muc-Off Honda Muc-Off has announced that it will become official title sponsor for AMA Supercross team Muc-Off Honda. The team, run by Australian Yarrive Konsky, will be contesting the US Monster Energy AMA Supercross Championship as well as select European

rounds during 2021. Muc-Off Honda will compete in the 450 SX class with four-times Australian SX champion Justin Brayton onboard a CRF 450R. It will also field two riders in the 250 SX class aboard CRF250s.

OBITUARY

Bill Lawless 1936-2020

B

orn in Manchester in 1936, Bill Lawless was founding editor of TMX, or Trials and Motocross News as it was, when the title launched in 1977. He guided the publication for 20 years marking it out as the go-to source for off-road news and events. The following are extracts from a tribute to Bill by his son Sean. William Thomas Evans Lawless – you’ll know him better as Bill but to me he was simply Dad – checked out on Christmas Day at the grand old age of 84. For a man without a religious bone in his body, his timing was

24

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irreverently impeccable. Bill’s biggest passions in life were words and horsepower. Of course, he loved his family fiercely – and he was also partial to the smell of a wet dog in front of an open fire – but if John Steinbeck had written it or Vincent had engineered it, well, you were going to struggle to get his attention because his mind was in Cannery Row (or at the Vincent factory in Stevenage).

SOME OF THE TMX STAFFERS After a few weeks Mannix Devlin – who’d been lodging with us in Saltburn while studying at

Teesside Polytechnic – came on board and over the years Bill recruited a string of journalists including Mike Rapley, Mike Greenough, John Dickinson and Pete Plummer. One of his favourite ‘finds’ was Alan Butler – “I saved him from borstal” he used to joke – who he took on as a teenager and to this day still plays a vital role in producing TMX. Bill’s survived by his wife, Sheila, daughters Kary and Victoria, son Sean and granddaughters Julia, Hazel and Polly. We’ll all miss him. You can read Sean Lawless’ full appreciation at www.tmxnews.co.uk

www.britishdealernews.co.uk


Off-road news

ORO2U optimism

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RO2U, the Zembrzuski familyrun Welsh concern, may be located in Ddole Road but there’s no one needing to claim benefits at the 70,000-plus sq.ft premises. Quite the reverse in fact. Recruitment has had to increase to keep pace with the business generated during lockdown. At the start of last March’s lockdown, according to managing director Jason Zembrzuski, there was a downturn in sales which lasted for about a month while dealers reacted to their changed circumstances. “Some dealers weren’t sure if we were open or not to begin with but for us, as the business is trade-only, we didn’t have the public to worry about, making it easier to comply with the Covid restrictions.” As soon as the trade realised that it was business as usual at ORO2U, sales began to climb back up. So much so that there has been unprecedented sales growth since May 2020. Ever more dealers are creating online shops, particularly during Covid as customers are less likely to browse in store, and ORO2U is ideally placed to help dealers in this respect, as Jason confirms. “Online ordering is often quicker and more convenient for our dealers. Also as a temporary service we were able to drop ship directly to their customers during the lockdown. “Apart from the normal trade, those people being furloughed and with time on their hands are finally getting round to doing up that old bike, so we’ve seen massive increases in all areas most noticeably in plastics kits and aftermarket exhausts.” ORO2U’s core business is obviously supplying off-road, mainly hard parts for all categories including ATV sport and utility and UTV (side-by-side). This latter category has seen significant growth over recent months. Road bikes are catered for but only represent around five percent of the business. Overall there are around 100,000 product lines in stock at any one time and the corporate aim is always to have three months’ worth on the shelves enabling a 98% fulfilment of orders

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Managing director Jason Zembrzuski with ORO2Ubacked enduro GP rider Fraser Flockhart

for next day delivery. The latest activities for ORO2U are the addition of Motul lubricants and the development of its own brand Factory Image Racing (FIR). This will be in the form of sponsorship of British Enduro rider Fraser Flockhart in collaboration with Colwyn Bay KTM. Looking forward needs a bit more than a crystal ball at the moment. The current global situation and the post-Brexit settle-down period are affecting all businesses involved with import and export and ORO2U is no exception, with stock coming in from the Far East, Asia and Pakistan and going out to

Europe, Northern and Southern Ireland and other international destinations. Even though factory production is back on track, the cost of shipping containers has increased four-fold, which rules out all but the highest value items. Jason remains optimistic, however, having brought sister Zoe on board to head up the company’s social media strategy. And the dealer portal is getting an ease-of-use overhaul. In the current trading climate, he recognises that the digital side of the operation will be ever more important. ORO2U 01597 822666 sales@oro2u.com

FEBRUARY 2021 25


Reaction

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Your thoughts and opinions on the trade’s top topics

A

s 2021 opens, who would have thought we would be where we are? It seems Covid hasn’t decimated our industry as it has done to many others and, in the main, we are in a strong position for the coming season. Furlough has been a help through the quiet period and has offset some of the costs incurred earlier in the pandemic. In thirty-six years in business, the exchequer has only ever lined its pockets from its dealings with my business. Even aged sixteen when I first started, I was unable to claim the enterprise allowance as I was too young: you had to be eighteen to receive the grant. I can’t imagine any motorcycle dealers paying the rates back to their local authority from whom they, on the face of it, receive very little back. So, as an old friend who recently died used to say to me, “the good lord helps those that help themselves”. But use the support wisely and don’t squander it. Use the time to make sure that you are ready for the season to come. Having all your bikes prepped and valeted, may be the biggest part of the PDI. However, stocktaking, website updates, general housekeeping are all so important and carrying them out mustn’t be neglected. I’d like to encourage more dealers to join the committee of the NMDA. It’s very rewarding and, in addition to many benefits, you get an insight into what is going on in our industry. Recently our meetings have been virtual due to the pandemic, so the necessity to travel has been removed which does make it easier. I’m sure as the pandemic closes, we will resume a face-to-face meet but maybe not for all meetings and this should help dealers reduce the time needed to attend. You can’t beat a face-to-face over a cup of tea and a biscuit ... On 25 May, Tony Campbell, MCIA chairman, will be presenting an update on the changes that the MCIA is lobbying for. In particular around licensing laws. All

Your thoughts and opinions on the topics that make the trade tick are welcomed: editorial@dealernews.co.uk BDN, 10 Daddon Court, Clovelly Road Industrial Estate, Bideford, EX39 3FH

Back to the future! members are welcome to log on. Invitations will be sent out in the New Year. The one thing about the NMDA that I really enjoy is meeting dealers that operate different franchises. In general, all the manufacturers offer dealers a proposition that allows them a territory within which to sell their product and run aftersales in respect of that product. But some seem to be able to execute that offering so much better than others. Some are better at bringing new products to market, whilst others seem to

We want your

Views Your thoughts and opinions on the topics that make the trade tick are welcomed: editorial@dealernews.co.uk BDN, 10 Daddon Court, Clovelly Road Industrial Estate, Bideford, EX39 3FH have scant regard for their networks, almost seeing dealers as a necessary evil that needs keeping in its place. The ones that do well in the NMDA Dealer Attitude Survey (DAS) generally understand that without profit the dealer soon becomes uninterested and doesn’t get behind the product with the enthusiasm that the brand expects. So, these brands ensure (or at least try to) that there is an opportunity for the dealer to earn out of their product. If the dealer is earning then the manufacturer can, in turn, expect

certain standards to be maintained. They can also select the best dealers in town. The manufacturers at the bottom of the table seem not to understand that dealers need to earn to the same degree, and no one likes working for them now! Consequently, they are less likely to be able to select the best dealers in town and end up with discount merchants that trash the brand leading to an ever-decreasing value of the franchise. This is a very simplistic way of looking at the relationship, but I do question the wisdom some have applied to the application of Euro 5. I would place good money on the likelihood that all the metal registered in the last week of December, didn’t actually need registering and that some manufacturers would have had some headroom to derogate more of that stock than they have encouraged their networks to register. We will never know as the numbers held in stock in March 2020 are something we aren’t privy to. A number of dealers asked me to challenge this but, without the numbers, it’s impossible. However, I thought it was worth a mention in my column, as it just shows how much power a manufacturer can wield. This is one of the reasons NMDA membership is necessary. By completing the DAS in big numbers, the winners and losers are in black and white for all to see. Let’s face it, we, as retailers, are being reviewed at every step of our journey, this is our opportunity to feedback along the chain. Let us grab 2021 and make hay while the sun shines, as it surely will. I wish everyone in the industry the very best for the New Year, let’s just hope it’s better than 2020 and that the vaccine does the trick. Philip Youles, Youles Motorcycles MD, NMDA Chairman

The new normal

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n a constantly changing world I think the recently surprising thing is Triumph making a big loss. £40m this year... Not having an entry level 125cc bike in the range could be part of the problem considering what’s been sold in the last few months. The shift in demand to cheap reliable personal transport has been so fast and manufacturers like Lexmoto are well placed, but the unknown is will it switch back? Or are we due for a long period of recovery and a new norm being, well, the new norm? Electric included of course.

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As an aside, the DVSA has said it won’t introduce the new banding for A2 test vehicles until parliamentary time allows – completely unnecessary as its already in legislation. But the new rules (agreed in Europe in May) mean test bikes only have to be over 250cc or the electric equivalent, rather than the previous minimum of 400cc. This change would allow a larger number of smaller riders, and those who struggle with a larger bike, to take the test and ultimately move up from 125cc. It all makes me wonder if big is no longer beautiful?

Ian Burrell MBE, Pass Bike Motorcycle Training, Rochford, Essex

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Off the

a superb working relationship when it was most needed, and we’re looking forward to an even busier 2021 in coming weeks”. He adds an interesting thought provoker: “Many of the new rider enquiries are for commuter bikes to replace public transport, and in conversation customers seem to presume they are the only one to think of a motorcycle or scooter as a solution to their problem!”

YOUR TYRE SPECIALIST!

CUFF A light-hearted column providing dealers with a platform to pass on customer comments and their own views. KEVS BIKES

“I’m a survivor. I’ve been here more than 30 years and taking it as it comes without any stress.” says Kevin Thomas at his sales and repair business KEVS BIKES in Aberdare, South Wales. “I’m not worried at all when Mark Drakeford [First Minister of Wales] changes the situation on full shop opening. I’ve got a more relaxed attitude to life at 56 years old and I can see what’s really important and that starts with the grandchildren and their future.”

SPEEDWAY MOTORCYCLES

SPEEDWAY MOTORCYCLES is a family based multi-franchise dealer in Cannock, Staffs and Ryan Plested is confident about the new season: “We achieved our new sales target in 2020 with our best-ever year – topping 1100 units, of which 600 were Lexmoto. Deliveries were a bit difficult in the run up to Christmas, but we got there with the Blitz MX style electric junior range along with increased sales of Super Soco scooters. An increasing industry problem it seems, is public unawareness, or even ignoring, the illegal use on road and pavement of PLEV e-scooter toys sold direct on the internet.” He adds: “Basically, we have not changed our business strategy. In May last year somebody flicked a switch and local and eBay sales took off with a lot of holiday savings being diverted to transport needs”

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MICKEY OATES

Grahame Ferguson heads sales in the family team at MICKEY OATES MOTORCYCLES in Glasgow, which celebrates 60 years in business this year. “We still love what we do for on and off-road. Supply is a problem at present but the situation is the same for other dealers, so just have to accept it. Life can be difficult with lockdown and restrictions, but we have evaluated what we can do and it’s given us an opportunity to improve ourselves and the business.”

DAVE DEATH MOTORCYCLES

DAVE DEATH MOTORCYCLES is long established on the Isle of Wight: “Reality check and positive thinking are the two situations for us to concentrate on” says Louise Dove adding: “Supply from manufacturers is a problem, but we have to do our bit to support the supply chain with forward orders. Counter sales are slow and it’s frustrating not to be able to support fully new riders with on-site encouragement, but the interest is there and we keep in contact with them. Another downside is the inevitable slowdown of sales for tyres, clothing, and servicing … so again, we must adapt to a changing market.”

DOBLE MOTORCYCLES

“Last year was the best trading year we have had for ten years, and Honda has made it happen for us,” says Paul Styles at long established solus Honda dealer DOBLE MOTORCYCLES in Coulsden, Surrey. “We’ve had a smooth transition period from Euro 4 to 5 without derogation issues and could not have asked more of Honda’s staff for

EVESHAM & WORCESTER MOTORCYCLE TRAINING

James and Tina Langstone at EVESHAM & WORCESTER MOTORCYCLE TRAINING are urgently looking forward to resuming “business as usual”. “We thank the government for its interim financial support and understand the difficult situation with CBT and test training being put on hold. We are ready to go as soon as the DVSA is, with riders, in the main, showing patience and understanding.” James adds: “Our objective is to retain and encourage the fantastic new rider enthusiasm for two wheels now being shown and share this with all ATBs around the country.”

Give BDN your “Off the Cuff” thoughts. They might just make a difference!

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Crewe Honda centenary

CREWE HONDA CENTRE

y r tu n Ce

Can you name three things the Cheshire town of Crewe is famous for? First has to be it’s railway heritage, the town was built on its engineering and manufacturing skills. Second, it’s the spiritual home of Rolls Royce and still home to Bentley, and third must be the local landmark in the centre of town – Crewe Honda Centre!

R

eferred to by a supplier as the Northern Powerhouse, this year sees Crewe Honda Centre celebrate 100 years in business and 58 years as a Honda dealer, all from the original premises in Crewe. Now headed up by the fourth generation of two wheeled enthusiasts, Roger Morris works alongside six employees supplying all things Honda and describes the team as “passionate about everything Honda!” Crewe Honda Centre won’t be getting a letter from the Queen but it certainly deserves one! It all began on 27 May 1920 when Roger’s great grandfather opened for business as A.R. Morris (Crewe) Ltd. Back then it was selling new and used British bikes of all varieties as well as bicycle sales and repairs and this remained the case until 1962. Mr. Morris had a good business but then, as legend has it, the local Raleigh sales rep encouraged his dealers to take on the new kid on the block and A. R. Morris became a Honda motorcycle dealer. This sparked

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a sea change for the business as a team of mechanics and sales staff were employed to service the franchise, and 58 years on Crewe Honda Centre is one of the longest standing Honda dealers in the country.

Crewe Honda Centre won’t be getting a letter from the Queen but it certainly deserves one! Roger (managing director) joined his father Malcolm in the family business from school and together they built it into what it is today, with the original building retained and a further two business premises purchased and combined into one modern, bright, inviting showroom with workshops to the rear and parking at the side. When Malcolm handed over the reins to Roger

in 2000, Keith Hanson, then area sales manager with Honda, presented Roger with some radical thinking of what the business needed to do in order to survive and thrive or face the unpleasant alternative. Roger took Keith’s advice and upgraded the business premises giving the showroom a complete corporate Honda facelift. Roger reflects: “Keith’s advice stood us in good stead for what was to come, with the way people buy and sell a motorcycle radically changing in the two decades that followed.” The message that Roger has for other dealers who have been around a long time is that you have to constantly invest, not just financially but with energy and ideas to keep the business fresh and up to date and ready for the next challenge. “In particular dealerships have had to adapt to a new way of trading in the last five years,” says Roger. “Gone are the days of advertise and wait for the customers to appear. You have to be creative through the use of social media platforms, open days, product placement in local colleges and shows. You have to go out there and engage with the customer.” Honda’s Nick Campalucci (now Datatag) also helped Roger with guidance and ideas for the business. Roger has also taken advantage of making life easier when it can be done without compromise, and he teamed up with Oxford Products for all clothing, helmets and accessories back in 2010 and has formed a really good working relationship with the supplier. Roger says: “Dave Cotterill is our area sales manager at Oxford, we get excellent customer service from him. He keeps the stock fresh, resulting in one less headache for me.” 2020, however, has been like no other year in the firm’s century-long history but two lockdowns in and there is now light at the end of the tunnel. Crewe Honda Centre reports a sharp increase in scooter and commuter sales and if there is a positive for

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L L C C

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s British Dealer News went to press came news that half of Crewe Honda Centre’s showroom has become a Covid vaccination centre. Dealer principal Roger Morris provided the facility free of charge to the NHS where it is expected up to 2000 locals a week will be treated. “The sooner everyone’s vaccinated, the happier I’ll be and the sooner we can get back to normality, which is what we all want”, said Roger. Despite the reduction in showroom space, Roger says it wont impact the business or the arrival of Honda’s new season range.

Roger sees the challenge for the industry as a whole is to encourage a younger audience on to two wheels and to retain them, rather than see them moving on to four wheels when they pass their driving the industry to take away it is that most of these sales have gone to those new to the two-wheel market; many on the back of public transport safety concerns.

GREAT RANGE Roger believes that Honda has a great range at the moment, in particular the entry level choices of CB125R/F and the Monkey Bike are the best on offer amongst the main manufacturers. Moving up to the mid-range CB500F/CB650R and Roger says that Honda is ticking all the boxes when it comes to the ever-growing demand for costeffective entry-level models for the “first big bike” market. A big believer in service plans and extended guarantees, Roger says they encourage customers to return and forges long term relationships with them. As Roger moves to future-proof the business for the years ahead he has taken the decision to give the dealership a facelift in line with Honda’s new corporate identity. This incorporates every aspect of the showroom – flooring, signage, lighting, displays etc – and also, new for the business, will be a Honda School of Motorcycling. The existing car park is currently being resurfaced to accommodate the feature.

Keith Hanson, then area sales manager with Honda, presented Roger with some radical thinking of what the business needed to do in order to survive and thrive or face the unpleasant alternative test. He believes that a massive pool of “dormant bikers” exists which can be tempted back with the right model range suited to that age group. Honda’s range is moving in the right direction to capture these audiences says Roger, who also believes the future for the town of Crewe is bright. “The town is set to benefit from HS2, new housing estates are cropping up everywhere and the town centre is undergoing a revamp with considerable investment going in.”

Crewe Honda centenary

Community Covid care

Roger says he prides himself on running a locally-accessible Honda dealer which services the town of Crewe and it’s surrounding areas. He aims to provide excellent sales and support with the best two wheel offering on the market with Honda. While birthday celebrations might be on hold until next year, you can’t argue with 100 years in the trade and still going strong! 

CREWE HONDA TIMELINE 1920 1962 2000

2010 2017 2020

Formation of A.R. Morris (Crewe) Ltd Becomes a Honda dealer Roger Morris takes the reins as managing director. The fourth generation in the business Takes on Oxford Products for all clothing, helmets and accessories Sad death of Malcolm Morris – Third generation of the business Installs a new Honda corporate identity and Honda School of Motorcycling

AUTOMATIC AUTOMATICTHEFT THEFTPROTECTION PROTECTION AUTOMATIC AUTOMATICTHEFT THEFTPROTECTION PROTECTION THATCHAMAND ANDPOLICE POLICEAPPROVED APPROVED THATCHAM THATCHAM THATCHAMAND ANDPOLICE POLICEAPPROVED APPROVED Supplying Supplyingmotorcycle motorcycleand andscooter scooter Supplying Supplying motorcycle motorcycle and and scooter scooter security security for forover over30 30 years years security securityfor forover over30 30years years LOOKING LOOKINGTO TOJOIN JOINAS ASAADATATOOL DATATOOLDEALER? DEALER? LOOKING LOOKINGTO TOJOIN JOINAS ASAADATATOOL DATATOOLDEALER? DEALER? CONTACT CONTACTUS USTODAY: TODAY: CONTACT CONTACTUS USTODAY: TODAY:

CALL: CALL: 01615 01615 431 431 129 129OR OREMAIL: EMAIL: DEALER@DATATOOL.CO.UK DEALER@DATATOOL.CO.UK www.britishdealernews.co.uk CALL: CALL: 01615 01615 431 431 129 129OR OREMAIL: EMAIL: DEALER@DATATOOL.CO.UK DEALER@DATATOOL.CO.UK

RIDERCONVENIENCE CONVENIENCEFEATURES FEATURES RIDER RIDER RIDERCONVENIENCE CONVENIENCEFEATURES FEATURES 24/7/365UK UKMONITORING MONITORINGCENTRE CENTRE 24/7/365 24/7/365 24/7/365UK UKMONITORING MONITORINGCENTRE CENTRE DESKTOP&&MOBILE MOBILEAPP APPACCESS ACCESS DESKTOP DESKTOP DESKTOP&&MOBILE MOBILEAPP APPACCESS ACCESS FEBRUARY 2021 29


Business Essentials

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The Business The latest news and views in the world of business

Boarded up borders?

B

ritain is a nation of shopkeepers (and online traders too). But so are our continental cousins. And it’s galling to some, and commercially suicidal to others, that a whole new and somewhat alien trade regime is now in place with the potential to damage all who come across it.

END OF FREE MOVEMENT Free movement of goods as we know it has ended. The Guardian, in a December story headlined “UK business leaders warn of Brexit red tape ‘tidal wave’ even with deal”, reported the Confederation of British Industry’s deputy director general Josh Hardie as saying that “preparation doesn’t mean protection if a tidal wave is coming. You can put in place the sandbags, and that helps a bit, but the water is still going to get through.” His view is based on the fact that countless surveys had shown that British firms just didn’t have the information to prepare for the new system and so would struggle to keep trade and goods moving from January. Many are flustered. Ben Fletcher from Make UK, a manufacturers organisation, felt that some firms might go into a form of hibernation at the start of 2021 – that is, that they’ll not even bother to move goods in and out of the UK, preferring “to see how the land lies in the first couple of weeks.” (Many will recall the end of November when a five-mile tailback built up on the M20 as the French tested their post-Brexit system.)

ACCEPTING NEW CUSTOMS For Andy Cliff, director of international logistics and customs firm, Straightforward Consultancy, the problem is that everything has changed. From January the “UK became a so-called ‘Third Country’, meaning that if we import something from say, Germany,

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it will require a similar level of complexity to imports from China or the US. We have left the Customs Union, discarded their Common External Tariff and have launched our own UK Global Customs Tariff which has different duty rates.” The question is – how will this be dealt with? Catherine Stephens, head of International Trade Services at Business West, speaking at the end of December, put the problem into sharp relief when she highlighted that the number of customs declarations which companies will need to complete could increase from 55m to 255m.

Delivery times will lengthen from say 3-4 days door to door on a typical UKFrance movement to a possible 10-14 days as new customs procedures at borders start up and become strained And to pour more fuel on to the fire, she cited a recent Business West Quarterly Economic Survey that found that “12% of companies surveyed were aware that they need to complete customs declarations but have not yet organised how they will do this, while 11% trade with the EU and do not know what they need to do to get prepared.” Cliff is just as direct. In his dealings with clients looking to get to grips with the new regime, he’s found that “many have done

little to prepare, seemingly delaying any preparations until they had more clarity on the outcome of trade negotiations, and of course, hoping that the elusive deal would mean minimal changes to the way they traded with the EU.” What particularly worries him is that many companies are not well-informed; they seem to be ignorant of the fact that “customs declarations will be required for exports and imports regardless. If they have made no preparations at all, then the truth is that they may damage their own business considerably, especially if they are reliant on EU business, be that export or import.”

PLANNING FOR RED TAPE It follows then, that while preparation is key, firms need to be aware of how to comply with the new regime – and fundamentally, this requires an understanding of form filling. Customers who traded primarily with the EU will now need to educate themselves on Incoterms, the international rules of commerce which determine who pays what part of the transport costs, duties and taxes, and at what point risk passes from seller to buyer. Cliff reckons that “delivery times will lengthen from say 3-4 days door to door on a typical UK-France movement to a possible 10-14 days as new customs procedures at borders start up and become strained.” Ultimately, he can see duties impacting the “margins on any final customer selling price as will charges for customs declarations.” And on top of that, customers will need to take responsibility for classification of their goods both for exports and imports and export documentation as each side will need to meet a new, much higher, standard. As Stephens says, “one of the most crucial ways companies can prepare is to make sure they have organised how they are

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going to complete custom declarations. For companies who have only traded with the EU, this will be a new requirement they will need to get used to. If they are completed incorrectly this could cause disruption for businesses.” One solution is training, and a number of organisations offer courses, including Business West, but interestingly, the Business West survey showed that 25% of businesses will self-train. No doubt they’ll be using information from gov.uk’s transition page which features hotlinks to advice pages on importing from and exporting to the EU and Northern Ireland. But whichever route to knowledge is taken, as Stephens highlights, “the process of completing customs declarations is complicated and time-consuming. If any details are incorrect then this has the potential to cause delays and incur extra costs.” Similarly, it’s important to check the details of trade agreements with countries that firms trade with as this will determine the documentation required. It’s central to

Stephens’ concerns “that regulations vary for different companies in different sectors, so firms who have not investigated the specifics for their own sectors risk being caught out by the new landscape.” The biggest worry is not so much the changing landscape but that some firms did not make any preparations for Brexit. And as Cliff points out, some were approaching him for help in December, but “that was very late in the day.” He, like Business West, has Brexit preparation guides on his website which detail the three areas that firms need to focus upon

– their business and systems; their logistics provider; and their EU customers or suppliers.

IN SUMMARY Naturally, how firms react to the new landscape will depend on how they value European trade. Low levels of profitability combined with a poorly handled process can damage a business in a short period of time and could take years to correct. One thing is certain, firms that did little or next to nothing to prepare can only hope for damage limitation. 

THE BUSINESS WEST CHECKLIST DELAY VAT ACCOUNTING Businesses can apply for postponed VAT accounting. This allows firms to defer paying VAT upon importation of goods. Instead, import VAT will be paid via the usual VAT return.

APPLY FOR A DUTY DEFERMENT ACCOUNT This defers import duty payments. Duty can be paid once a month, rather than every time goods are imported. Currently, HMRC have waived the need to put up a Customs Comprehensive Guarantee so if a business qualifies, HMRC will grant a £10,000 credit limit per month.

CHECK COMMODITY CODES Businesses must ensure that they are using the correct commodity code for their goods. If incorrect codes are used this could cause delays and firms may face financial or criminal penalties.

CHECK DUTIES PAYABLE Firms bringing goods into the UK should check whether import duty may be payable on goods after 1 January if importing from the EU.

CHECK THE REGULATIONS FOR TRADING WITH NORTHERN IRELAND If trading with Northern Ireland, firms must have an XI EORI number; they will not be able to trade without one. It’s also possible to register on the Trader Support Service which will guide firms through the changes resulting from the implementation of the Northern Ireland Protocol.

CHECK ON AN EORI NUMBER Every business wanting to trade with the EU will need an EORI number that starts with GB. As with Northern Ireland, trade cannot be done with the EU without it. Firms won’t usually need an EORI number if they only provide services or move goods between Northern Ireland and Ireland. Note that it can take a week to get a number.

CHECK CURRENT TRADE AGREEMENTS Firms must check the detail of the trade agreements with each country they are trading with to ensure goods can be imported using the correct procedures. This must be done from within the UK; a UK company overseas should contact the Department for International Trade.

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Business Essentials

s Essentials

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Fantic

A NEW DAWN FOR FANTIC A name from the past with a bright future, Fantic has revived its forunes by thinking outside the box and giving customers what they want. Rick Kemp reports The Caballero range has allowed the Fantic brand to move into road-bike showrooms

Y

ou could say that Italian bike manufacturer Fantic was the comeback kid of the early 21st century and, unlike some, its 50-plus year pedigree remains pretty much intact. However, the brand hadn’t been available in the UK for more than 15 years prior to being taken up by its present distributor. By 2014 the company was virtually on the floor but still producing some bikes with a staff of about ten, most of whom were looking for a way out. Enter senior ex-management from Aprilia and BMW/ Husqvarna, who put a refinancing proposition together for a venture capital company – and it worked. Put into numbers, turnover in 2014 was €800,000, while last year it was in excess of €40m.

BRING IT BACK TO THE UK As many dealers will know, Fantic is distributed in the UK by Clements Moto. Dean Clements takes up the tale. “We were distributing GasGas enduro bikes in 2014/15, just before the manufacturer went into

administration. We looked after the brand with warranty and parts, but it became clear that what was going to come out at the other end was a dog with three legs. “We started talking to Fantic at that point. There wasn’t much of a product range, just

I knew it wasn’t going to be a get-rich-quick opportunity but the people were very convincing the 50, 125 and 200cc Supermotos and Enduros, but they took me through their electric plans and showed me some concept drawings of road bikes. I knew it wasn’t going to be a get-rich-quick opportunity but the people were very convincing.” Getting Fantic at this stage of its evolution was a good move for Clements as it allowed

some clout in model specification. The 200, which was in fact a 183, which was in turn an overgrown 125, wasn’t going to light up the UK market. Part of the reason for that was Fantic’s use of Yamaha Minarelli engines. Clements suggested that they might like to look at the motor used by GasGas in its 250 Cami model, which they did, and a year later Clements had a 250 ready for domestic consumption. UK specifications were also applicable with Euro 4 and 5 under our Trials and Enduro type-approval exemption regulations. This involved different ignition mapping and exhaust specification, which allowed Clements to offer a better product.

ROAD BIKE REJUVINATION By 2018 Fantic’s promised Caballero roadbike range had materialised in 125, 250 and 500cc versions in Scrambler, Flat Track and Rally variants with two special editions, so suddenly the brand was active in a new market sector with some very stylish

The Caballero is available in three styles: the Flat Track, Rally and Scrambler. It also has three engine options: a 125, 250 or 500cc

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PEDALS AND POWER Coming bang up to date, e-bikes have hit Halfords, so they must have officially landed. Yamaha motorcycle dealers in the USA now have to stock the brands range of pedal-powered machinery as part of their franchise agreement and something similar could happen here this year. Fantic is well placed to be part of the e-bike boom, both in terms of technology and model range. In Italy the e-bike division makes a significant contribution to corporate coffers, though to be fair there are some European markets that it does not have here. Interestingly, the big ski resorts in Italy and France switch over to e-biking

in the summer, leasing out fleets of hire bikes. Clements can put this in UK perspective. “Our off-road sport dealers are adapting to e-bikes much more quickly because there are a lot more synergies with what they already do as a business. However, we’re not just about downhill and MTBs. We cover a lot of bases with our e-bike offering. We have an urban bike range, a couple of which cross-over into trekking (parkland and woodland trails), as well as a full-on, hard-tail front suspension trekking bike.”

E-BIKES Fantic’s extensive range of e-bikes includes a variety of mountain and downhill machinery, urban and city bikes, and pure road steeds

NEW DEALER PLATFORM The Fantic dealer network for motorcycles numbers 34 nationwide. This year, to help dealers, there will be a new global web platform, particularly important when face-to-face meetings are banned due to Covid. Any dealer will be able to log in, be identified by their IP address and will then be taken to the relevant part of the site with the right language and model ranges for the country. Actual ranges and stock can be edited by the various distributors. As Clements is keen to emphasise, it won’t be a one-size-fits-all arrangement. Dealers can stock what they want. For example, there are 38 Fantic e-bike dealers but only a few are motorcycle dealers as well and this is precisely the way it should be. “There isn’t room for 60 Fantic dealers in the UK if they all stock everything,” says Clements. “This way you can have two dealers a few miles apart and if they stock different ranges there’s no conflict.” Fantic won’t be holding back on new models either. Now that it has its own engine plant, thanks to the take-over of Minarelli, there are many motors that could be developed and put in new chassis. Watch this space.

MOTORBIKES The brand’s off-road range includes enduro and motocross competition machinery, supermoto and trail bikes

Clements Moto 01227 720700 sales@clementsmoto.co.uk

A DEALER’S VIEW “THE GASGAS CAMI ALWAYS DID QUITE well for us but then GasGas restructured and decided that they were only going to produce two-strokes. I was a bit disappointed. Then I heard that Fantic was going to use that motor and it was Dean Clements who was importing it, so I got in touch with Dean to see about taking it on, and it went on Haines & Co’s from there really. The showroom mixes brand goes back a long e-bikes and way and there’s not much motorbikes out there that’s perfect, but this is a pretty good product and I know that if I have an issue and Dean says he’ll deal with it, then he will. Dean’s a proper importer – he’s got good staff who’ve been with him for years and there must be a

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reason for that. “For us Fantic has been growing quite nicely into a good franchise. We started doing the e-MTBs at the beginning of 2020 and it was the best thing we could’ve done with this lockdown. Round here, in the Forest of Dean, e-biking is getting more popular by the month. “We’ve dealt with the big importers over the years, and some small importers that have been too small to keep up, but I feel with Dean he doesn’t mess about and does things properly from a dealer’s perspective. He really looks after his dealers.” Anthony Moore, Haines & Co, Cinderford, Glos

FEBRUARY 2021 33

Fantic

offerings. This represented something of a leap forward for the brand in this country; something that mainstream road-bike dealers actually wanted. At the beginning of last year the Fantic race bikes began to emerge, using the basic Yamaha frame and motor platform for its XX (Motocross) and XE (Enduro) machines. The debut season proved successful, with the factory taking the 125 European MX title. So you now have the Caballero range and the Fantic off-road race-bike range and as far as the dealer is concerned these are two totally opposed markets. How do you get the wider brand offering under one roof? Clements explains: “We’re trying to point out to dealers, and some of them have got it, that the ‘soft’ Enduro or Trail range isn’t bought by 25-year-old racers. It is being bought by 40-, 50- and 60-yearolds, mainly men, who want to go out and trail ride together. They will overlap with their existing road-bike customers.” The fact that the Trail range also includes 50 and 125cc bikes catering for those licence categories will give it a broader appeal. The smaller capacity bikes are also available in the urban, on-trend Motard variant.


Marketing Matters

MARKETING

MATTERS

Expert adv ice to improve how you promote and sell you r products or services

DAN SAGER FOUNDED THE FAB-BIKER PR AGENCY IN 1996 AND HAS been advising businesses in the motorcycle industry on marketing matters ever since. Here he shares some of the most important lessons he’s learned during that time. fab-biker.co.uk

DON’T BE SELFISH WHEN IT COMES TO CHARITY Every year British people give £10bn to charity and the UK is ranked sixth in the World Giving Index compiled by the Charities Aid Foundation. Research shows that 64% of the population give to good causes, so most of the people reading this will already donate to charity

A

nd it isn’t only individuals who support worthy causes. In boardrooms across the country Corporate Social Responsibility – giving something back to the community – is a buzzword. Of course, it doesn’t do any harm to show investors, regulators, staff and customers that you have a caring side, but there’s more to it than that. You’ll have noticed that many high profile entrepreneurs, like Bill Gates and Richard Branson, create charitable foundations, to build a legacy from their wealth. On a smaller scale, many businesses in the motorcycle industry raise money for associated good causes, such as Blood Bikes or the local Air Ambulance. Knowing that the success of your business not only provides you with a living, but also puts something back into the community, naturally creates a sense of fulfilment. More than that, it is also something that will be recognised and valued by your colleagues, customers and the local community which could raise even more money and create a closer bond with these important people.

COLLEAGUES Are your staff aware that the organisation they work for supports a charity or what the money is used for? It might sound obvious, but it’s very easy to assume that your colleagues know everything that’s going on, when in reality they’re just getting on with their day-to-day jobs. Some organisations like to get staff

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FEBRUARY 2021

involved in fund-raising, believing that it will create a sense of shared purpose and team spirit. Handled well, this can be very successful. However, it can backfire, if people feel that they’re being forced to raise money for the boss’s pet project, which will make

Apart from the fact this activity could bring in additional revenue for your chosen charity, a little local goodwill goes a long way them look good down the golf club. If you want to involve your staff, be sure to ask staff for their input first, so they have some say in what the funds will be used for and how they’ll be raised.

CUSTOMERS While it might be tempting to tell your customers about all the great work you do for charity, that might sound like bragging and there’s even the danger that your customers feel that they’re being charged extra so that you can look generous at their expense. Therefore, as with your colleagues, it’s far better to get your customers onboard, so that raising money is promoted as a joint effort.

Charity open days to raise money for good causes, raffles, ride-outs to deliver Easter eggs to the children’s hospital – these are all proven ways to get customers involved in your chosen charity and to build their loyalty in the process.

LOCAL COMMUNITY Why stop at customers? There could be opportunities to get the wider community involved, some of whom could be future customers. Apart from the fact this activity could bring in additional revenue for your chosen charity, a little local goodwill goes a long way, especially when you need to get the council or your community on side. When it comes to giving, remember to give other people a chance to get involved and share the love. 

NEXT MONTH Don’t make a drama out of a crisis. A beginner’s guide to crisis communications.

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Product news

Products The latest products for your showroom

FROM ONLY

RETAIL DEALER OFFER

Contact Alison on 01237 422660 or adsales@dealernews.co.uk

10TEN Electric

Triumph nose 5 UK BODYWORK SPECIALIST PYRAMID Plastics has just launched its new Triumph Speed Twin nose fairing with specialist colour match. The nose fairings come fitted with a cockpit screen by Puig, and fit onto the Speed Twin without modification to the bike. The fairings are painted in the UK and are designed to match Triumph’s paintwork perfectly for an OEM look! Available in both Korosi Red and Ice Silver, SRPs start at £155. Pyramid Plastics; 01427 677990; sales@pyramid-plastics.co.uk

MOTOCROSS AND PIT BIKE BRAND 10TEN has launched its first allelectric model – the 10TENMX-E. It is aimed at junior and novice riders, so has two power settings to restrict speed until the rider is capable enough to unleash the full max of 1000W. This is enough to power the MX-E up to a maximum of 45km/h. The removable lithium battery can be rapidly swapped for a fullycharged replacement, and can then be recharged in four to six hours. SRP is £999 including a six-month parts and labour warranty. Dualways; 01623 708607; drew.m@dualways.com

Rapid Bike SMART Kit 6 THE NEW RAPID BIKE SMART fuelling kit is specifically designed to improve the performance of Euro 4 and 5 motorcycles by enrichening the fuel/ air ratio throughout the rev range. The compact-sized SMART module does this by controlling the lambda sensor signal in order to modify the operation of the stock ECU. The module’s effect on the lambda signal can be increased or reduced using a free app connected via Bluetooth, and it promises smoother power delivery, torque improvements of up to 20% and power boosts of approximately 5hp. Installation is a simple plug and play operation, and current models it fits are BMW’s R1250GS, R1250GS Adventure, R1250R, R1250RS and R1250RT. Performance Parts; 01327 706139; colin@performanceparts-ltd.com

Terra Force rubber SLOVENIAN TYRE BRAND MITAS IS adding junior sizes to its extreme enduro tyre range. Designed for motorcycles from 50 to 85cc, the company claims the new rubber ensures high levels of grip and stability, along with excellent handling, making them suitable for both novices and competitive riders. The fronts come in 70/100-19 and 90/90-14 sizes in Terra Force MX MH Super and C-21 Super compounds respectively. Rears are 90/100-16 and 90/100-12 in Terra Force MX MH Super Soft and C-20 Super Soft. Mitas Tyres; 0038 642 066142; sales@mitas-tyres.com

Adjustable footpegs A NEW SET OF ADAPTORS WHICH ALLOW MODIFICATION OF THE position of both rider and passenger footpegs in a matter of minutes are available from accessories manufacturer Puig. The system uses a model-specific footpeg adaptor together with a choice of 20mm or 40mm displacer – the 20mm shifter can be used for both driver and passenger while the 40mm shifter is for pillion only. The displacer can be rotated 360o in 15o increments allowing multiple positions to get the perfect fit . Puig; 0034 938 49 06 33; info@puig.tv

Muc-Off Anti-viral 5 THIS ANTI-VIRAL ONE SHOT Grenade is a single-use canister of compressed sanitiser. It can be used in vehicles (to sanitise the inside of a van, for example) or indoors in rooms (changing rooms, staff rooms or even a main showroom). It’s a compact 150ml can filled with quaternary ammonium compounds and alcohol which is said to kill 99.99% of bacteria as well as enveloped viruses. To use, simply press the trigger and leave the can in the room for a few minutes to do its thing. A twin pack of canisters has an SRP of £14.99. Muc Off; 01202 307799; sales@muc-off.com

Contact Alison on 01237 422660 or adsales@dealernews.co.uk 36

FEBRUARY 2021

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Product news

ByCity Roadster HARKING BACK TO THE DESIGNS OF 1970’S racing lids, the ByCity Roadster is a full face helmet with graphics based on the JPS F1 livery of the same era. The carbon fibre shell is ovalised for a more comfortable fit, and underneath is a multi-density impact absorbing inner shell. There’s a wide aperture opening for the thermoformed visor which gives a better field of vision, and inside is a removable and washable interior. Closure is by double D buckle. The Roadster comes in size XS-XL for an SRP of £229.95. Dot4Distribution; 020 3514 2413; info@dot4distribution.com

MX1 Roost Guard

Dainese body armour 5

Malossi filters

HJC RPHA 90S 5 THE NEW FLIP FRONT HELMET FROM HJC IS SAID TO be “race inspired”, taking cues from the brand’s RPHA 11. The track inspiration means the the 90S comes in three shell sizes to keep it as compact and lightweight as possible, and it has a wide visor opening to aid peripheral vision. More touring-inspired features include dual homologation (so it can be ridden in the open or closed positions), Pinlock-equipped centre locking visor, drop-down sun visor, quick-release micro buckle fastener and it is ready to accept HJC’s SMART Bluetooth communication system. It comes in solid colours for £399.99, graphics for £449.99, plain carbon for £479.99 or carbon with graphics for £499.99 SRP. Oxford Products; 01993 862300; info@oxprod.com

MALOSSI HAS EXTENDED ITS RANGE OF high performance air filters for scooters. The standard range replaces the OE filter element and comes in either flat sponge configuration or as dedicated panel filters for certain models of maxi scooter. Both styles utilise a fine sponge which can remove smaller dirt particle than the OE filter whilst maintaining a higher flow rate of air. The Double Red sponge filters incorporate a second, even finer, sponge layer to remove microscopic dust particles to provide an extra level of engine protection. VE (UK); 0115 946 2991; sales@ve-trade.com

NEW FOR 2021 ARE DAINESE’S MX1 and MX2 Roost Guard body protectors for motocross and enduro. The MX1 Roost Guard features a Pro-Armor back protector (certified to EN1621-2 Level 1) made from expanded nitrile rubber for comfort and flexibility, plus a chest protector (Level 2), shoulder protectors (Level 1), and hip protectors for an all-round defence against impact. Velcro adjustments allow a tailored fit, and the ventilated structure helps to keep riders cool in the thick of competition. Available in XXS-M or L-XXL) sizes, in black only, the MX1 has an SRP of £219.99. The MX2 model has a similar structure, but with the Pro-Armor back protector swapped out for a more everyday item. It comes in black or copper colourway, in the same sizes as the MX1 version, for an SRP of £179.99. Bike It; 02380 658700; tradesales@bikeit.co.uk

MX2 Roost Guard

Leovince for Africa Twin LEOVINCE HAS DEVELOPED A NEW LINE OF EXHAUST systems for the Honda CRF1100L Africa Twin which comes in three finishes – Stainless Steel, Black Edition and Titanium. The stainless exhaust is made of TIG-welded AISI 304 stainless steel, while the black edition has been treated to several coats of heat-resistant black ceramic-based paint. The titanium version has an outer sleeve and bracket made from TIG-welded titanium. All models are ECE approved, and feature a dual-flow carbon fibre end-cap with a matt clear coating for UV resistance. Stainless models are €559, black stainless models are €589 and the titanium is €699. Moto GB Distribution; 01706 212102; leovincegb@gmail.com

Tank film 5 R&G HAS LAUNCHED A NEW RANGE of tank protection film to prevent scratches and paintwork damage. Made from a tough non-yellowing polyurethene film, the kits suit a wide range of popular machines. SRP is £19.99. R&G; 01420 89007; alan.garrett@rg-racing.com

Contact Alison on 01237 422660 or adsales@dealernews.co.uk www.britishdealernews.co.uk

FEBRUARY 2021 37


Product news

Tucano gloves

LS2 FF805 Thunder 5 ALL NEW FOR 2021, THE LS2 FF805 THUNDER IS SAID TO BE THE brand’s most advanced helmet yet. The shell is a new aerodynamic design made from carbon fibre, which comes in three sizes. Ventilation is provided by ports at the chin, forehead and crown with internal channeling through the EPS liner and large exhaust ports at the rear, while the hypoallergenic liner is removable, washable and breathable. Other features include quickrelease cheek pads and laser-cut foam inserts for a secure fit. The Thunder comes in plain carbon finish for £379.99 or graphic options for £419.99. LS2 Helmets UK; 01670 856342; ukservice@ls2helmets.com

Oxford muffs OXFORD HAS UPDATED ITS BAR-END muffs just in time for hardy commuters to brave the wintery conditions. The muffs attach using a universal handlebar mount and are made from weatherproof neoprene with bonded seams and an elasticated cuff, and have a synthetic fleece lining. They claim to be capacious enough to be used in conjunction with a pair of winter gloves. The muffs suit bars up to 22mm diameter and have an SRP of £49.99. Oxford Products;01993 862300; info@oxprod.com

REGULAR WINTER RIDERS KNOW THAT ONE OF THE BIGGEST challenges they face is keeping their hands warm enough for both comfort and safely operating the controls. Italian clothing and accessories manufacturer Tucano Urbano has released a whole new range of touchscreen compatible winter gloves with the aim of keeping riders going through the chillier months. The TAAAC is a CE-certified glove with lots of thermal padding and an eco-fur lining across the back of the hand. The outer is softshell with a TAAAC goatskin leather palm and a waterproof inner membrane to keep everything dry. Convenient commuter features include a zipped pocket on the left cuff to hold a garage door remote, toll swipe card or just loose change, and a two-tiered visor wipe. Soft armour is fitted across the knuckles and there is an antiabrasion insert on the palm. Available in black in sizes XS-3Xl for an SRP of £72.99. Piega The Piega is a technical fabric glove with a synthetic chamois palm and a neoprene cuff. A waterproof membrane keeps fingers dry and the hard knuckle armour, padded fingers and anti-abrasion palm insert offer impact protection. They come in black in sizes S-3XL for £49.99 SRP. Made from soft goatskin with a diamond-pattern stitching the Diamond gloves have a more traditional look. But they are waterproof thanks to the Hydroscud inner membrane and also have thermal padding and a microfibre lining to add some winter practicality. They come in black in sizes S-3XL for an SRP of £75.99. Tucano Urbano; 07799 626635; info@tucanourbano.com Diamond

K-tech ORVS A REPLACEMENT VALVE SYSTEM FOR WP 48MM AER forks as fitted to KTM and Husqvarna models from 2016-onwards, the ORVS replaces the OE compression and rebound damping assemblies to provide improved damping, more adjustment and increased stability and ride comfort. SRP is £269.64 K-Tech Suspension; 01283 559000; enquiries@ktechsuspension.com

Anti-fog inserts 5 Stylmartin Audax AIMED AT RIDERS OF SUPERNAKED AND SPORTS bikes, Stylmartin’s new Audax is a trainer-style CEcertified motorcycle boot. The outer is made with a two-tone upper made from a combination of suede and fabric with a waterproof and breathable lining membrane to allow for the British weather. The changeable footbed is microperforated and breathable for comfort, and the rubber sole provides plenty of grip on pegs or pavement. The Audax comes in a choice of red/black, military green/black or all-black in EU sizes 39-47 with SRPs starting at £155. Dot4Distribution; 0203 514 2413; info@dot4distribution.com

ANTI-FOG VISOR INSERTS HAVE become a must-have for bikers, and now there is another option on the market to suit almost any helmet. Speedo Angel’s Anti Fog Visor Inserts are made from polycarbonate with a special coating which prevents fogging and misting. They are a universal fit and attach using a mild adhesive. The kit includes a fitting template, suede cleaning cloth and instructions for its £13.99 SRP. Speedo Angels; 07782 308269; info@speedo-angels.com

Contact Alison on 01237 422660 or adsales@dealernews.co.uk 38

FEBRUARY 2021

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Product news

Momodesign boots 6 ITALIAN BRANDS TCX AND MOMODESIGN have combined their skills to make Momo’s first footwear range – “tech sneakers” aimed at urban riders looking for contemporary style. The Firegun-1 WP is top of the range, made from a breathable mesh upper with a waterproof outer gaiter fastened by a water resistant Firegun-1 zip. It’s fully CEcertified thanks to protective inserts fitted at vulnerable points, but the flexible uppers and running shoe-inspired sole are said to offer freedom of movement and walking comfort for use off the bike. A Groundtrax tread provides grip on both pegs and ground and the removable and washable Ortholite footbed provides cushioning. Available in black in EU sizes 38-48 for an SRP of £199.99. The Firegun-2 GTX is more of a traditional sneaker design, with lace-up fastening and Velcro strap. A Goretex membrane allows all-weather riding Firegun-2 and, like the Firegun-1, it has protection inserts, a ZPlate insert to correct longitudinal flexibility and transverse rigidity, an Ortholite sole and an EVA cushioned midsole. Available in black in EU sizes 38-48 for an SRP of £169.99. The Firegun-3 WP is a CE-approved lace-up soft mid-cut boot for everyday use. Made of breathable mesh with a waterproof membrane and quick-lacing fastening, it also has a pocket on the tongue to store … who knows what? Sole technology is as Firegun-3 the other models in the range. Available in black or army green, in EU sizes 38-48, or ladies’ sizes 35-42, for an SRP of £149.99. Last but not least is the Firegun-3 Air which loses the waterproof membrane but increases the amount of mesh for better ventilation on the hot day we get in the summer. Available in black with army green side panels, in EU sizes 38-48, for an SRP of £149.99. Nevis Marketing; 01425 478936; info@nevis.uk.com

Firegun-1

Firegun-2

Firegun-3

Kenda KM1 DEVELOPED AND TESTED IN THE USA, THE brand new KM1 radial marks Kenda’s first entry into the sport touring market. The KM1 has steel belt construction with an advanced rubber compound said to provide excellent grip, but not at the expense of durability. The tread pattern includes additional sipes to improve wet weather grip while also promoting even wear, while the use of Optimized Apex Geometry is said to provide highspeed stability and responsive handling. The KM1 comes in 120/70 ZR17 front and 180/55 ZR17 and 190/50 ZR17 rear sizes. Cambrian Tyres; 01970 624004; info@cambriantyres.co.uk .

Malossi cylinder kit 6 AN ALL-NEW 187CC CYLINDER KIT FOR FOR LARGE frame Vespa 125-150cc with three port crankcase is now available from VE (UK). The kit features a nickel-chromium plated aluminium cylinder with a bridged exhaust port, seven enlarged transfer ports, a 63mm single ring piston, and a 1:12.5 compression cylinder head designed for optimal cooling. Malossi quotes power figures of 22 to 30hp depending on final set up. SRP is £384. VE (UK); 0115 946 2991; sales@ve-trade.com

MOTORCYCLE MOTORCYCLESPARE SPAREPARTS PARTS&& &ACCESSORIES ACCESSORIES MOTORCYCLE SPARE PARTS ACCESSORIES

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FEBRUARY 2021 39


Product news

FMF Vision 56 TWO US OFF-ROAD BRANDS – FMF and 100% – have teamed up to produce the first range of FMF goggles, called FMF Vision. The collection has over fifty different goggles across two model ranges. The PowerCore range has an antifog coated polycarbonate lens, a 40mm wide silicon coated strap and the frame has a dual layer of foam to help manage sweat. Prices start from $22.50 for both youth and adult sizes. The PowerBomb range has the same lens spec as the PowerCore range, but the frame adds in a removable nosed guard and triplelayer foam. The strap is a fraction wider at 45mm. Prices start at $42.50, with a desert-spec version with closed-cell foam for $52.50, There is also a version designed for glasses-wearers for $52.50 and a filmsystem equipped version for $65.00. Madison; 01908 442833; sales@madison.co.uk

WK SX125 THE NEW SX 125 SCOOTER FROM WK BIKES CATERS FOR LEARNERS ON a budget and is the successor to the brand’s TTR 125. The SX 125 is a twistand-go scooter with a fuel-injected four-stroke engine for the go and a combined braking system with steel braided brake lines for the whoa. Other features include a USB charging port, a luggage rack and lockable underseat storage as well as LED indicators and LED rear light. Available in black/orange or black/blue, the SX 125 comes with a two-year parts and labour warranty for its £1499 +OTR price. WK Bikes; 01507 523900; sales@wkbikes.com

Vintage 2.0 slider PUIG HAS “REINTERPRETED” ITS Vintage frame slider and created the highly customisable Vintage 2.0. Designed to suit sport or custom machinery, the Vintage 2.0 has a double-grooved polyamide end block, into which coloured insert rings can be fitted to match or contrast with the bike’s aesthetic. Puig; 0034 938 49 06 33; info@puig.tv

GET YOUR NEW

PRODUCTS SEEN IN 2021 RETAIL DEALER OFFER

Product news

FROM ONLY

Products room

ucts for your show The latest prod

CANYON IS A REPLACEMENT FOR GIVI’S VENERABLE GRAVEL-T RANGE and is a 13-strong line of new adventure-styled soft luggage. The new range will include a pair of 8-litre bags which strap to the bike’s engine guards, 25-litre Monokey side bags, a 40-litre cargo bag with air release valve and a modular throwover base to which bags can be fitted. This is in addition to various tank bags, tool bags, rucksacks and waist bags. They come in black only, and are expected to be available from the end of March. Givi UK; 01327 706220; info@givi.co.uk

Contact 01237 422660 adsales@dealernews.co.uk

FEBRUARY 2021

10TEN ElectricBIKE BRAND

PIT MOTOCROSS AND ed its first all10TEN has launch 10TENMX-E. It electric model – the and novice riders, is aimed at junior settings to restrict so has two power is capable speed until the rider h the full max of enough to unleas to power the 1000W. This is enough um of 45km/h. MX-E up to a maxim battery can The removable lithium a fullyfor be rapidly swapped and can charged replacement, to six 5 four in nose ed Triumph then be recharg ng LIST PYRAMID includi SPECIA £999 ORK is SRP UK BODYW hours. ed its new and labour Plastics has just launch a six-month parts nose fairing with Triumph Speed Twin warranty. 7; The nose ays; 01623 70860 specialist colour match. Dualw om with a cockpit screen fairings come fitted drew.m@dualways.c the Speed Twin by Puig, and fit onto to the bike. The without modification are and UK in the fairings are painted ork RT Kit 6 Triumph’s paintw designed to match Rapid Bike SMA look! Available in BIKE SMART perfectly for an OEM THE NEW RAPID Ice Silver, SRPs start cally designed both Korosi Red and fuelling kit is specifi ance of Euro perform the e at £155. to improv fuel/ s; 01427 677990; by enrichening the Pyramid Plastic 4 and 5 motorcycles compact-sized stics.co.uk the rev range. The sales@pyramid-pla air ratio throughout the lambda this by controlling SMART module does ion to modify the operat sensor signal in order the on The module’s effect of the stock ECU. d reduce or be increased lambda signal can oth, Blueto via ted using a free app connec er power delivery, and it promises smooth s of up to 20% and torque improvement imately 5hp. power boosts of approx ion, plug and play operat simple a is tion S Installa R1250GS, R1250G it fits are BMW’s and current models T. , R1250RS and R1250R td.com Adventure, R1250R performanceparts-l 01327 706139; colin@ Performance Parts;

Givi Canyon 5

40

Contact Alison

lernews.co.uk 0 or adsales@dea on 01237 42266

a Force rubber

Terr

BRAND MITAS IS SLOVENIAN TYRE to its extreme adding junior sizes Designed for enduro tyre range. 50 to 85cc, the from ycles motorc new rubber company claims the of grip and ensures high levels excellent stability, along with them suitable for handling, making competitive riders. both novices and 70/100-19 and The fronts come in Terra Force MX MH 90/90-14 sizes in compounds Super and C-21 Super are 90/100-16 and respectively. Rears Force MX MH Terra in 90/100-12 Super Soft. C-20 and Soft Super 642 066142; Mitas Tyres; 0038 om sales@mitas-tyres.c

TO THE HARKING BACK face Roadster is a full racing lids, the ByCity F1 cs based on the JPS helmet with graphi shell era. The carbon fibre livery of the same comfortable fit, and is ovalised for a more ing absorb ensity impact underneath is a multi-d g a wide aperture openin inner shell. There’s a gives which visor for the thermoformed is a removable inside and better field of vision, D r. Closure is by double and washable interio for an er comes in size XS-XL buckle. The Roadst SRP of £229.95. 020 3514 2413; tion; istribu Dot4D tion.com info@dot4distribu

Dain

NEW F and M for mo The Pro-A to EN expan flexib 2), sh hip p agai allow stru the XXS MX T str ba ev

5 HJC RPHA 90SHELMET FROM HJC IS SAID TO

l5 Muc-Off Anti-vira SHOT

ONE THIS ANTI-VIRAL use canister of Grenade is a singleer. It can be used compressed sanitis e the inside in vehicles (to sanitis le) or indoors of a van, for examp rooms, staff in rooms (changing showroom). rooms or even a main can filled with It’s a compact 150ml nium compounds quaternary ammo is said to kill and alcohol which well as as a 99.99% of bacteri pegs . To use, simply Adjustable foot WHICH ALLOW MODIFICATION OF THE enveloped viruses ORS s are leave the can A NEW SET OF ADAPT gs in a matter of minute press the trigger and and passenger footpe do position of both rider a few minutes to for Puig. room acturer the in ries manuf with a available from accesso g adaptor together its thing. model-specific footpe can be used for rs has an The system uses a the 20mm shifter A twin pack of caniste 40mm displacer – is for pillion only. choice of 20mm or of £14.99. the 40mm shifter SRP while ger le passen multip g 307799; both driver and 15o increments allowin Muc Off; 01202 be rotated 360o in The displacer can sales@muc-off.com perfect fit . positions to get the puig.tv 49 06 33; info@ Puig; 0034 938

THE NEW FLIP FRONT the brand’s RPHA taking cues from be “race inspired”, 90S comes in tion means the the 11. The track inspira and lightweight keep it as compact three shell sizes to g to aid openin has a wide visor as possible, and it d features include -inspire More touring peripheral vision. in the open or n (so it can be ridden dual homologatio centre locking visor, ped -equip Pinlock closed positions), buckle fastener quick-release micro drop-down sun visor, Bluetooth accept HJC’s SMART and it is ready to colours for . It comes in solid 9 communication system carbon for £479.9 for £449.99, plain cs graphi 9, £399.9 cs for £499.99 SRP. or carbon with graphi 01993 862300; Oxford Products; info@oxprod.com

Malossi filters

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OF DED ITS RANGE MALOSSI HAS EXTEN rs. air filters for scoote high performance replaces the OE filter The standard range sponge flat either in element and comes dedicated panel filters configuration or as of maxi scooter. Both for certain models remove sponge which can styles utilise a fine whilst than the OE filter particle dirt r smalle flow rate of air. maintaining a higher filters incorporate The Double Red sponge e sponge layer to remov a second, even finer, an extra e particles to provid microscopic dust tion. level of engine protec 2991; VE (UK); 0115 946 sales@ve-trade.com

ca Twin Leovince for Afri OF EXHAUST OPED A NEW LINE

LEOVINCE HAS DEVEL which comes in CRF1100L Africa Twin systems for the Honda and Titanium. ss Steel, Black Edition three finishes – Stainle lded AISI 304 t is made of TIG-we The stainless exhaus treated edition has been black the while stainless steel, ceramic-based heat-resistant black to several coats of outer sleeve and m version has an paint. The titaniu m. All models TIG-welded titaniu from made t bracke ow carbon and feature a dual-fl are ECE approved, for UV resistance. a matt clear coating fibre end-cap with ss models are €589 are €559, black stainle Stainless models is €699. and the titanium ; 212102 01706 ution; Moto GB Distrib .com gmail leovincegb@

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Product news

H2 accessories 5 EVOTECH PERFORMANCE HAS TURNED ITS ATTENTION TO PRODUCING protection and riding accessories for Kawasaki’s Z H2 and Z H2 Performance models. There are a total of nine UK-made EP products in the range. A CNC-machined tail tidy which uses the OE indicators is £100 SRP, while the radiator guard is produced from a single sheet of 5000-series aluminium, fabricated to create a hex-pattern matrix, for £79. Crash protector brackets machined from 6000-series aluminium are fitted with high-density nylon bobbins and are £235 per pair, and the similar-spec wheel spindle bobbins are £35.99. Powder-coated alloy exhaust hanger brackets come as a direct replacement for £59.99 or as a kit with a pillion footrest blanking plate for £79.99. Paddock stand bobbins allowing easy access to remove the rear wheel are £25.99, while the CNC-machined mirror extension brackets allow a better rearward view for £41.99 per pair. Evotech Performance; 01507 466729; sales@evotech-performance.com

Send us the information we need, and we’ll put them in the mag and online. Remember, dealers need to be informed before consumers. We need trade relevant information about the item, retail pricing and up to date contact details. Plus good quality imagery.

MX1 Roost Guard

our 5 Dainese body arm SE’S MX1

DAINE NEW FOR 2021 ARE body protectors and MX2 Roost Guard enduro. for motocross and features a The MX1 Roost Guard tor (certified Pro-Armor back protec 1) made from to EN1621-2 Level for comfort and expanded nitrile rubber tor (Level protec flexibility, plus a chest tors (Level 1), and 2), shoulder protec e an all-round defenc hip protectors for adjustments Velcro . impact t agains and the ventilated allow a tailored fit, keep riders cool in structure helps to tition. Available in the thick of compe the sizes, in black only, XXS-M or L-XXL) £219.99. MX1 has an SRP of a similar The MX2 model has the Pro-Armor structure, but with more a for out ed back protector swapp everyday item. or copper It comes in black same sizes as the colourway, in the SRP of £179.99. MX1 version, for an 0; Bike It; 02380 65870 o.uk tradesales@bikeit.c

E OF XTENDED ITS RANG rs. e air filters for scoote OE filter ange replaces the sponge flat either in mes filters as dedicated panel r. Both els of maxi scoote can remove ne sponge which filter whilst ticle than the OE air. igher flow rate of incorporate Red sponge filters to remove finer, sponge layer e an extra ust particles to provid protection. 2991; 5 946 de.com

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NEW FOR THE 2021 SEASON, THE WEISE SUMMIT IS BILLED AS AN ALLseason jacket with a sense of adventure. Triple layer construction consists of an outer shell with a removable waterproof and windproof liner and a softshell inner jacket with a micro-fleece lining for use when the temperatures fall. The softshell can also be used on its own as a casual jacket when off the bike. Vents on the chest, arms and back can be secured open, and there are stretch panels at the elbows and shoulders to aid comfort and movement. An AA-rating for protection is the result of Cordura, SuperFabric and Nylon being used for the shell, and CE-approved armour being fitted at the elbows, shoulders and back. Other features include adjustment at the waist and sleeves, reflective detailing and a short connection zip. The Weise Summit is available in black and stone in sizes S-5XL at an SRP of £299.99 including a two-year warranty. The Key Collection; 01179 719200; sales@thekeycollection.co.uk

TCX Street 3 Product news

ters

Weise Summit 5

Send your information and images to: products@dealernews.co.uk or British Dealer News, 10 Daddon Court, Clovelly Road Ind Est, Bideford EX39 3FH www.britishdealernews.co.uk MX2 Roost Guard

TCX BOOTS HAS INTRODUCED A NEW URBAN BOOT FOR 2021 – THE Street 3. Available in two variations – the WP and TEX WP – the Street 3 is a CE-approved all-weather boot with street style. The Street 3 WP comes in three colour options – all with a slightly different construction. In black, the boots are made from grain leather with a nubuck finish, whilst the brown option is full grain leather and the green/ brown boots have a suede upper. All versions have a T-Dry waterproof membrane and an OrthoLite footbed, along with a ZPLATE equipped midsole for transverse rigidity. D3O inserts are fitted at the malleolus area, along with reinforcements at toe and heel. Ground and peg contact is maintained with a distressed-finish wear-resistant rubber sole. They come in men’s EU sizes 38-48 for an SRP of £129.99, or in a ladies-specific fitting with a raised heel in black suede finish in EU sizes 35-42 for the same price. The TEX WP boots have the same general specification, but with a combination of suede and weft fabric for the uppers. Only available in black/grey, the TEX WP is available in men’s sizes EU 38-48, or in a raisedheel ladies version in sizes 35-42, at £129.99. Nevis Marketing; 01425 478936; info@nevis.uk.com

Tank film 5

E HED A NEW RANG R&G HAS LAUNC film to prevent of tank protection ork damage. scratches and paintw llowing non-ye Made from a tough the kits suit a wide polyurethene film, £19.99. machines. SRP is range of popular ; R&G; 01420 89007 ing.com rg-rac arrett@ alan.g

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Product news

Kappa heated muffs 6 HANDLEBAR MUFFS MIGHT ONCE HAVE BEEN A BIKING FASHION faux-pas of epic proportions, but with an influx of new commuters who have swapped the heated comfort of trains and buses for the fun and isolation of two wheels it is important to keep their circulation moving through the harshest of the winter weather. Kappa’s KS604 heated muffs are made from padded polyester and are a universal fit. Connection to the bikes battery is by a fused cable or by a USB socket with an optional adaptor. The muffs are said to warm up within three minutes of starting the bike and can then be adjusted between three incremental heat settings using the external illuminated switch. SRP £120.99. Neo Distribution; 01778 349333; sales@putoline.co.uk

Nitro MX700 THE NITRO MX700 FULL FACE MOTOCROSS HELMET IS AN ECE22.05compliant replacement for the MX620 design. It features a MPT (Multi Poly Tech) constructed MX shell with a wide eye port to improve peripheral vision. Rear exhaust ventilation has been doubled compared to its predecessor to keep heads cool, plus there’s a fully removable and machine washable liner and cheek pad system, allowing the helmet to stay fresher for longer. It is ACU gold approved and comes in a wide range of all-new raceinspired graphics in both adult (SRP £79.99) and junior sizes (SRP £59.99). Bickers; 01394 604040; sales@bickers-online.co.uk

Bullit Hero 250 56 BULLIT MOTORCYCLES HAS ANNOUNCED THAT THE LONG-AWAITED Bullit Hero 250 has finally arrived in the UK. The scrambler-style machine slots into the range above the Hero 50 and 125cc versions and is powered by a fuel-injected single cylinder twin cam motor producing 27hp. Other features include upside down forks and a Fastace Swingarm spring oil damper. The 250 comes in three colour options – gold/black, White Racing and titanium grey – and retails at £3999 complete with a two-year warranty. Bullit Motorcycles; 01623 708607; henry@hdmtrading.co.uk

Arai Quantic IT’S NOT OFTEN THAT A NEW ARAI HELMET arrives, and the launch of the brand’s new sports-touring helmet also sees the first ECE R22-06 compliant model in the range. The Quantic is billed as a luxurious and comfortable helmet for longdistance rides, but which uses race-derived technology in its construction. The shell is made from (deep breath…) Peripherally Belted e-Complex Laminate Construction (PB e-cLc) with a multi-density EPS liner. The rounder shape and smoother edges are also said to help with strength and performance in an impact. There is a new duct behind the Arai logo on the crown, a chin vent, dual tear duct intakes and a combined spoiler/exhaust at the rear to provide ventilation, even at city-centre speeds. The new shell design and the use of Super Fibre belting around the base allows fitment of an intercom system without compromising rigidity, and the brushed-nylon interior incorporates an integrated wire pocket to store excess cable in the neck roll. The Quantic comes in a range of solid colours for £499.99 SRP, plus designs by Aldo Drudi for £599.99 SRP. MotoDirect; 01773 864420; sales@moto-direct.com

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DI R ECTO RY Our Classified Directory is packed full of the best suppliers in the industry. A one-stop reference point, helping you find the products and services you require – quickly! Our guide is now online too, at www.britishdealernews.co.uk, call 01237 422660 to get listed.

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Used bike data

Used bike data

FROM ONLY

What’s hot and what’s not in the used-motorcycle world

Top thirty fastest selling bikes 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10.

I

Average days advertised before sale

think it’s fair to say during these times of lockdown, where click-and-collect and home delivery are the only buying options for motorcycles and accessories, that, “If it’s not online, it’s not for sale.” This view is strongly reinforced when we compare the 11-week period from the start of November 2020 to the second week of January 2021 to the same period the previous year. The chart (right) shows the huge surge in the number of tracked calls, emails, chat and text leads on Auto Trader Bikes, with the volume being 83% greater than the same weeks the previous year. The median speed of sale of machines advertised on Auto Trader Bikes was 44 days over the period, compared with the

21. Suzuki GSX1400 _____________27 22. KTM 125 Duke _______________27 23. Honda MSX ________________27 24. Ducati 1199 Panigale ________ 27.5 25. Triumph Bonneville 865 _______ 28 26. Yamaha XJR1300 ____________ 28 27. Suzuki GSX-S125 ____________ 28 28. Honda CBF600 _____________ 29 29. BMW R1150 ________________ 30 30. Honda CBR125_____________ 30.5

11. Ducati Scrambler 800 _______ 20.5 12. Honda SH300 _______________ 21 13. Honda SH125______________ 21.5 14. BMW R1250GS ____________ 22.5 15. Honda CBF125 _____________ 23.5 16. Suzuki GSX-S1000 __________ 24.5 17. Honda CBR650R ___________ 24.5 18. Yamaha YZF-R125 ____________25 19. Yamaha X-MAX _____________ 26 20. Yamaha MT-07 ______________27

Honda CRF250L ____________ 6.5 KTM EXC __________________ 9 Honda Vision _______________ 13 KTM 1290 Super Adventure _____ 13 Peugeot Speedfight _________ 14.5 Honda PCX125 _______________ 15 Yamaha NMAX ______________ 15 Yamaha YS125 _______________ 15 Yamaha MT-125 ______________ 16 Triumph Thunderbird 1700 _____ 16

56 days it took, 12 months previously. The fastest-selling bikes list is littered with scooters and 125s as we’ve seen over the past few months, but a couple of mid-capacity enduro-style machines sit at the top. Off-road bikes have proved to be the fastest-selling style sector of all, with a median time of ten days overall. It’s good to see that the top 30 list has representation from a broad swathe of bike style sectors, and that it also includes a couple of past Auto Trader “Bike of the Year” winners in the form of the Ducati Scrambler 800 and Yamaha MT-07. PAUL EDMONDSON Product lead, Auto Trader Bikes

Auto Trader Bikes tracks the number of calls, emails, chats and text messages its adverts generate as a measure of audience engagement. For the 11-week period from the beginning of November, the average number of contact made through the platform rose by 83%.

URGING CAUTION IN AN UNCERTAIN MARKET Following Lockdown-2 and the Christmas period, recent feedback suggests variable retail activity in December, with some dealers reporting strong enquiry levels. However, with the start of another national lockdown in January, dealers are understandably concerned. Despite this, they are better prepared, being able to offer online sales and click-and-collect services. With these processes in place, this latest lockdown should have a lower impact on sales. However, with the recent Scottish government announcement tightening the rules covering which goods consumers can click-and-collect’, there are concerns that the motorcycle market will see a further negative impact. Although this is a disappointing start to the year, dealers remain cautiously optimistic that 2021 will be positive overall, with a significant bounce-back predicted at the end of Lockdown-3. It is also positive to see Covid -19 vaccines rolling out across the country, giving a glimpse of light at the end of the tunnel.

TOP-SELLING MODELS Apart from larger capacity sport machines which

are typically quiet at this time of year, demand continues to be good across the board. Mopeds, scooters and 125cc machines remain the most sought after and this trend is likely to continue for the foreseeable future, especially with a shortage of new machines. Yamaha’s MT ranges are always popular and the Kawasaki Z1000SX remains in strong demand too.

Dealers remain cautiously optimistic that 2021 will be positive overall, with a significant bounceback predicted STOCK Stock availability is a challenge for many dealers and most auctions have strong bidding activity. With extended order to delivery times for 2021 new stock, due to factory Covid restrictions, demand for late plate used machines will

increase. Dealers report forecourt stock levels are leaner than last year, however many are currently satisfied with these levels because of the current lockdown situation.

SALES ACTIVITY Unlike recent years, when January has been mild and snow-free, 2021 started on a cold note with snow and ice for some parts of the UK leading to poor riding conditions. However, taking into account strong market prices, and the fact that dealers are ordering stock for the season ahead, values have been moderately increased across the board in Glass’s February edition, except where trade feedback or evidence from the market has indicated certain models require further specific adjustments.

Paul McDonald Leisure vehicle editor Glass’s

Contact Alison on 01237 422660 or adsales@dealernews.co.uk 46

FEBRUARY 2021

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On the Money

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T

he sneering has finally stopped. Lexmoto’s ascendancy to the upper echelons of best-selling motorcycle brands in the UK during 2020 shows the Chinese are definitely here to stay. Nobody can ignore 10,222 units registered, a 9.8% total market share on the cusp of catching Yamaha, and overall leadership of the up-to-125cc sector in front of Honda. But Lexmoto isn’t alone. The products of other new-wave entrants from China, such as Sinnis and Keeway, have started to make regular appearances in MCIA statistical press bulletins too. And then there are a lot more under the radar than you might imagine. The Japanese have been manufacturing in China ever since its markets were opened up to foreign input in the early 1990s. Honda has a pair of large joint-venture production sources in the country. These churn out finished machines, mainly for Chinese domestic consumption, and completely-knocked-down (CKD) component kits for export. Wuyang Honda, domiciled in the vast industrial city of Guangzhou near Hong Kong, makes the equivalent of more than a million motorcycles and scooters per year, many of them shipped overseas as boxes of bits. Sundiro Honda adds a further half-million annually. Sundiro’s biggest factory, a recently developed state-of-theart facility, is located at Taicang on the outskirts of Shanghai, about 900 miles to the north-east of Guangzhou. This has been designated by Honda as its global Super Cub hub, supplying CKD kits to more than 25 destinations

worldwide. All Super Cub models assembled in Japan originate from the Taicang parts bin. I don’t know what’s actually engraved on the VIN plates of Super Cubs sold by Honda UK dealers. But I’m prepared to bet they started life in China. Such an accolade might apply to some other Honda scooters and small motorcycles reaching our shores. Yamaha plays the same game. All those YBR125 Yamahas running around on British roads and their YS125 successors were spawned in Chongqing, roughly a thousand miles west of Shanghai. They are produced by Jianshe Yamaha Motor, a joint-venture operation with Jianshe Vehicle System. Incidentally, Wuyang parent Guangzhou Automobile Group, Sundiro and Jianshe have two things in common. They are public companies variously listed on the Shanghai and Shenzhen stock exchanges. But in every case their majority shareholder is a Chinese communist government holding entity – either China South or China North Industries.

On the Money Market analysis with financial editor Roger Willis effect. Besides Yamaha’s commie chum Jianshe, thoroughly Chinese manufacturer Longxin

I don’t know what’s actually engraved on the VIN plates of Super Cubs sold by Honda UK dealers. But I’m prepared to bet they started life in China European brands are increasingly comfortable around the China syndrome as well. BMW Motorrad has a solid reputation for precision engineering and reliability. But a portion of that is now traceable to Chongqing, without adverse

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Motorcycle Industry is also based there. A subsidiary of Loncin Holding, it makes in excess of two million Loncin-branded machines annually. Longxin has had a contractual

relationship with BMW for several years, initially building the old 650GS engine. This has since moved on to fabricating F750GS and F850GS motive power. In addition, BMW C400X and C400GT maxiscooters are now produced in Chongqing, rather than at the German brand’s Berlin factory. And an uprated version of BMW’s 650 motor continues, licensed for use in Loncin-branded LX650/CR9 models sold domestically. 

FEBRUARY 2021 47


On the Money

On the Money Teutonic enthusiasm for the economically priced opportunities available from China extends to Hangzhou, just south of Shanghai. Austrian KTM parent Pierer Mobility recently completed construction of a joint-venture factory there, in partnership with big-league local biker resident CFMoto – which already has a growing UK and European presence in its own right. According to Pierer, KTM’s new middleweight 750cc platform has immediately gone into production at the plant, to serve Chinese domestic and global demand. In the near future, these will be supplemented by further models from the KTM

890cc series and selected off-road bikes. The avowed intent is to strengthen Pierer’s presence in China and expand market shares elsewhere. And the deal with CFMoto is a two-way investment street. As with Pierer’s tie-up to Indian partner Bajaj Auto, the Austrians are actively inviting equity participation. (Bajaj acquired a substantial minority stake in the Pierer Mobility KTM manufacturing subsidiary through buying virtually all of its free-float shares on the Wiener Börse, before it was subsequently delisted. Bajaj therefore holds sway as pre-eminent outside investor beyond the Pierer cabal.) Closer cooperation with

this next-generation Chinese associate is being cemented in a similar fashion. At the back end of last year, CFMoto doubled its shareholding in Pierer Mobility to 2.05%. That might not sound like much. But the increased stake is worth about £28m. And rather than free-floating shares bought speculatively, they came from eponymous supremo Stefan Pierer’s private holding company Pierer Konzerngesellschaft and other Pierer Group directors. At least BMW and Pierer have chosen their long-term Chinese affiliates judiciously, to avoid getting into bed too deep with China’s government. While both are public listed companies in Shanghai, they are

also independent enterprises. Dollar billionaire entrepreneur and Chongqing motorcycle industry veteran Tu Jianhua has an unassailable 50.1% grasp on Loncin equity. Members of the Lai family dominate CFMoto ownership and its board of directors. And that governmental cosiness issue is currently the most grievous, vis-a-vis our increasing dependence on a boom in affordable Chinese motorcycles. Past Tory prime minister David Cameron mounted a diplomacy love-in with Chinese premier Xi Jinping, to ramp up UK-China trade. The current shower running Westminster seem to be keen on

International Share Prices A snapshot of bike and ATV industry share performance across key manufacturers and major global markets at the trading week closure on Friday 22 January 2021.

USA – BRIEF BIDEN BOUNCE US investors celebrated the eve of Joe Biden’s elevation to the presidency and the actual inauguration with vigour. This euphoric surge of confidence pushed New York market indices up to record highs by Wednesday night’s close. But then it petered out quickly, overwhelmed by rising concerns over economic and mortality impacts from the Covid pandemic. Prices flattened on Thursday and fell back on Friday. S&P’s blue-chip S&P 500 and MidCap 400 indices finished on respective 1.9% and 1.6% gains. The Dow Jones Industrial Average made only a 0.6% advance. Among biker-related stocks, Polaris stood out with a big hike in value, just a few days before the company’s full-year figures are due. Analysts were pointing to a big improvement for its ORV sales during Q4 of 2020. Harley-Davidson wasn’t given credit for similar prospects, though. After steady progress for four of the previous five sessions, Harley’s share price benefited from the Biden bounce on Tuesday, stacking on 3.5%. It then added a further 1.3% on Wednesday. But as the market mood levelled, Harley went into reverse faster, falling by 1.5% on Thursday and a further 1.4% on Friday, ending just 73 cents higher week-on-week.

EUROPE – MIXED MESSAGES Faltering economic activity data in Europe, attributed to much stricter

48

FEBRUARY 2021

Covid curbs, overwhelmed any sense of relief at Biden’s ascension to the White House. But smiles weren’t entirely wiped off German faces, thanks to rapidly recovering Far Eastern sales for Teutonic automotive brands. Frankfurt’s Xetra Dax index returned to a small measure of positivity, 0.6% up. BMW and Volkswagen both shrugged off losses in the previous week with much bigger rises than the market average. But KTM parent Pierer Mobility inexplicably went the other way, its decline ending eleven weeks of uninterrupted share price growth. Profit-taking may have been the excuse. Further south, pessimism reigned. The Borsa Italiana’s MIB index in Milan fell for a second week, this time by 1.3%. However, Piaggio maintained its run of continuous accelerating growth throughout January, as investor anticipate blossoming year-end results. Conversely, electric superbike specialist Energica has been heading in the opposite direction for the entire month to date.

JAPAN – WATCHING AMERICA Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 index continued to climb for a fourth week, albeit by just 0.4%. Among indigenous motorcycle manufacturers, Honda and Yamaha escaped from a previous week of across-the board sector negativity, the latter’s significant rise suggesting that its imminent 2020 full calendar year results may be better than analysts first suspected. The others are still tied

to traditional fiscal periods and will be reporting Q3 numbers. Kawasaki copped a second week of retreat from its recently remarkable rally since announcing a major restructure at the beginning of November last year.

INDIA – BIKER BOOM? Mumbai’s BSE Sensex 30 index made a modest advance of just 0.4%. But Indian motorcycle manufacturers remain a popular investment. Bajaj went ballistic on the basis of its export achievements. And Royal Enfield parent Eicher boasts the biggest monthly growth, presumably on the back of its new Meteor model roll-out. Mahindra’s abrupt retreat was prompted by news that production of some of its two and three-wheeler brands, including the retro Jawa bike marque, had been disrupted by shortages of components.

CHINA – BUSINESS AS USUAL While the Chinese are now having to face the reality of no change in policy direction from the new US administration, so incipient trade warfare will carry on regardless, Shanghai’s SSE Composite index revived from negativity to post a 1.1% improvement over the past week. China’s ten listed motorcycling manufacturers also did better, a slim majority gaining ground, many by reasonable margins. E-biker CETC Energy, formerly known as Jialing Industrial, appears to be unstoppable

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completely queering that pitch. Boris Johnson has trashed Chinese telecoms giant Huawei’s participation in the British 5G network roll-out on security grounds. His foreign secretary Dominic Raab constantly attacks China’s human rights record, having conveniently forgotten that we don’t exactly have clean hands in that department.  Raab is backed by parliamentary foreign affairs committee chairman Tom Tugendhat, who also heads up a newly formed and vociferously critical China Research Group of Tory MPs. Tugendhat, a former Lieutenant-Colonel in the Intelligence Corps, would be happy for us to send gunboats up

the Yangtze again. Taken together, their bellicose tub-thumping has annoyed the hell out of China’s UK ambassador Liu Xiaoming, and every tier of Beijing officialdom up to the top, for what is perceived as attempted meddling in their internal affairs. Commercial consequences could easily follow. We have much more to lose than the Chinese. China’s GDP grew by 6.5% in the fourth quarter of 2020, a faster rate than before the pandemic. And it is the only large economy worldwide that didn’t shrink across the whole of last year. As for the UK, we’re apparently plunging into a double-dip recession. ■

Price

Week

Month

USA (dollar) Harley-Davidson Polaris Industries Textron

41.35 118.73 49.73

+1.8% +9.9% +1.6%

+11.4% +20.3% +3.5%

Europe (euro) BMW Volkswagen Pierer Mobility Piaggio Group Energica Motor

71.25 179.40 66.50 3.00 1.72

+3.0% +7.4% -2.2% +6.0% -2.8%

-3.0% +5.7% +3.9% +11.1% -6.0%

Japan (yen) Honda Yamaha Suzuki Kawasaki

2851.5 2177.0 5098.0 2404.0

+0.6% +4.0% -0.7% -4.5%

-2.8% +2.2% +4.9% +11.6%

India (rupee) Hero MotoCorp Bajaj Auto TVS Motor Eicher Motors Mahindra

3376.60 4094.10 522.30 2975.15 798.35

+5.4% +14.4% +3.0% +4.1% -2.6%

+9.9% +21.3% +8.9% +22.1% +12.3%

27.64 7.17 2.51 12.83 5.38 3.22 5.75 12.04 188.80

+7.1% +0.4% -0.8% +16.1% +5.5% -2.4% +3.4% -3.8% +4.0%

-1.3% -6.9% +6.8% +33.0% +4.3% -6.9% -6.8% -9.3% +6.7%

4.74

+3.5%

-2.3%

China (yuan) Qianjiang Zongshen Sundiro CETC Energy Lifan Loncin Linhai Guangzhou Auto CFMoto China (HK dollar) Jianshe

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Connected Retailing Putting dealers in control of their digital sales process

Building the online sales processes that lockdown demands Repeated lockdowns have demanded that motorcycle dealers get better and better at online sales that enable online-clickand-collect trading models. But, as they have continually refined their approach, many have found that the technology they are using doesn’t deliver the sales processes they’d really like to offer. The fact is that many online motor retail processes are very prescriptive. Customers enter the online journey at one end, go through a series of defined steps, and hopefully pop out of the other end with a motorcycle. That’s great if the process is the one that the customer needs and that the dealer wants to offer. What is very often lacking though, is any kind of flexibility. If it’s not the right path, there is no option for change. The technology is definitely limiting the sales potential. This creates a situation where dealers often become passive, unable to attempt to move sales forward in the same way they

would in a showroom situation. To us, it is unacceptable that they become bystanders in their own online sales processes. What iVendi has done with the new products that we have introduced over the last year – ENGAGE, CONVERT and TRANSACT - is empower them to be proactive. These solutions place dealers in the driving seat of the sales process in exactly the same manner as in the showroom, providing the tools needed to create processes that work at maximum effectiveness for them and for their customers. Each motorcycle dealer and each customer has different needs – and iVendi is perhaps unique among online motor retail solutions providers in recognising that fact and providing a solution.

Russell White VP of Sales

iVendi Limited russell.white@ivendi.com

iVendi is the international market leader in connected motor retail technology, working with everyone from dealers and manufacturers to portals and finance providers.

To find out more contact us on 0330 229 0028 or email tellmemore@ivendi.com

FEBRUARY 2021 49


New registrations

Registration data New motorcycle and scooter registrations for December 2020 2020 / 2019 Registrations by Style MOPEDS

Dec 2020

Year to Date Dec 2019

Change

Dec 2020

Dec 2019

Highest Registering Model by Style

% Change

Dec 2020 Registrations

Moped Scooters

604

321

88.2%

5331

4909

8.6%

Yadea C-Like YD 1200

97

Moped Others

162

74

118.9%

1795

1307

37.3%

Sur-Ron Light Bee

24

TOTAL MOPEDS

766

395

93.9%

7126

6216

14.6%

MOTORCYCLES Adventure Sport Custom

1079

785

37.5%

17047

18914

-9.9%

BMW R1250GS Adventure

125

502

286

75.5%

7187

7535

-4.6%

Lexmoto ZSB125 EFi

175

Naked

2164

1427

51.6%

31794

34505

-7.9%

Lexmoto ISCA 125 SK

240

Scooter

1916

1058

81.1%

22232

20175

10.2%

Lexmoto Enigma ZS 125

309

Sport/Tour

68

146

-53.4%

2320

2564

-9.5%

Kawasaki Ninja 1000SX

22

Supersport

654

385

69.9%

7746

8094

-4.3%

Lexmoto LXR125

236

Touring Trail/Enduro

84

85

-1.2%

1614

2151

-25.0%

BMW R 1250 RT

32

567

400

41.8%

6443

6480

-0.6%

KTM 300 EXC TPI

65

8

1

700.00%

156

54

188.9%

7042

4573

54.0%

96539

100472

-3.9%

Unspecified TOTAL MOTORCYCLES TRICYCLES Scooter

56

11

409.1%

530

349

51.9%

Honda Gyrocanopy

21

Other

34

16

112.5%

417

371

12.4%

Rewaco RF1

9

TOTAL TRICYCLES

90

27

233.3%

947

720

31.5%

7898

4995

58.1%

104612

107408

-2.6%

TOTAL REGISTRATIONS

2020 / 2019 Registrations by Capacity ENGINE BAND

Dec 2020

0 - 50cc

Year to Date

Dec 2019

% Change

Dec 2020

Dec 2019

Highest Registering Model by Style

% Change

Dec 2020 Registrations

893

461

93.7%

8212

6764

21.4%

Yadea C-Like YD 1200 (E-Lex)

97

51 - 125cc

3472

1478

134.9%

38897

33874

14.8%

Lexmoto Enigma ZS 125

309

126 - 650cc

1421

1156

22.9%

20077

22422

-10.5%

Suzuki DL650 V-Strom

104

651 - 1000cc

1149

931

23.4%

19713

23280

-15.3%

Suzuki GSX-S 750 Z Phantom

181

over 1000cc

963

969

-0.6%

17713

21068

-15.9%

BMW R1250 GS Adventure

125

7898

4995

58.1%

104612

107408

-2.6%

TOTAL REGISTRATIONS

BRANDS CHART Top Ten Manufacturers Dec 2020 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10.

Lexmoto .....................................1875 Suzuki...........................................726 Honda ..........................................691 BMW ............................................513 KTM .............................................440 Yamaha .........................................380 Triumph ........................................274 Kawasaki.......................................222 Piaggio..........................................212 Royal Alloy ....................................196

Alternative power registrations December 2020 Alternative power registrations data is included in the overall market data shown in the tables above

2020 / 2019 Registrations by Capacity POWER BAND Under 1kW 1-4kW 4-11kW 15-35kW

Dec 2020

Year to Date

Dec 2019

% Change

Dec 2020

Dec 2019

% Change

0

3

-100.0%

47

59

139

74

87.8%

1551

1060

-20.3% 46.3%

4

7

-42.9%

94

38

147.4%

6

4

50.0%

58

81

-28.4%

over 35kW

10

9

11.1%

96

52

84.6%

Unknown

127

38

234.2%

613

336

82.4%

TOTAL REGISTRATIONS

286

135

111.9%

2459

1626

51.2%

2020/2019 Registrations by Style MOTORCYCLES Adventure Sport

50

FEBRUARY 2021

Mopeds 1

Naked

21

22

Moped Others

Scooter

59

36

TOTAL MOPEDS

6

0

TRICYCLES

Trail/Enduro

10

4

Unspecified

2

0

103

63

TOTAL MOTORCYCLES

tel 02476 408000; www.mcia.co.uk

Dec 2019

5

Supersport

Registration statistics supplied by the MCIA;

Dec 2020

TOTAL ALTERNATIVE POWER REGISTRATIONS

Moped Scooters

Dec 2020

Dec 2019

140

57

41

13

181

70

Commercial Tricycle

2

1

Tricycle

2

2

TOTAL TRICYCLES

4

3

288

136

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New registrations

PREREGISTRATIONS SWAMP YEAR-END STATS MCIA REGISTRATION STATISTICS FOR December were a seasonal fairy tale with Santa’s elves delivering magical numbers – of unsold and underogated Euro 4 stock in urgent need of plates. BDN financial editor Roger Willis reports. Progressively mounting in degrees of unlikelihood, motorcycles were 45.8% up at 5126, scooters rose by 81.1% to 1916, mopeds climbed by 93.9% to 766 and trikes went ballistic to the tune of 233.3%, a 90-unit tally. The sum total of this monthly extravaganza was alleged 58.1% growth to 7898 machines. Fantasy figures engulfed every parameter. Stars among style categories shone brightly. Custom was 75.5% higher, led by Lexmoto’s ZSB 125 EFi. Naked put on 51.6%, with Lexmoto’s ISCA 125 SK out in front. Supersport gained 69.9% and Lexmoto’s LXR 125 SY topped that particular pile. Trail/Enduro added 41.8%, as a fleet of KTM 300 EXC TPI enduro bikes took the holeshot. Capacity classes displayed similar twisted reality. The 0-50cc slot blossomed by 93.7%, with the Yadea C-Like YD 1200 (E-Lex) and Sur-Ron Light Bee claiming leadership. The high-volume 51-125cc firmament stacked on 134.9%, dominated by Lexmoto’s Enigma ZS 125 scooter. Middleweight 126-650cc stuff was 22.9% up, with Suzuki’s previously invisible DL650 V-Strom to the fore. The 651-1000cc range was also exuberant, boasting a 23.4% rise. Another Suzuki, the GSX-S750Z Phantom got those laurels. Only over-1000cc machines spoilt this party, 0.6% down. BMW’s probably Euro 5 compliant R1250GS Adventure received highest-registered honours. If you haven’t clocked the picture by now, December brand rankings gave the game away. Most major marques, short on stock anyway and

Monthly Registrations Rolling Year Comparison

obviously more capable of managing Euro 4 derogation issues, suffered registration declines. The three biggest Japanese contenders – Honda, Yamaha and Kawasaki – were down respectively by 9.9%, 17.6% and 31.3%.

The Yadea C-Like(E-Lex) was not only best-selling moped in December, it is also the first electric-powered machine to top an overall style category.

Most major marques, short on stock anyway and obviously more capable of managing Euro 4 derogation issues, suffered registration declines Triumph sank by 21.9%. BMW Motorrad escaped with a minor 0.4% loss. Primary preregistration culprits were blatantly obvious. Lexmoto apparently usurped Honda from long-standing market hegemony with a ridiculously unfeasible 531.3% monthly growth.

NMDA COMMENT

A

decline of -2.6% in the motorcycle market in a year when we faced so many challenges is hugely positive”, said Paddy O’Connell, head of the NMDA, commenting on the latest MCIA figures. “Despite the multiple challenges that faced businesses in 2020, a total of 104,612 units were registered, just 2796 less than in 2019. Just for a moment, transport yourself back to the confusion and disarray of the first lockdown in March. If you had asked whether dealers would be happy with registrations declining by -2.6% for the year, there would have been much scoffing and speak of ‘wishful thinking’, but that is exactly where we ended the year. “As consumers continued to choose two wheels to stay ‘Covid safe’ in their commuting, many last-mile delivery businesses also required additional scooters and mopeds, leading to a 10.5% rise in scooter registrations for the year.

Runner-up Suzuki recorded an incredible 180.3% recovery from its weak performance in December 2019. KTM’s 27.9% surge was also somewhat suspicious. And as for niche retro scooter player Royal Alloy’s sudden ascension into top-ten territory, jaundiced observers would note that its fellow Keeway and SYM brands in the MotoGB distribution stable variously achieved the same feat during October and November, undoubtedly for the same reason. A sensible estimate of the position, going forward into 2021, is that there are somewhere in the region of 4000 preregistered new bikes now gathering dust in showrooms or sheds, awaiting customers looking for bargains. Given the aforementioned inventory shortages and without this distortion, actual sales in the final month of 2020 probably turned negative.

“Continually strong performance through the year for the adventure sport, sport/tour and naked segments indicated that riders alike were still engaged and wanting to get onto new PTWs. “With no travel, less opportunity to eat or drink out, and hardly any live sports or music to watch, consumers turned to alternative forms of entertainment resulting in the Trail/Enduro sector performing well. It is encouraging to see this side of the hobby and leisure market remains strong at the end of the year. “Throughout the whole of 2020, motorcycle dealers have shown resilience and flexibility. With the lockdowns, tier changes, restricted business practices and all the other obstacles that PTW dealers faced, to finish 2020 with 58.1% growth in December is simply staggering”, concluded O’Connell.

NATIONAL MOTORCYCLE DEALERS ASSOCIATION

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FEBRUARY 2021 51


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