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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 • October 2021

CREAKING +PLUS+ AT THE SEAMS UKCA quality mark on hold

Bristol dealer closure

Consumer demand outstrips supply Prices set to rise – Full report page 16

Yamaha no-show at Motorcycle Live Big UK inflation surge Record results for Pierer New battery consortium Crescent hires TT ace More microchip misery New and used sales data

October 2021

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2  OCTOBER 2021

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October 2021 : Issue 243

the team

the news

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

4 8 10 12 13 14 16 24 26 28

FINANCIAL EDITOR Roger Willis: motobusiness@icloud.com PRODUCTS EDITOR/DESIGNER Colin Williams: design@dealernews.co.uk DESIGNER Maurice Knuckey: creative@dealernews.co.uk

on sale NOW!

t: 01237 422660 e: adsales@dealernews.co.uk

Reluctant demise for Bristol dealer Yamaha no-show at Motorcycle Live On the Move – Crescent hires TT ace Classic Bike Jumble returns Sunbeam site rides again Fourth time lucky for bike show Manufacturer’s Trade Talk Firing and re-hiring – lawful, but risky International news – Pierer record results Off-road news – Segway new utility debut

CONTRIBUTORS Roger Willis; Dan Sagar; Alan Dowds; Rick Kemp; Adam Bernstein; John Featherstone

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ACCOUNTS MANAGER Mark Mayo: accounts@dealernews.co.uk ADVERTISING EXECUTIVE/AGENT 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 PUBLISHER Colin Mayo: editorial@dealernews.co.uk 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.

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the knowledge

54 ON THE MONEY Market analysis by Roger Willis

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Contents

Contents

2 2 0 2 WALL PLANNER

55 INTERNATIONAL SHARE PRICES A snapshot of global performance 56 NEW REGISTRATION DATA MCIA statistics, NMDA and BDN reports 58 USED BIKE DATA From Auto Trader, Glass’s Guide and MCN

the business 32 REACTION Off the Cuff 34 BUSINESS BEAT Due recognition

36 MARKETING MATTERS Social media – Do it right or not at all 38 SCH MOTOPREP Serving the industry from dock to doorstep 40 THE BUSINESS ESSENTIALS Pump up the speed 42 PRODUCTS Eight pages of wares for improved profit 51

TRADE CLASSIFIEDS Small adverts, big opportunities

advanced copy

deadlines

2021 Nov Issue 11 Oct

2021 Dec Issue 8 Nov

2022 Jan Issue 7 Dec

OCTOBER 2021 3 27/09/2021 11:47


Business news

Reluctant demise for Bristol dealer All good things come to an end and our 35 years here at Bath Road Motorcycles have been very good

B

ristol-based Bath Road Motorcycles shutdown at the end of September after 35 years in business. Originally established in 1986, Bath Road became the city’s BMW Motorrad franchise in 1989, a status it held for 23 years. Latterly, the dealership had successfully rebranded as an “independent BMW specialist”. Although manager Kris Stinchcombe says the closure is due to a combination of

reasons, he makes no bones about the fact that the principal culprit is local authority intransigence. Recent imposition of a camera-monitored bus lane across his showroom’s frontage, allied to blanket 24-hour residents’ parking schemes in nearby side streets, made access for motorcycling customers “almost impossible”. In a statement on social media, Stinchcombe said: “All good things come to an end and our

35 years here at Bath Road Motorcycles have been very good, meeting and dealing with so many loyal and returning customers, as well as welcoming the new generation of riders. “However, not least due to our everthoughtful council surrounding us with parking restrictions and the bus lane, the time has sadly come to call it a day. A big thank you to all our friends, customers and suppliers. It’s been one hell of a ride.”

UKCA quality mark on hold A NEW STAND-ALONE UKCA (UK Conformity Assessed) safety and quality assurance mark has been delayed further, as Brexiteer “sovereignty above all” ideology collides with the real world. BDN financial editor Roger Willis reports. Conceding that businesses won’t be able to achieve UKCA compliance by an official cut-off date of January 2022, the government has now extended ongoing recognition of the European Union’s CE mark to January 2023. Astute commentators believe a multi-faceted British testing regime built from scratch to replace CE certification on a like-forlike basis will be unable to meet that target either. The whole subject is made more farcical by the fact that, in most instances, there was no intention to differ from EU industry standards anyway. Domestic firms and foreign participants would therefore be submitting exactly

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the same paperwork to gain both UKCA and CE approval. And, in addition, the key British Standards Institute has remained a member of the European organisation that co-ordinates compliance. A core problem is British-based authorising bodies in many specialist areas simply don’t exist yet. For instance, the automotive

recertifying for the UK market, where they supply in only modest volumes of goods or components, so serious gaps in British supply chains may emerge. Complications come from having to certify the processes used to make widgets, as well as the actual widgets, too. Financial Times columnist Helen Thomas recently described the

Firms would be submitting exactly the same paperwork to gain both UKCA and CE approval sector has cited an absence of necessary UK testing capacity for the pyrotechnics employed in car air bags, which would stop sales of European-manufactured vehicles on our shores. And an increasing number of manufacturers in Europe and elsewhere are proving reluctant to bear the burden and costs of

ludicrous history of UKCA in a scathing piece entitled “Bonkers Brexit battle persists on product standards”. She pointed out it only surfaced in February 2019 as a contingency measure, if the UK left the EU without a trade deal in place, although the CE mark would also be unilaterally recognised for some unspecified period after that.

When Boris Johnson subsequently seized power, abandoning compromise on ruletaking and the desire for frictionless trade, such a position was ditched in favour of imposing UKCA when transition ended in January 2021. Apart from an unfeasible time-scale, Thomas noted that EU negotiators then inconveniently refused to replicate the mutual standards recognition agreement it had in place with other countries like Canada. So that date suddenly fell by the wayside in September 2020 and a unilateral nod to CE played into extra time – since extended once more. And she felt that it’s entirely possible this issue will come around again.

www.britishdealernews.co.uk 27/09/2021 11:47


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Business news

Sole traders hit hardest SOLE TRADERS HAVE BEEN disproportionately impacted by Covid restrictions, with 58% either not trading or trading less than pre-Covid, say a report by Small Business.co.uk Almost half of sole traders worry they won’t be able to afford to pay themselves a salary in the next six months, according to research supported by small business lender iwoca. And sole traders – said to account for 59% of UK businesses – are twice as likely not to be trading at all, with 14% in this predicament, compared with 7% of limited companies. The second-biggest worry for sole traders is being able to afford new stock (28%) and then repaying emergency Covid-19 financial help such as a Bounce Back Loan (20%). Although nearly a quarter of limited companies say they are making fewer sales due to Covid-secure workplace measures, this rises to almost one third for sole traders. Nearly four in ten sole traders say they have had fewer customers through the doors because of having to stay Covid-secure.

Yamaha no-show

Y

amaha Motor UK has stated that it will not be present at this year’s Motorcycle Live, scheduled to take place at the NEC Birmingham in December, thereby posing a question mark over the event’s viability if other leading manufacturers follow suit. Although Yamaha Motor Europe has confirmed its commitment to exhibiting at the EICMA Milan trade fair in Italy, that will be its sole

hands-on-metal European show appearance in the autumn of 2021. Yamaha Motor’s 2022 lineup will only be unveiled to potential British customers via its online platforms, such as the Yamaha Motor UK website and social media channels, as well as motorcycle media outlets. Some new models, such as the R7, will also be available for inspection at dealer showrooms from as early as November, with other new models in the range

Big UK inflation surge

T

he Office for National Statistics has revealed that UK inflation, as defined by the Consumer Prices Index, rose to an annualised 3.2% in August – up from 2% in July. This represents the highest level since March 2012 and the largest JMC-JMP-JMT-210x76.pdf 1 02.07.2021 13:08:13 month-on-month increase since detailed CPI data gathering began in 1997. Rising

filtering through across the winter and into the New Year. Commenting on the decision, Yamaha Motor UK general manager Adam Kelley said: “This year we feel it is the right time to showcase our 2022 line-up via our online channels and fully re-designed dealer network, which is enhanced by integrated interactive showroom tools such as the MyGarage app. However, attending events will continue to be part of our strategy moving forward in 2022.”

CONTACTLESS LIMIT SET TO RISE

food costs are mainly held responsible. The jump outstripped a recent Reuters poll of economists, which had predicted a 2.9% reading for August. However, the ONS and Bank of England are still insisting that inflationary pressures are “temporary” as the British economy recovers.

THE LIMIT SET ON CONTACTLESS CARD transactions will rise from £45 to £100 from 15 October. The spending limit has been raised gradually, from an initial £10 limit when contactless card payments were introduced in 2007 to £20 in 2012, then £30 in 2015 before it rose to the current limit of £45 at the start of the Coronavirus pandemic in 2020. The pandemic has encouraged consumers to move away from using cash, with many retailers keen to minimise contact between staff and customers. Nearly 60% of all debit card payments are now made using tap-and-go contactless technology.

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27/09/2021 14:01


Business news

New director at MCE MOTORCYCLE INSURANCE BROKER MCE HAS RECRUITED LEONARD Labinjo as finance director. Bringing 15 years of strategic financial management experience with him, Lubinjo’s appointment is the second recent addition to MCE’s leadership team, following Paul Ormiston joining as claims director. While he will take full responsibility for MCE’s finance function, Labinjo said the strategic advisory role particularly appealed to him: “MCE has some fantastic corporate discipline, and I saw a senior management team with a real vision and passion for fully modernising the business. Clearly good financial governance and strategic insight is needed to do this – and that’s what excites me.” MCE chief executive Julian Edwards added: “Insurance is changing. There’s been so much talk in the industry about digitisation and the insurtech future. But I’ve seen little evidence of many businesses actually making it happen. Now we have taken that step, with the technology to allow growth and diversification. Leonard Labinjo’s appointment is a critical piece of the jigsaw.”

K-Tech add applications engineer LAUREN ROSE HAS BEEN appointed as applications engineer for K-Tech Suspension, strengthening the company’s design team. Rose recently graduated from Coventry University after successfully achieving a first-class degree in Automotive Engineering and is not a stranger to K-Tech as she spent a year’s placement with the company in 2019/2020. She is also a keen motorcyclist, owning five bikes, including a Honda CBR400.

Promotions at Close

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lose Brothers Motor Finance has promoted John Cassidy to director of commercial partners. In a career at Close spanning almost 12 years, Cassidy has led the sales and operations teams across all the UK territories in which the business operates. Most recently, he served as head of brokers and partnerships. Prior to that, he worked for HFC Bank and then HSBC for 17 years. Matt King has been promoted to a new head of partners role, reporting to John Cassidy and working on building a network of potential commercial partners. Joining Close in 2017 to lead the national sales team responsible for franchising and national broker relationships, King subsequently became head of sales transformation and capability in early 2019. Managing director Sean Kemple said: “John and Matt have been instrumental to our success. Their expertise in sales, relationship management and finding new routes to market is second to none.”

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Constant growth for Super Soco

F

ollowing strong year-todate sales for Super Soco, the electric motorcycle brand has continued its rapid expansion of both its team and premises in the UK with the recent appointment of a new systems administrator and the opening of a new satellite office in Exeter. Systems administrator Sean Kelly has joined the Super Soco team from Exeter-based brand Lexmoto, where he was parts manager. He has extensive experience in the automotive industry, having previously worked for the Hendy Group and White Horse Motors, and will hone the brand’s internal processes as it continues to grow. Kelly joins senior operations

manager Dan Frost, and social media and marketing manager James Archibald at Super Soco’s brand-new office premises in Exeter, which the company has opened in addition to its London HQ to accommodate its expanding team. “I’m very happy to make the move to Super Soco as it continues to establish itself as the leading electric motorcycle brand in the UK”, said Kelly. “I’m joining at a very exciting time and I can’t wait to see where we can take the company over the coming months and years. We know that electric vehicles are the future and Super Soco is really leading the way in terms of alternative urban transport.”

Sean Kelly has joined the Super Soco team from Lexmoto

Crescent hires TT ace Hillier MULTI-TALENTED motorcycling sportsman James Hillier has joined the Crescent Yamaha dealership at Verwood in Dorset, to support its GYTR Pro Shop division. At the specialist facility, one of only four in the UK approved by Yamaha Motor Europe, Hillier will be helping customers to ensure race and track-day bikes, along with associated equipment, are best suited to their experience and budget. In addition, he will work with them to develop bike set-up and riding

technique on coaching days. With his CV already featuring 56 Isle of Man TT finishes, 52 silver replicas, 14 podiums, victory in the 2013 Lightweight TT and status as seventh-fastest TT rider in history thanks to a 132.414mph lap, Hillier certainly isn’t short of experience pertinent to his new role at Crescent. Still highly competitive under the Rich Energy OMG Racing banner at selected British Superbike meetings, he is looking forward to the North West 200 and Isle of Man TT road races

returning next year, as well as a debut off-road entry in the 2022 Dakar Rally. Commenting on the appointment, Crescent supremo Paul Denning said: “James Hillier has all the credentials we could possibly look for in someone to take our GYTR Pro Shop customer service to the next level. He may be one of the world’s best road racers, but more importantly James is downto-earth, enthusiastic and already has experience in the motorcycle industry.”

www.britishdealernews.co.uk 27/09/2021 14:11


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Business news From left: Pete Downes, Rob Sheldon and Peter Abbott

Wholesale changes TRADE DISTRIBUTER BICKERS HAS MADE A TRIO OF ADDITIONS AND changes to its sales team. Pete Downes has joined the team to cover East Anglia, his appointment follows the promotion of Marc Jeffery to sales office manager at the Bickers Felixstowe headquarters. Many in the trade know Downes from past roles with several leading distributors over the last couple of decades. Bickers UK sales manager Rob Sheldon said: “It’s great to welcome Pete to the team. I’m sure he will be a valuable addition to our current sales force. Pete is well respected throughout the trade, and we look forward to working with him alongside our two newest brands – Fulbat batteries and BWX accessories. “It is also timely to officially welcome our South Eastern area sales manager Peter Abbott who joined us during the last lockdown. Peter has already begun making a positive difference for us and is a welcome face with dealers in his territory.” Interested dealers can contact Peter Abbott on 07775 661942 and Pete Downes on 07775 661943.

Classic Bikejumble returns

T

he South of England Classic Bikejumble and Show returns to the Ardingly showground for the final time this year, on Sunday 31 October. Club stands, plus individual entries for pre-1980 machines, will be on display in the Jubilee Hall, with prizes awarded to the best bikes on show in nine classes. The trade stands, jumblers and garage clear-out stalls will spread across three sheds, allowing visitors to browse new and used parts, accessories and tools, ready for that winter restoration. Members of the public can also display complete, running machines for sale in the Bikemart section. Held at the South of England Showground, between London and Brighton, the venue is only eight miles from junction 10 off the M23. Gates open to the public from 10am on Sunday 31 October. Early bird admission from 7:30am is available for serious bargain-hunters! Visit www.elk-promotions.co.uk for more information.

Targeted TV advertising

D

igitally Charged has announced a new partnership with AdSmart from Sky that easily enables brands to advertise on TV by focusing on targeted audiences that matter to them. The technology behind the system means a brand can reach households by postcode area, within a designated distance of their store, or by household make-up that best suit their brand. For motorcycle brands, AdSmart can build an audience by pulling through every motorcycle programme that has been viewed in the last twelve months and sits these households in a segment ready to target. The new partnership allows Digitally Charged to offer multiple advertisers affordable access to a prebuilt segment using viewing data to target motorcycle enthusiasts. AdSmart only runs advertisements when the selected audience segment is watching, and to keep the cost down and ROI high, charges are only applied when 75% or more of the advert has been viewed. “We’ve been working with Sky for almost

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a year now and I feel we’ve got one of the best motorcycle audiences built for our clients to use on TV. It’s given us another string to our bow aside from all the other digital offerings we have,” says Chris Day, founder of Digitally Charged.

“Having run multiple campaigns and with one client having triple-digit bike registrations over three months it’s definitely something that should be considered as part of any marketing strategy, especially now we’ve worked to make it a more affordable offering and not just for clients with higher value products to launch. It’s perfect for clothing, parts, accessories as well as retailers and manufacturers,” added Day. Digitally Charged also offers a host of alternative digital business solutions. Contact: digitalsales@digitally-charged.com

Cambrian backs Blood Bikes LEADING INDEPENDENT POWERED TWO-WHEELER tyre distributor Cambrian Tyres has donated a brandnew BMW R1250RT to Blood Bikes Mid Wales. It has become the latest addition to this charity’s life-saving motorcycle fleet, which provides a completely free courier service for the NHS. Each machine used by Blood Bikes is named. This one has been affectionately entitled Myfanwy, after Cambrian Tyres founder Cledwyn Evans’ late wife, who sadly passed away early last year. Myfanwy, who was also known by many Aberystwyth residents as Margaret, played an instrumental role in establishing the company, which celebrated 50 years in business in February this year. Cambrian Tyres hopes this gift in her memory will continue to make a difference in Aberystwyth and beyond for years to come. Cambrian Tyres sales manager Mathew Leeman, who is also an area representative and trustee of Blood Bikes Mid Wales, kindly accepted the bike keys from Cledwyn Evans.

www.britishdealernews.co.uk 27/09/2021 10:18


Business news

Sunbeam site rides again STALLED PLANS TO CONVERT the former Sunbeam motorcycle factory complex in Wolverhampton into housing are set to resume after commercial real estate agent Colliers International – acting on behalf of insolvency practitioner Quantuma – finally found a buyer. The 2.1-acre site, where Sunbeam motorcycles were manufactured from 1912 to 1937, consists of a 150,000sq.ft group of mainly Victorian industrial buildings ranged around the perimeter of a large triangular courtyard. Four Isle of Man Senior TTwinning machines were built at the factory. Tommy de la Hay took the first of Sunbeam’s TT victories in 1920, followed by the great Irish-Canadian star Alec Bennett in 1922. Then Charlie Dodson scored a double, winning both the 1928 and 1929 Senior TT races. Legendary F1 commentator Murray Walker’s father Graham was also a regular competitor for the marque in the 1920s and early 1930s. Famous Yorkshireman Tom

Bullus, whose name went on to be synonymous with German-made but British-designed NSU racers in the same period – the Bullus singles – also cut his TT teeth astride a Sunbeam. However, the factory’s more recent history is a less-stirring saga. It stood disused and semi-derelict from the early 1990s onwards, in danger of demolition, until bought by QED Developments a decade ago. This new proprietor obtained planning consent for conversion to 117 residential apartments in 2013, but only 35 of these were completed before QED went bust in 2017. The remaining property then fell into the hands of joint administrators Simon Campbell and Carl Jackson at Quantuma. Having languished without any saviour in sight for three years, the premises have now been sold for £7.5m to Paragon Living Space, a local developer specialising in the delivery of social and public-sector housing.

NMDA e-scooter progress

A

virtual meeting between the Department for Transport (DfT) and the National Motorcycle Dealers Association (NMDA) took place on 17 September, providing a useful opportunity for the association to highlight its priorities. “Following a recent letter to Rachel Maclean MP, which outlined member’s position on future regulation, the NMDA asked for clarification of the recent reclassification of e-scooters to ‘Powered Transporters’. It was encouraging to meet with the minister and government officials to discuss our member’s position regarding e-scooter trials and their future regulation,” said Paddy O’Connell, head of the NMDA. During the meeting with DfT, NMDA reiterated its support of the government’s decarbonisation strategy and Powered Transporters as an integral part of reaching net-zero carbon goals. NMDA called for compulsory accredited road awareness training for those without full licenses (to last 24 months), wearing safety equipment, minimum rider age of 14, unique identifiers on all e-scooters, and registration of e-scooters through the RaV portal and mandatory liability insurance. Paddy O’Connell added: “By properly regulating, training, and registering e-scooters, there is a natural route to market through established dealer networks that already offer rider training, safety equipment and have the facilities to register new vehicles.”

www.britishdealernews.co.uk BDN243 News 2.indd 13

OCTOBER 2021  13 27/09/2021 10:22


Business news

Fourth time lucky for Bike Show

A

fter three cancellations, two putative changes of venue and a last-minute reversal, the Manchester Bike Show organisers are understandably delighted to announce that their event will return at Manchester’s EventCity on the weekend of 29-30 January 2022. Due to the pandemic, shows at EventCity were canned in March 2020 and again in March 2021. Then, upon hearing of potential permanent closure for the EventCity venue, a third attempt to revive the event was scheduled elsewhere at Bowlers, to run on 11-12 September 2021. That bit the dust when exhibiting dealers, on behalf of various manufacturers, pulled out owing to display stock shortages. In its turn, this version was rescheduled for 2-3 April 2022 at Bowlers. But then the superior EventCity venue was suddenly offered by a third-party company which had taken out a short-term licence to run activities in the halls there until 31 January 2022. Battle-weary Manchester Bike Show organisers therefore gratefully booked the weekend immediately prior to that date. They have reportedly gained approval from all the major exhibitors who were booked into the original show, before its first postponement in March 2020, so it’s definitely on the road. Fingers crossed …

Michelin races on

MotoGP promoter Dorna Sports has signed a three-year contract extension with Michelin that will see the French firm continue as official tyre supplier to Dorna’s premier race series until at least 2026. Michelin, based at Clermont-Ferrand, became sole tyre supplier to MotoGP in 2016, replacing Bridgestone. As part of this extended agreement, the brand will also continue to be featured trackside at each event and will be the title sponsor of a grand prix each season.

Commenting on the refreshed deal, Michelin Group chief executive Florent Menegaux said: “We are very satisfied with the results obtained since returning to MotoGP. For us, being a partner means engaging with both spectators and all players in the discipline using our tyres, our brand and our innovations. We see motorsport like a lab that encourages transfers of expertise and swift application of our sustainable solutions that benefit everyone.”

Supply constraints continue to plague the industry According to data published by the Motor Cycle Industry Association (MCIA), registrations in August fell 5.2% compared to last year. However, compared to August 2019’s pre-pandemic total, 24.4% more machines were registered, indicating activity remains far from disappointing RECENT FEEDBACK FROM dealers suggests that demand for new machines has slowed, which is not uncommon at this time of year but has been exacerbated by stock shortages. However, it remains at least on par with last year. Supply constraints continue to plague the

industry with various models sold out. This is likely to continue for the time being, with the likelihood that registrations will be hindered further.

OUTLOOK Although used market activity remains strong for the time of year, we are now moving into autumn where we expect demand to fall. Taking this into account values have been eased a little across most sectors for Glass’s October edition. The exceptions to this are mopeds, smaller capacity scooters, commuters and off-roaders, where values have been held. Paul McDonald Leisure Vehicles Editor

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’ s r e r tu c a f u n a M

Making and getting bikes from factory to showrooms has presented the supplyside of the industry with massive problems over the last 18 months. Huge increases in shipping and raw materials costs, erratic delivery dates, component shortages and Brexit have all combined to create a never-ending game of chess. Alan Dowds finds out how the manufacturers have been making their moves

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an utter nightmare. But bikes have got off here’s an old saying that when Wall lightly. Indeed, the last 18 months has seen Street sneezes, the City of London strong demand all across the powered twocatches a cold. And when it comes wheel sector, for a number of key reasons. to the bike industry, if the mainstream Through all but the early ‘extreme’ levels of UK economy catches a cold, we often end lockdown, people felt able to enjoy leisure up with pneumonia. That was true during motorcycling: the isolated nature of bike the last financial crash in 2008, when riding felt ‘safe’, even without vaccines, bike sales plummeted amid price rises, at the peak of the pandemic. That meant high unemployment, bank collapses and a bikers with spare cash – from cancelled massive global credit crunch. And it looks holidays, refunded train season tickets or like it might be true now – but in some very simply three months away from the pub different, interesting ways (interesting to the – could spend it on a bike and kit instead. economists and historians for sure). Limits on foreign travel have continued Before we start though, it’s worth reright up till today, boosting ‘staycations’, iterating that the motorcycle industry has been extremely lucky over the past 18 months and jumping on the bike for a tour of the Highlands of Scotland, the valleys of the Covid-19 pandemic. A wide of Wales or the Cornish seaside range of industries, from jetShipping has made perfect sense as engine manufacturers to an alternative all through nightclub owners, airlines has been hard 2020 and 2021. “We’ve to gyms have all had had one of our best to manage, even years ever with the Gold getting containers Wing, because people can’t travel abroad,” is difficult Andy Mineyko, business planner at Honda UK told us for this piece. “You can’t get a camper van for love nor Mutt Motorcycles money, and we’ve sold an awful lot of Wings.” Meanwhile, at the other end of the market, essential workers, and people who couldn’t work from home were desperate for an alternative means of commuting. Tubes, trains, trams and buses all felt like Covid petri-dishes, and given the choice, a solo motorcycle or scooter journey wrapped up in helmet and riding kit felt much safer to many. Add in the explosion in demand for delivery riders for home food deliveries,

Will Rigg

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and it’s easy to see (with hindsight) why small bikes also became such hot property. That demand came as a surprise to many last year – and our Trade Talk feature from 12 months ago told the story back then. Bike importers had massively cut their forward orders – who thought that bike sales would remain strong when it seemed like the world was about to end in March 2020? And in the Far East, Covid restrictions closed down motorcycle assembly plants as well as component manufacturers in the supply chain. That all meant bike supply dried up massively through the middle of 2020, while dealers were met with demand that picked up fast through summer, and became insatiable into the autumn and even the winter of 2020/21. There was a bit of a setback at the start of 2021, thanks to another enforced lockdown and a huge second peak of Covid infections and deaths. But as the vaccine programme accelerated, and lockdown eased again, the scene was set for a new season of strong demand for bikes.

LOGISTICS Now though, there’s another perfect storm from those difficulties common across the whole economy, affecting the supply side of the bike industry. The first one is logistics – the (usually mundane) process of moving bikes and parts from where they are produced to the dealer and final customer. Supplies of 40ft shipping containers are limited, the global container shipping network is creaking at the seams, and there’s a massive shortage of HGV drivers in the UK and elsewhere. Howard Dale of Kawasaki UK outlined his firm’s experience at the moment. “The global shortage of shipping containers is causing huge logistical problems and as a result the cost 

www.britishdealernews.co.uk 27/09/2021 11:50


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standard shipping containers – and even used of shipping has risen by over 400% for product a refrigerated one.” A cool performance from coming from the Far East,” he told us. the Llexeter team then … And that story was repeated by everyone Perhaps the most frustrating aspect to the we spoke to, from giants like Honda, where shipping problems is the unpredictability according to Andy Mineyko, “the supply of container delivery – as Andy chain is unpredictable … the problem is Mineyko of Honda explains. getting the bikes from the factories to the You “When a ship leaves Thailand dealers,” through to smaller firms like Mutt think you’re or Japan and you’re told Motorcycles in Birmingham. Will Rigg from it’s going to arrive in Mutt told us, “shipping has been hard to important, but Southampton on a certain manage, even getting containers is difficult. they don’t give a At one point we had 14 shipped and they were date, if it gets there and share all information the port is too busy with stuck at a dock somewhere.” shit about you! with our dealer partners a backlog, it just carries on That problem – one of the many that to ensure they get the to its next destination, then are common throughout the entire British stock they need, with the comes back to us in two or economy at the moment – is also leading to top priority being to supply three weeks. And you don’t find eye-watering price rises. Dean Clements of ClementsMoto customers first. out till after the event. So, a boat ClementsMoto, the UK Fantic, Motorini and “One measure we have taken is is due on the 17th and on the 18th Zontes importer, was one of several industry to introduce levels of financial support for you find out it’s in Rotterdam or Zeebrugge figures reporting a 1000% increase in dealers that are willing to trade their stock or wherever. And it’s very hard to explain shipping costs. “Inbound stuff from China with other Suzuki dealerships. This initiative to dealers and customers. Places is pretty well documented: prices was designed to ensure eager customers can like the Suez Canal, they don’t have gone up just over tenfold. The collect and ride their new Suzuki as soon as usually stop for anything, We ship in 40ft containers, problem is possible, rather than waiting for another they just keep going. And which used to cost £1650. month or longer. We cover the logistics costs when you have customers We’re now haggling getting the bikes waiting it’s incredibly for dealerships taking part in the scheme, around £16,000-£18,000 and its great that so many are involved and a container.” from the factories frustrating.” are helping keep customers happy.” Suzuki GB head of Will Rigg agrees. to the dealers Dean Clements has also experienced this. motorcycles, Jonathan “Before Covid we were “We had a ship due in to Southampton, a big Martin, said, “Like most paying $2000 for a one, and there weren’t enough drivers to clear industries we have seen container to get from the containers off the portside. So our ship delays in the shipping Honda UK the Far East to here, and just sails on to Zeebrugge, dumps its English process over recent months, now it’s $20,000. It went to load there and you have to wait for a feeder but we work closely with the $24,000 at one point.” vessel to shuttle it back to Tilbury. It’s one ports in Japan, here in the UK and Firms have had to get imaginative or two weeks late, and you don’t have road everywhere in between to make as well. Pete Smith at Llexeter freight booked, it’s booked for Southampton sure any disruption is kept to a told us of one novel tactic the not Tilbury.” minimum. But we also ensure our firm used: “Supply chain issues Clements puts the position bluntly: “You dealers are informed and kept stemming from container shortages, might have ten containers on a ship holding up to speed regularly, so that increased shipping costs, and the lack they can manage their stock 14,000 containers. You think you’re important, of trained drivers for lorries but they don’t give a shit about you!” and manage customer has affected us without a Shipping from the Far East is a tricky job expectations. doubt. We’ve seen longer then – and one shared with other, much Those stock waiting times for parts, bigger industries. Dean Clements told us of challenges are found containers to be one company his logistics supplier works likely to remain, far more expensive, and certainly for the with; “We use a shipping firm that works occasionally struggled with DFS, the furniture company. They’re coming weeks to get the products obviously using hundreds of containers and months, to our warehouse. monthly and they’re paying the same sort but we will We’ve sought out of prices as us, so there’s no one in our continue to alternatives to 

Dean Clements

Andy Mineyko

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trade shipping in the volume needed to get anything any better.” But what about other routes? Arun Gopal, head of business markets EMEA of Royal Enfield told us about the supply chain from India. “The non-availability of containers and freight costs has become a bit of an issue, with the economy bouncing back. As we speak, we are struggling with that. The teams in India and our business partners here in the UK and Europe, are looking at longer-term contracts with various providers so we can lock-in rate and availability of containers for the next few months and that has helped. Container and ship availability from India to UK has been a challenge, but it is easing up now.” Gopal pointed to other issues that Royal Enfield has been facing though. “All our material costs have gone up – steel, aluminium, rubber, it’s a global issue because so many steel mills closed down last year. I’ve worked in the steel industry and it is not easy to re-start a steel mill that’s shut down. And for Royal Enfield, we use more metal and less plastic parts than some others – made like a gun! So that has been a factor – and the latest one is the microchip semiconductor shortage.” Many other firms also mentioned the global semiconductor shortage and its impact on production. Some, like Tim Maccabee, MD of Ducati UK were sanguine about the effects. “It’s slightly slower getting the bikes into the country but that’s not been a big drama. It’s been a combination of component supply and the sheer level of demand for parts like microchips and other electronic parts that go into bikes and cars. But I think if we were facing the year that we might have expected in 2020-21 due to a global pandemic (surely demand would have gone down …), we’d have been alright.” For Howard Dale, the situation is manageable but trying. “I think Kawasaki is in the same situation as many automotive companies inasmuch as obtaining certain specific components in sufficient quantity to complete a production build has become difficult and unpredictable. We are working on a week-by-week basis at present in terms of what will be available and when.”

Deliveries of Austrianbuilt machines are running as normal into the UK

Matt Walker KTM

20  OCTOBER 2021

BREXIT The next problem that’s hit the UK economy is Brexit – though the precise impact of leaving the EU remains controversial. Leavers seem keen to blame Covid, EU intransigence and global changes for any difficulties, while remainers pin the blame solely on Brexit for We have two troubles with importing products and staff new factories in shortages across the Argentina and Colombia economy. Whatever the truth, it seems but for UK and Europe clear that Brexit has made life tougher it’s 100% Indian-built so for firms bringing Brexit hasn’t affected bikes and parts into Great Britain from anything don’t want to come the continent. “Road over, and it’s weeks. freight coming into the UK There’s paperwork, from Italy is now 40% more there’s so much more expensive,” said Dean Clements. Royal Enfield involved in getting a lorry over “That’s purely Brexit and the extra now. It’s just not as simple, and takes a time the lorry is going to be on the road to week or two now.” get through customs. The paperwork is now A major problem with Brexit is ‘rules of a nuisance where it never used to be. Before origin’ paperwork, where bikes and parts it didn’t matter if it was coming from Italy or need proof of where they were originally Manchester, it was the same, absolute free made, and even what percentage of the final movement of goods. We don’t have that now, product comes from where. Dale Robinson it’s not the same. And most EU hauliers don’t of Zero UK told us how the electric bike firm want to do UK routes, they can make more adapted to Brexit and the changes of EU money travelling around the EU rather than shipping timescales. “It used to be three days, coming here.” now it is two weeks, which we can live with. Will Rigg echoes these problems. “We used The first three or four months were difficult to bring a lot of stock into the UK for final but it’s settled down a lot now. We’re busy finishing then re-export, and with Brexit that managing duties and VAT – rules of origin is has been a real nightmare – paperwork, cost, easy because we have a bonded warehouse time. Goods arrive at the destination, and in the EU and [Californian-built] bikes the papers are correct but local customs are leave there to go to the UK as if they came making a meal out of it because they don’t straight from the US. But our parts don’t like Brexit.” have a bonded warehouse, and they can have Big firms like Yamaha and Honda also have multiple origins and we haven’t got a grip of production sites in the EU, and they’re facing that yet. So we’re paying double duties: into the same time penalties on moving bikes into the UK. “We have factories in Spain and Italy,” the EU and then into the UK.” Firms are adopting various strategies to said Honda’s Andy Mineyko, “and production overcome Brexit – including moving business isn’t the problem. Before when a lorry functions out of the UK and into the EU. Will departed from Barcelona or Italy, it would Rigg again: “We’ve opened a European base in turn up the next day. Now, lorry drivers Rotterdam and bonded our warehouse here in Birmingham. But even then you never have the stock in the right places and the costs are high. We want to keep as much of the business as we can in Birmingham but it will depend on how the Brexit situation pans out. If it becomes logistically too difficult we’ll have to scale the EU operation.” KTM has important supply chains from India, and Matt Walker, MD at KTM UK told us how Brexit has changed how it moves bikes into the UK. “Brexit was the first challenge that we had to overcome, and we were quickly onto resolving the issues that arose from the agreement. As an example, we’re now getting our Indian-built product (KTM 125/390 Duke, Husqvarna Svartpilen 125/401 and Vitpilen 401) delivered directly to the UK rather than going via our hub in Austria, so if anything we’re a month ahead of where we thought we would be with 

Arun Gopal

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bike from stock, in the short term, that’s a challenge. I think it’s a case of going into a showroom and the sales staff taking an order and managing customer expectations. It’s a tough place to be a dealer at the moment, and they’ve coped remarkably well. It’s a massive change, from having a showroom full of bikes to now We’ve having more of a boutique had a staffing than a warehouse. So had less bikes than boom in the past 12 they’ve ever before on show, and months and have been they have to manage customer expectations recruiting constantly in differently and they have adapted on the line with exponential whole very very well.” company growth Despite the challenges, Suzuki GB has made good on a promise to deliver new products to market in 2021, Super Soco with Jonathan Martin adding, this product, which in the “We informed our dealers a year ago of context of the category has our new model plans for 2021 and we have been a real benefit.” been true to our word on that. The icon that Walker also reckons KTM has avoided is the Hayabusa returned and we had plenty the worst of Brexit problems with its EUof confirmed orders before the bike had even UK logistics. “Deliveries of Austrian-built arrived in dealerships. Throughout the year machines are running as normal into the UK we’ve also introduced the GSX-S1000 and so the distribution of product into dealers has been as planned. As such, stock levels are the GSX-S950, plus an updated Burgman 400, and believe our dealer partners can at a healthy level across the network to meet expect an excellent start to the 2022 season.” strong demand.” Arun Gopal says Royal Enfield is seeing Royal Enfield has been largely insulated light at the end of the tunnel in terms of from Brexit, with its production entirely supply now. “We did have an issue towards based in India. Arun Gopal told us there the beginning of the season especially in hadn’t been any problems since the the UK but there are a lot more containers Brexit transition arrangements ended in coming in now and we should be able to January this year, “because we don’t do clear 100% of all the orders and have a little any manufacturing over here. As of now all excess to supply dealers too. In terms of the bikes in the EU and UK are from India. sales figures, up to week two of September We have two new factories in Argentina 2021, we have increased by 55% – last year and Colombia but for UK and Europe it’s we did 1840 registrations and right now we 100% Indian-built so Brexit hasn’t affected have done 2864. So despite the doom and anything.” gloom we have done really well.” Adam Kelley, GM sales and marketing at THE SHOWROOM FLOOR? Yamaha UK is also positive about where the What does all this mean for salespeople firm is heading – with sales up and good on the showroom floor then? Well, it supply of important models like the Tracer boils down to less machinery in stock, range. “By now everyone longer lead times for deliveries, rising will appreciate the prices for used stock – and more space in dealerships. Everyone that BDN spoke to Shipping for this feature agreed that demand is used to be three outstripping supply across the board. “Demand has been outstripping days, now it is two supply,” continued Tim Maccabee. “The percentage of bikes arriving weeks, which we as sold units and the percentage can live with arriving as stock units has reversed – in a normal year it might be 25/75, now it’s 75/25. We don’t have the long lead times of travel that the Japanese Zero Motorcycles have so theirs is more usually a stock unit so they know what they’re getting. That change is really quite significant for the dealers.” Andy Mineyko agrees that customers can’t just rock up to a dealership and expect to buy any bike from stock. “No, I think the days of going into a dealer and picking up any

Dan Frost

current challenges we face – raw material availability, rising costs of those materials and logistic challenges. It is a changing environment and it continues to affect us globally. Depending on factory location, the changing pandemic environment impacts production and we understand dealer and customer frustration, particularly when affecting volume models across all sectors from NMAX through to MT-09. We remain positive about the market place and the continued strong demand, and still have conversations with dealers who are considerably up on sales (even against 2019). However, some are understandably frustrated to not be able to make more additional profitable sales. Thankfully new models like the Tracer are in good supply so we need to take the opportunity where stock allows. That said, we are clearly missing opportunities based on availability.”

STAFFING The final problem that’s making headlines in the main economy at the moment is staffing – but here we didn’t find as much evidence of problems in the bike sector itself, as opposed to in support services like delivery drivers. Howard Dale of Kawasaki told us, “[The] KMUK staffing situation is stable,” and that seems like the broad picture at the bigger firms. It’s a different story at some smaller, expanding firms though. “Hiring people at the moment is really hard,” said Will Rigg at Mutt Motorcycles. “As a growing brand we’re in a constant cycle of recruitment and in some sectors people are reluctant to move if they think they might be looking at furlough again, for example.” Again, though, that’s not universal. Dan Frost, operations manager at electric bike firm Super Soco told us the firm has been taking on lots of workers. “We’ve had a staffing boom in the past 12 months and have been recruiting constantly in line with exponential company growth. We currently run our dealership deliveries in-house, so have been able to dodge most of the current problems with HGV driver shortages.” What about in the dealer world itself? We asked Andy Mineyko at Honda if his

Dale Robinson

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NICHE ISSUES We found one or two unusual problems that bike manufacturers have been having this year too. Will Rigg at Mutt told us that the shutdown of government vehicle test centres held up his firm’s new product development by months. “We have three new models coming in the early part of next year that are updates, then four more ground-up new OEM platforms that we’ve developed. They’ve been delayed by Covid. The testing centres just shut for long periods of time, holding up legal conformity checks.” Meanwhile, Dale Robinson at Zero has had difficulties launching a new technical training program for dealers taking on the firm’s high-tech electric machinery. “Training has been difficult. Most problems on Zero machines can be diagnosed remotely, but engineers haven’t been able to visit us in the UK from Holland since last February. We’ve gone from three to 21 dealers in four years, and haven’t been able to provide physical tech support because we can’t get people from here to Holland and vice versa. We’ve been doing it all remotely but that’s obviously much harder – so we’re just about to appoint a UK field service engineer to visit all our dealers once a month.”

THE UPSIDE It’s important to go back to where we started in this feature. Despite the previous 3000 words about the problems the trade is facing in terms of logistics, bike supply, Brexit and staffing, the fact remains that we are in a pretty decent position – certainly nothing like 2008. Demand outstripping supply is almost always a better situation for traders than the reverse, within reason. And there’s other positive knock-on effects too: secondhand bike values are rocketing, with keen consumers ready to pay more for used bikes. “Everything’s going through the roof,” said Andy Mineyko of Honda. “We monitor auctions etc, and dealers are getting fantastic money for used bikes. There’s a massive shortage, and some places are now employing a buyer to go around the country and buy used bikes.” Ducati’s Tim Maccabee also points out the swings and roundabouts. “There have been some benefits and some disadvantages. So less stocking charges – and more space in the showroom to display bikes more nicely. Dealers report that they are maintaining better

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margins, and the incentive for customers to shop around not only on price but also on availability is slightly less, so perhaps people are buying more from local dealers. And second hand values are strong too.” It does seem inevitable that there will be price rises next year – or sooner – as firms try to cover the extra costs from logistics, shipping, Brexit friction and rising raw materials costs. “Will (new) prices go up? Ultimately yes,” said Andy Mineyko. “I wish it wasn’t so, but the prices of raw materials have increased, shipping has increased. We’ve managed to stabilise it, we had a small price increase beginning of August and ultimately as new bikes come through, it’s something that will end up potentially being passed onto the customer.” “[Prices rising] is inevitable The global I am afraid,” said Howard Dale. “The cost of shortage of shipping has risen shipping containers is so severely we are unable to absorb causing huge logistical all the additional problems and as a result cost and the cost of product will the cost of shipping has increase to cover underlining its some of this extra risen by over 400% status as one of the cost. However, we are biggest names in determined to keep electric bikes. Though these increases as low as Dale Robinson reckons possible.” Kawasaki UK the firm’s demo roadshows Tim Maccabee confirmed have been more useful in terms the upward pressure on of selling the new technology. “Shows costs. “We’re expecting a small annual are important, though we do get asked the inflationary price rise on October first and same questions over and over again. But if we had a small price increase on transport you can do an event where people can ride earlier this year. And there is an element of bikes and really experience the product, component costs going up.” that’s much better. But we’ll be there to Possible price rises aside, everyone BDN support the industry and be a part of it but spoke to for this feature were also very the most effective thing for us is to demo the positive for the medium-term future, product. In the last six months, doing tours assuming no more ‘black swan’ events like all over UK, we’ve done 2500 test rides, and another Covid pandemic. “We’re positive on the day sold 20 bikes there and then.” about 2022 and will continue to ensure What about expanding dealer networks? we remain competitive in the market,” “We’re doing Motorcycle Live, yes,” said said Adam Kelley, “even with the current Ducati MD Tim Maccabee. “And we’ve got a production and logistic cost increases. new dealership in London, and Chris Walker Continued strong demand backed up by new on board too. We probably have had more models in many segments will help all of applicants [to open Ducati dealerships] than us enjoy what we hope to be a good year’s in a long time, and there are a few more trading.” people across the country we’re talking to.” Other firms outlined their commitment to the Motorcycle Live show at the NEC, and other marketing activities. MAKING IT WORK “We are really excited for what the future So, is the bike trade going to escape the will bring for our brands,” said Peter Smith UK’s current economical sickness with from Llexeter. “We’re going to Motorcycle little more than a sniffle? The final word Live 2021 in December, with the biggest for this Trade Talk goes to the inimitable stand we’ve ever had, and we’re going to be Dean Clements. “I haven’t got a crystal ball, continuing to launch the new Euro 5 range at but unless things change drastically I can the same pace as we had originally intended.” see a busy autumn and busier winter than Arun Gopal revealed that Royal Enfield usual. In summary, there are challenges, it’s will even be launching a new bike at the NEC not easy, everything is harder work than – the 350 Classic. “We have a second 350 it needs to be. But I wouldn’t complain, model coming, the Classic. It was launched because the market is going strong. If any in India this month, and we will get it at the dealer is struggling to make it work at the NEC show.” moment with the market as it is, they need Zero Motorcycles will be at the NEC too, to go and get a job!” 

Howard Dale

OCTOBER 2021  23

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dealers are short on people. “Yes – especially technicians. We speak to the network and they can’t get technicians for love nor money. And they’re paying good money, the correct wage, but there is a huge shortage of techs. The sales side seems okay, but the workshop side is really struggling.” Is the technician shortage perhaps caused by Brexit? “I’m not sure if it’s people moving back or if they’ve just gone back to their home country and now can’t get back to the UK, or if they’re perhaps moving onto stuff like delivery driving.”


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Firing and re-hiring Lawful, but not without risk

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he practice of ‘fire and re-hire’ – also known as dismissal and re-engagement – is a practice that can be used by employers to alter the terms and conditions of employees’ contracts of employment. And it has been slated in the press by some. According to Mark Stevens, senior associate at law firm VWV, ‘fire and re-hire’ is generally used as a last resort when a proposed change that the employer wishes to make to a contract of employment cannot be agreed with employees. He says that “as the name suggests, the ‘fire and re-hire’ process involves the employer giving notice and dismissing an employee, and subsequently offering to re-hire the employee on new varied terms.” He adds that the practice itself is lawful, but because it involves a dismissal there is, by definition, a higher degree of risk involved. Trades Unions have previously advocated the outlawing of this practice. Indeed, back in May (2021), Unite reported that it and 19 other unions, along with 140 MPs and Lords, joined together to campaign against it. And following its increased use by employers to vary terms of employment, particularly in response to the pandemic, the practice has been gaining increased media attention and receiving more scrutiny.

As Stevens highlights, “the report noted a divergence in views amongst participants as to whether or not employers were using the pandemic opportunistically as a justification to force through changes to employment terms or, rather, whether the increase in the use of ‘fire and re-hire’ seen over the past year was simply a fallout of genuine business pressures caused by the pandemic.”

ACAS REPORT ON ‘FIRE AND RE-HIRE’

THE OUTCOME

As a result of the rising profile of ‘fire and re-hire’, ACAS, the government’s conciliation service, was asked (by the government) to gather evidence and report on its use by employers. Its report, Dismissal and re-engagement (fireand-rehire): a fact-finding exercise, took into account the opinions of various stakeholders and was submitted to the government in February 2021; the findings were published in June.

For the moment at least, the government has confirmed that it does not intend to legislate to outlaw ‘fire and re-hire’ practices. However, in his response to the report in the House of Commons, Paul Scully MP, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, said that the government’s expectation is that employers should exhaust every avenue towards reaching agreement where it is necessary to change terms and conditions.

24  OCTOBER 2021

When moving to terminate and re-engage, employers should ensure they have followed a fair dismissal procedure He adds that the report found that views were equally mixed as to whether the practice should be reformed, and if so, how. “Findings,” he says, “ranged from feelings that 'fire and re-hire' practices are never reasonable, and should be outlawed by legislation to, on the other side, those who believed that it could be useful when genuinely used as a last resort.”

Stevens, noting the government’s view, said that one reason for inaction was “the risk that reform in this area of employment law could result in more businesses failing if they cannot amend terms of employment due to business necessity.” Instead, he says that “the government has asked ACAS to provide more detailed guidance on how and when termination and re-engagement should be used, and ‘good practice’ for employers.” This further guidance is awaited.

ADVICE FOR EMPLOYERS As to what this means for employers, Stevens says that whilst further ACAS guidance is still awaited, “employers are strongly encouraged to be cautious when firing and re-hiring and to only adopt this approach when necessary and only if all other attempts to agree varied terms have been exhausted.” He says that they should also be mindful of the increased scrutiny of the practice. His advice is quite clear: “When moving to terminate and re-engage, employers should ensure they have followed a fair dismissal procedure – including confirming there are sound business reasons for the change; engaging with affected employees; considering alternatives prior to deciding to dismiss; and offering a right of appeal.” Also, he warns that employers should be aware that this practice may also trigger collective consultation obligations where it is possible that more than 20 employees may be dismissed.

IN SUMMARY ‘Fire and re-hire’ is perfectly lawful if the process is carried out correctly. However, employers should be alive to the risks that it carries, both in terms of a tribunal case being brought against them and a judgment made in the court of public opinion.

www.britishdealernews.co.uk


International news

International news With financial editor Roger Willis

More record results for Pierer

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TM, Husqvarna and GasGas parent Pierer Mobility not only staged a tremendous recovery in the firsthalf of 2021 – it also trounced its pre-pandemic record figures for the equivalent period in 2019. BDN financial editor Roger Willis reports. Six-monthly revenue soared by 79.7% to £923.9m. Operating profit went nuclear, reaching £87.9m against a gestural £1.5m in the first half of last year. Operating margin hit 9.5%, up from just 0.3%. Net profit came in at £67.1m, replacing an £8.3m loss. Of course, this data is qualified by Covid’s savage second-quarter impact in 2020, causing largescale production and sales

disruption. But it’s definitely impressive when contrasted to disease-free 2019 performance. In biennial terms, turnover rose by a third and operating profit more than doubled. Commentators don’t have to look far to discern why. The company has grown exponentially. In the first half of 2019, it shifted 135,711 KTM and Husqvarna motorcycles. This year, to date at the end of June, the tally of KTM, Husqvarna and GasGas machines sold climbed to 176,045. While that was 94.9% up on the severely diminished total of 90,331 in 2020, it was also 29.7% higher than in 2019. And in 2019 results, revenue streams from nascent electrically-

assisted and pedal bicycle operations weren’t worth a mention. But the contribution of some 34,351 Husqvarna and R Raymon pedelecs surfaced in 2020. This business area has since expanded to 39,601 e-bicycles – representing 15.3% growth – plus 13,777 pedal bicycles in 2021. Rebounding demand in 2021 has seen combined sales of Pierer’s three motorcycle brands increase by 20.8% across Europe, with a joint market share of 11.3%. The company claims achievement of

an identical 11.3% share in North America, and 18.9% in Australia and New Zealand. Sales of the KTM and Husqvarna brands represented in India have reportedly improved by 59% in relevant segments, taking a 6.9% share. Despite ongoing supply-chain challenges, Pierer’s executive board says the outlook remains positive and has substantially raised revenue guidance for its full fiscal year to December. €-£ currency translation at forex rates applicable on 31 August

No signs of microchip misery moderating PLATITUDES ABOUT THE GLOBAL semiconductor shortage afflicting automotive and motorcycle manufacturers improving any time soon are rapidly crumbling, going forward through the autumn and beyond. Toyota, the world’s biggest car manufacturer, cranked up the fear factor by slashing car production during September by 40%, after Covid outbreaks shuttered suppliers of microchips for brake systems in Malaysia and wiring harnesses in Vietnam. Previously weathering the chip famine quite well, thanks to strategic stockpiling and particularly robust supply-chain maintenance, Toyota had managed to avoid the early impact of semiconductor manufacturers swerving just-in-time supply agreements and prioritising more lucrative contracts in telecoms and consumer electronics last year. But not anymore. Now, its annual output targets and sales forecasts are being savaged too, as stockpiles run down and increasingly scarce chip supplies dry up. Falling back on traditional sources in Japan’s once dominant and loyal semiconductor industry, which produced more than half the world’s chips in its heyday, is no longer an option for Japanese auto/moto brands. Factories on home turf cling on to

26  OCTOBER 2021 BDN243 News 2.indd 26

barely a 10% global share of the market and are fully stretched. Voicing the concerns of his member companies, which include all of Japan’s leading car and motorcycle producers, Japanese Automobile Manufacturers Association (JAMA) vice-chairman Seiichi Nagatsuka said: “Uncertainties surrounding the bottlenecks in chip supplies will persist. It is difficult to foresee the impact of Covid resurgence beyond autumn.” Specialist data provider AutoForecast Solutions recently predicted that production of 9.5 million vehicles could be lost because of the chip crisis during 2021 – an estimate revised upwards by an additional million from just the previous week. In Europe, Volkswagen announced plans for extended production-line suspensions and widespread single-shift working at its SEAT Spanish car assembly plants around Barcelona in mid-September. These were set to come into effect almost immediately and run through to at least the end of June 2022. SEAT had originally reduced output in the first half of this year. Then, when vehicle demand reached pre-pandemic levels, it tried to fully re-open its factories in August to offset dealer inventory shortfall, But within

weeks, the company was forced to back-track, furloughing hundreds of employees. The European Stellantis automotive conglomerate, a relatively fresh merger covering everything from Peugeot-Citroen PSA and Vauxhall through to the Fiat-Chrysler brands, is also in similar dire straits. One example of grief entailed is the Peugeot factory at Rennes in north-west France. Bereft of consistent quantities of semiconductor-dependent componentry, Stellantis has simply shut the plant, furloughing its 600-strong workforce for the duration on short wages. Others dotted around the Stellantis empire are in receipt of the same fate. In the US, both Ford and General Motors halved production in August and September at their domestic plants, most painfully those making particularly profitable pick-up trucks. Ford reported a 33% sales plunge in August. Neither could see any improvement on the horizon. Statistics specific to disruption for powered two-wheeler manufacturers worldwide are hard to come by. Most admit to problems without detailing them and express hopes for recovery in the new year. But at the moment, it appears a full-on chips crisis is unabated.

www.britishdealernews.co.uk 27/09/2021 11:51


EUROPEAN MOTORCYCLE industry association ACEM has published a new piece of research by Oxford Economics, highlighting the financial, commercial and environmental benefits of powered two-wheelers across Europe. Using data from 2019, the study found that the motorcycle sector contributed about €21.4bn (£18.3bn) to GDP spread over Europe. Every euro of GDP created directly by motorcycle businesses supported a further €1.80 of GDP in other industries, due to various knock-on expenditure impacts. EU countries and the UK accounted for about 389,000 jobs in the sector through different activities, including the manufacturing of vehicles, parts, accessories and personal protective equipment. In the area of international trade, EU and UK-based motorcycle manufacturers exported around €2.1bn-worth of vehicles, parts and components to non-European customers. Key

export markets included the US, Australia and Japan. The sector and related activities generated about €16.6bn in tax revenue, making motorcycling an important contributor to public finances, particularly in large markets like Germany, France, Italy, the UK and Spain. Oxford Economics research also examined additional benefits offered by motorcycles to their users and to the environment. A scenario analysis suggested that if just 5% of those who commute by car across Europe (a total of 5.3 million commuters) switched to motorcycles, the aggregate time savings would be 21.2 million days per annum – worth €3.3bn to these users. Powered two-wheelers were also found to offer substantial cost savings to owners, due to lower fuel use and operating expenditure. On average, the cost of commuting by motorcycle (€545) was nearly onethird of what it would cost to use a car (€1435) across a year.

Motorcycles offered a smaller environmental footprint than fourwheelers too, with the average powered-two-wheeler in the European vehicle fleet emitting about 99g of CO2/km, less than half of the 210g CO2/km emitted by the average car (petrol or diesel). Bikes up to 250cc were found to emit on average 62g CO2/km. About 62% of Europe’s PTWs fall into this category. Finally, the economic importance of motorcycle-related events – sports, trade fairs and events organised by OEMs – were examined. In total, these activities were estimated to have contributed about €2.1bn to Europe’s GDP and to have supported about 38,400 jobs. About five million spectators attended major motorcycle sporting events in Europe with MotoGP attracting about 1.8 million spectators to its 12 European races in the 2019 season. Furthermore, about 2.5 million people attended exhibitions and manufacturers’ promotional events.

International news

Data boost for bike business

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enior representatives of Honda, KTM parent Pierer, Piaggio Group and Yamaha have officially signed an agreement to create the Swappable Batteries Motorcycle Consortium (SBMC). This follows letters of intent exchanged at the beginning of March this year.   In a joint statement, they said: “Committed to the promotion of widespread use of light electric vehicles and to more sustainable life-cycle management of batteries in the context of international climate policies, SBMC founding members believe that the availability of commonly developed swappable battery systems is key to the development of low-voltage electromobility. The underlying aim is to find solutions to the concerns customers may have regarding the future of electromobility, such as range, charging time, infrastructure and costs. “By working closely with interested stakeholders and standardisation bodies, founding members will be involved in the creation of international technical standards.” The availability of charging stations varies between

New battery consortium D977 STYLING WITH established CLASSIC UNCOMPROMISING SAFETY countries, and there is still limited information for end users. Therefore, the consortium aims to engage decision makers for the development and deployment of charging infrastructure. “The founding members encourage all interested

www.britishdealernews.co.uk BDN243 News 2.indd 27

stakeholders to join the cooperation, to enrich SMBC’s expertise in order to ensure a large diffusion of standard swappable batteries in the future. Parties who are interested to join SBMC can contact one of the founding members for further information.”

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OCTOBER 2021  27 27/09/2021 11:52


Off-road news

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

Off-road news With off-road correspondent Rick Kemp

Segway new utility debut S egway Powersports joined be handy for both agricultural and the Dualways brand leisure use. portfolio at the end of 2020 having been previewed SNARLER at the EICMA motorcycle show As it happens, the (remember them?) in Italy the Snarler is something previous year. Yes, the brand is of a cross-over the same Segway that developed machine with a the eponymous two-wheel, auto- slightly agricultural, balance electric transport device, T3 (tractor) which accounts for the company’s homologation ATV6B version at smart technology bias including £5999, an ATV6S with more bling the Paralleled Hybrid Powertrain at £7499 and an L option with offered on its four-wheeled bling and backrest for £7999. products. The range Current sales FUGLEMAN comprises the levels are about Recently released Snarler ATV, has been the Villain SxS and 80% leisure Segway Fugleman the Fugleman Utility threeDualways MD Henry Maplethorpe UTV. All seater at £14,999. vehicles share the smart stuff Like the rest of the range, this such as the Bluetooth-enabled model is road-legal and comes Airlock Ignition and the Segway with all the brand’s smart tech. Powersports app for Android and The Fugleman U10TX Deluxe, to iOS smartphones. This allows give its full model designation, users to access real-time data is powered by a 1000cc, twinfrom their vehicles through the cylinder DOHC engine delivering Smart Commanding System, 105bhp and 100Nm of torque. including horsepower, torque, In terms of stopping range, mileage and speed as well as power, the Fugleman service intervals. A tracker is also range features a integrated along with a ‘roll-over’ powerful Engine function, which will send out an Braking System SOS message to a chosen contact. (EBS) for safe While users may not need all this and slow information all of the time, it can descents.

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Other clever stuff includes three power-steering modes for added stability when turning; power is supplied via a front axle diff-lock and straight drive rear axle with ondemand four or two wheeled drive. The chassis has 320mm of ground clearance and 280mm of suspension travel for when the going gets tough, and a 450kg tipper ‘bed box’ and 1134kg towing capacity, matched with a powerful winch, gives the Fugleman utility ability.

VILLAIN Due to arrive at the end of the year is the last in the trio of models, the Villain SxS. This is an all-terrain buggy with absolutely no utilitarian pretensions whatsoever. No detailed specifications are available as yet, but suffice it to say it

will live up to the firm’s “Fear No Place” slogan. As dealers will be aware, lockdown has created the perfect storm when it comes to recreational vehicle sales – people with more time on their hands and money in their pockets. According to Dualways managing director Henry Maplethorpe, current sales levels are about 80% leisure. “We are obviously looking to expand the dealer network and with t h e launch of the Villain, which is a sports vehicle, we will be appealing to a different category of dealer. We will have demonstrators available, and dealers can make an appointment for us to come to them and show the Villain to their customers.” Maplethorpe is keen to stress that there will be more to come from Segway in the near future. Dualways 01623 708607 sales@dualways.com

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Off-road news

Enduro recalls HUSQVARNA AND GASGAS DEALERS SHOULD BE in line for some extra workshop time as a result of a recall on both brands. The affected models are Husqvarna’s MY22 FE and TE, and for GasGas it’s all MY22 EC enduro models. The front brake is the culprit in both cases; “A possible deviation relating to the fitment of the locking split pins mounted to the holding bracket may result in the brake pads becoming detached from the machine” is the reason given by Husqvarna for the recall, but GasGas is slightly less specific with, “there may be a small issue with the front brake caliper”. Whether it’s the same problem is not clarified. However, owners of affected models should be notified directly, and any worried customers should check the service area of the relevant manufacturer’s website.

Trail Blazers THE UK DISTRIBUTOR FOR MUD ROCKS, DUALWAYS, now has youth and adult Trail Blazer off-road buggies available from stock. The Trail Blazer is suitable for drivers aged 10 and above, while the Trailblazer 150 is a full-size buggy, with reverse gear, aimed at the teenager and adult market. Both versions have electric start, are fully automatic and are powered by a four-stroke singlecylinder air-cooled engine. They have adjustable bucket seats with safety harnesses, and a cargo rack. The Trail Blazer is available in a choice of blue or red, for an SRP of £1699. The Trailblazer 150 colour options are black or white, and it carries a price tag of £2499 SRP. Both prices include a one-year manufacturer’s warranty.

Can-Am adds more power

T

he Can-Am Maverick line-up of performance off-road vehicles enjoys a strong reputation amongst dealers, and with its 2022 line-up CanAm is upping the ante by becoming the first side-by-side manufacturer to offer a 200hp engine. The new motor, coupled with a new pDrive roller-clutch system, offers quicker acceleration and an increase in power throughout the rev range. The Maverick is claimed to deliver the best power-to-weight ratio in its class, but Can-Am says that the handling remains critical to all-around performance. Hence BRP engineers employed Smart-Shox adaptive suspension, new 30 and 32-inch Maxxis Carnivore tyres, a stronger frame, and higher ground clearance and stance. Can-Am is also introducing two new Rotax engines – the HD7/700 ACE and the HD9, replacing the HD5, HD8 and 800. These motors will be fitted to Traxter models and the Maverick Trail 700.

The ATV line up has also been updated and has now been fitted with the Visco4Lok push-button system, which engages four-wheel-drive lock mode. It will now be available on all 2022 Outlander and Renegade X mr packages, as well as the Outlander XU (650-1000), Outlander XXC, Outlander XT-P, and Outlander MAX Limited. For further details visit: can-am.brp.com/off-road

Yamaha MX at Pro Tour Event YAMAHA MOTOR UK IS offering the chance to try its 2022 motocross range at the Apex Motocross track in Worcester over 29-30 October. Factory technicians will be on hand to offer advice as

will Cabscreens Crescent Yamaha MXGB riders Harri Kullas and Dan Thornhill. Riders can also benefit from AMCA instructors and professional photography service is also available. The event will be split

into two days, the first being an exclusive Yamaha Test Day with places on a pre-booked basis only. On the Saturday anyone attending the MX practice day will be able to take an MX Pro Tour Test ride.

GB women runners-up at ISDE

T

he Italian Trophy Team won its home event at the 95th running of the ISDE. Not content with that, Italy also took the Junior World Trophy. The Women’s Trophy was won by

30 OCTOBER 2021 BDN243 News 2.indd 30

the USA with Great Britain team of Jane Daniels (Fantic), Nieve Holmes (GasGas), and Rosie Rowett (KTM) second. Sadly, they were the only official team representing GB as the World

Trophy and Junior Trophy had been withdrawn. GasGas rider Andrea Verona had a particularly good Six Days in a hotly contested event. He was the fastest Enduro 1 rider,

finished second overall and was part of the winning Italian team. Endorsing the product Verona said, “My bike has been perfect, so much fun to race.” The bike in question being the EC250F.

www.britishdealernews.co.uk 27/09/2021 11:54

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28/04/2021 11:22


Reaction

Reaction

Your thoughts and opinions on the trade’s top topics

Off the

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

PHILIP MCCALLEN MOTORCYCLES

CUFF September’s dealer views and opinions range from supply problems to slowing footfall. Almost all report growing online interest, while one worries about the future direction into retail by some wholesalers

“BE IT THE NEC SHOW IN BIRMINGHAM OR THE Northwest 200 in Northern Ireland, I don’t think either sell more bikes, but the social aspect and trade communication they provide is important.” Always controversial McCallen based in Lisburn adds: “Middle-range bike interest is still increasing, and a valuable addition for us is an electric cycle division. They are ideal for those tired legs and a good stepping stone for the motorcycle business.”

GT MOTORCYCLES

MIKE GRAINGER AT GT MOTORCYCLES IN PLYMOUTH REMAINS OPTIMISTIC. “SEVENTY BIKES SOLD, AND yes, we are getting cancellations, but we are just stuck with it for the time being.” He adds: “Despite Brexit, Covid, the Suez Canal blockage, Euro 5, and an increase in the cost of living, we are going to come out of this more than ever as affordable transport.”

5 WAYS MOTORCYCLES

A STRAIGHTFORWARD COMMENT FROM GARETH ROBINSON FROM 5 WAYS MOTORCYCLES BASED IN Hull. “Supply against unprecedented demand is now at an all-time low. It’s the only time in our 41-year history that we cannot offer a 125cc product from stock.”

B & B MOTORCYCLES

“JONATHAN MARTIN AT SUZUKI IS AN ABSOLUTE STAR FOR WHAT HE CONTINUES TO ACHIEVE AT SUZUKI. They have a limited range and supply problems, but his determination gives us confidence,” said Peter Littlewood, owner of B & B Motorcycles located in Lincoln. “We saw this situation coming and it makes you get the best out of all sectors. For instance, we have Walt’s Training School on site as an integral link for CBT and rider retention, and we see this as a massive business asset.”

SUTTON MOTORCYCLES

RICHARD SHEPPARD FROM SUTTON MOTORCYCLES, TAMWORTH, REPORTED SELLING SEVEN BIKES IN one day when we spoke to him in mid-September. “We have to accept that the lack of supply means we will not be achieving that again soon, but there is good customer interest for the Honda range and we just try to keep the enthusiasm going and sell bikes without a full range of demos.”

ALPHA MOTORCYCLES.

JASON FALLOWS OF ALPHA MOTORCYCLES IN LEIGH-ON-SEA, ESSEX, HAS DECISIONS TO MAKE. “SOCIAL media and the internet have changed the way riders buy accessories. We have all seen the TV and internet adverts encouraging consumers to buy direct from various manufacturers. Times are definitely changing with wholesalers becoming retailers and this is being helped by the major motorcycle shows becoming retail parks for the suppliers we have supported for years.” Half of Crewe Honda's showroom became a Covid vaccination centre

CREWE HONDA CENTRE

ROGER MORRIS RECEIVED NATIONAL AND LOCAL ACCLAIM EARLIER IN THE YEAR FOR TURNING PART OF his showroom into a Covid vaccination centre. He takes a circumspect reality check: “Total stock now is down to around 20 bikes against the 80 bikes we usually hold. Demand is still there, and we have met our targets, but we have to accept the slow delivery situation. Online enquiries are healthy, but showroom footfall is down. We have cancellations looming as we go into October, as customers are not prepared to wait any longer.”

Give BDN your “Off the Cuff” thoughts. They might just make a difference! e: editorial@dealernews.co.uk t: 01237 422660 e: john.featherstone1@hotmail.com t: 07541 998290

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Business beat

Business beat

DUE RECOGNITION Some employers feel that only money can motivate staff. While that may be the case for those in sales, for others it has limited application as they in time become used to the pay and resent what is taken in tax

A

s good managers know, it’s possible to motivate employees by recognising and rewarding traits that the business wants to encourage. It’s the reason why many public-facing firms have ‘employee of the month’ boards; their aim is happy employees in conjunction with business success. But a recognition and rewards scheme can do much more. Used properly, it can reduce staff turnover which can be very disruptive and ultimately will involve expense in finding replacements who themselves need training.

34  OCTOBER 2021

For Charles Cotton, senior reward and performance adviser at the CIPD, a reward policy can not only support an organisation to reach its goals, it can also, he says, “guide an organisation’s objectives and legal obligations as well as the needs of its employees … it can enhance a firm’s reputation as an employer of choice.” No matter the driver, any scheme and its processes need thought over the end results and the steps taken to get there. This means, in practice, rewards ought to ignore sales targets (because that often leads to bad sales), and instead, look at – say – service, customer satisfaction and returns reduction.

SCHEME SET-UP Setting up a scheme isn’t hard, but it does require consideration says Lauren Sweeney, head of people at Virgin Incentives and Virgin Experience Days. She advises “defining the objectives and the reasons for starting a reward and recognition scheme as this will

impact what firms offer.” She notes that rewards must be used strategically. Activity won’t increase because of a gift given on someone’s birthday. Similarly, loyalty doesn’t follow from performance-based rewards. In her opinion, the best way to create a reward and recognition scheme is to find out what employees want. As she highlights, “some might want traditional rewards like long service awards, but others might want in-themoment recognition to keep them motivated day-to-day.” As to the rewards themselves, cash isn’t always best and in fact can become quite expensive. A bonus in one year becomes a benchmark which needs to increase yearly to hold value. Further, cash can easily be lost on the triviality of everyday life. On top of that, staff may not know precisely how a reward was earned since it could be based on several elements of pay. The best alternative, and one which is

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easier to manage, are vouchers and gift cards – they are distinct from cash and can be held separately from daily spending. Of course, rollout is important too. While Sweeney says rewards may be publicly announced, given via a payslip, emailed or posted, she warns that the process is one that should be on-going: In particular, she says that “it’s important to check-in with people to get their views of the scheme and how it could be improved - there’s no point setting up a rewards scheme if your people aren’t going to use it.” It should be said that for those that want a helping hand, there are a multitude of thirdparty providers as a search for ‘employee rewards’ demonstrates. These providers offer online portals that allow employees to choose from selected rewards.

BE EVEN HANDED Many firms engage with employees over business decisions. And it should be no different when it comes to rewards says Cotton. As he says, “benefits offered to flexible working, employee involvement in employees often depend on their grade, work processes and changes that improve the location or occupation. However, it’s work-life balance. important that benefits are He adds that “employers fair, otherwise the purpose Employers have become increasingly is undermined.” Regardless have become aware of the importance of of role, he says different supporting the wellbeing benefits should always be increasingly of their staff, particularly justifiable. since the onset of the Another point to aware of the pandemic.” It makes sense consider is the passage importance of that, as before, checking of time and that values in with staff might find change. Where parties supporting the that a season-ticket loan is and hotel stays may once wellbeing of their no longer wanted whereas have been in vogue, they Cycle-to-Work scheme invariably become less staff, particularly the might be. valuable when children arrive. since the onset of And referring to money, it’s entirely logical that Beyond that Cotton the pandemic employees will value a £25 points to “research that voucher in a shop they shows that non-financial rewards can be just as important as pay.” Here frequent compared to a £50 voucher for a shop they don’t. Beyond that, it’s possible to he cites personal and career development,

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offer a much sought-after reward that costs nothing to provide – a free prime parking space outside the shop for example. Further, qualifying criteria can change each month to support a desired business goal. Lastly, any scheme must be properly communicated to staff – they need to know how it works, what’s on offer and what they need to do to be rewarded. And this is where Sweeney says that it helps to “give employees a personal account where they can redeem their rewards instantly.” These, as noted earlier, can be offered by third-party providers.

IT’S ABOUT THE PEOPLE In summary, firms are based on people and with the right programme, employers can both please staff with incentives and improve business performance. Sight shouldn’t be lost of the fact that rewards may have tax consequences; good advice is essential. 

OCTOBER 2021  35

Business Beat

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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

DO IT RIGHT OR NOT AT ALL

Get social media wrong and it will do your business more harm than good. So, if you have already taken the plunge, or are about to do so, remember the three Rs

S

ocial media is defined as websites and applications that enable users to create and share content or to participate in social networking. Facebook is the UK’s most popular channel, with approximately 37 million users, followed by Instagram (24 million) and Twitter (nearly 17 million). These are huge numbers and we’re constantly told by self-proclaimed social media ‘marketing experts’ that businesses and organisations need to join the party. What they don’t mention is that under no circumstances should you dive into the turbulent waters of social media unless you’re prepared to do it properly. Why? Because getting it wrong can do more harm than good. The worst thing you can do is create a page on Facebook or Instagram, or a Twitter account, post or tweet a couple of times, and then forget about it, because you have more pressing jobs to deal with. Social media never sleeps. Before you know it, you’ll have a stream of unanswered messages, angry posts and bad reviews. Apart from the fact that you appear to be ignoring customers, this could even create the impression that you’ve ceased trading.

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If you are going to take the plunge – or you have already, but you aren’t confident or fully active yet – then with quickly and professionally? consider the three Rs: Is someone moderating your 1. Reason. You might Before you social media channels to ensure want more customers there is no ‘hate speech’ used and sales, but how will know it, you’ll on them? being on social media have a stream None of the above is make that happen? Are you trying to increase of unanswered complicated or requires specialist skills, but you must awareness of your messages, angry have a plan and be committed business by building to seeing it through. a following or do you posts and bad Remember, there is no legal want to engage with reviews obligation for your business existing and potential to have a presence on social customers with online media but if you do, don’t feel you need to be chat? How will you measure success – by on every platform. Initially, pick one channel the number of followers and the volume you’re comfortable with and stick with it until of likes, shares and comments? you have achieved your goals and it is running 2. Regular. Are you able to create fresh smoothly. If you don’t have the time, skills or content at least once a week, every resources to manage an account, then either week? That might not sound too demanding, but there needs to be a plan employ someone to do it, outsource the work or avoid it.  to make this happen and a system so it isn’t overlooked. NEXT MONTH 3. Responsive. Who is monitoring your social How best to accomplish the correct tone on media and how often will they check it? your social media Are questions and comments being dealt

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SCH MotoPrep

k c o d m Fro p e t s r o o to d

Chris Lee, left, general manager motorcycle operations and motorcycle commercial manager Nigel Bosworth

SCH MotoPrep offers a complete last mile and logistics solution to manufacturers and dealers. Rick Kemp discovers the secrets behind the service

S

CH MotoPrep, established in 2015, is part of the Southampton Cargo Handling Group, itself part of a wider organisation – think cruise ships, roll-on roll-off cargo vessels, warehousing, lorry fleets and you begin to get the picture. Being part of a larger group provides a degree of financial security. Many operations like to describe themselves as ‘One Stop Shops’ but the MotoPrep side of the organisation really is one. Cars and motorcycles are left at the dockside, MotoPrep collects them and takes them to its central site near Northampton, unpacks them, gives them a factory-approved

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PDI – which includes a road test of up to five miles followed by a total valet service – before the vehicles are loaded on to task-specific equipped trailer units and delivered to dealers and end users. As you can envisage, this has been a a pretty useful service throughout lockdown, when many dealers have been running a skeleton staff what with furlough and people isolating. The last thing you need is a lorry with a forklift on the back, turning up at short notice and off-loading crates all over the place. As motorcycle commercial manager Nigel Bosworth, who some of you might remember as a racer from the 1980s, points

out, qualified technicians aren’t paid to shift boxes or dispose of all the packaging– they’re meant to be performing chargeable tasks. As this was an actual face-to-face tour of the premises and facilities, the first since before lockdown, the logistics of the layout could be explained. Our guide for the day was general manager Chris Lee. As with most storage depots, there’s a ‘goods in’ and a ‘goods out’ on opposite sides of the building. As soon as the motorcycles arrive in their various crates – some metal, some wooden, some a mixture of both depending on manufacturer and country of origin – they are scanned and put on the system. Some

www.britishdealernews.co.uk 27/09/2021 12:02


alarms and trackers, whatever the dealer or customer has ordered. After this it’s roadtest time as it would be in any workshop, putting the theory into practice. The bikes are ‘dressed’ in a special protective material prior to road-testing to prevent any chips or scratches occurring. After being undressed the bikes are thoroughly valeted and then go through quality control, where everything

Qualified technicians aren’t paid to shift boxes or dispose of all the packaging– they’re meant to be performing chargeable tasks crates are more recyclable than others and MotoPrep deals with that too. Once uncrated, the motorcycles undergo any final assembly, such as fitting screens, prior to going to the workshop area. Apart from the paperwork accompanying each motorcycle, it’s possible to see what the next part of the process is going to be by the way they are pointing; sounds basic but it works. The scan information will initially determine whether the bike is headed for the workshop or storage. Within the workshop there are various teams that work on the bikes depending on what needs to be done: straight PDI, accessories fitted,

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is checked again: tyre pressures need to be correct, all relevant switches should be in the off position, trips and clocks are reset, all the attention to detail that improves the customer experience. Chris Lee is pleased to report that the complaints level is 0.5%. This is in part down to the processes in place and also due to the fact that all the staff are motorcycle enthusiasts and fully trained for their jobs. MotoPrep doesn’t just deal with new bikes, however. Fleet bikes are also part of what it does: supply and resale, paramedics, blood bikes, dealer demonstrators, insurance management company loan bikes and machines coming off

PCP. When these fleet bikes hit their mileage limit, MotoPrep will refurbish them to ‘as new’ standard, ensuring the best residual values. All MotoPrep’s technicians are manufacturertrained by any company it partners, so brand standards are assured. Getting away from the nuts and bolts, MotoPrep can offer a turn-key service for press and media launches and outside events. Should you, as a dealer or manufacturer, want to be represented at a motorcycle event or even a county show, then MotoPrep can handle the whole thing on your behalf leaving you free to carry on business as usual. Likewise with sales, if a dealer sells a bike over the weekend that MotoPrep is holding, it can be delivered to the dealership or the customer on the Wednesday. This method is becoming more popular with more internet sales and dealers selling out of area. This also makes the handover to the customer more important and again, this is where MotoPrep scores because it has a factory-trained handover specialist with the full menu, which can be gone through at the customer’s own home – something a dealer would find hard to replicate. By any standards, the MotoPrep operation is impressive. Whether you are a manufacturer, a distributor or a dealer you can benefit from its services. Everyone who works there is a professional and an enthusiast and will do their best to provide the correct solution for your business.  e: schinfo@schltd.com t: 01604 970618 www.schltd.com

OCTOBER 2021  39

SCH MotoPrep

MotoPrep can handle the whole thing on your behalf leaving you free to carry on business as usual


Business Essentials

CATALYST

The Business   Pump up the speed A Constellation Software Company

0116 230 1500 | sales@catalyst-uk.com | www.catalyst-uk.com

The latest news and views in the world of business

Life in the modern world travels at the speed of light. Or so it seems. And just as life runs at double time so our levels of patience have fallen through the floor. If something isn’t quick or responsive, we’re off

W

hen it comes to browsing websites, we get fed up with slow pages and convoluted checkouts and move on to a site where the user experience is so much better. And this is especially so when a mobile device is involved. It’s for this reason alone that a retailer needs to ensure that its website is userfriendly, and turbo charged. But speed equates to more than just the customer experience, it also means a higher placing in search rankings.

FIRST IMPRESSIONS LAST Just as clean shoes can make a suit, so a fast website helps visitors get a good feel for the business. A fast-loading website creates a good impression – that the firm knows what it’s doing and has invested in the backend and servers it uses. In contrast, a website that loads slowly is automatically on the backfoot as impatience will set in before customers have even started shopping. In fact, a slow website makes us think it’s unsafe, insecure, and untrustworthy. And it’s difficult to turn around that negative first impression. According to a June 2021 Superoffice report, 66 percent of 1900 business professionals surveyed said that

40  OCTOBER 2021

And the data isn’t much a “frustrating experience Amazon found better for the mobile on a website hurts their experience where many opinion of the brand that if a page of us shop now. The overall.” Further, 40 percent complained about took longer than Superoffice survey found that 55 percent said that slow load times. one second to “a bad mobile experience Statistics from kissmetrics.com suggested load it could cost makes me less likely to engage with a company.” the obvious – that we now the company The problem is exacerbated expect speed and demand on a mobile device fast loading times. Its data around $1.6bn precisely because we’re reckoned that 47 percent on the move and using a of people expect a site in sales small screen which can test to load in less than two seconds and 40 percent will give up if it takes patience levels to the extreme. It’s true to say that popular and official longer than three seconds.

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websites have more leeway; the brands are either trusted or visitors have no choice but to use a given site. Small firms, however, don’t have that level of goodwill.

GIVE THEM WHAT THEY WANT But apart from speed, customers linger longer on websites that they enjoy, and which don’t frustrate them. This means giving them what they want and giving it to them quickly. Menus and navigation should be simple and effective, and the homepage shouldn’t be cluttered. And all of this can be demonstrated using simple maths. Consider a website that has 10,000 visitors a month. If 40 percent of them give up because the site takes more than three seconds to load, it’ll have lost 4000 opportunities to sell before it’s even got off the starting blocks –visitors may have been looking to buy something and may well do so from a rival. In the context of a slow website, speed can kill. A report on Fast Company – albeit back in 2012 – noted that Amazon found that if a page took longer than one second to load it could cost the company around $1.6bn in sales as visitors shopped elsewhere. If Amazon could suffer that level of loss, what does that mean for a small independent?

HINTS AND TIPS FOR DESIGNING FASTER WEBSITES ACCORDING TO WEB BROWSER TESTING platform, LambdaTest, there are several key design changes that should be built into a website to make it friendlier to visitors and therefore more successful. 1. Ditch the navigation bar. Simplify the design by using a short menu 2. Provide a search button and make it visible. Very simply, a search button relieves the visitor of the responsibility of finding what they are looking for. Remember, though, to put the search button on all pages on the website 3. Vertical scrolling is always preferable. Mobile visitors are more focused on finding what they are looking for so help them to do this 4. Avoid pop-ups. This is key as it’s bad for the user experience and Google has started to penalise websites using full-page pop-ups and will lower their search rankings 5. Disable multiple tabs. A mobile browser does not keep tabs side by side but stacks them on top of each other which makes it harder for users to navigate

6. Provide click-to-call buttons for phone numbers. This will allow visitors to automatically connect to the business 7. Move automatically in forms and validate inputs in real-time. Enabling ‘move to next element’ allows visitors to populate information without having to press into individual lines. End with the ‘go’ button to move to the next stage 8. Provide a home button on all pages. Again, this will allow users convenient access to the main page without having to navigate. The logo of the company could be embedded to return to the home page. It is clean, convenient, and a good design method 9. Keep important elements within reach. Mobile devices are typically used with one hand so ensure actions buttons are centrally located 10. Compress necessary images. Using high-quality images will just lead to slow downloads and will eat into a visitor’s data allowance. Use images that will allows better navigation

DON’T LET GOOGLE RANK YOU POORLY There are several reasons why Google ranks one page higher than another – and one that is key is the speed at which a page – desktop or mobile – loads. The search engine said, back in April 2010, that it would use page speed in its ranking algorithms for searches. And when Google switched to including mobile indexing in December 2017, it announced the following January that it would, from July 2018, use mobile page speed to help it rank mobile searches too. Beyond that, in May 2020, Google also said that it would use overall page experience in its ranking algorithms. Fundamentally, page speed plays

a significant part of the user experience and therefore how it ranks pages. But there’s more to website ranking than pure speed. Google uses crawlers to find information on websites that help it create its rankings and Google has said that “making a site faster improves the users’ experience while also increasing crawl rate.” In other words, a slow website may make it harder for Google to find new products or posts put on your website. And that’s an own goal. 

In tune with the industry, leading All-in-one Business Management Soſtware through innovation and expertise for Motorcycle Dealers Complete Business Solution. Easy to Use 0116 230 1500 | sales@catalyst-uk.com | www.catalyst-uk.com www.britishdealernews.co.uk

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A Constellation Software Company

OCTOBER 2021  41

Business Essentials

s  Essentials

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Product news

Products The latest products for your showroom

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Airoh Mathisse 

Thor racewear THOR HAS UPDATED ITS OFF-ROAD RACEWEAR RANGE FOR THE 2022 SEASON. THE venerable Prime motocross range is now made from a lightweight, breathable, abrasion resistant material and comes in three new designs in a total of six colourways. Construction details include polyester/Spandex four-way stretch sleeves, flat-stitched seams and laser-cut ventilation holes. Jerseys come in sizes S-2XL and matching pants come in waist sizes 28-40in. Parts Europe; 0049 6501 9695 1035; sales@partseurope.eu

AIROH’S FLIP-FRONT MATHISSE HELMET HAS BEEN the subject of a thorough refresh to update it for 2021. It’s a dual mode helmet – usable in both full-face and open-face configurations, thanks to a chin guard which can be flipped through 180 degrees. The shell is thermoplastic and incorporates a ventilation system with multiple vents and a rear exhaust. A scratch-resistant visor comes with an extra-wide Pinlock anti-fog insert and there’s a drop-down dark tint sun visor. On the inside is a hypoallergenic removable and washable liner with provision for a Bluetooth communication system to be fitted. The Mathisse comes in two shell sizes covering fitting sizes S-XXL in matt black or gloss white for an SRP of £289.99. Bike It; 02380 658700; tradesales@bikeit.co.uk

WP suspension

Touratech Ibarra  ADVENTURE BIKE ACCESSORIES GIANT TOURATECH has added a new smaller tank bag to its Ibarra range. The new Midi bag is shorter than the full size model to improve fitment on mid-range machinery. It sports the same water-repellent Cordura fabric construction as its big brother and has two zipped outer pockets and a detachable map pocket in addition to the expandable main storage compartment which goes from 7-10-litres. Fastening is by a combination of straps, buckles and quick release fasteners. SRP is €158.73. Touratech; +49 7728 9279-0; info@touratech.de

WP SUSPENSION HAS LAUNCHED A NEW high-end fork and shock combo for wellheeled owners of small-capacity KTM, Husqvarna and GasGas motocross machines. The XACT Pro 7543 fork uses a closed cartridge system along with cone valve technology to improve feedback. Made from lightweight CNC milled materials it has an SRP of £2187.70. The XACT Pro 8946 rear shock features variable oil bypass valves to improve traction and has adjustable rebound speed to improve control characteristics. It has an SRP of £1523.08. WP Suspension; support@wp-suspension.com

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Stealth hoodie  WEISE HAS MADE A LADIES’ VERSION OF ITS STEALTH armoured hoodie. Rated AA for protection, the machinewashable Stealth is made from cotton fleece, with a drawstring hood which zips off so it won’t flap about when riding. Protection comes from an abrasion-resistant Aramid lining and CE-armour at the shoulders and elbow plus a CE Level-1 back protector. A connection zip on a stretch panel enables the hoodie to be attached to riding jeans, and pockets inside and out provide storage. Available in black or grey in sizes 8-22 at £129.99 SRP. The Key Collection; 01179 719200; sales@thekeycollection.co.uk

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Product news

Nicky Reset  ARAI HAS A NEW RACERinspired graphic for its RX-7V helmet. Seen on Nicky Hayden’s helmet during his off-season MotoGP testing duties, the Reset design is a family-endorsed homage to the MotoGP champion who died in a road accident in 2017. Available in sizes XS-XL at an SRP of £789.99. MotoDirect; 01773 864420; sales@moto-direct.com

Watsonian Prescott NOT A COMPANY TO LET TRADITION GET IN THE WAY OF PROGRESS, Watsonian has updated its Prescott sidecar. First made in 1946 from leftover RAF Mosquito reserve fuel tanks, the Prescott was subsequently produced in fibreglass and carried on in production until now. After just 75 years it has been updated again and is now made in two sections – speeding up production and giving a distinctive central crown where the two halves join. It sits on a powder coated tubular steel chassis with hydraulic suspension and a 16in wheel with stainless spokes and a machined Watsonian hub. A fold-down screen is mounted on a cast aluminium bar in front of the cockpit and the seat tilts forward to access a storage space behind. A tonneau cover is also included. Prices for the Prescott Sidecar start at £4495. Watsonian Squire; 01386 700907; sidecars@watsonian-squire.com

Hevik protection  BACK PROTECTORS USED TO BE THE preserve of one-piece leathers, but gradually they have spread throughout clothing ranges to become an option at all price points. So that it can offer improved passive safety to all its customers, Hevik has produced a new multi-layer protector which is compatible with its entire 2021 jacket range. The HPB04’s memory foam layers can slide individually to distribute the shock and limit energy transfer and this helps it achieve CE level 2 certification. To aid comfort the protector has ventilation holes over its entire surface area. It comes in three sizes – including a ladies-specific version – ranging in length from 44 to 52cm. SRP is €39.90. Givi UK; 01327 706220; info@givi.co.uk

Speed Triple accessories  EVOTECH PERFORMANCE HAS DELIVERED A NEW ACCESSORY LINE FOR the 2021 Triumph Speed Triple 1200 RS. The range includes a CNC aluminium tail tidy in black powder coat (£199.99), a hexagonal-matrix aluminium radiator guard (£62.99), alloy and nylon crash bungs (£235.01), a rectifier guard which fits under the rear tail (£32.49), a lever protector kit (£150 for both, or £99.98 each including a matching bar end weight) and black powder coated aluminium brake caliper guards (£25). Evotech; 01652 680060; www.evotech-performance.com

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OCTOBER 2021 43 27/09/2021 13:14


Product news

PRODUCT NEWS MITAS

MITAS HAS STRUCK A DEAL WITH PIAGGIO TO supply OE tyres for the Beverly 400 scooter. The Touring Force-SC rubber, which has a tread pattern based on the company’s full size sport touring tyres, will be supplied in 16in front and 14in rear sizes for the sporty commuter. Mitas; www.mitas-moto.com

PARTS EUROPE

PARTS EUROPE HAS added a new Helmet & Apparel catalogue to it’s existing roster of promotional tomes. The new publication is no lightweight – extending to 750 pages covering a huge and diverse range of helmets, goggles, accessories and clothing. Parts Europe; sales@partseurope.eu

Givi backpack  AN EASY SOLUTION TO CARRYING STUFF ON A motorbike, a rucksack is seen as an essential by many bikers. Givi’s new EA129 is an urban backpack aimed at commuters and is designed for regular use where comfort and ruggedness are priorities. A padded back and wide shoulder straps are useful both on and off-bike, and the outer is 600D Polyurethane to survive knocks and scuffs. Capacity is 15 litres, and there is a thermoformed front pocket for small items, two side pockets, plus three internal compartments including one for a laptop. A waterproof cover is included for the SRP of £72. Givi UK; 01327 706220; info@givi.co.uk

Alpinestars Headlands ALPINESTARS DESCRIBES ITS NEW Headlands as a sport touring jacket and its no-fuss, no-frills style certainly fits into the less-is-more aesthetic. The 600D polyfabric exterior shell has a microfibreedged collar and there are Velcro adjusters on the wrists and sleeves. Inside is a fixed Drystar membrane with taped seams to guarantee its waterproof and breathable credentials and a removable thermal liner. Nucleon Flex Plus protectors are fitted at the shoulders and elbows and there are chest and back pockets for optional armour upgrades. It comes in black, black/olive or black/grey/ red in sizes S-4XL for an SRP of £199.99. Alpinestars; 0039 0423 5286 sales@alpinestars.com

RACEFX

RACEFX HAS TAKEN OVER THE UK distribution of Skyrich, which specialises in producing Lithium Ion Phosphate (LiFePO4) batteries as replacements for conventional lead acid batteries. The LiFePO4 batteries come in a wide range of sizes and are roughly 1/3 the weight and deliver four times the cranking power of the lead acid version, as well as being quicker to recharge and slower to discharge. RaceFX; sales@racefx.co.uk

WMD

WMD HAS SOURCED AN AFFORDABLE STATOR THAT is a replacement for the somewhat maligned OE Honda item used on 2004-2007 CBR1000RR Fireblade models. Said to fit straight in without any modifications to the bike, SRP is £59. WMD; info@wmd-online.com

MOTORCYCLE BUYERS’

GUIDE

www.motopromedia.com

Know More & Purchase Smarter with MBG Motorcycle Buyers' Guide (MBG) will bring you the up-to-date information from more than 100 suppliers from Taiwan & China. Check our website for more information: www.motopromedia.com or contact us to get a free copy of MBG Be sure to mention MBG when contacting manufacturers for more information. How to reach us:

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Tel: +886-4-726 4437 Fax: +886-4-728 4657

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Product news

Simpson Speed A NEW HELMET FROM THE STREETFIGHTERS’ FAVOURITE BRAND IS A rare occurrence, so Simpson’s new Speed will certainly get some attention. The lightweight polycarbonate shell comes in three sizes for a slimmer profile, and features a Simpson Speed Brow for venturi-effect venting. The ultra-wide visor has four positions with a lock to keep it closed at speed, and is Pinlock ready. Inside are a hypoallerganic washable liner and cutouts ready to take a comms system. The Speed comes with a clear visor and is both DOT and ECE-approved. It comes in gloss black, matt black or gloss white, in sizes XS-XXL for £249.99 SRP. Oxford Products; 01993 862300; info@oxprod.com

Wunderlich pillion 6 ACCESSORIES MANUFACTURER WUNDERLICH HAS LAUNCHED a comfort seat option for BMW F900R and XR models which promises a smooth ride for pillions. Comparing the OEM pillion perch as the equivalent of “a bench in a beer tent”, Wunderlich claims its new Aktivkomfort Queen’s Edition seat offers unrivalled bum-cossetting, thanks to an increase of 40mm in width, 3D contour shaping and two layer construction with a firm core and softer top layer. It comes in a choice of thicknesses and with ThermoPro coating to lower the surface temperature by up to 25 deg C. The Aktivkomfort Queen has a five-year warranty and an SRP of €499. Wunderlich; +49 2641 30 82 600; f.wunderlich@wunderlich.de

Casa Lambretta cylinder kit CASA LAMBRETTA CREATED ITS 200SS WITH ONE AIM – TO BE THE MOST powerful cylinder kit on the market. Designed for small block Lambretta motors, the 200SS has been tested for three years on race tracks across Europe and uses a high pressure cast cylinder mated with a forged piston. The inlet side has a six petal reed valve and it comes with a manifold for a 28 or 30mm carb. It fits Lambretta GP, Li and SX models in 125 and 150cc, plus TV 175 models if a replacement crank is fitted. SRP is £595. VE (UK); 0115 946 2991; www.ve-uk.com

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OCTOBER 2021  45


Product news

MV Logo Voge 500DS 5

AFTER LAST-MONTH’S BDN REVEAL OF THE NEW Voge brand of motorcycles, more details of its first model have been released. The Voge 500DS is an adventure-sport styled mid-range machine with an A2 licence-compliant liquid-cooled, four-stroke 500cc parallel twin engine producing 46hp which is made by Loncin, the Chinese company which also makes BMW parallel twin engines. Other brand-name components are used throughout the machine – Nissin ABS brakes, KYB suspension and Bosch fuel injection are all fitted, along with Pirelli Angel tyres. The dash is a full-colour TFT display. Currently the only colour choice is grey livened-up with some splashes of red graphics, and the SRP is £4999.99 including a two-year warranty. Voge UK; 01395 234573; sales@llexeter.co.uk

MV AGUSTA IS LAUNCHING A NEW LINE OF STREETWEAR aimed at a younger, trendier clientele of non-bikers, doubtless in the hope that some of them will eventually become affluent middle-aged bikers with a yearning for the brand’s motorised merchandise. The Logo 1 collection consists of T-shirts, jackets, sweat pants and hoodies in various bright shades all adorned with the MV logo. The press release is short on details but long on moody models cavorting in an Italian version of Portmeirion, but it does say that more apparel will be launched throughout the year. MV Agusta; 07774 437937; david.wilson@mvagusta.com

Spada Kinetic Pro 5

S&S for Royal Enfield S&S CYCLE HAS A NEW QUALIFIER EXHAUST system to fit Royal Enfield 650 twins. The stainless steel two-into-one system is hand fabricated and TIG welded in the USA and promises to provide a useful power increase against the stock system, as well as an increase in volume. S&S say that the system bolts on without need of any tuning. Parts Europe; 0049 6501 9695 1035; sales@partseurope.eu

IN WHAT WILL DOUBTLESSLY BE SEEN AS A CONTENTIOUS MOVE, FERIDAX has launched an electric-powered scooter under its own Spada branding, despite it being currently illegal to ride one on the road, pavement or anywhere other than private land. The Kinetic Pro has a 350W motor (more powerful than the 250W permitted for electric bicycles) housed in a folding magnesium frame which helps keep weight down to 15.5kg. Control is via a thumb throttle, and an LCD display shows which of the three power modes is selected along with speed and battery status. Top speed is limited to 15mph. Pneumatic tyres, along with front and rear suspension, help to reduce the bumps while a rear disc provides braking when needed. The built-in 7.5Ah battery can be charged in around four hours using the supplied fast charger. Front and rear lights and reflectors are fitted. Feridax is no doubt hoping for a swift decision on how the general roll out of scooters beyond the current trial phase will be implemented. Available in black only, SRP is £499.99. Feridax; 01384 413841; info@feridax.com

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Product news

Racing timepieces MOTO CULTURE IS A NEW BUSINESS venture producing motorcycle-inspired watches. The company’s first launch is the Heritage Racer model in a trio of designs which echo the classic liveries of Honda, Yamaha and Suzuki GP machines. The three versions are all based on iconic tobacco sponsor colours from the 500cc two-stroke era of Rainey, Schwantz, Lawson and Mamola and use a Seiko quartz movement in a 40mm stainless steel body with crystal sapphire glass and a leather strap with contrast stitching. SRP is £299. Moto Culture; www.motoculture.co.uk

Icon Pharaoh 5 THE PHARAOH GRAPHIC HAS BEEN SEEN BEFORE – Icon first used it on the Airframe Pro – but this is it debut on the Airform helmet. Not a style suitable for shrinking violets, it features metalflake glitter finishes and metallic foil in its densely colourful design. The full-face Airform is Icon’s entry-level lid but still features a drop-down tinted sun visor, HydraDry liner and is comms system compatible. Parts Europe; 0049 6501 9695 1035 sales@partseurope.eu

Optimate solar 5 ByCity waterproofs AS SUMMER GENTLY TURNS TOWARDS Autumn and the weather becomes more unpredictable, a lightweight set of waterproof trousers and jacket that can be slipped on at a moments notice become an essential piece of kit. ByCity’s set are made from polyester with sealed seams and waterproof zips and roll up compact enough to fit under a seat or in a tailpack. They come in a equally lightweight carry bag for convenience. Available in black, they come in three sizes covering XS/S, M/L and XL/XXL at £43.99 SRP for the jacket and £36.99 for the trousers. Dot4Distribution; 0203 514 2413; info@dot4distribution.co.uk

OPTIMATE HAS UPDATED ITS SOLAR KITS TO allow the charging of both lead acid and lithium batteries. The solar panel can provide low-level constant power anywhere there is daylight – race paddock, campsite or off-grid sheds and garages – and the smart controller converts it into high-current pulses necessary to charge the battery. Kits come in versions ranging from 10W to 60W and include panel, controller, clips and leads with prices starting from £146.99. Motohaus; 01256 704909; info@motohaus.com Probike; 01604 660555; www.probike.co.uk

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Sena 30K SENA HAS UPDATED ITS 30K COMMUNICATION system with new premium quality HD speakers which promise better sound quality. The bevel-tapered design improves the fit into helmet recesses and volume, bass and clarity are all said to improve. SRP is £269 for a single unit or £469 for a twin pack. Feridax; 01384 413841; info@feridax.com Motohaus; 01256 704909; info@motohaus.com

MT-09 screen PYRAMID HAS A NEW FLY SCREEN TO SUIT THE LATEST 2021 Yamaha MT-09/SP models. The new screen fits above the MT-09’s controversial new headlight module and provides improved protection for the TFT dash, as well making the bike more distinctive. The screen is made from 2.5mm ABS and comes with a CAD bracket and all necessary fixings. Currently available in matt black for £75 or in blue/black/ silver SP livery for £135, two more colour matching schemes will be available soon. Pyramid Plastics; 01427 677990; sales@pyramid-plastics.co.uk

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MX Account Manager North UK

MX Account Manager

Scooter materials 35 SIP SCOOTERSHOP HAS TAKEN AN unexpected swerve left into the drapery business. Teaming up with historic textile collective Forder- und Fruendeskries based in the Bavarian town of Ausberg has led to the production of a Vespa-inspired tea towel with designs featuring the iconic scooter alongside a selection of pasta shapes. The jacquard towel is made from pure cotton with the woven design in a choice of blue, red or black and measures 700 x 500mm. SRP is £9. Alternatively, wrap your sarnies in scooter-themed, plastic-free beeswax cloths. Also made in Germany, these reusable cloths can be used instead of foil or plastic bags to keep food fresh. Pack of three different sizes is £19.49 SRP. SIP Scootershop; +49 8191 96999-69; ralf@SIP-scootershop.de

North UK Due to the continued growth of our business we urgently need to recruit a new Account Manager within our Motocross business.

If you feel that you have the passion and drive to represent one of the most exciting, dynamic and expanding product ranges in the UK MX industry today, then we would love to hear If you feel that you have the passion and drive to from you. represent one of the most exciting, dynamic and

To be considered for this exciting andwe Due to the continued growth of our business urgently need to recruit a new Account Manager challenging position, you will need expanding product ranges in the UK MX industry within our Motocross business. to be a motivated selfstarter with a We then offer a competitive and a today, we would love to hear fromsalary you. To be considered for this exciting and challenging passion for and knowledge of MX, generous staff discount scheme. We offer a competitive salary and a generous position, you will need to be a motivated selftogether starter withwith ana passion understanding of of for and knowledge staff discount scheme. register an interest in this role MX, together with an understanding of digital digital technologies and social media. ToToregister an interest in this role please send a technologies and social media. please send a CV, stating your salary CV, stating your salary requirements stating MX Account Manager in subject header to:- Account is a sales-based role role and we would This is a This sales-based and we be requirements stating MX to meet you if you are from either a would beinterested interested to meet you if Manager in subject header to:deb.newman@madison.co.uk distribution or retail MX background. you are from either a distribution or Interviews to be held in Milton Keynes This employed role is UK based and will include deb.newman@madison.co.uk retail MXtravel background. commencing 18th October. Closing date for in the UK and ROI. The successful be confident, This employed rolecandidate is UK will based and able to present, merchandise stores and will include travel in the UK and ROI. train our customers. You will enjoy meeting people, organising events and importantly, be

The successful candidate willabout be the UK knowledgeable and passionate MX scene. confident, able to present, merchandise stores and train our customers. You will enjoy meeting people, organising events and importantly, be knowledgeable and passionate about the UK MX scene.

Interviews to be held in Milton Keynes

applications Tuesday 12th October.

Please note that we usually receive a high commencing 18th October. Closing volume of applications for our roles and we date for Tuesday 12th therefore may applications only respond to successful candidates. October.

Please note that we usually receive a high volume of applications for our roles and we therefore may only respond to successful candidates.

MOTORCYCLE TECHNICIANS We are looking for experienced motorcycle Technicians to join our thriving dealership. • The candidate will need to have knowledge of PDI, Service, Repair and MOT testing on both new and used motorcycles and across the on and off-road sectors. • Experience of working within a franchised motorcycle dealership is preferable. • Knowledge of working on ATV’s would be beneficial. • A full UK car and motorcycle licence must be held. Competitive package offered to the right candidate, please check out our website for full details www.colwynbaymotorcycles.com and email your covering letter and CV to natalie@colwynbaymotorcycles.com

KTM Factory 50 5 JUNIOR RACERS CAN NOW SLING A LEG ACROSS A PROPER FACTORY version of KTM’s 50 SX motocross machine. The Factory takes the standard SX and throws a heap of race-tested technology and components at it to improve performance – an FMF pipe and silencer, smaller rear sprocket, reworked fuel jetting, special clutch, grippier seat, grippier grips, CNC machined clutch and ignition covers all topped off with Dunlop Geomax MX53 tyres. SRP is £4099. KTM; 01327 850350; simon.roots@ktm.com

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The latest produ

TECH ACCESSORY BRAND ULTIMATEADDONS HAS ADDED TWO NEW methods of connecting a phone to a motorbike. The first is a model specific Tough Case for Samsung S20/S21 Ultra phones. The case provides full touchscreen operation and is both water and dustproof to IPX5 rating. A self-sealing charging port means power can be topped up even in rain or snow and the case still allows front and rear camera operation. SRP is £30.83. Second is a universal Grip & Go phone or phablet mount. The aluminium construction and adjustable clamp locking system hold phones up to 190mm in length securely and fits into a standard 25mm ball mount on the bike. SRP is £20.83. UA Distribution; 01854 611188; trade@ua-distribution.com

10TEN ElectricBIKE BRAND

Product news

PIT MOTOCROSS AND its first all10TEN has launched 10TENMX-E. It electric model – the and novice riders, is aimed at junior settings to restrict so has two power is capable rider the speed until the full max of enough to unleash to power the 1000W. This is enough of 45km/h. MX-E up to a maximum battery can The removable lithium for a fullybe rapidly swapped ent, and can replacem charged 5 in four to six Triumph nose ST PYRAMID then be recharged including SPECIALI UK BODYWORK hours. SRP is £999 its new and labour Plastics has just launched a six-month parts nose fairing with Triumph Speed Twin warranty. The nose 708607; specialist colour match. Dualways; 01623 with a cockpit screen s.com fairings come fitted drew.m@dualway the Speed Twin by Puig, and fit onto bike. The the to ion without modificat in the UK and are fairings are painted MX1 Roost Guard6 k Triumph’s paintwor SMART Kit designed to match Rapid Bike r5 armou Available in look! body SMART se OEM BIKE an Daine perfectly for THE NEW RAPID DAINESE’S MX1 ARE ly designed Ice Silver, SRPs start NEW FORkit2021 is specifical both Korosi Red and fuelling body protectors performance of Euro MX2 Roost the Guard and at £155. to improve ng the fuel/ enduro. and 01427 677990; enricheni s by les Plastics; motocros for Pyramid sized 4 and 5 motorcyc a rev range. The compactlastics.co.uk Roost Guard ut the features MX1 througho sales@pyramid-p ratio airThe the lambda (certified this by controlling r back protector Pro-Armo SMART module does from the operation 1) made to modify Level in order EN1621-2 tosensor signal andon the for comfort effect nitrile rubber The module’s expanded of the stock ECU. (Level protector or , plus a chest be increased reduced flexibility lambda signal can s (Level 1),Bluetooth , d via and protector connecte shoulder app 2), free a using defence delivery, power s for an all-round hip it promises smoother andprotector nts of up to 20% and entsadjustme impact. Velcro against torque improvem ventilated 5hp. fit, and the ately a tailored allow boosts of approxim cool in , power riders plug and play operation toakeep helps simple n is structure Installatio in R1250GS, R1250GS ion. Available BMW’s of competit models it fits are the current andthick the only, R1250RT. in blackand .com R1250RS or L-XXL) sizes, XXS-M rformanceparts-ltd Adventure, R1250R, of £219.99. 01327 706139; colin@pe SRP Parts; has an nce MX1 Performa a similar has model MX2 The the Pro-Armor structure, but with out for a more back protector swapped

ByCity RoadsterDESIGNS OF 1970’S

TO THE HARKING BACK face Roadster is a full racing lids, the ByCity F1 based on the JPS helmet with graphics shell era. The carbon fibre livery of the same comfortable fit, and is ovalised for a more sity impact absorbing underneath is a multi-den opening a wide aperture inner shell. There’s a visor which gives rmed thermofo the for e and inside is a removabl better field of vision, D Closure is by double and washable interior. for an comes in size XS-XL buckle. The Roadster SRP of £229.95. ; 020 3514 2413; Dot4Distribution ution.com info@dot4distrib

r Terra Force rubbe

5 HJC RPHA 90SHELMET FROM HJC IS SAID TO

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

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BRAND MITAS IS SLOVENIAN TYRE to its extreme adding junior sizes Designed for enduro tyre range. 50 to 85cc, the motorcycles from new rubber company claims the and filters high levels of grip OF Malossiensures EXTENDED ITS RANGE excellent MALOSSI HAS stability, along with scooters. forthem filters suitable for air nce high performa handling, making the OE filterriders. range replacescompetitive The standard both novices andflat sponge in either 70/100-19 and comes element and The fronts come in filtersMX MH panel Force dedicated as or Terra in configuration90/90-14 sizes Both of maxi scooter. Super compounds for certain models Super and C-21which can remove and a fine sponge ely. Rears are 90/100-16 styles utilise respectiv whilst filterMX MH than the OEForce smaller dirt particle 90/100-12 in Terra flow rate of air. Soft. higher Soft and C-20 Super maintaining aSuper te filters incorpora 066142; Red sponge The DoubleMitas Tyres; 0038 642 to remove layers.com sponge finer, even itas-tyre second, a sales@m an extra particles to provide microscopic dust n. level of engine protectio 2991; VE (UK); 0115 946 m sales@ve-trade.co

iral 5 Muc-Off Anti-vSHOT

ONE THIS ANTI-VIRAL canister of Grenade is a single-use It can be used compressed sanitiser. the inside in vehicles (to sanitise or indoors of a van, for example) rooms, staff (changing rooms in showroom). rooms or even a main can filled with It’s a compact 150ml m compounds quaternary ammoniu is said to kill and alcohol which as well as 99.99% of bacteria gs simply ATION OF THE Adjustable footpe d viruses. To use, ALLOW MODIFIC envelope WHICH RS are leave the can A NEW SET OF ADAPTO in a matter of minutes press the trigger and and passenger footpegs few minutes to do position of both rider in the room for a es manufacturer Puig. with a available from accessori adaptor together its thing. model-specific footpeg has an can be used for The system uses a the 20mm shifter A twin pack of canisters 40mm displacer – pillion only. for is choice of 20mm or shifter SRP of £14.99. r while the 40mm multiple 307799; both driver and passenge 15o increments allowing Muc Off; 01202 be rotated 360o in om The displacer can sales@muc-off.c perfect fit . positions to get the ig.tv 49 06 33; info@pu Puig; 0034 938 MX2 Roost Guard

everyday item. or copper It comes in black same sizes as the colourway, in the SRP of £179.99. MX1 version, for an Bike It; 02380 658700; .co.uk tradesales@bikeit

Venhill MX hoses and cables

on 01237 Contact Alison

36 FEBRUARY 2021

Tank film 5

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

on 01237 Contact Alison

ws.co.uk

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Twin

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

VENHILL’S NEW OWNERS HAVE BEEN WORKING with the JM Honda Racing MXGP team to create new upgraded hoses and cables for the Honda CRF450R. The Powerhose Plus brake and clutch lines are made with a Teflon core with stainless steel braid wrap and a PVC outer jacket in a choice of 10 colours. Swivel socket nuts are used at both ends for easier fitting. The replacement throttle cables use marine grade stainless steel wire with a Teflon liner for reduced friction and lighter action. Brake hoses are £54.23 front, £37.73 rear; clutch hose is also £37.73, and a pair of throttle cables is £39.77. Venhill Engineering; 01306 885111; sales@venhill.co.uk

.co.uk es@dealernews 422660 or adsal

.co.uk es@dealernews 422660 or adsal

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

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OCTOBER 2021

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SOMETIMES YOU CAN struggle to undo a nut no matter the size of the breaker bar you attack it with, and then sometimes you want to make sure that a nut doesn’t undo itself no matter what. For the second situation, you need some thread lock, and Xeramic has produced two versions to suit most situations. Threadlocker Blue is medium strength (so should undo using hand tools when needed) and is suitable for stainless and galvanised fixings. It’s resistant to temperatures up to 150 deg C and most liquids – solvents, oils, fuels and alkaline solutions. Threadlocker Red is similar but is high strength, so is really for stuff that you never want to shift again. Both come in 50ml squeezy bottles for fuss-free application. MotoMondo; 01429 650555; andrew.davidson@ motomondo.com

T:ur winter gloves 

R&G protection film R&G SECOND SKIN PROTECTION FILM IS MADE from non-yellowing, ultra tough polyurethane and aims to protect motorcycle fuel tanks from scratches and marks. The near-invisible film is pre-cut to suit a wide range of machines from all the major manufacturers, and is said to be easy to apply and doesn’t obscure any graphics. SRP is £19.99. R&G; 01420 89007; alan.garrett@rg-racing.com

READY TO BATTLE THE WINTER weather, T:ur’s new G-Zero gloves are designed to be comfortable in sub-zero temperatures. They are a four-finger design – the ring and little fingers are linked – with a fivefinger inner glove that can be worn separately. A HDry waterproof and breathable membrane is laminated inside the outer glove and keeps the digits dry and also provides an additional insulating layer. Thermore padding adds extra warmth for the coldest days and can increase warmth by up to 20%, according to the manufacturer. Protection elements of the CE-approved G-Zero gloves include rigid knuckle protectors, anti-abrasion pads on the palms and soft padding on the ring finger. Available in black in sizes S to 3XL, for an SRP of £129.99. Tucano Urbano; 07799 626635; info@tucanourbano.com

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OCTOBER 2021  53


Market analysis with financial editor Roger Willis

F

MOTORCYCLE

visitors did business at Expo

same or of visitors did the of increased the amount 2011 business at Expo

FACT 74%

Report Roger Willis

Motor Cycle According to the (MCIA), which capture this market. for Industry Association were on alert to and low seat the Department spend is gets its data from Driver and he female market of the The Harley image models is particularly Transport (DfT) and the (DVLA), cent eight to 11 per height on some members of the Agency and riders. Vehicle Licensing licence holders overall UK motorcycle appealing to some fraternity, said y 3.5 million New female full motorcycle and according there are approximatel licences in in of scooter market, female motorcycling In America one joining the ranks 12 per cent people with motorcycle s, dealers and other Harley show staff. Harley-Davidsons 525,000 (15 per to manufacturer canvassed for this scooter riders constituteThis figure the UK. Of them total. ten buyers of new industry members share has been of the newcomer cent) are women. MCIA survey is female. active riders? To feature. This marketquarters as a some clothing and is from the 2008 How many are which In recent years figure with s have been recognised in some growth potential. Women and Motorcycling, survey of approach that particular with note aftermarket manufacturer to the telephone valuable sector of realism, we must are dedicated taking ng was based on a s lines sense any or scooter-owni The introducing Among manufacturer sector also says there 600 motorcycleAmong them are in this that the DVLA more than female market. powered twoa serious interest households conducted BMW and Arai. 1.29 million licensedroads. Adding a Harley-Davidson. per cent of the Key Collection, are Suzuki and a decade ago. Ten argue wheelers on British in active use, introduced a website year this women. You could Suzuki bikes market by sample were riders strains the fairer sex (Girl bit for untaxed QuaNtiFyiNg tHe s mostly rely on recently estimated dedicated to the that a mere 60 the first allwhich was most cent, credibility. Bike manufacturer as to the further 3.6 per Torque) and organised Park, 14 bounds of statistical the poll “guesstimates” the DfT to be a (Donington 1.34 day judicious worth, nearly track it’s to market girl up For what pushes the tally size of the women’s 32 per cent of these doesn’t illuminate September 2011). dealers have been overall ly reluctant to discovered that 35-44. Two per million. But that Harley-Davidson to teach female and are understandab total either because degrees of success if women were aged Seventy-five per the overall rider nights more 25. reveal their own own under running ladies’ the most out of were minority competition, the cent and 60 per cent (or otherwise) to them a substantial Building in a buyers how to get basic roadside cent held full licences than ten years. able to measure out than one motorcycle. more indeed they are their bikes, carry per cent for multiple stated, somewhere for lifting had been riding discount of ten means convincingly. As 11 per cent is the repairs, learn techniques individuals by ownership between eight and . bikes and so on. Live at the most popular generalisation At 2010 Motorcycle son UK staff NEC, Harley-David

prefer of visiting business’s start-ofExpo’s January season timing

FACT 8/10

s population, the e almost half the uk’ sts are men. motorcycli While women compris crepancy, given majority of British overwhelming this customer-base disoption. Continuing to ignore es we face, is not an the hard economic tim

riders in total, probably 1.2 million possibly fewer. 15 per cent female Transferring the holders to bikes factor from licence 180,000 female us on the road gives

following the passes have plummeted more controversial claimed that a imposition of a Just over a quarter was their main test regime. powered two-wheeler official information and 27 per cent Since 2008 little form of transport riders made up on the female market has been used mopeds. All-year pleasure of riding gathererd. 63 per cent. The for 42 per cent. was top motivator by 38 per cent. data Mobility was quoted that, of women BLack Horse finance uptake and Point-of-sale The MCIA reports 20 per cent shine a sharper, cover surveyed, has insurance per riders it light on the state machines and 18 more up-to-date ride supersport Motorcycle of play. Black Horse on this button cent sport/tour. DfT finger Finance has its According to 2000-2007average of biggest consumer an annual and is by far the compendiums, test, through UK learners took the a funding provider 11,680 female with a keen compared to motorcycle dealerships, every 55 per cent passing success rate. During vested interest in growing of 67 per cent male segment. Franchise highest percentage possible market this period the was 14 per cent. Dave Macey development manager data. female test takers for 2008 show provided the following DVLA statistics total test cent of new in Some 12.27 per per cent of a sudden increase 9.9 105,362. Of them motorcycles and with Black applications to women. were cent) used bikes bought now go to 15,288 (14.5 per was 66.4 per cent ➥ Horse loan participation as a Overall pass rate 55 per cent customers. Applied (68 per cent men, applications and female then women). Since

analysis

analysis

FOR...

Female market

GIrL

FACT 95%

VER WAY YOU

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building sisterhood in the saddle when interviewed. Only one of them was actually female, Fiona Cole at Honda, mind you. Pressure from covert sales and marketing tools like mystery shopping were being assiduously applied, they told me, to ensure the average dealership ceased

The core industry is basically run by the usual bunch of blokes in suits, perhaps even more so than it was ten years ago

reflecting my far more detailed research from ten years ago. Taken together, hardly in-depth information. So is the women’s market really growing? On such scant evidence, I suspect not. Way back in 2011, there was far more promotional activity aimed at women by both the industry and individual motorcycle manufacturers. The MCIA website featured a Women and Motorcycling business press briefing fact sheet. expansion The facts speak for It doesn’t even mention themselves... the fairer sex now. Suzuki GB had a dedicated Girl stands from FACT only £749 Torque web presence – PoWEr long since redundant. Every single marketing or T communications manager from major brands expressed firm and focused d in the malege an ch s ha ch mu A decade on, not ustry corporate commitment to dors of the bike ind EXHIBIT AT EXPO

Female market

To gild this frail lily of data, Auto Trader also quoted comparethemarket.com revelations that women most likely to buy a bike are in the younger 25-34 age bracket and the popular majority of machines purchased by female riders are in the up-to125cc mobility sector – closely

or a party animal like yours truly, all landmark anniversaries are worth celebrating. It’s a sobering thought that an entire decade has passed since I wrote a weighty 4000-word analysis of UK women’s motorcycle market prospects for this magazine in October 2011. Our only excuse for the fact that BDN hasn’t bothered to address the subject again is that neither has anybody else. However, recent teasers from Auto Trader about activity on its bike website, suggesting the number of female riders is rising, has tempted me into dusting off what now appears to be an otherwise moribund topic. According to the online used bike sales platform, it experienced a 36% increase in female traffic and 34% growth for virgin female users, year-on-year, during June 2021. Furthermore, 48% of all lady visitors to the site this year have been first timers.

-EXPO.COM

On the Money

On the Money

sept'11.indd

1

DECEMBER 2011

16:01

35

R 2011 34 DECEMBE

dominated corri

to be a blatant male-chauvinist pigsty. So showrooms were no longer necessarily replete with soft-core girly calendars behind the spares counter and condescending staff who treated female footfall humiliation as an entertaining blood sport. There was a sense of work in progress, even if some approaches were a tad facile, and solid data supported that contention. Leading POS funding provider Black Horse had cheerfully obliged me with details on the proportion of female customers. Some 12.3% of new motorcycles and 9.9% of used machines bought with Black Horse finance participation in 2010 had been ridden away from dealers by women. Scooter numbers were even more encouraging, 25.8% for new and 21.2% for used.

Scooter registrations, including 50cc products, had subsequently risen by 13.1% in the first nine months of 2011, pointing to a growing feminine presence in the mobility sector. In my decade-old analysis, I reckoned from a consensus of various sources that about 15% of overall bike park ownership and somewhere between 11% and 15% at best of new and used bike sales were attributable to women that year. But here’s the rub. Department for Transport figures showed 1.29 million licensed powered two-wheelers on British roads in 2011. There were exactly the same number in the most recent data covering 2020. And I would bet the percentage of that volume owned by women will be approximately static too, given the extent to which enthusiasm for canvassing sales across the gender divide has stagnated – and in many ways been abandoned altogether. Ironically, MCIA chief executive Tony Campbell castigated BDN last October for sexism in jocular remarks about a new female chief financial officer joining HarleyDavidson. In his stern missive, Campbell pontificated about belief in equal opportunities, “evidenced by the number of senior women across the UK motorcycle industry”. Where are they hiding? I can think of none. The core industry

International Share Prices USA – PANIC STATIONS

EUROPE – SHARED CHINA SYNDROME

The third week in September stank of volatility in New York, caused by an unfolding bankruptcy crisis for huge Chinese property developer Evergrande, with lots of US investment capital at risk. Wall Street’s “worst day for more than six months” on Monday was followed by two sessions of steady bounce-back, anticipating Chinese governmental intervention to save the company. Thursday turned into Wall Street’s “best day since mid-July”, before Friday slumped when it became evident Evergrande’s woes hadn’t gone away. Inevitably, market indices were up and down as this saga progressed. The blue-chip S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average eventually closed on minor respective gains of 0.5% and 0.6%. S&P’s MidCap 400 did a bit better, 0.8% up.

The Evergrande debt default threat also hit European markets as the week began and Frankfurt’s Xetra Dax index performed a single-session dive of 2.3% on Monday. But more generalised influences related to supply chains, microchip shortages, energy issues and Covid took over. A resilient mood in the face of these challenges prompted steady Dax recovery, to finish 0.3% up. In Italy, Milan’s MIB index bucked gloom with a 1% rise, primarily because Italian investors had little or no exposure to Chinese real estate. However, Italian biker stocks slipped, probably bitten by lack of chips.

54

OCTOBER 2021

BDN243 Stats.indd 54

JAPAN – AUTUMNAL INTERRUPTIONS After a three-week boost through September, thanks to the prospect of a smarter new Japanese

prime minister in the offing, Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 index turned sour, declining by 0.8%. The main culprit was shrivelled trading volume, though, because Monday and Thursday were both public holidays associated with the Autumn Equinox. Many investors filled in the gaps by simply staying at home. Honda and Suzuki shares followed weakening market activity. Yamaha and Kawasaki blithely ignored it.

INDIA – TWO-WHEELED RETREAT Sobering news specific to its motorcycle industry upset India’s applecart. The dominant share of powered two-wheelers in the Indian automotive market as a whole has fallen to 74% during this year so far, the lowest level since 2013. And data for August going into September suggested that numbers were still falling.

www.britishdealernews.co.uk 27/09/2021 10:07


is basically run by the usual bunch of blokes in suits, perhaps even more so than it was ten years ago. There are some spectacularly successful female trade personalities, such as Stephanie Fowler and Louise Jefferies, leading their respective dealer dynasties, plus Valentina Slater at high-profile accident management enterprise McAMS and Feridax managing director Anna White. But as much of our readership is often painfully aware, a chasm of mistrust generally separates trade and industry. Besides, for many years those blokes in suits were keen on keeping women out of an informal and distinctly secretive “club” which combines motorcycle touring weekends for industry executive personnel with discreet cross-company networking. I’ve never been invited either, because press and trade were also traditionally on the exclusion list. The odd token female may join them occasionally now but it’s still predominantly a masculine preserve.

I’ll freely admit that motorcycling media, which has filled my wine rack for more than 40 years, isn’t much better in the gender-equality stakes. While MCN deputy editor Emma Franklin’s status should be hailed, she is one of only three women on the weekly’s 18-strong

Women’s market issues are so distanced from the industry agenda that hardly a ghost of recognition is left editorial masthead – equating to a 17% minority. In the mid1980s, when I was editor of Bike magazine, we beat that with two women in an editorial team of

A snapshot of share performance across key manufacturers and markets Although Mumbai’s BSE Sensex 30 stock index climbed by 1.7%, the three largest indigenous bike manufacturers lost value in response.

CHINA – LUCKY BREAK Autumn festival holidays were also to the fore in China, with a threesession week starting on Wednesday. Conveniently, that had shuttered stock exchanges when jitters about the feared Evergrande collapse were peaking elsewhere. Seriously reduced trading activity saw Shanghai’s SSE Composite index close dead flat. The blue-chip CSI 300 across Shanghai and Shenzhen – which includes Evergrande – dropped by a trivial 0.1%. Motorcycle producers were mostly unscathed, with just three of eleven biker listings on the back foot.

www.britishdealernews.co.uk BDN243 Stats.indd 55

seven, art editor Gillian Lockhart and regular freelance features writer Louisa Young. Arguably, feminist press representation has gone backwards. There have been occasional milestones of positivity in the 21st century. Carolynn Sells and Ana Carrasco became the first

women to win historic pinnacles of motorcycle racing, respectively taking a debut female victory on the Isle of Man’s fabled Mountain Course

Price

and winning the FIM World Supersport 300 championship title. Overt exploitation of women has declined too. Brolly dollies have almost vanished from race grids and employment of scantily clad eye candy on stands at motorcycle shows is fading away as well. But it’s difficult to avoid feeling we have frozen in time over the past ten years, because no easy break-through occurred. Half of the UK population is female yet motorcycling remains a mostly male dominion. Women’s market issues are so distanced from the industry agenda that hardly a ghost of recognition is left. Nevertheless, the premise I posed in 2011 is as true today as it was then. Developing a coherent strategy has nothing to do with bending the knee to “woke” political correctness. It’s simply a matter of hard-nosed commercial common sense. 

Week Month

USA (dollar) Harley-Davidson 37.95 Polaris Industries 120.82 Textron 71.08

+0.3% +0.9% +3.8%

Europe (euro) BMW 81.59 Volkswagen 267.00 Pierer Mobility 78.70 Piaggio Group 3.09 Energica Motor 3.18

+1.5% +4.2% -0.6% -5.3% +1.2% +4.4% -1.9% -2.5% -1.2% +3.9%

India (rupee) Hero MotoCorp 2833.45 Bajaj Auto 3809.80 TVS Motor 537.20 Eicher Motors 2931.00 Mahindra 779.45

-3.4% +6% -0.4% +3% -1.8% +5.1% +1.1% +13.8% +3.4% +0.6%

-3.9% -1.8% -2.5%

Share performance as of 24 September 2021

Price Japan (yen) Honda Yamaha Suzuki Kawasaki

3414 3200 5180 2523

On the Money

Contact 01237 422660 or adsales@dealernews.co.uk

Week Month -1% +5.1% +3.1% +18.7% -0.3% +11.3% +2.1% +7.5%

China (yuan) Qianjiang 14.35 Zongshen 7.03 Sundiro 2.19 CETC Energy 15.80 Lifan 7.68 Loncin 4.36 Linhai 7.27 Guangzhou Auto 16.58 CFMoto 120.00 Xinri E-Vehicle 17.52

+3.5% +0.7% -0.9% +3.3% +11% +3.3% +1% -3.5% -3.1% +1%

China (HK dollar) Jianshe 6.10

+5.9% +19.8%

-2.4% -5.3% +10.1% +15.1% +23.3% +20.8% -1.8% -5.3% -13% +2.6%

OCTOBER 2021 55 27/09/2021 10:07


New registrations

Registration data New scooter and motorcycle registrations for August 2021 2021 / 2020 Registrations by Style MOPEDS

Aug 2021

Year to Date Aug 2020

Change

Aug 2021

Aug 2020

Aug 2021 Registrations

Highest Registering Model by Style

% Change

Moped Naked

47

109

-56.9%

480

687

-30.1%

Rieju MRT 50

Moped Other

98

36

172.2%

519

341

52.2%

Multiple models

11 1

Moped Scooters

408

509

-19.8%

3537

2937

20.4%

Lexmoto Echo 50

35

TOTAL MOPEDS

553

654

-15.4%

4536

3965

14.4%

1213

1187

2.2%

13759

10691

28.7%

Royal Enfield Himalayan

97

384

383

0.3%

3766

3561

5.8%

KTM 300 EXC TPI

46 145

MOTORCYCLES Adventure Competition Custom

739

616

20.0%

5490

4812

14.1%

Keeway Superlight

Modern Classic

861

914

-5.8%

7570

6441

17.5%

Royal Enfield Interceptor INT 650

78

1892

2185

-13.4%

17167

15192

130%

Honda CBF125M

175

Naked

565

748

-24.5%

5913

6486

-8.8%

Lexmoto LXR125

94

Scooter

Road Sport

2184

2104

3.8%

18478

14101

31.0%

Yamaha NMAX 125

271

Touring

137

194

-29.4%

1718

1438

19.5%

BMW R 1250 RT

40

12

23

-47.8%

87

128

-32.0%

7987

8354

-4.4%

73948

62850

17.7%

Unspecified TOTAL MOTORCYCLES TRICYCLES Scooter

24

38

-36.8%

316

281

12.5%

Unspecified electric

8

Other

43

41

4.9%

349

267

30.7%

Piaggio MP3 300 Sport

16

TOTAL TRICYCLES

67

79

-15.2%

665

548

21.4%

8607

9087

-5.3%

79149

67363

17.5%

TOTAL REGISTRATIONS

2021 / 2020 Registrations by Capacity ENGINE BAND

Aug 2021

0 - 50cc

Year to Date

Aug 2020

% Change

Aug 2021

Aug 2020

Highest Registering Model by Style

% Change

Aug 2021 Registrations

833

772

7.9%

6623

4505

47.0%

Vmoto SuperSoco CPX

94

51 - 125cc

3799

3991

-4.8%

27991

24211

15.6%

Yamaha NMAX 125

271

126 - 650cc

1420

1622

-12.5%

14684

13293

10.5%

Royal Enfield Meteor 350

136

651 - 1000cc

1387

1443

-3.9%

15817

13296

19.0%

Yamaha Tracer 9GT

82

over 1000cc

1168

1259

-7.2%

14034

12058

16.4%

BMW R1250 GS Adventure

92

TOTAL REGISTRATIONS

8607

9087

-5.3%

79149

67363

17.5%

Alternative power registrations August 2021

BRANDS CHART Top Ten Manufacturers

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

August 2021

2021 / 2020 Registrations by Capacity

1. Honda...........................................1641 2. Yamaha...........................................963 3. Triumph..........................................558 4. BMW..............................................490 5. Lexmoto..........................................422 6. Kawasaki.........................................394 7. KTM...............................................371 8. Royal Enfield...................................339 9. Ducati.............................................267 10. Piaggio............................................244

POWER BAND

Aug 2021

Under 1kW

Year to Date

Aug 2020

% Change

15

Aug 2021

Aug 2020

0.0%

60

% Change 0.0%

1-4kW

385

148

160.1%

3146

897

250.7%

12

-8.3%

114

59

93.2%

0.0%

6

1

100.0%

32

39

-17.9%

4-11kW

11

11-15kW

0

15-35kW

2

0.0%

Over 35kW

11

14

-21.4%

83

61

36.1%

Unknown

71

48

47.9%

407

281

44.8%

495

223

122.0%

3848

1337

187.8%

TOTAL REGISTRATIONS

2021 / 2020 Registrations by Style MOPEDS Adventure

Aug 2021 Aug 2020

Change

0

0

0.0%

58

19

205.3%

EPAC

1

1

0.0%

Naked

21

17

23.5%

0

0

0.0%

136

68

100.0%

0

1

-100.0%

216

106

103.8%

Competition

Other L-Cat Scooter Unspecified TOTAL

MOTORCYCLES

Aug 2021 Aug 2020

Change

Adventure

3

2

50.0%

Competition

6

7

-14.3%

45

27

66.7%

Naked Road Sport Scooter Unspecified TOTAL

3

7

-57.1%

211

72

193.1%

0

0

0.0%

268

115

133.0%

TRICYCLES Other L-Cat

Aug 2021 Aug 2020

Change

11

5

120.0%

Scooter

2

0

0.0%

TOTAL

13

5

160.0%

Aug 2021 Aug 2020 TOTAL ALTERNATIVE POWER 497 226 REGISTRATIONS Includes 3 Diesel PTWs Includes 3 Diesel PTWs

Change 119.9%

Registration statistics supplied by the MCIA; tel 02476 408000; www.mcia.co.uk 56  OCTOBER 2021

www.britishdealernews.co.uk


THE TRADITIONALLY THIN AUGUST MARKET delivered a second consecutive month of registrations decline, inevitably skewed by last summer’s tremendous demand resurgence after the initial Covid lockdown. Potentially negative vibes were bubbling under, though. BDN financial editor Roger Willis reports. According to MCIA statistics, total monthly registrations fell by 5.3% to 8607. Within that, scooters were 3.8% up at 2184, motorcycles were 7.2% down at 5803, mopeds lost 15.4% to 553 and trikes retreated by 15.2% to 67. But, bearing in mind the headline tally of 8607 was satisfactorily 24.3% above Covid-free August 2019, knee-jerk fear factor was minimised. To avoid confusion engendered by the pandemic’s erratic impact, concentrating on year-to-date numbers continues to be the most helpful route. In the eight months of 2021 so far, registrations have staged a 17.5% recovery to 79,149, compared to a 11.7% loss to 67,363 at the same YTD point in 2020. However, we’ve only achieved 3.7% growth from 76,305 in YTD 2019. Capacity classes colour the picture with more detail and start to challenge over-confidence. Before casting aspersions, though, it has to be said the up-to-125cc sector (or perhaps we should rename it “up-to-11kW” in Newspeak) is an unalloyed success. On a YTD 2021 basis, it has now grown by 20.5% to 34,614 machines, after adding 4.3% to 28,716 in YTD 2020. Most pertinently, the sector is currently 25.7% ahead of the YTD 2019 total of 27,532. YTD input from electric scooters and small motorcycles has accounted for 3320 machines, increasing by 247.3% – although evidence that

Rolling Year Comparison

these are actively boosting overall registrations rather than replacing petrol-powered alternatives is still anecdotal. Super Soco’s CPX scooter ruled that roost in the past month. Last year, the industry and media mostly attributed this phenomenon to cheap selfisolating urban mobility appeal. Some of that may still be true. But status as a prime provider of delivery worktools for the gig economy can take much of the credit now. Yamaha’s NMAX 125 remained sector steed of choice in August, leading absolute highest-registered, scooter and 51-125cc categories. It must also be able to claim YTD 2021

figure was a painful 8.7% lower than the 48,773 plated in the first eight months of 2019. Ongoing feedback from disgruntled dealers highlighted plenty of demand with no means to satisfy it. Drastic supply-chain disruption has been the main culprit, a worsening problem with no resolution in sight. Sufficient quantities of some sought-after 2021 models apparently won’t reach showrooms until 2022. Spotting the victims in August’s brand rankings wasn’t difficult. Honda and Yamaha finished positive, respectively 2.7% and 9.3% up. But dealers for both have been complaining to all and sundry in the trade of too much dependence on small fry and gaping holes in their stock plans. Illustrating such obstacles, 28.1% of the latter’s entire monthly registrations constituted samples of the aforementioned NMAX 125 scooter. Honda led the Naked style category with its CBF125M. Value-for-money Chinese specialist Lexmoto plunged by 30.5%, despite its LXR125 claiming the Road Sport accolade. KTM was 28.4% down. Kawasaki took a monumental 39.6% supremacy, given Yamaha dive. BMW Motorrad was 8.7% in has now shifted about 4000 arrears. Piaggio lost 29.9%. of them. The only clear winners were Triumph, rising by 25.4% and Sadly, we’re stuck no doubt bolstered by the with a tale of woe in desirability of its budget 660 126cc-plus engine Trident, and Royal Enfield, bands. Sure, YTD 2021 earning highest-registered registrations of bigger honourable mentions for and more profitable bikes Himalayan, Interceptor 650 were 15.2% up to 44,535, and Meteor 350 models in following YTD 2020’s 20.8% The Enfield Meteor 350 topped appropriate categories. loss to 38,647. But that latest the mid-capacity rankings

New registrations

WEAKER INDICATORS IN AUGUST

Status as a prime provider of delivery worktools for the gig economy can take much of the credit now

NMDA COMMENT

I

Scooter Market Performance The percentage of the overall market made up of scooters

www.britishdealernews.co.uk BDN243 Stats.indd 57

by the Yamaha NMAX 125 with 271 n what is typically a low volume registered units. Honda was the brand month due to customers opting leader in terms of registrations in to wait until September to obtain August with 1641 units, followed by the latest registration plate on their Yamaha with 963 units and Triumph new machine, Powered Two Wheelers with 558 units. (PTWs) continued O’Connell added, their upward Motorcycle dealers “With PTW’s finally trend in August, being recognised said Paddy are optimistic by government as O’Connell, head that if the supply a viable option for of the National mobility, the main Motorcycle chain issues show issue to consider Dealers now remains Association improvement, the manufacturer supply. (NMDA). market going forward With all major brands “Whilst the being in the market was down will remain buoyant largely same situation, -5.3% compared to August 2020, throughout the final managing customer expectations the figure still quarter of 2021 becomes paramount. represents 24% “Motorcycle dealers growth over what are optimistic that if the supply chain would be considered a normal year, in issues show improvement, the market 2019.” going forward will remain buoyant “Sales of Electric PTWs continued to throughout the final quarter of 2021”. perform well, with an increase of 122% (to 495 units) for the month and 188% (to 3848 units) for the year to date. In August, the larger engine scooters (51-125cc) sector was again dominated NATIONAL MOTORCYCLE DEALERS ASSOCIATION

OCTOBER 2021 57 27/09/2021 13:20


Used bike data

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DEMAND AND PRICING STILL STRONG

C

onsumer demand was still looking very strong in our August data, with the number of leads 16% ahead of the previous year and a huge 96% ahead of 2019. These statistics were generated during the 18 million minutes buyers spent on Auto Trader Bikes drooling over their next dream machine, or maybe just something simple and reliable to commute to work on! Pricing remained strong throughout the latest month due to the huge demand, with the average price of a used bike standing at £175 more than it was 12 months back. Mopeds, scooters and adventure bikes saw the biggest pricing growth while sports tourers actually went against the

Pricing remained strong throughout the latest month due to the huge demand

trend and saw a decrease in average price.

FASTEST SELLERS When it comes to the fastestselling used bikes we are focusing on the top 30 during the period from 1 July through to 20 September, based on the median number of days the bikes were advertised on site. A brace of Lexmotos lead the way – the sporty LXR125 and the knobbly-tyred Assault – with more CBT-compliant 125cc fodder filling much of the list. In fact, learnerfriendly 125 machines made up eight of the top ten and 13 of the top 30. The only big-capacity machines to break into the top ten were Kawasaki’s

middleweight naked Z800 and KTM’s monster naked 1290 Super Duke R. Outwith the top ten, a mix of nakeds, cruisers and adventure bikes fill the majority of positions, with Aprilia’s RSV4 the only supersports example, showing how out-of-favour this sector has become. The overall median days to sell was 28 days. PAUL EDMONDSON Product lead, Auto Trader Bikes

The fastest selling bikes on Auto Trader Average days advertised before sale

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10.

Lexmoto LXR125 ______________ 4 Lexmoto Assault _______________ 8 Suzuki GSXR125 ______________ 8 Kawasaki Z800 _______________ 8 Honda CB125F _______________ 9 Honda Monkey _____________ 9.5 KTM 1290 Super Duke R ______ 9.5 Yamaha YS125 _______________ 10 Honda XL125 Varadero ________ 10 Yamaha YZF-R125 __________ 10.5

11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20.

Yamaha MT-125 _____________ 11 Kawasaki Vulcan______________ 11 Yamaha YBR125 _____________ 11 Suzuki Gladius 650 ___________ 11 KTM 125 Duke ____________ 12.5 Yamaha Tracer 900____________ 13 Suzuki Bandit 600 ____________ 13 Triumph Speed Twin ___________ 13 Honda CBR125 ______________ 14 Husqvarna 701 ______________ 14

21. 22. 23. 24. 25. 26. 27. 28. 29. 30.

Triumph Trident ______________ 14 Triumph Speedmaster 865 ______ 14 Yamaha XSR700____________ 14.5 KTM 390 Duke ______________ 15 Honda CB125R ____________ 15.5 Honda CB650R ______________ 16 Suzuki GSXR600 _____________ 16 Triumph Street Twin ___________ 16 Aprilia RSV4 _______________ 16.5 Suzuki Bandit 1250 _________ 16.5

CONSUMER DEMAND REMAINS ROBUST THE USED MOTORCYCLE market continues to remain buoyant, with several dealers reporting stronger activity than last year. Consumer demand continues to be strong across all motorcycle segments, although smaller capacity geared machines, scooters, naked machinery and modern classics have performed particularly well. Unsurprisingly, acquiring stock continues to be the biggest challenge for dealers, with the

Motorcycle Auctions 58 OCTOBER 2021 BDN243 Stats.indd 58

majority reporting that their stock Acquiring stock is lower than during the same continues to be the period last year. Some franchised have begun to sell nonbiggest challenge dealers franchised stock that they would for dealers, with the ordinarily have traded out to other dealers, simply in order to make majority reporting up the stock shortfall. Activity within auction that their stock is channels remains animated, lower than during although recent hammer prices have eased back a little. That said, the same period residual values remain stronger than last year. last year

PAUL McDONALD Leisure vehicle editor, Glass’s

To enter a bike or open a buying account please call 01530 833535 Every 3rd Thursday of every month @ 11.00am www.britishdealernews.co.uk fleetauctiongroup.com 27/09/2021 13:20

M A


Used bike data

35

NAKED BIKES REMAIN THE MOST POPULAR CAN YOU BELIEVE THE AUTUMN IS HERE ALREADY? The summer seems to have flown by and now we’re thinking about heated riding kit again. Despite the chilly tang of Autumn the bike market remains bullish, and Kawasaki’s Z900RS was the most popular bike for sale on the MCN site in the past month, followed by Honda’s perennially popular NC750X and CB500X adventure models. In fact, Honda is the most popular manufacturer too,

albeit with a slightly lower margin than last month’s figures, with Triumph and Yamaha both beginning to nip at the Red H’s heels. Our Bike Reviews show significant interest in the UK’s most popular sports bike, the Lexmoto LXR 125, alongside BMW’s latest G310R and the new Aprilia Tuono V4. GARETH EVANS Online editor, MCN

Bikes for Sale

Trail

Retro

Classic

Supersport

Sport/Tour

Scooter

Naked

Custom

Adventure

1. Kawasaki Z900RS 2. Honda NC750X 3. Honda CB500X 4. Harley-Davidson Fat-Boy 5. Yamaha R1 6. Honda GL1800-Goldwing 7. Honda CBR1000RR-Fireblade 8. Honda VFR800 9. BMW R1200GS 10. Kawasaki ZZR1400

Touring

Percentage of views by type

Most viewed models

MCN Reviews

Other

Retro

Trail

Touring

Supersport

Sport/Tour

Scooter

Naked

Custom

Adventure

Percentage of views by type

Top 5 Bike Reviews by type

Naked

Sports

Adventure Sport

1. 2021 BMW G310R

1. 2021 Lexmoto LXR 125

1. 2014 Honda NC750X

2. 2021 Triumph Trident 660

2. 2019 Honda CBR650R

2. 2019 Honda CB500X

3. 2021 Aprilia Tuono V4

3. 2020 Aprilia RS660

3. 2021 Honda CRF300 Rally

4. 2021 Triumph Speed Triple 1200 RS

4. 2020 Ducati Panigale V4S

4. 2018 Royal Enfield Himalayan

5. 2018 MV Agusta Dragster 800 RR

5. 2018 Honda CB1000R

5. 2019 Yamaha Tenere 700

Motorcycle Auctions www.britishdealernews.co.uk BDN243 Stats.indd 59

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Mopeds

Scooters

Geared 125’s

3 Wheelers

Quads

A2 Licence Bikes

Adventure Bikes

Classic Scooter

Classic Bikes

Cycles & Electric Cycles

Electric Scooters

Electric Motorcycles

Profile for British Dealer News

British Dealer News October 2021  

British Dealer News October 2021  

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