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Ducati has plenty to boast about in the nine months of 2021 to date. But Audi, its direct parent in the Volkswagen empire, left some questions unanswered in a combined results statement. BDN financial editor Roger Willis reports.

Revenue rose significantly, a muscular 41.3% up to £608.6m. Operating profit went ballistic, recovering from the equivalent Covid-soured period last year by 318.8% to £56.6m. “Both items not only surpassed the prior-year figures, but were even way above the pre-pandemic level of 2019,” said Audi, bragging on Ducati’s behalf.

Global retail motorcycle sales grew by 28.1% to 49,693, already exceeding the full-year tally in 2020. Diavel, Monster and Streetfighter products together delivered the largest volume to customers, 19.4% up to 15,571. Multistrada and Hypermotard machines piled on 50.9% to 14,912. The Scrambler sub-brand added 26.4% to 9523. And sports bikes were 16.2% higher at 9687. European markets were responsible for 53% of these purchases. The US bought 15% and China 7%. 

Nine-monthly bike production had risen by 38.3% to 47,184. Audi confessed that its car output had been severely inhibited by worsening semiconductor shortages in the third quarter but made no mention of Ducati in this context.

Also absent was any reference to Ducati’s move towards electrification, through a forthcoming role as control fleet supplier to Dorna’s FIM MotoE championship in 2023. The Audi Group’s official stance is that it will launch new all-electric models only from 2026 onwards. Whether that applies to motorcycles as well remains opaque.

€-£ currency translation at forex rates on 29 October      

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