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DECEMBER REGISTRATIONS SWANSONG

The fact that MCIA statistics for December 2021 turned sharply negative really didn’t mean much, given the contrast with an underogated Euro 4 preregistrations frenzy a year earlier and the stretched Yuletide festivity schedule this time around — which shuttered many businesses for up to a fortnight, from “Black-Eye Friday” on 17 December through to New Year’s Eve. BDN financial editor Roger Willis reports.

Total registrations for the month plunged by 24.2% to 5988, theoretically 1910 fewer. But in December 2020, Lexmoto alone had preregistered considerably more than a thousand machines. Point taken? For the record, motorcycles were 19% down to 4151. Scooters fell by 32.9% to 1285. Mopeds were 35.9% lower at 491. And trikes lost 32.2% to just 61.

In capacity classes, the 51-125cc range was biggest loser, 38.5% down to 2135. 126-650cc machines laid sole claim to positivity, adding 2.8% to 1461. Royal Enfield products were to the fore, with the Meteor 350 both highest-registered bike within that band and topping the Custom style category. Its Interceptor 650 brother led the Modern Classic firmament.

Larger bikes were on the back foot, though. The 651-1000cc range sank by 23.7% to 877, fronted by a fairly modest quantity of Yamaha’s new YZF R7 sporting twin — probably all that are available to dealers through a tight supply chain. Over-1000cc stuff dropped by 19% to 780. BMW’s cash-cow R1250GS Adventure, fully loaded with bells and whistles, was by far the biggest fish in that small pond.

At least Yamaha found enough fresh NMax 125 supplies to reclaim its scooter market hegemony. Electric machines, meanwhile, put on 48.6% to 413, equating to just 6.9% of overall monthly registrations.

Brand performance was led, as usual, by Honda. Yamaha came a fairly distant second, although both posted dramatic improvements on the previous December, respectively 41.2% and 41.3% up. BMW in third spot pretty much held station on a slight 2.1% rise.

As numbers got progressively thinner down the pecking order, Lexmoto took fourth place, an 82.6% volume slump exposing its aforementioned 2020 mass preregistration surge. KTM followed in fifth, diving by 29.5%.

Triumph exactly flatlined in sixth, only 61 bikes ahead of rising star Royal Enfield. Kawasaki’s supply agonies were once again reflected by a 19.4% monthly decline in eighth, closely pursued by Piaggio in arrears by 22.2%.

Chinese-sourced Sinnis made a rare guest appearance as tail-end charlie, which may have been associated to preregistering any left-over derogated Euro 4 stock — all of which needed to be wearing plates before the new year dawned.

Best news saved until last — 2021 proved to be a solid year that saw annual registrations rise by 9.3% to 114,371 versus 2020 and improve by 6.5% against pre-pandemic 2019. For full analysis, see BDN’s February issue.  

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