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NMDA predicts end of Euro 3 wash-through

The question of whether the market is shrinking or just affected by a surfeit of pre-reg bikes has to be asked, says the NMDA, after a 12.6% drop in registrations in the plate-change month of March.

“This is a huge drop of 2103 machines compared with what went on the road in march of last year,” notes NMDA chief Steve Latham.

“The sectors taking the biggest hit in volume terms were scooters and supersport – the same sectors that dominated the Euro 3 preregistrations in December. As so often, the sub-50cc mopeds were weak, being 29.3% behind the previous March figure; but as well as the pre-reg issue this market has been diminishing in its own right as buyers wait and prefer to go straight to 125cc machines.

“If you examine the cc sectors, yet again it is the lower-powered registrations that have suffered. In March these were down 31.2%, but year to date for the first quarter of 2017 these machines suffered a market decline of 30.7%. That’s a massive reduction of 2989 new motorcycles going on the road, and that has to be the effect of the huge preregistration hike last December. Hopefully the majority of bikes have now found new owners and our motorcycle market could return to normality next month.”

Latham says the market for bigger-powered machines showed marginal declines of 12.5% for 126-650cc and just 6.6% for 651-1000cc motorcycles, the machines being less affected by the transition from Euro 3 to Euro 4. Large motorcycles over 1000cc showed growth of 6.9%, up from 3708 to 3962 units. “This clearly indicating the experienced enthusiast is still in the marketplace and prepared to spend at the top end of the market,” Latham added.

“This scenario about the higher-priced top-end machines is clearly borne out when BMW moves up to second place in the manufacturers’ rankings, with 2101 motorcycles registered in March. Only Honda surpassed BMW, with 2904 bikes put on the road. This issue of demand for larger powered machines for the discerning enthusiasts buyers is further borne out by the inclusion of Triumph, Kawasaki, Harley-Davidson and Ducati in the fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh volume position respectfully.

“With hopefully the last big wash through of the Euro 3 registrations seen this March, the marketplace should hopefully return to normality for the dealers to plan their profitable business for the rest of 2017.”

 

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