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REGISTRATIONS AVOID LOCKDOWN TRAP

Contrasting vividly with the “circuit-breaker” lockdown which shuttered showrooms again in November last year, and abetted by dealers being urgently reminded that they must sell or at least register all remaining derogated Euro 4 stock before the end of this year, November 2021 registrations bounced back smartly from four consecutive monthly retreats. BDN financial editor Roger Willis reports.

Total numbers rose by 21.9% to 7292. Motorcycles were 28.1% up at 5173. Scooters improved by 12.9% to 1517. Mopeds put on 4.1% to 532. Trikes posed the only negative note, falling by 21.3% to 70.

In capacity classes, 0-50cc soared by 37.8% to 868, allegedly led by Vmoto’s Super Soco CPx — which is actually a 125cc-equivalent scooter. Consequently 51-125cc, headed up by the Honda CBF125M, managed only a 3.6% increase to 2552. If MCIA statisticians had inserted the Super Soco CPx in its rightful place, that would have been a 10.6% rise to 2726. And 0-50cc would have grown by 10.2% to 694.

Strongest result was in the 126-650cc bracket, surging by 44.9% to 1731. It was dominated by Royal Enfield’s Meteor 350, which also claimed outright best-seller status. The 651-1000cc band grew by 34.9% to 1172, topped by the Triumph Trident. Over-1000cc machines were 17.6% higher at 969 with BMW’s R1250GS Adventure in charge.

Besides traditionally lower autumnal volumes anyway, cautionary messages from ongoing supply-chain pressure impacting stock availability and the aforementioned final exit from Euro-4 derogation have to be factored in when interpreting top-ten brand performance.

Honda’s market leadership in November was underlined by a 35.4% gain. Runner-up Yamaha increased by 13.5%. But while Lexmoto climbed back up into third spot, this Chinese flag carrier’s monthly registrations declined by 25.5% year-on-year. Triumph in fourth place put on 26.2% and its best-selling Trident 660 accounted for 17.3% of volume.

Then disruptors began to emerge. Royal Enfield achieved highest-ever brand ranking in fifth, only two bikes behind Triumph. That hot little Meteor cruiser was responsible for 62.4% of the brand’s registrations. KTM, on the other hand, slumped by 19.4% in sixth, even though its 300 EXC TPI enduro iron topped the competition style category.

BMW Motorrad sank to seventh but added a muscular 41.8%. And Kawasaki in eighth spot staged a recovery, rising by 14.2%. Anecdotally, judicious disposal of Euro 4 dust gatherers may have helped in both cases. Piaggio claimed a modest 3.6% advance in ninth. Saving the most spectacular milestone until last, Super Soco purveyor Vmoto became the first solely electric brand to be awarded a top-ten accolade.

For the eleven months of 2021 to date, total registrations grew by 12.1% to 108,383 — respectively 3.6% and 0.9% ahead of full-year tallies for 2020 and pre-pandemic 2019.  

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