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REGISTRATIONS RISING

The early arrival of new stock is generating more showroom footfall than many dealers expect during what is still supposed to be the depths of winter. BDN financial editor Roger Willis is confident they won’t be complaining.

According to MCIA data, total registrations in usually bleak February were 6.1% up to 5106 units. Motorcycles rose by 4% to 3249, and over-50cc scooters put on 12%. Trikes surged by 125% to 54. Only mopeds were a disappointment, 10.1% down to 258. Within the headline count, petrolhead products were dominant, stacking on 7.9% to 4955. Battery-electric steeds swerved back towards oblivion, 31.4% in arrears on a mere 151 units sold.

The mobility segment up to 125cc added 7.6% to 2385 units. Honda got this month’s fleet delivery prize, L-plating 309 PCX125 scooters and pushing against early Yamaha NMax domination. The 126-500cc slot, notionally populated by a lot of A2 bikes which are not necessarily ridden on A2 licences, continued to grow, 9.4% up to 894 machines. Triumph’s Speed 400 was best-seller once more, although dealers report that the Scrambler 400X version of this refreshingly new 400cc single-cylinder platform is in hot pursuit.

The only disappointment of any significance was for 501-750cc wares, which were 9.2% down to 442. Yamaha headed up this depleted tally with a batch of best-selling MT-07 ABS twins. But weakness was probably attributable to a paucity of stock for some popular niche brands.

The same cannot be said for the booming 751-1000cc range, a wholesome 34.3% up to 654. Supplies of Suzuki’s latest GSX800R parallel-twin entrant into this budget bonanza arrived a month prior to expected delivery for the March new-plate season opener — and promptly snatched best-seller laurels.

Finally, premium 1000cc-plus contenders held station, just six bikes down on February last year, and headed up by the already consistent best-selling BMW R1300GS. We assume Motorrad dealers are rubbing their hands together in expectation of a full-loaded Adventure version at an even higher price point once left-over R1250GS Adventure stock has been exhumed from the führer-bunker.

February’s top-ten brands chart kicked off with four leading manufacturers on double-digit percentage gains from a shabby performance 12 months earlier. Honda was in charge and boasted a 15.9% advance. But to be fair, almost a third of its tally comprised the aforementioned PCX125 fleet. Runner-up Yamaha added 16.5%, and BMW Motorrad rose by 16.7% in third. Then Triumph thoroughly redeemed itself in fourth, a muscular 63.2% up thanks to an ongoing influx of desirable new model availability.

KTM was the first dunce, dropping by 11.5%. Then Lexmoto improved by 20%, although that only amounted to 42 additional bikes. Suzuki was no doubt relieved to actually be in the chart, after a no-show last February. Kawasaki followed at the front of three tail-enders, with a nevertheless useful 50.4% gain. No such luck for Royal Enfield, apparently soft on inventory and 9.7% down in ninth spot. Piaggio slid in dead last and dead flat, exactly repeating its February 2023 total.

For the two months of 2024 to date, total registrations are 5.4% higher on 11,149 units, with the petrolhead firmament 5.8% up to 10,745. Over-50cc scooters put on 10.9% to 3135, motorcycles grew by 3.6% to 7315 and trikes added 21.7% to 84.

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