Thursday, 2 April 2015

Italian Motorcycle Registrations

Italian motorcycle registrations increase again

According to the latest data released by ANCMA, the Italian motorcycle industry trade association, new motorcycle registrations increased in January and February this year compared to the same months in 2014.
New unit registrations were reported as being 3,806 in January, up by +7.39 percent, and 4,765 in February, up by +7.51 percent.

Following the modest return to growth seen in the Italian market last year (+3.3 percent in 2014) this will be taken as further encouragement that market recovery may now become established in a market that was among the hardest hit by the recession.
For the two months of the year to date Italy is up by +7.46 percent, with 7,976 registrations.
The growth in total PTW sales, which includes scooters and small cc machines, is slower than for motorcycles, but there is growth, with the market at +4 percent for the year to date at 19,097 units.
Honda dominates total PTW sales with the top three best selling models, all scooters, the BMW E 1200 GS the top selling motorcycle. Enduro and Naked style bikes are the strongest selling styles of motorcycle, with 6,897 of the 8,571 motorcycles registered being over 601cc.

Pirelli Metzeler

Pirelli Metzeler to come under Chinese ownership

THE iconic Italian Pirelli tire brand and its German Metzeler specialist motorcycle tire subsidiary are being purchased in a complex 8 billion dollar deal by the giant China National Chemical Corp (ChemChina).


ChemChina will become the majority owner of the world's fifth largest tire maker, with the 67 year old Marco Tronchetti Provera, one of Italy's best known business men, who married into the Pirelli founding family 30 years ago, staying on as Chief Executive for another 5 years.
ChemChina is a state-owned Chinese chemical company whose China National Tire and Rubber Co subsidiary would initially purchase the 26 percent stake in Pirelli held by CamFin, its current largest shareholder, for $1.9 billion.
The new owner, who would then seek to take over the remaining share of the 143 year old Italian company, securing control of Pirelli's intellectual property, manufacturing facilities and tire technology.
With initial bridging finance being provided by a consortium of Western banks headed up by JP Morgan, CamFin, which itself is 50 percent owned by Russian oil company Rosneft - whose President, Igor Sechin, is the subject of US government sanctions due to his close associations with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Once the initial stage of the deal has passed regulatory hurdles by the summer (assuming it does), a mandatory tender offer for Pirelli's remaining share capital will be made at the same price that ChemChina is paying for CamFin's stake - representing a considerable premium over the recent average trading prices of the stock concerned.

Pirelli is the sole tire supplier to Formula 1, with sales exceeding €6 billion ($6.5 billion) and a sales network that covers more than 160 countries and regions.
Although Pirelli's Powersports industry tire operations are a small percentage of its overall business, the Pirelli brand is nonetheless a major player in the motorcycle tire market, not least because of its ownership of the German Metzeler brand.
ChemChina, which has a strong position as an industrial tire maker in China through four active subsidiaries, including Aeolus, has long been looking for overseas acquisitions. Its planned purchase of Pirelli will help it to grow its market share in premium consumer tires.
The sprawling Bejing based group has some 140,000 employees and nine listed business units whose shares trade on the Shanghai or Shenzen stock exchanges. Founded by Mr Ren Jianxin, who is known as one of China's "merger kings", ChinaChem had previously expressed interest in acquiring Ohio-based Cooper Tire and Rubber, owner of British manufacturer Avon Tyres, Metzeler's primary dominant rival for custom motorcycle tire market leadership.
According to the Financial Times "Cooper Tire was subsequently at the centre of a bitter dispute between Apollo Tyres of India, which proposed paying $2.5bn for the US company, and Chengshan Group, Cooper’s former China joint venture partner. Chengshan’s opposition scuppered what would have been the biggest ever US acquisition by an Indian company." Cooper Tire recently announced that it was embarking on a $200m common stock repurchase plan.
The ChinaChem-Pirelli deal has sent shockwaves around the global tire industry, and as this edition of AMD Magazine went to press, Pirelli CEO Marco Tronchetti Provera was firefighting rumours that Japanese giant Bridgestone was contemplating a rival bid.
Although he is adamant that this is the right deal at the right time for Pirelli, with other opportunities having been rejected, this not expected to be the last tire industry M&I action in the coming months and years. In response to this announcement established and aspiring players alike will be seeking to make sure that they are not left behind when this new outbreak of ownership, partnership and strategic alliance realignments is concluded.

UK motorcycle market

UK market growth continues

New motorcycle registrations in the UK have continued to grow this year, according to the latest data released by the MCIA - the UK's motorcycle industry trade association.

Following a +14.69 percent improvement in January, registrations in February were up by +17.9 percent (3,491 units), bringing the UK motorcycle market to +16.08 percent growth (7,956 units) for the first two months of the year.
This follows strong +11.7 percent annual growth for motorcycle registrations in the UK in 2014 (to 90,673 units, up from 81,180 in 2013), with total PTW registrations +10.19 percent in 2014 (101,227 units, up from 91,910 in 2013).
February total PTW registrations in the UK were +11.71 percent (3,939 units, and +11.31 percent in January (5,028 units) making the total UK PTW market +11.49 percent (8,967 units) for the year-to-date.
In motorcycle terms the biggest growth in the UK market came in the 651 - 1000cc sector where sales are up by +34.6 percent so far this year (a massive +59.1 percent in February), machines of over 1000cc up by +12.9 percent so far this year.
The most recent available data (2012) says that there are 1.2 million PTWs in use in the UK; that some 45,000 new riders passed their motorcycle test in the UK in 2012/13 (down from 70,000 in 2008/09, and that the total distance travelled by motorcycle in the UK was 4.6 bn KM (2.8 bn miles) in 2012 (down from 5.1 bn KM/3.2 bn miles in 2009).

BMW Motorrad

Barca Beamers 

A fleet of maxi scooters comprising 30 BMW C models has been sold to the Barcelona City authority for use by the local police.
The zero-emission BMW C evolution is BMW Motorrad’s delivers a continuous output of 11KW and a maximum output of 35 KW, and is homologated to be ridden with an A1 or B licence. 

Highlighting the importance of the delivery of this fleet for BMW, Guenther Seemann, President of BMW Group Spain, who was there to hand over the scooter keys to mayor Xavier Trias, said “The delivery of this fleet is a special achievement for the BMW Group for two main reasons: it is the first fleet of electric maxi scooters worldwide to be supplied and secondly the recipient is the city of Barcelona - a role model in Europe when it comes to two-wheel mobility. We strongly believe that the future of urban mobility will be shaped in the next few years by cities with minimum emissions".


SW-Motech opens French branch

SW-MOTECH has now opened a branch in Paris, France, which means it is now represented in more than 60 countries worldwide. 

The initial focus for SW-Motech France will be after sales services, corporate communication and marketing activities with the project being led by Aurelien Szulek. Szulek has taken on the new role, bringing to it seven years of after sales experience and many years as a motorcyclist. Talking about his involvement and the opening of the office in France he said: “Together with a premium brand comes the commitment to provide a premium service. In order to meet the strong market demand and offer support for French customers and businesses, it is mandatory for us to establish a strong local presence.”
One of the first projects Szulek will be working on is the promotion of the revised and relaunched line of SW-Motech all-weather bags for GPS devices and smartphones. The Navi Case Pro product line now has a new design and additional features. 

The lid membrane, shielded by a sun screen, is said to allow for convenient operation of touch surfaces, and there is a cable feed-through to make it easy to connect the devices to the bike’s power supply. Broad Velcro straps on the inside of the padded bags provide support for the devices, and there is a circumferential zipper, which is rubber coated to prevent moisture entry, but offers easy access. The durable plastics base plate has compatible hole patterns for the SW-Motech GPS mount, RAM system and Richter plate.
SW-Motech is offering the Navi Case Pro bags in three sizes; small 150 x 87 x 42mm (outside) and 146 x 83 x 38mm (inside), medium 135 x 100 x 42mm (outside) and 131 x 96 x 38mm (inside), and the large size, which is 160 x 115 x 42mm (outside) and 156 x 111 x 38mm (inside).

Rauschenberg, GERMANY
Tel: +49 (0)6425 820280


Bosch strengthens its presence in motorcycle markets around the world

Bosch has announced plans to "reposition itself in the rapidly expanding global motorcycle market".
Describing itself as a "technology and services company" it has announced that it will combine its currently disparate motorcycle activities "from the areas of riding safety systems, powertrain technology, and display instruments" into one business unit, their newly formed ‘Two-Wheeler and Powersports’.

Bosch says that the objective is to "address the individual requirements of motorcycle manufacturers worldwide even more effectively", and that it is looking to expand its product portfolio and "strengthen its expertise in two-wheeler system solutions.
Dr. Dirk Hoheisel, a member of the board of management at Robert Bosch GmbH said “we are aiming to become a leading supplier in the motorcycle market”.
Two-Wheeler and Powersports will be a part of the Bosch Mobility Solutions business sector, with its headquarters in Yokohama, Japan and branches in the United States, Europe, India, and China.
Bosch go on to say that "Globally, the need for affordable mobility is on the increase, and this is pushing demand for powered two-wheelers. Studies indicate that by 2021, more than 160 million two-wheelers will be produced annually – a third more than today. The portion of the market relevant for Bosch, which covers driving safety systems, powertrain technology, and displays and infotainment systems, will double over the next five years,” Hoheisel says.


Interphone OffRoad and Pro Sound

INTERPHONE's 2015 range includes continuing lines (the F5, F4 and F3 MC Series Bluetooth units) as well as new options such as the OffRoad, which is said to be the first Bluetooth intercom system designed specifically for off-road use. 

Developed so off-roaders can communicate over considerable distances and in situations that are impassable or difficult because of the terrain, it is water and dust resistant, has a hard case shell, comes with standard audio speakers and mic for a range of up to 1,300 metres (with auto reconnect) and 'Pro Sound' to improve and provide a high audio quality.
Interphone’s new Pro Sound series of headsets sees the thickness of the audio capsules reduced, while the diameters have been increased in order to reduce environmental noise. The microphone has also been significantly improved in terms of vocal performance and wind resistance, with new ergonomics of the design are said to allow optimal positioning on the back of the chin guard.

Reggio Emilia (RE), ITALY
Tel: +39 0522 334002


Levers guards

LIGHTECH has two versions of its lever guard in production; one in aluminium and the other carbon fibre. The former is machined from a block off billet aluminium and is 153mm long, and the carbon version, known as the ‘C-Tech’, which is 132mm long, is produced in an autoclave. 

The guards are available for both brake and clutch sides and in five different colours for the terminal part. More than 10 specific adaptors are available for quick and easy installation on OEM handlebars.

Lucia de Piave (TV), ITALY
Tel: +39 0438 453010


Hymec Z1000SX clutch conversion

MAGURA has developed a hydraulic clutch conversion kit for the Kawasaki Z1000SX. The kit has been created to allow owners to convert the standard cable clutch to hydraulic operation, offering a claimed 20 percent lighter lever feel. 

Included in the kit is a forged lever with improved ergonomics and span adjustment. The lever is self-adjusting and works with a specially developed mineral oil – Magura Blood – which is non-toxic and non-hygroscopic, and is included in the conversion package. 

Bad Urach, GERMANY
Tel: +49 (0)7125 153 262