Thursday, 19 May 2016


First quarter new motorcycle registrations +7.8 percent in EU markets

The latest EU-wide new motorcycle registration statistics released by ACEM  (Association des Constructeurs EuropĂ©ens de Motocycles), the Brussels based international motorcycle industry trade association, show new PTW (powered two- and three-wheeler) registrations continuing to grow during the first quarter of 2016.

A total of 267,667 powered two and three-wheelers were registered in EU markets during the first three months of 2016; this represents an increase of +6.5% compared to the 251,420 vehicles registered during the same period of 2015.
Registrations performed positively in all the key markets, including Italy (49,576 units, +21.5%), Spain (31,679 units, +13.5%), UK (27,395 units, +7.6%), Germany (49,748 units, +4.5%) and France (49,505 units, +0.5%).
Cumulative motorcycle registrations grew by +7.8% during the first three months of 2016 on a year-on-year basis. A total of 205,258 motorcycles were registered between January and March 2016, against 190,429 during the same period of 2015.

Year-on-year motorcycle registrations increased in most key European markets, including Italy (44,573 units, +23.9%), Spain (28,528 units, +15.5%), the UK (25,519 units, +8.5%) and France (33,732 units, +0.8%), but they decreased in Germany (38,115 units, -4.8%).
A total of 62,409 mopeds were registered in the EU during the first three months of 2016, whilst 60,991 had been registered during the same period of 2015. This represents an increase of +2.3%.
Moped registrations increased in Germany (11,633 units, +54.2%), the Netherlands (12,851 units, +3.3%) and Italy (5,003 units, +3.1%), but decreased in France (15,733 units, -0.1%) and Spain (3,151 units, -2.3%).

Italian motorcycle registrations

Motorcycle registrations in Italy +14 percent in April 2016

The latest data released by the motorcycle industry trade association in Italy (ANCMA, Milan) shows new motorcycle registrations up by +14.21 percent for April at 9,905 units, and +23.12 percent YTD at 30,903 units.

Total PTW registrations in Italy were +10 percent in April (23,755 units), and are +18.79 percent YTD at 68,152 units for the first four months of 2016.
Enduro model sales are growing strongly at +36.92 percent YTD (11,003 units), with naked-style models +19.93 percent YTD (11,270 units) and custom-style bikes +10.89 percent at 2,821 units YTD.
The Honda CRF 1000 'Africa Twin' is the top selling enduro bike in Italy so far this year (1,834 units), ahead of BMW’s R1200 GS (1,465 units YTD). Yamaha's MT-09 Tracer is the top selling naked-style bike (1,273 units YTD), ahead of the Ducati Scrambler 800 (893 units YTD).
In powerband terms, the 601-750cc sector (+18.69 percent, 7,265 units YTD) and 751-1,000cc markets are doing well (+34.30 percent, 10,062 units YTD), with the 1,000cc+ market up by +11.57 percent YTD (8,955 units).

Piaggio Group

Piaggio Group posts best first quarter financial performance since 2008

The Piaggio Group says it strengthened its position on the European two-wheeler market, closing the first quarter of 2016 with an overall market share of 13.6% (13.1% in the first quarter of 2015) and a 24.5% market share in scooters (approximately 11 percentage points ahead of its second European competitor). 

The Group says it also maintained "particularly strong positioning" on the North American scooter market, with a share of 19.6%.
In the scooter sector, the Piaggio Group reported excellent results in the "high-wheel segment" thanks to the new Piaggio Liberty scooter and the strong performance of the Beverly bestseller, which generated an improvement of +32.8% in global revenues from the first quarter of 2015.
In the high-wheel scooter segment, beginning in the second quarter of 2016, the Group will also have the support of the new Piaggio Medley ABS launched recently in 125 and 150cc displacements.
The Vespa brand strengthened its presence on the European market, with revenues up by +7.1%.

Group revenues also improved in motorcycles, with an overall increase of +9.7%. This result was assisted by higher sales for the Moto Guzzi California line (+5.3%), while sales for the Aprilia motorcycle brand were driven by the Supersports models with V4 engines, where shipments rose sharply, with +62.5% growth in sales volumes for the RSV4 1000 range and +104.4% growth in sales volumes for the Tuono models.
In the first quarter to 31 March 2016, the Group sold 74,800 two-wheelers worldwide (74,200 in the year-earlier period), generating net sales of 208.2 million euro, an improvement of +2% from 204.1 million euro in the first quarter of 2015. The figure includes spares and accessories.
The total workforce of the Piaggio Group as at 31 March 2016 numbered 7,074 employees. The Group’s Italian employees numbered 3,620, substantially unchanged from the previous year.

UK motorcycle registrations

UK motorcycle registrations +13.27 percent in April

The latest data released by the motorcycle industry trade association in the UK (MCIA) shows that new motorcycle registrations for April were +13.27 percent (11,500 units) and are +9.94 percent for the year-to-date (36,814 units).

Moped sales continue to be down, as elsewhere in Europe, but overall total PTW registrations in the UK are +8.88 percent YTD at 39,414 units.
The strongest growing sectors in the UK for the first four months of 2016 are custom-style bikes (+17.4 percent, 3,310 units YTD); adventure sport models (+16.8 percent, 6,679 units YTD); scooters (+16.5 percent, 7,842 units YTD); and sport/tour models (+14.3 percent, 1,362 units YTD).
The largest sector in the UK remains naked-style bikes (+6.4 percent, 10,046 units YTD); the historically strong Supersport market in the UK was -4.2 percent for the first four months of the year (4,383 units).
In powerband terms, the 651-1,000 cc market is growing strongly, as elsewhere in Europe, at +14 percent (9,852 units YTD), with Honda's CRF 1000 'Africa Twin' the bestseller in all categories in April (182 units).
The best selling 1,000cc+ model was BMW’s R 1200 GS Adventure, with the sector as a whole +4.7 percent YTD (7,239 units).
Honda were market share leaders in the UK in April (2,109 units), followed by Yamaha and Triumph.


New graphics for Caberg Stunt

There are new graphics for Caberg's popular 'Stunt' full-face for 2016, which has a polycarbonate shell noted for its "sporty and aggressive look and compact design".

The helmet is offered in two solid colours, matt black and metal white, and in two graphic versions - 'Steez' and 'Blade'. There are two new colour combinations for the 'Blade', matt black/pink for ladies in sizes XS, S and M, while the second comes in black/orange, intended for younger riders in sizes XS to XXL. 

Stunt comes in two shell sizes for best fit and has a double visor system (Double Visor Tech) that thanks to the easy to use integrated sun visor allows riding with the perfect light and in safety. The sun visor is treated for anti-scratch resistance, as is the outer clear visor, which is also prepared for a Pinlock lens.
Ventilation is ensured by three glove-friendly wide air vents; the lower vent on the chin guard drives air directly to the inner side of the visor to avoid misting, and the vent on top channels fresh air inside the helmet through numerous air grooves, while a rear vent ensures the discharge of hot and stale air.
The lining, made with transpiring fabrics, is entirely removable and washable, as is the wind stop under the chin guard of the helmet and the breath guard.


National Cycle

Aerodynamically superior VStream+ windshield designs for S1000XR

ZTechnik, the specialty brand of windscreens made in Maywood, Illinois, by National Cycle, has added 3 new VStream+ windscreen designs for the Sport/Adventure BMW S1000XR.

The company says that the new screens have "the shape and contour to help reduce annoying turbulence". The VStream is named for its unique, patented "V" shape, while the "+" indicates that a "highly engineered and perfectly manufactured" mounting bracket is included in the kit.
VStream windscreens are effective because the three-dimensional contours push turbulent wind out and away from the side of the rider's head, reducing turbulence and wind noise, and the smooth-radiused edges are precisely engineered to add to the excellent aerodynamics.

The advantage of the VStream+ is that the included mounting bracket is more robust than the OEM mount points - assuring that the screen will "stay tight, strong and secure".
Available in clear, light or dark tint, VStream windshields are made from hard-coated Lexan polycarbonate, a material that provides outstanding durability and optical clarity. The company says that their ZTechnik windscreens are 20 times stronger than windscreens made from acrylic or the "aircraft" material that is commonly used in the motorcycle industry.
"We believe we make the world's best and toughest windscreens and we back that commitment up with a 3-year warranty against breakage", says award-winning chief engineer and CEO Barry Wiley, whose father founded the company in 1937.



Dual purpose Terra Force-R

Czech manufacturer Mitas has introduced the Terra Force-R, a new radial dual purpose tyre designed for maxi enduro and trail motorcycles that is meant to be used 90% on-road and 10% off-road.

Described as the ideal choice for commuters as well as adventurers who love longer rides with a passenger and luggage, the aim is to offer to both groups of riders a "safe, dynamic and user-friendly tyre".
"The new Terra Force-R is an excellent choice for riders of adventure motorcycles", said Ksenija Bitenc, Managing Director for Mitas Moto. "It is a radial dual purpose tyre with a more street oriented tread pattern. It offers excellent traction on wet or dry roads and outstanding performance on light off-road surfaces", added Bitenc.
Mitas say it ensures immediate grip, excellent traction on wet or dry roads, easy steering and manoeuvrability with good straight and corner stability - with consistent performance through its lifetime and under heavy loads. 

Specially developed tread compounds use modern elastomers, and high active fillers are said to result in excellent grip in all conditions and optimal balanced wear rate.
3-D Optimum Groove Technology (OGT 3D) is featured by optimum tread groove direction, optimum groove depth and less overheating of tread compounds. Strong Carcass Technology (SCT) maintains the carcass rigidity at a high level even as the tyre wears, thereby prolonging the optimum driving performance throughout the tyre’s service life.
Using Finite Elements Analysis (FEA) and a special computer-assisted simulation, an optimum tyre construction was designed that achieves the highest possible level of grip while still being rigid enough to achieve driving stability.


K-Tech Suspension

Off-Road Spring System (ORSS)

British suspension specialist K-Tech has announced its new "Air2Spring" system - a new Off- Road Spring System (ORSS) for the WP (AER) and Showa (SAFF/TAC) front forks fitted to Honda, Kawasaki, KTM and Suzuki off-roaders.

The ORSS replaces the stock Air Spring set-up with a conventional spring system that can be set to the rider’s weight and riding style and eliminates the "stiction" (friction in direction change) created by the high air pressure of these air systems.
K-Tech say that conventional springs also mean less of the complexity that calculating the optimum balance of pressures on the WP and Showa AIR systems creates.
"As with all K-Tech manufactured products, our ORSS is made of our high quality designs and materials and will not only improve the handling and stability of the motorcycle, but also have that 'Factory' desired look". 

K-Tech say that their ORSS conversion kit is simple and ready to install, requiring no machining of components, easy to set up and "delivers consistent feedback from the front forks".
The original fork remains fully adjustable in compression and rebound damping, "but with the ORSS it provides external spring preload adjustment for the optimum in fine-tuning from hard pack to sand conditions".