Global Motorcycles Market lost 9 million sales in 2020


Global Motorcycles industry in the covid 19 era is transformed by a new and evolved demand, projecting projects strong sales in the next decade. 2020 sales dropped 14% losing 9 million units from the previous year, but the lost was concentrated in 4 countries which will recover fast.

McD tracks new motorcycles registrations in over 80 different markets, representing the 98% of the global motorcycles industry (including categories like ATVs/RUV, Tuk-tuk and – of course – 2/3 wheelers). So, we report on REAL historical data and our forecast are based on facts and data. We do not sell “Market Research”, but REAL data in excel plus our Senior Partners consulting and expertise in the industry.

Global Motorcycles Industry Trend

During the last decade the motorcycles industry evolved under the pressure of many factors. In general the economic development is the most of less rich countries generated new demand for individual mobility and the two-wheelers represent the best solution for low-cost, easy-to-use and smart mobility. The global market grew up boosted by the evolution of “new” markets, like India, China, The Philippines, Pakistan, Mexico and several smaller countries in Central and South America or in the South East Asia.

The “old” markets, represented by the richest countries in the World, like North America, Europe, Japan, Korea, Australia, where the purchase of two wheeler is correlated with a urban mobility or leisure, were moderately declining after having lost most of the volume compared with 20 years ago.

In these basic trends two factors have modified the industry in main countries: 

  1. The introduction of safety rules
  2. New emission standards and EVs policy 

The emerging markets have an average price level well below the “old” markets and are very sensitive to price increase. New standard imply highest production cost with increased price to clients. This price increase has been relevant in many countries hitting volumes in Indonesia (2014) and then in India (2018) and in other countries.

New rules have transformed the Chinese market, the largest in the World, when in 2015 the Government decided to convert the industry from ICE to EVs and several top metropolitan areas banned the motorized two wheeler traffic in the center. Again new standards for emission (and relative subsidies) further evolved the market after the 2018.

The Motorcycles Industry in the Covid 19 Era

In the new environment created by the spread of this global virus, the motorcycles industry reported short terms negative impact, mainly registered in the first half of 2020 when lockdown hit production and distribution.

However, benefits have been more than damages with two new trends clearly in place world-wide:

  1. Huge demand for individual mobility, perfectly matched by the two wheeler vehicles
  2. Tangible increased consciousness for environmental among governments, institutions and people

As a result, starting from the second half 2020 the global motorcycles industry has taken a new pathway, with strong sales increase in several countries with shining perspective for the next years.

Global sales in the 2020 have been 56.5 million, down 14% from the previous year, the 5th highest level ever. In volumes, the industry lost over 9 million units, due to the fall of few top countries: India (-5 millions), Indonesia (-2.9 millions), Philippines (-0.7 million), Vietnam (-0.5 millions). 

In these countries the motorcycles industry is crucial and the 2021/2022 will report a strong recovery while the rest of the World will keep the already positive trend, resulting in the achievement of a huge year on year increase in the 2021 with the following year projected to establish the new all time record.

The introduction of rules, incentives and subsidies for Electric Two Wheelers will support the market evolution in the rest of this decade. Actually the market is split in two, with China having electric two wheelers (of course, not considering the e-bicycles) already representing more than the half of the industry. In the rest of the World EVs segment is still marginal, with few exemptions, like Taiwan.

Now, we can easily forecast not only that all markets will follow the Chinese pathway, but even that Chinese EVs manufacturers will shake the global competition, having already a huge advantage in terms of knowledge, technology, product portfolio. It is not a case that Yadea in the 2020 took the second place in the World, producing only electric vehicles.



Beyond coronavirus: The road ahead the Motorcycles industry

Standing tight to our mission and supporting all our global clients, the McD Team created a task force to study in deep the short and medium terms effects of global Covid19 crisis into our loved motorcycles industry.

Top Managements have to phase crucial questions today, as the plants start to progressively re-open:

  • What to produce?
  • Which countries to supply?
  • With which volumes?
  • How to distribute the short available production?
  • How to support the distribution network when short in cash?
  • Will EVs segment boom or collapse?
  • What about the 2021 Model Year? Is it still necessary?
  • Will Stage 5 emission be really introduced in Europe by next January?
  • What challenges are Motorcycles players likely to face in 2021 and later?
  • When will demand return to 2019 levels?
  • Will the pandemic permanently alter the industry’s structure and dynamics?

To help on finding the best answers, we are examining and explaining the motorcycles market trends, considering the disruptive impact of Covid-19, taking into account a wide range of factors and developing  market projection for the period 2020-2025 based on the effects of three index developed by our Research Team, the Base Trend Index (pre-Covid19 outlook), the Disaster Covid-19 Index (impact of anti-covid19 actions) and the Recovery Route Index (economic impact on our sector).

The forecast cover the monthly data from next months and will be adjusted any month, as the actual data are collected.

We have forecast at global/regional/country/segment/brand levels.