Economies worldwide continue to contend with stifling supply chain shortages, shipping delays, and inflation. On top of those factors, the ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine contributes to energy insecurity around the world. After motorcycle sales benefited from the COVID-19 pandemic for months, it looks like a potential recession could threaten those gains in the future.
At least, that’s what Europe’s June, 2022, motorcycle sales figures suggest. After outperforming projections in the year's first five months, the Motorcycle Industry Association (MCIA) reports that the U.K.’s momentum slowed in June. Compared to June, 2021, the sales shrunk by 15.7 percent.
Still, the Brits have purchased 11.1 percent more two-wheelers in 2022 (when compared to the first half of the previous year). Those numbers are a direct result of a 15.2-percent increase in the adventure segment and a 37.1-percent spike in the electric sector, which now comprises six percent of the overall motorcycle market.
“Against the backdrop of a cost-of-living crisis it’s encouraging to see year-to-date registrations remain positive from both an industry and user perspective,” admitted MCIA CEO Tony Campbell, “as we know riding provides great mental health benefits as well as easing pressure on the pocket.”
Italy also sustained similar losses in June, 2022. The country moved 7.5-percent fewer units in the sixth month of 2022, with 69,202 new registrations underperforming the 74,708 two-wheelers purchased in June, 2021. Even used moto and scooter sales decreased by seven percent.
Unlike the U.K., though, that one-month falloff couldn’t keep Italy in the black by the end of H1 2022. Through the first six months of the year, the boot-shaped nation saw motorcycle sales moderately decline at 1.8 percent (compared to the same period in 2021).
Of course, we still have one-half of 2022 left to go and manufacturers should start rolling out new models in the coming months. However, with signs of a looming recession and many brands focusing on a transition to alternative energy sources, the market may remain on shaky ground for the foreseeable future.