Europe Continues Its Love Affair With The Motorcycle

According to the latest registration numbers out of Europe, motorcycles are becoming more popular than ever, but is it at the cost of the scooter?

With more models, the latest two-wheeled technology and roads full of bikers it could be considered official that motorcycles are back. This is no more obvious than in Europe which is seeing one month after another of growing motorcycle registration numbers

First, understanding both motorcycles, scooters as well as three-wheeled vehicles all fall under the watchful eyes of the European Association of Motorcycle Manufacturers, ACEM. In a recent press release, the group tracked a total of 408,362 powered-two and three-wheelers registered during the first four months of 2016 in the European Union (EU).

The ACEM consider this great news and represents an increase of 4.7% compared to the 390,179 vehicles registered during the same period of 2015. For motorcycle enthusiasts, it’s even better news.

Cumulative motorcycle registrations grew by 7.9% during the first four months of 2016 on a year-on year basis. A total of 321,085 motorcycles were registered between January and April 2016, against 297,577 during the same period of 2015.

Year-on-year motorcycle registrations increased in most key European markets, including Italy which increased 18.8 percent with 68,482 units, Spain increased 15.9 percent with 41,753 units, the UK 9.9 percent with 37,134, Germany 1.2 percent with 62,980 units and France bringing up the rear with 0.4 percent with 52,465 units registered.

However, all this two-wheeled love appears to be at the cost of the lovable scooter, or moped. Registrations for these classic riders were down 5.8 percent in the first four months of 2016 when compared to the same period last year. While the Netherlands enjoyed a slight increase in moped registrations, all the other countries in the EU saw decreases, down as much as 32.8 percent in Poland.

Normally, this type of heightened interest in motorcycles would be a concern for safety advocates. But with the EU mandating its member nations follow the worldwide trend of requiring motorcycles being sold with antilock braking systems as a standard accessory, this peak could set a different type of trend.

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