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Motorcycles can change our mobility paradigm

Despite a dire market crisis, manufacturers of motorcycles, scooters, tricycles and quadricycles are leading the way in changing individual mobility

Brussels, 25 January 2012 – The crisis affecting the powered two-wheeler market in the EU since 2008 is not loosening its grasp. 2011 marks the lowest performance of the decade with only 1.7 million sold units over the last year. Sales of PTWs in 2011 were 37% lower than pre-crisis volumes (2007 = 2.7 million).

Despite a dire market crisis, manufacturers of motorcycles, scooters, tricycles and quadricycles are leading the way in changing individual mobility

Brussels, 25 January 2012 – The crisis affecting the powered two-wheeler market in the EU since 2008 is not loosening its grasp. 2011 marks the lowest performance of the decade with only 1.7 million sold units over the last year. Sales of PTWs in 2011 were 37% lower than pre-crisis volumes (2007 = 2.7 million).

These figures were released yesterday in Brussels by ACEM, the European Association of Motorcycle Manufacturers, during the yearly industry meeting. Since the last quarter of 2008, registrations have begun to fall dramatically in important markets such as Spain, France and Greece.

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In spite of these unprecedented market difficulties during yesterday’s conference, Motorcycle Manufacturers have depicted a changing landscape in the transport habits of European citizens. As mobility is becoming a challenge for citizens as well as for administrations, smaller, lighter and more specialised vehicles offer a great opportunity to beat congestion, solve parking problems and improve air quality.

A study presented by Transport & Mobility Leuven, an independent research consultancy, indicated that if 10% of car drivers would give up their car for a motorcycle or a scooter, traffic congestion would be reduced by 40%. This study demonstrates the actual potential of PTWs of relieving congestion, with time savings and positive effects for the environment.

Furthermore, Peugeot’s MU Mobility Service showed the approach of a vehicle manufacturer towards changes in mobility demand. Mobility services, already a reality, confirm the role of PTWs as integral part of a full range of transport modes adapted to the changing needs of the users.

Powered Two-Wheelers, such as mopeds, motorcycles, tricycles and quadricycles, widen the transport offer and integrate other transport modes. ACEM manufacturers propose a smart approach to individual mobility and small urban logistics. As environmental and safety innovations develop into consumer products, ACEM Members are confident that their vehicles will answer both users’ and policymakers’ expectations.

m panel 23222At yesterday’s ACEM annual conference industry executives shared their views with policymakers and researchers in order to show the vision of the industry which is investing in a smart new mobility paradigm. Motorcycle manufacturers are determined to exploit these new opportunities by offering innovative vehicles that are best adapted to users’ needs, budgets and lifestyles.

Quote:
Hendrik von Kuenheim, ACEM President and CEO of BMW Motorrad: “In spite of the current adverse conditions, ACEM believes that its unique know-how in developing and producing small, light and specialized vehicles will prove useful tools for sustainable mobility, in the context of the European Union’s transport objectives.
However, strong political support is necessary to further develop this reality and market even more innovative products. This support should start with the full acknowledgement of our products as positive contributors to mobility.
Furthermore, the future Horizon 2020 for research and innovation must importantly foresee earmarking of EU funds for research and demonstration projects for the L-category vehicles. These funds should also be made easier to access for smaller and innovative industries, through a reduction of administrative complexity.”

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