USED MOTORCYCLE MARKET STARTS TO FEEL THE COLD
December 12 2007.

Despite more visitors to showrooms than expected over recent weeks, EurotaxGlass's reports that the majority of used motorcycle retailers remain overstocked and are now bracing themselves for the inevitable fall in demand over the Christmas period.

"A number of retailers of second-hand machines reported that activity picked up during November and, while showrooms weren't exactly buzzing, there were at least prospective customers to talk to. However, there is no doubt that interest in motorcycles will wane in the run up to Christmas," explains Randal Thomas, Motorcycle Editor at
EurotaxGlass's.

Recently released sales data indicates that a total of 383,006 used motorcycle transactions took place between January and September 2007, a rise of 3.3 per cent against the same period last year. This is the latest in a series of increases in used transactions over the last seven
years, with the year-to-date figure for 2007 now almost 100,000 units higher than in 2001.

However, these impressive figures need to be treated with caution, suggests Thomas. "With a greater number of machines now being registered for a rapid used sale, the volume of genuine second-hand transactions is inevitably smaller than the statistics might suggest. Furthermore, we have not spoken to many retailers that have achieved a 35 per cent increase in used volumes since 2001, and the advent of the internet has clearly eroded the proportion of used sales being achieved through genuine dealer premises."

Surplus Seasonal Stock
The significant majority of dealers are concerned about the high level and unbalanced mix of their used stock. "Three-quarters of respondents to our latest survey anticipate that their used stocks are too high for anticipated demand," continues Thomas. "Retailers are also highlighting the difficulty of maintaining the correct balance in their stock mix, both in terms of machine age and style. Supersports machines in particular are more likely to be over-represented. Interest in a broad range of styles is expressed by retail buyers, and so trade demand for machines that originally sold in smaller volumes is often stronger than for the mass-market models."