May 17th, 2018.

The National Motorcycle Dealers Association (NMDA) Spring 2018 Dealer Attitude Survey, published earlier this week, showed that the all-dealer average, when asked about the overall value of the franchise, remained static at 6.3 since the last survey in Autumn 2017.

“The NMDA is pleased to see that this year’s Spring 2018 Dealer Attitude Survey received a response rate of 28 per cent,” said Stephen Latham, Head of the NMDA. “Participants in this survey were made up of 90 per cent of independently owned franchise dealers, and 10 per cent privately owned groups. Fifty three per cent were single brand dealers, whilst the remainder of 47 per cent were multi-franchised.”

The dealer/manufacturer relationship score average had improved by 0.2 since the last survey in Autumn 2017.
• The partnership dealers have with their manufacturer scored an all-dealer average of 3.5.
• Ducati dealers were more dissatisfied with the partnership they have with their manufacturer, dropping to a score of 1.5 (from 2.6), and falling to ninth in the ratings chart.
• Harley Davidson was the top scoring dealer with a score of 4.4, however, this was down 0.4 points from last year.

Dealer profit declined by 0.1 points and future profitability remained static in this survey from Autumn 2017.
• When rating the profit return by representing their franchise, the all-dealer average declined to 2.9.
• Harley Davidson, KTM and Kawasaki were recorded as the top three franchises.
• When asked about the future profitability of their business, the all-dealer average remained at 3.1.
• Again, Harley Davidson, KTM and Kawasaki were recorded as the top three franchises.

Latham continued; “Overall, this year’s Spring survey suggests that dealers are fairly satisfied with the business relationship they have with their manufacturer. Harley Davidson scored particularly well across most questions and it was interesting to see that although Piaggio Group’s score increased significantly across the majority of questions, it was still rated as the least valued motorcycle franchise overall.

“Dealers are, on average, most satisfied with the image of the brands they represent and products they sell. This suggests that dealers are brand patriotic and confident in how the consumer views their manufacturer.

“With the declines in scores for certain key questions, there is still scope with certain manufacturers to develop their relationships with their dealer networks as some still fall well below average in many areas of the survey.”