It's been a tough year for most of the motor industry and even more so for the motorcycle and scooter industry which did not benefit significantly from the business stimulus package except for perhaps some ATV's purchased by primary producers. Nonetheless the last ¼ of 2009 has shown some stability return to the market and the signs are favourable for the year ahead. The scooter market was hardest hit but this comes on the tail of 6 years of triple digit percentage growth and a record 2008. There was still some good news for established scooter brands.
The Piaggio Group scooter brands which include Aprilia, Gilera, Piaggio and Vespa, have increased market share in 2009 compared to 2008 with 68% more people choosing a Piaggio Group brand over the nearest competitor.
Most categories in the Motorcycle and Scooter markets were hit fairly hard in 2009 with scooters down 32.9% overall. Hardest hit however has been the less established or non-brand name scooters in the entry level end of the market. Conversely, it is the premium established brands that have faired best with the Italian favourite Vespa enjoying a significant increase in market share from 9.9% in 2008 to 12.3% in 2009.
"When there is some uncertainty in the market people are attracted to known and trusted brands and are less likely to take a chance on an unknown entity" said Piaggio-Vespa-Gilera Brand Manager, Simon Gloyne. "This is no more evident than with Vespa. It is the iconic style leader for any discerning owner and has never been more affordable and valued as a considered purchase. Our flagship Vespa GTS300 Super and the Vespa LX 150 continue to dominate the over 125cc category and feature in the Top 10 Scooters for 2009"*.
Aprilia importer John Sample Group commented further, "While the total Scooter market has been down over the recent twelve months the very strong growth in the premium Italian Aprilia and Scarabeo brands shows how scooter buyers are clearly choosing the best value product rather than simply the cheapest. According to the market the premium Italian brands clearly represent the best value for style, performance and price and our market share would not have doubled in 2009 if this was not the case" said Aprilia/Scarabeo National Manager Kris Matich.
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