The Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI) has released the motorcycle sales data for 2023, showing a decline in overall sales for the fourth consecutive year. However, the scooter segment was the only one to register a growth, indicating a shift in consumer preferences amid economic pressures.
According to the FCAI, a total of 95,980 new motorcycles, scooters and off-highway vehicles (OHVs) were sold in 2023, marking a decrease of 3.1 per cent compared with the 2022 tally. This is the lowest annual sales figure since 2019, when 89,199 units were sold.
The FCAI attributed the decline in motorcycle sales to the rising interest rates and cost of living pressures that affected the discretionary spending of Australians. FCAI Chief Executive Tony Weber said that recreational products, including motorcycles, often bear the brunt of financial constraints during challenging periods.
The decrease in motorcycle sales was evident across all but one of the major categories: road bikes, dirt bikes and OHVs. Road bikes accounted for 35,122 units sold in 2023, down 3.0 per cent from 2022. Dirt bikes sold 40,138 units, down 3.7 per cent from 2022. OHVs sold 14,585 units, down 7.8 per cent from 2022.
Scooter sales up 15.4 per cent in 2023
The only category that bucked the trend and recorded a growth in 2023 was the scooter segment. A total of 6,135 new scooters were registered in 2023, up 15.4 per cent from 2022. This is the second consecutive year of growth for the scooter segment, which was up 10.3 per cent in 2022.
The FCAI said that the increase in scooter sales points to changes in consumer preferences in the Australian market, with new riders venturing onto the roads, taking advantage of easier parking and quicker commute times. Scooters are also more affordable and efficient than other vehicles, making them an attractive option for commuters who face cost-of-living pressures.
The scooter segment was also the smallest of the four major categories, representing only 6.4 per cent of the total motorcycle market in 2023. However, its growth rate was the highest among all categories, indicating a potential for further expansion in the future.
Top-selling brands and models in 2023
The FCAI also released the top-selling brands and models in each category for 2023. The top-selling brand overall was Honda, with 22,219 units sold, followed by Yamaha with 19,034 units and Kawasaki with 9,788 units. The top-selling model overall was the Honda CRF50F, a dirt bike, with 2,614 units sold, followed by the Yamaha PW50, another dirt bike, with 2,060 units sold and the Honda CRF110F, also a dirt bike, with 1,951 units sold.
The top-selling brand in the road bike category was Harley-Davidson, with 7,139 units sold, followed by Honda with 6,841 units and Yamaha with 5,667 units. The top-selling model in the road bike category was the Harley-Davidson Street 500, with 1,144 units sold, followed by the Honda CB125E, with 1,038 units sold and the Yamaha MT-07LA, with 1,016 units sold.
The top-selling brand in the dirt bike category was Honda, with 10,222 units sold, followed by Yamaha with 9,891 units and KTM with 7,304 units. The top-selling model in the dirt bike category was the Honda CRF50F, with 2,614 units sold, followed by the Yamaha PW50, with 2,060 units sold and the Honda CRF110F, with 1,951 units sold.
The top-selling brand in the OHV category was Polaris, with 4,291 units sold, followed by Honda with 2,874 units and Yamaha with 2,513 units. The top-selling model in the OHV category was the Polaris Ranger 570 HD, with 1,057 units sold, followed by the Honda TRX420FA6, with 749 units sold and the Yamaha YFM700FA, with 622 units sold.
The top-selling brand in the scooter category was Piaggio, with 1,336 units sold, followed by Honda with 1,130 units and Vespa with 1,041 units. The top-selling model in the scooter category was the Piaggio Fly 150 3V, with 392 units sold, followed by the Honda NSC110 Dio, with 387 units sold and the Vespa GTS 300, with 308 units sold.