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Motorcycles boom during pandemic

Aussie sales up 22.1%

Ducati test ride demo motorcycle sales showroom selling motorcycles pace sales slide common

The best cure for the coronavirus seems to be hopping on a motorcycle and hitting the starter button.

Despite early concerns in the Australian motorcycle industry that the lockdown would hurt the industry, the reverse has been true, according to the 2020 figures from the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI).

Total sales for the year were recorded at 108,926 units, an increase of 19,727 vehicles and 22.1 per cent on full year 2019 when 89,199 sales were recorded.

The most starting fact is that this rise was despite an early 2020 slump due to fires, drought, floods and then the COVID lockdown.

While riders hit the road with a 9.2 per cent increase in road bike sales, it was the bush that beckoned most people keen to get away from locked-down cities.

Off-highway vehicles (OHVs) demonstrated significant sales growth during the year, with 24,856 vehicles sold.  This represents a strong increase of 6950 vehicles, or 38.8 per cent, over the same period in 2019 when 17,906 vehicles were sold.

Off-road motorcycles also recorded strong growth, with 44,697 bikes sold during the year – a 30.3 per cent increase on 2019 when a total of 34,298 units were sold.

Road bikes were up 2931 or 9.2 per cent to 34,912 bikes.

Scooters were the only segment to record a decrease, perhaps because people were no longer commuting into the cities.

A total of 4461 scooters were sold, 553 fewer, or 11 per cent less, than the 5014 sales recorded in 2019.

FCAI boss Tony Weber says the increased sales were welcomed by the industry.

“Given the difficult market conditions resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, it is reassuring to see segments of the market continuing to perform well.

“The rise in popularity of personal transport in this segment demonstrates that OHVs, off-road motorcycles and road bikes were a preferred option for many recreational and commuting activities during the year,” he says.

Key 2020 figures include:


YTD 2020

YTD 2019

Percentage +/-





+38.8 per cent

22.8 per cent




+30.3 per cent

41 per cent




+ 9.2 per cent

32.1 per cent




-11 per cent

4.1 per cent

Total market



+22.1 per cent 

100 per cent

The FCAI no longer provides sales information such as top ten charts in each category, individual model sales, nor brand sales figures.

They say the new abbreviated format aligns with the publication of corresponding information in the USA and Europe.

Also, it should be noted that 23 minor manufacturers are not included in the official FCAI figures.

They are mainly small-volume importers such as Norton, Hyosung, VMoto, Benelli, Bimota, Bollini, CFMoto, Daelim, EBR, Kymco, Laro, Megelli, Mercury, MV Agusta, Norton, PGO, Royal Enfield, SWM, SYM, TGB, Ural and Viper.