MV Agusta has joined the “race to the bottom” not long after Harley-Davidson signed a deal to make low-capacity bikes in China and Ducati signed away its naming rights to Chinese scooters.
In the latest race to the bottom, premium Italian motorcycle manufacturer MV Agusta has signed a long-term deal (pictured above) with Chinese industrial giant Loncin Motor.
Together, they will build a four-model “all-new family of MV Agusta products in the 350-500cc displacement”.
It follows a somewhat dubious financial rescue deal last year with a Russian company that has links to the Russian mafia.
For years, MV have said they would never sell out and were proud to be the last true Italian brand.
You have to ask what is happening to the world of premium-brand motorcycles.
Is a sellout not beneath any of them?
Triumph has been making their bikes in Thailand for several years and BMW already makes G 310 models in India and scooters in China by the same company, Loncin.
So what is next?
The official MV/Loncin press release says the bikes will be “completely designed by MV Agusta to occupy the premium segment of this high-growth market”.
- How many MV owners think this is a good idea for the resale value of their bike?
- How many MV owners think this is a good idea when they can’t even get parts for their bike inside six months?
- How many MV owners who sold out the new limited-edition Superveloce 800 are now nervous about their investment?
Sorry, but this latest deal just smacks of desperation and a race to the bottom.
Would Ferrari make commuter cars in China?
The official MV press release says the new Chinese deal will “enable MV Agusta to enlarge its current product portfolio with the objective of increasing our riders globally, expanding access into Asia through a partnership with Loncin Motor Co., Ltd”.
There is no word on whether it will improve the supply chain of spare parts to current owners waiting while their bike sits idle in their garage.
They say the new “smaller and more accessible motorcycles” will be available for sale in MV Agusta dealerships by the end of 2021.
“MV Agusta and Loncin announce that their partnership will not be limited to the development of the new family of products in the 350-500cc range,” the release says.
“It also includes MV Agusta assisting Loncin into entering the premium segment market with their premium range of 800cc.”
MV promises to develop an “entirely new family of products for VOGE, Loncin’s premium high-end brand”.
By “high-end”, they mean Chinese high end , which is not what the rest of the world considers high end.