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The motorbike in the fast lane

Jun 1, 2018

The megatrends of urbanisation and sustainability are influencing the motorbike market all over the world. A few weeks after Motobike Istanbul, motorbike expert Bülent Kılıçer takes a look at the developments in the Turkish market. Here are the figures at a glance.

Motorcyclist on a street
Motorbikes are becoming an alternative to cars and public transport in cities (Photo: Shutterstock)

Our cities are growing. Studies show that by 2050, two thirds of the world’s population will live in cities. ‘People are already taking longer and longer to get from A to B. Motorbiking is therefore becoming an increasingly popular alternative to public transport, car sharing and cycling’, says Bülent Kılıçer, chairman of the Turkish Motorcycle Industry Association Moted ‘There are many advantages: motorbikes cost comparatively less to buy and maintain, parking is easier to find and you make faster progress in dense traffic’. Nevertheless, Turkey has sold fewer new motorbikes in the last five years, making trade fairs such as the Motobike Istanbul  all the more essential. A look at the Turkish motorbike market.

58% of Turks have a motorbike licence

Around 46 million Turks hold a motorbike licence, but only 28 million Turkish motorbike licence holders are active riders. ‘Unfortunately, fewer and fewer new motorbikes have been sold here in the last five years’, says Bülent Kılıçer, Chair of the Turkish Motorcycle Industry Association Moted. His assessment: ‘This negative trend will continue unless motorbike taxation improves’.

24% of motorcyclists are women

24 per cent of Turkish motorcyclists are female. By way of comparison: in countries such as the USA or Germany, the proportion of women is around 14 per cent. ‘Although only a quarter of motorcyclists are women, the proportion of female motorcyclists has risen considerably since 2010’, says expert Bülent Kılıçer. This is a trend that can be observed in many regions of the world.

Top 10 bestselling motorbike brands make up 87% of the market share

In terms of manufacturers, the Turkish market is very diverse, says Kılıçer: ‘There are 43 motorbike brands available in Turkey. Nineteen of these brands are local suppliers. However, the top ten brands make up 87 per cent of the market share’. The bestselling motorbike brands in Turkey include Honda, Yamaha, Mondial, Cuba, Yuki, Motoran, TVS, Arora and SYM.

90% of the turkish market is comprised of motorbikes with engines of up to 250cc

Motorbikes with engines of up to 250 cc account for 90 per cent of the Turkish market. And this number continues to rise. ‘Megatrends such as urbanisation and sustainability are forcing manufacturers to make their models lighter and more suitable for the city’, says Kılıçhe. ‘In addition, we have adapted our driving licences to EU regulations – since 2016, Class B holders have also been able to drive motorbikes with a capacity of up to 50 cc. Demand in this segment has increased accordingly’.

Over the past four years, the market share of motorbikes with electric drives has grown by over 680%

One of the most important developments is the strong market growth in motorbikes with electric drives. ‘In the last four years, market share has risen from 0.6 per cent to 4.1 per cent’. Even if this still only accounts for a small share of total sales, the increase is still 680 per cent.

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