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Motorcycle sales Boom Rides on

Motorcycle sales in Australia are continuing to grow rapidly, according to retail figures for the first quarter of 2005 released today by the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries.

A total of 21,336 road bikes, dirt bikes and all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) were sold to the end of March - an increase of 13.3 per cent over the same period last year.

The increase follows a record year in 2004, when total motorcycle sales grew by 21.3 per cent to 89,374 - the highest in more than two decades.

"The latest figures are consistent with our belief that the motorcycle market in Australia is experiencing a long term revival," said the Chief Executive of the FCAI, Peter Sturrock.

"If the percentage increase in the first quarter is replicated through the rest of the year, the market will top 100,000 motorcycles - a figure not seen by the industry since the early 1970s."

The first quarter growth was primarily driven by the road bike market, which grew by 1,528 sales, or 21.4 per cent.

Road bike segments which enjoyed big volume increases were Super Sports (up 426 or 36.9 per cent), Scooters (up 433 or 23.0 per cent), and Cruisers (up 290 or 17.1 per cent).

Scooters continue to be the largest road bike segment after their sales almost doubled in 2004.

Honda's CT110 - sold mostly to Australia Post as a delivery bike - recorded 502 sales in the first quarter, making it the best selling road bike or motorcycle model of any kind.

The rest of the top ten selling models were all Off Road motorcycles, with Yamaha's WR450F enduro model maintaining its position as Australia's most popular privately purchased bike.

Sales in the Off Road market as a whole rose 664 or 7.6 per cent compared to the first quarter last year. Most of that increase was accounted for by an extra 525 sales in the Enduro segment - an increase of 20 per cent.

Honda was the best-selling brand overall with 26.7 per cent of the total market, followed by Yamaha (22.9 per cent), Suzuki (11.5 per cent) and Kawasaki (10.7 per cent).

Honda was the leading road bike brand (1,428) ahead of Yamaha (1,096) and Harley Davidson (1,034).

Honda was also the best-selling brand in the Off Road market with 3,156 sales, followed by Yamaha (2,872) and Suzuki (1,171).

The ATV market was led by Honda with 1,123 sales ahead of Yamaha (930) and Polaris (457).

Sales of the ATV market rose 305 or 10.1 per cent.

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