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Top Motorcycles of 2021

18 February 2022

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With 2022 well underway, and ahead of bikers looking at potential new bikes this year, Close Brothers Motor Finance looks back at the most popular motorcycles in the last 12 months. With an increase of 61.4% on Motorcycle registrations compared to last January the industry is seeing a shift in the right direction as buyers’ interest continues to rise. 

Neil Richardson, Head of Sales North & Motorcycle Division at Close Brothers Motor Finance said: “After another turbulent year mostly caused by the pandemic, the motorcycle sector ended 2021 at a healthy speed – up almost 10% on the previous year. The MCIA reported on more than 114,000 new bike registrations in 2021 – the highest figure since 2016. This is likely due to a combination of people enjoying bikes for leisure, those opting to use their motorcycle to commute to and from work, and the increase in delivery drivers. Perhaps corroborating this is the fact that the Top Selling county in the UK for Motorcycles was Greater London with 846 units sold. This is up 292 units on last January.

“And with 2,354 more Bikes sold in January compared to January 2021, and registrations rising significantly across every single model band, it seems that interest in bikes continues to rise.

 “Despite the optimism felt throughout the sector, challenges remain. The industry is not immune to the global manufacturing delays and the semiconductor shortage, which is throwing stock availability, both in the new bike market and used, into disarray. Another blow to the sector has been the recent announcement by the Government changing the Plug-in Motorcycle Grant’s rates and criteria. The 90% reduction in support will likely have a significant impact on the desire to switch to fully electric, zero-emission vehicles. Currently, demand continues to grow, with 72.2% higher electric bikes sales this January v last year. But if the Government is going to continue with its ban on new petrol motorcycles being sold in the UK from 2035, more will need to be done to encourage riders to move away from diesel and petrol. 

“With the bike market performing well, the key for dealers to continue riding this positive wave is to remain engaged in where customer demand lies and stock the relevant bikes on the forecourt. Our data shows a mix of commuter-style mopeds and bikes used more for leisure. Interestingly, when comparing the top financed motorcycles from last year to the year before, the table looks very different, with almost all models moving up and down the table. And the top two most popular models (Lexmoto LXR and BMW S 1000 RR) moved from first and second place in 2020 to third and seventh place respectively last year. In 2021, the SYM JET has been the most popular bike choice, followed by the Yamaha MT and Lexmoto LXR. “

Top Motorcycles of 2021 - results table

[1] Top 12 motorcycles financed by Close Brothers Motor Finance in 2020 and 2021

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