Motorbike sales surge 50pc in Bahrain
Manama, September 30, 2012
The number of motorbikes being sold in Bahrain has shot up by 40 to 50 per cent in the past year, according to the top official of a major dealership.
"Three years ago we were selling far fewer vehicles than we are now," said Khalid Almoayed and Sons director Abdulrahman Almoayed.
"The growth has been good and we are growing further. There was a time when most of Bahrain's two-wheeler owners were those owning luxury brands. Now we have everyone wanting to own a scooter or a motorcycle as a second vehicle."
Almoayed is director at Wheels of Arabia, which supplies brands including Vespa, Aprilia, MotoGuzzi, Piaggio and Gilera.
"What we have found is that the road system in Bahrain is perfectly suited for scooters, in that the distances are generally short and the residential areas are well connected to each other - eliminating the need to use the major highways," he said.
His company was the first to introduce scooters to Bahrain and he said the market for motorbikes was diverse.
"We have seen a lot of growth among youngsters, but we also have customers from all age groups," he said. "Most are those who would like to have a two-wheeler to move around, but we have others for whom a two-wheeler is the only mode of transport."
Abbas Biljeek and Sons marketing manager Adel Biljeek said a 40 to 50 per cent growth in motorbike sales had been seen across the market.
"Indian brands Mahindra and LML Scooters, as well as the old British classic Royal Enfield, also from India, are the best sellers," he said.
He added in previous years motorbike shipments could gather dust for months before they were eventually driven out of the showroom.
"Earlier we had new consignments not being sold for months, but now the situation is different with new arrivals literally flying off the shelves," he said.
Harley-Davidson Bahrain general manager Najeeb Abdulla said they normally sell an average of 150 units a year.
"However, this year we have already neared that figure and hope that we can sell around 175 by the end of December," he added.
Meanwhile, a General Directorate of Traffic official confirmed that more people than ever before were registering as motorbike owners.
"We have been registering an increase and people are going in more than ever for two-wheelers now," he said.
He believed the lower cost of owning a motorbike, compared to a car, was also a factor.
"We have come a long way from the time when two-wheelers were only used by delivery men," he said. "Now everyone wants to own one."
One factor driving up bike sales is thought to be chronic road congestion across Bahrain, since bikes are easier to manoeuvre through traffic. – TradeArabia News Service