Yamaha sales up, except in North America, Europe

Yamaha is selling more motorcycles, but maybe not in North America.

The Japanese manufacturer’s numbers show that the company’s sales are up, overall; they sold a total of 1.689 million bikes in the first quarter of 2011, up from 1.605 million units in the same time period of 2010. Sounds, good, right?

But it’s not all rosy for the tuning fork company. North American sales dropped from 17,000 units to 16,000 units in that time period, and European sales dropped even further, from 54,000 to 44,000. Ouch.

Thankfully for Yamaha, Japan, Asia, and other regions more than made up for slack sales in the western world.

A poor exchange rate didn’t help matters out, as revenue dropped to 219.7 billion yen, from 220.1 billion yen, although operating income grew 11.9 per cent to 13.3 billion yen, thanks to cost reductions.

Smaller bikes are selling well all over the world, but how long will it be until that trend hits North America?

What do these numbers mean? The Japanese manufacturers are all selling more motorcycles in Asia and undeveloped areas of the world right now, while their sales in North America and Europe are nowhere near their pre-recession levels. Could a global demand for smaller, more affordable machines eventually work its way down to the North American marketplace?

It’s hard to imagine manufacturers selling too many smaller bikes over here, but global sales numbers may eventually shape the showroom lineup in North America.



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