Industrialising countries key to growth in motorcycle tyre market, according to Smithers Rapra.

Smithers Rapra publishes new report, The Future of Motorcycle Tyres to 2021, which provides an in-depth, long-term assessment of the economic, demographic and technology-based demand growth for the tyre industry.

The Future of Motorcycle Tyres to 2021 states that, altogether, motorcycle tire demand is estimated to be $12.4 billion in 2016. The market appears poised to continue the growth of recent years, with post-financial crisis OE demand rebounding, and the motorcycle parc and tyre use/wear contributing to steady replacement demand. A 6.8% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) by value is expected over the five-year period through 2021.

“Growth will be driven by an increasing number of households in industrialising countries being able to afford motorcycles, as personal incomes rise,” “Additionally, markets for all motorcycles in a number of important countries – notably Brazil, Indonesia, Thailand, the US, and Vietnam – will accelerate, after economic difficulties in some of these countries are hopefully overcome.”

Arthur Mayer Report Author

The greatest growth is expected in what is also by far the largest region (in both value and growth and volume), Asia-Pacific, the least growth will be observed in the mature and somewhat stressed European market. North America is the smallest market, with below-average volume and unit growth prospects; but the US will continue to be a leader in medium and heavy motorcycles and premium tires, due to modest economic growth – and the motorcycle parc.

Growth in premium motorcycles is driven by Asia (mainly China) and South America, which have a growing middle class that is more interested and able to have a motorcycle for recreation, rather than just commuting. The premium motorcycles market in Europe and North America is more mature and is expected to see only a small growth in the coming years. The main tire companies active in the premium motorcycle sectors in both

With the evolution and proliferation of motorcycle models, tyre makers are constantly innovating to improve the match to specific motorcycles and improve safety, driving experience, and other qualities. As with all types of tyre, compromises have to be made between a number of properties such as grip, wear, noise, fuel efficiency, and puncture resistance. With motorcycles, safety issues mean that this is more heavily biased towards grip. One of the consequences of maximising grip is a sacrifice in treadwear, and the life of motorcycle tyres is relatively short compared to automotive and trucks.

Performance tyres can wear much faster, however, with lives of only a few thousand miles on average. Silica reinforcements are well established in the tyre compound, mainly for improved wet grip – although there are also benefits with respect to rolling resistance and cool running. In order to improve motorcycle tyre characteristics and performance, manufacturers continue to work at incremental improvements, with grip being the most critical, followed by durability, which is an issue due to the frequent replacement need.

Innovations in tire construction and compounds include advance steel radials; wire winding/spacing; multiple and single radius contour; diagonal belt; radial carcass and diagonal belt; carbon fibre matrix; high silica content; reinforced; and two or more compounds. These developments are variously targeted at tire attributes such as traction/grip/performance (above all); followed by durability; and, to a much lesser extent, rolling resistance.

The Future of Motorcycle Tyres to 2021 provides statistical data for the value and volume of the global motorcycle tyre market by region and application, this report looks at economic, demographic and technology-based demand growth over the next five years.  Determinants of demand, technological developments, trends in tyre types (original equipment/ replacement, premium/general, radial/bias) and sizes, and regional market size and influences are all taken into account and explained.


Notes for Editors            

The Future of Motorcycle Tyres to 2021 is available for £4,200. For more information, please contact:

Smithers Rapra is the global leader in rubber, plastics, polymer and composites testing, consulting and information products and events, with key focuses including the tyre, industrial, transportation, consumer and medical industries.

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