On 1 January 2006, there were 553 thousand motorcycles registered in the Netherlands. In 1996, the Dutch motorcycle fleet stood at 315 thousand. The average annual increase over the past decade was 7.5 percent.
Motorcycles, 1 January
Many motorbikers in their forties
On 1 January 2006, there were 545 thousand privately owned motorcycles in the Netherlands, 137 thousand more than in 2000. Motorbike ownership decreased among people in the age category between 18 and 30 and increased among over-30s, most strikingly among 40 to 49-year-olds. On average, there were 75 motorcycle owners in every thousand people aged between 40 and 50. The corresponding rate for 2000 was 45. In this age group motorbikes are most popular. In 2000, motorbikes were most popular among people in their thirties.
Motorcycles by age category
Motorcycle sales dipped in first quarter 2006
In the first three months of 2006, only 3.8 thousand new motorcycles were sold, 16 percent down on the same period last year and no less than 37 percent down on the first quarter of 2004. Over the past five years, about 17 thousand new motorcycles were sold annually. Most motorcycles are sold in the second quarter before the summer season begins.
Sold new motorcycles with a cylinder capacity of at least 951 cc
More heavy motorcycles sold
More than 40 percent of new motorcycles sold in the first quarter of 2006 had a cylinder capacity of at least 950 cc. A decade ago, the rate was 25 percent. Approximately one in ten motorcycles fall into the category light motorcycles up to 550 cc.
Astrid Dohmen and Michèl Pluijmen