E-bike Sales in EU to Break 1 million Barrier in 2010
Electric bike sales experts Frank Jamerson and Ed Benjamin have updated their forecast for global electric bike sales in 2010, reports Brussels-based European Two-wheel Retailers' Association (ETRA). If this forecast is anything to go by, 2010 will be the year in which the European Union (EU) breaks through the magical one million sales barrier.
According to ETRA, the duo forecasts global e-bike sales to grow by “only” 7% to 24.3 million this year in the 2010 edition of their publication Electric Bikes Worldwide Reports.
The main reason for the "modest growth" in 2010: In China e-bike sales are expected to "stagnate" on around 22 million units this year – unchanged from the 2008 level and only slightly above the 2009 level.
In comparison to the sluggish growth forecast for the worldwide market, the duo forecasts EU sales to jump by 33% in 2010 from 750,000 units to 1 million units, thereby growing its share in global sales from 3.3% to 4%.
The Jamerson/Benjamin sales forecast reminds (yet again) of the “lobsidedness” of the global e-bike market. In 2010 90.5% of all e-bikes will be sold in China, despite the predicted “market stagnation” in that country. In 2010 sales in Asia (including China, India, Japan, Taiwan and South-east Asia) are expected to climb to almost 95% of global sales, meaning only 5% of global sales (24.3 million) will be concluded outside Asia!
According to ETRA “the high sales in China can be ascribed to the large number of cities which have legally banned petrol engine mopeds and scooters, leaving consumers with no other choice but to opt for electric bicycles”.
Inside the EU the market is also “lobsided”. According to Jamerson/Benjamin the Netherlands accounted for 28% of all EU sales in 2009 (about 210,000 units). When the 140,000 units sold in Germany in 2009 (a statistic of the independent industry association VSF) are added, it is clear that almost one of every two bikes sold in the EU in 2009, was sold in the Netherlands and Germany.
Most interesting, is that the almost non-existent US market (in world terms) is finally showing signs of life. In 2009 only 150,000 units were sold in the US. The light in this dark tunnel: Jamerson/Benjamin forecast sales to double to 300,000 in 2010.