The motorcyle industry yesterday got its first view in the UK of Midland-based Triumph's striking 2007 product range.
Triumph – based in Hinckley, Leicestershire – put the spotlight at Birmingham's NEC on one brand new model and significant updates to several existing designs.
That came as a Chinese motorbike manufacturer caught the attention at the Motorcycle and Scooter Show press and trade day by exhibiting for the first time
From the Midlands, the Triumph Tiger 1050 is fresh for next year. The company believes the tourer has a special mix of sporting capability, long journey comfort and nimble in-the-city handling.
Triumph – which employs 600 people at Hinckley – also put the spotlight on a range of updates to models including the Triumph Bonneville and Bonneville Black, Triumph America and Speedmaster.
The company's last annual results showed it has been enjoying buoyant times.
For the year to June 2005, the latest 12 month figures available, Triumph group turnover rose by 42 per from #125 million to #177 million.
Operating profit, before interest and tax, for the period rose from #1.5 million to #10.7 million and sales jumped to 31,600.
That represented a growth of 29 per compared to the previous year's 24,500.
Triumph's latest range was unveiled for the first time in the UK after previously being shown in Europe and America.
Among the talking points at the show yesterday was UK and Ireland distributor David Silver Spares showing off the latest range of Wuyang motorcycles.
Bikes on display included four 125cc models and a 50cc scooter.
China is the biggest motorcycle producer in the world, turning out 50 per cent of the world’s supply of motorcycles.
Chinese brands account for 12 per cent of the total UK road bike market and more than 25 of registrations up to 125cc.
With a Chinese manufacturer now exhibiting at the UK’s largest motorcycle show and third largest consumer show overall, the country’s growth in market share looks certain to continue to rise.
Over the last ten years production of motorcycles in the Far East has ballooned as economies have expanded, with research suggesting that 59 per cent of Chinese producers have been formed in the last ten years. The Birmingham Post yesterday revealed that Dunlop in Birmingham was announcing at the show a #1 million plus investment in the development of tyre technology to compete at the highest level in the prestigious 500cc MotoGP season.
Show organisers say 274 exhibitors from all over the world were using the event to showcase their products.
One of the highlights is the Thunderdome Games Arena, a new live action stage show featuring stunts against a theatrical Mad Max-style backdrop. n The show opens to the public today and runs until November 5.