BMW reported a new company record for third quarter motorcycle sales, selling 26,755 BMW motorcycles in the quarter ended Sept. 30, 2012. The record result is a 1.7% increase over the 26,312 units sold in the third quarter of 2011.
The increase however was nearly offset by a dip in Husqvarna sales. BMW reports sales of 2,121 Husqvarna motorcycles over the quarter, down from 2,550 units in the same period last year. Combining both brands, the BMW Group sold 28,876 motorcycles over the quarter, a sliver of an increase over the 28,862 units sold the same quarter the year before.
The third quarter numbers are actually the reverse of BMW’s 2012 year-to-date results. Over the first nine months, BMW motorcycle sales were down 1.1% to 85,944 units from 86,892 while Husqvarna sales increased 21.0% to 7,356 from 6,080. This represents a 0.4% overall increase in sales to 93,300 units from 92,972 units, a nearly negligible increase but still better than the overall market contraction of 3% for 500cc and larger motorcycles over the first nine months.
The European economy had a negative influence on sales, with consumers on the continent buying 11% fewer motorcycles in the first three quarters. BMW fared better than most, seeing just a 7.7% decline over the same period. Sales were particularly bad in Spain (-16.2%), Italy (-28.6%) and Great Britain (-8.9%) compared to the first nine months of 2011. BMW fared better in its home market with German sales up 1.4%. BMW also saw growth in France, selling 10.6% more motorcycles than it did the same period last year.
BMW also saw an increase in U.S. sales, with Americans buying 11,420 BMW and Husqvarna motorcycles over the first nine months, a year-on-year increase of 19.5%. BMW’s Brazilian sales also saw an increase of 48.9% while Japanese sales increased 14.2%.
The record third quarter motorcycle sales translated to a record 358 million euros (US$459 million) in revenue, a year-on-year increase from 334 million euros. Despite the record figures, BMW’s motorcycle business still operated at a loss of 4 million euros (US$5.1 million) before tax. Still, that represents an improvement on the third quarter loss of 17 million euros before taxes in 2011.
Overall the first nine months, BMW’s motorcycle division saw revenues of 1.22 billion euros (US$1.56 billion), compared to 1.18 billion euros over the same period in 2011. Profit before tax, is up to 80 million euros (US$103 million) from 60 million euros.