Motorcycle Prices Skyrocket During COVID


So first we’ll need a little back story. I moved to the United States from Australia in December 2019. Yep bad timing, but there isn’t much you can do about that. Now before I left, I sold my Aprilia Tuono V4 and my wife’s Honda CBR250R. I had also started to look at US motorcycle prices while I was in Australia. I tend to keep an eye on bikes for sale, so between me selling my bikes, constantly looking at bikes and having this channel, I have a fair idea of what bikes sell for.

Now I am moving back to Australia in the middle of this year, so what’s the first thing I do? I look at motorbike prices. And boy was I shocked. Prices are bloody high! I thought if anything, COVID would have bought prices down, but as my video on motorcycle sales also showed, that isn’t the case at all.

I spoke to some mates back in Australia and all of them have confirmed that prices have gone way up; they are even calling it the COVID tax! Doing a bit of digging, Gumtree (the equivalent of Craigslist in Australia) has confirmed that used prices have risen by 16% on average. That is a big jump. Now I sold my Tuono and CBR250 for reasonably low, but fair prices. Having a look at equivalent bikes for sale now, they are more expensive than what I sold mine for 1 and half years ago!

The equivalent to my Tuono V4 is selling for more now than mine did 1.5 years ago!

And a similar thing is happening here in the United States. Analysts are reporting that used vehicles have gone up and looking online confirms this.

So why are used prices so much higher? Well it’s a combination of a few things.

The first reason is due to the limited supply of new models. During COVID, manufacturing stopped for many companies. The result? Low stock and people weren’t able to get their shiny new bikes.

There are also reduced listings online. Since people haven’t been able to get new bikes, they’ve been keeping their old ones. Demand for bikes has also increased which makes things worse.

With the virus, people haven’t been using public transport as often and have been commuting on their bikes instead. With lockdown and being unable to travel, people have been using their bikes to essentially social distance by riding both on and off road. Then there are those who have been saving money because of lockdown. They haven’t been able to blow their cash at the pub or strippers, so they want to buy bikes and they’ve got the money to do it.

So there you have it, the perfect storm for driving up motorcycle prices. Will it change any time soon? This is some crystal ball stuff, but I think things will start to normalise in a three-four months’ time. Motorcycle companies have said they are ramping production back up and hopefully things will start ticking along and get back to normal (whatever normal will be).

I’ve never bought a new bike, the closest I’ve come is my Brutale 675 which had about 1500km’s on it, but if prices don’t start coming down, I could tempted. I mean with some of the prices I’ve seen, you might as well spend a couple of grand more and get a new one.

So have you seen how much higher used bike prices are in your area? I’m mainly been talking about Australia and to some degree the US, but I’d been to hear what people in other countries have been experiencing. Let me know in the comments below. Hopefully they come back down for when I get back to Australia, if not I’ll be convincing Mrs OnTheBackWheel I need to buy an Aprilia Tuono 660.

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