KAOHSIUNG, Taiwan — KYMCO USA, Inman, S.C., is the exclusive importer and distributor of KYMCO brand scooters, motorcycles and ATVs sent to the United States by Kwang Yang Motor Co. Ltd. Last year, KYMCO brand sales in the U.S. were up 44 percent from sales in 2004.
Owned by Stanislav Razen’s STR, Inc. — a diversified company involved in the trade of bananas, coffee and other goods — KYMCO USA, formally know as STR Inc., Motorsports Division, spent more than two decades representing various moped and mini-cycle brands before discontinuing support of other brands and selecting KYMCO as its main product line in 2001.
While not a subsidiary of Kwang Yang, KYMCO USA’s exclusive import and distribution agreement with the Taiwan-based manufacturer gives it an edge over many other Asian vehicle manufacturers currently attempting to crack the U.S. market — suppliers who often export units to numerous U.S.-based companies who then re-brand and distribute the product to whomever is willing to initiate the sale to a consumer. In fact, the only other brand offering a KYMCO-made vehicle is Arctic Cat.
Today, KYMCO USA offers more than 400 dealers a selection of vehicles ranging in size from 50cc to 500cc. The company’s line of scooters last year included the 50cc Vitality, ZX, Super 9 and People; 150cc People and Bet & Win; and 250cc People, Bet & Win and Grandvista. Also available: the Venox 250 motorcycle and a growing ATV line featuring the MXU 150, 250 and shaft-driven 300 utility ATVs as well as the Mongoose 50, 90, 250 and 300 sport quads.
Last year, Kwang Yang Motor Co. Ltd. shipped approximately 4,800 ATVs to the United States, down from a shipment of approximately 6,200 units in 2004. Scooter shipments in 2005 numbered approximately 7,000 units, up more than 1,000 units from the roughly 6,000 scooters imported in 2004.
“We began 2005 with a pretty high inventory of ATVs, so our ATV sales to dealers were actually up over 40% this year,” KYMCO USA President/CEO Eric Bondy told Powersports Business. Concerning scooter sales, he said: “When gas hits $3 per gallon, people begin looking for alternative modes of transportation, so scooter sales really experienced a large spike when we saw gas prices increase. They were up about 20 percent.”
All KYMCO scooter models are backed by a two-year warranty, and services offered by KYMCO USA mirror those expected from a mainstream powersports supplier. They include: cooperative dealer advertising programs and seasonal specials, consumer financing options, a spare parts department offering same-day service to anywhere in the United States, parts manuals in printed form and in electronic format on CDR, a warranty department ready to handle the processing of registration cards and claims, a billing department with a toll-free number, a technical department and full-service manuals, and a growing internal sales staff educated on company product and processes.
KYMCO USA’s wholesale financing program is offered by GE and Textron. The company’s consumer financing option is supplied by Sheffield Financial. psb
Copyright 2006 Powersports Business