Kelley Q3 charts show H-D cruisers at top

Harley cruisers dominate Kelley Blue Book views

Customer views on trended similarly in the third quarter of 2012 as they did in the year-ago quarter, as customer views typically decline heading into the fall season.

An analysis of the Kelley Blue Book top 10 most researched powersports vehicles for Q3 shows a return to a Harley-Davidson-dominated top 10 for cruisers, following the breakthrough made by Honda in Q2 with the Shadow 750cc series.

“This year has been dominated by the 2007 Harley Electra Glide Ultra Classic and the 2005 Harley Sportster 1200 Custom, which have occupied the top two spots on the Top 10 Most Researched list consistently,” according to Lisa Pelissier, senior analyst for Kelley Blue Book.

Pelissier notes that interest in sport bikes has remained constant throughout 2012 as nine of the top 10 bikes have been on the list all year.

“The curious exception for Q3 is the addition of the 2003 Honda CBR600RR,” Pelissier said. “Interest in sport bikes is highest for bikes that are six or seven years old; the sudden appearance of a 2003 model is surprising. There have been no models older than a 2005 on the top 10 since it was first compiled in 2010.  It is too soon to make any specific assumption based on this anomaly, but it is noteworthy nonetheless.”

Pelissier also pointed out that the first 2011 model has appeared on the Top 10 Most Researched list from the dirt bike category. The other nine models in the Over 400cc category are repeat placers.

“The Under 400cc group is also showing consistency, with eight of the top 10 returning from Q2,” Pelissier said. “For the first time in 2012, Suzuki has a dirt bike on the list. Curiously, the same Suzuki model made the list in Q3 2011.”

Scooters hard to figure
Interest in scooters has been more fickle than in the other market segments. The most viewed scooter in Q3, the 2009 Yamaha Zuma 125, did not make the top 10 list in Q2 but was on the list in Q1.

Half of the most viewed scooters are 2008 or 2009 models. This may indicate that people are selling their scooters sooner than their ATVs and/or motorcycles, as the average age of the top 10 scooters are one to three years newer, Pelissier said.

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