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PSB shares rider perspectives on electric powersports

As electric models revolutionize the powersports industry, the debate is heating up over whether riders are willing to exchange the iconic growl of gas engines for the silent zip of electric power. For more insight into the sales potential of electric models, Cycle Trader embarked on a mission to understand this shift from the rider’s perspective. By looking at feedback from audience polls with an analysis of browsing behaviors, we’ve started to uncover the magnetic pull of electric motorcycles alongside the reservations that still exist. Dive deeper with us for more insights into this landscape.

Electric motorcycles that consistently win over consumers

Top e-bike make/model year over year By search results page impressions

2022:

  1. Harley-Davidson LiveWire
  2. STACYC 12 e-Drive
  3. Indian FTR
  4. STACYC 16 e-Drive
  5. Zero SR/F

2023:

  1. Kawasaki Elektrode
  2. Harley-Davidson LiveWire
  3. Surron Light Bee
  4. Zero FXE
  5. Zero FX

2024:

  1. Kawasaki Elektrode
  2. Surron Light Bee
  3. Zero FXE
  4. Harley-Davidson LiveWire
  5. Zero FX
E-bike brand popularity

Over the years, a consistent trend emerges among the most searched electric motorcycle models, with Harley-Davidson LiveWire and Zero Motorcycles SR/F being consistently two of the most searched make/model of e-motorcycles over the past three years. Marketplace searches for Kawasaki Electrode have also been on the rise for the past two years, along with Surron Light Bee. Dealerships can use this data to tailor their marketing strategies, showcasing the features and benefits of these sought-after electric models to attract potential buyers.

Factors driving consumer interest in electric motorcycles

*2023 Survey- What most attracts you to electric motorcycles?

  • Less engine maintenance- 37%
  • Save money on gas- 35%
  • They are quieter- 30%
  • Emissions-free/good for environment- 24%
  • New electric models have higher torque/ power- 24%
  • Innovative design- 18%
  • Newest technology- 13%
  • They are lighter- 12%

We found that 22% of respondents are considering purchasing an electric motorcycle, while another 13% are committed to purchasing one within the next five years. Despite some reservations, the appeal of electric motorcycles persists, largely due to the benefits of switching to electric power.

The popularity of electric motorcycles can be attributed to three key benefits: 30% of respondents appreciate their quiet operation, 35% value the economic advantage of avoiding gas purchases, and 37% are drawn to the low maintenance requirements. Additionally, some respondents highlighted extra perks such as their advanced design and technology, positive environmental impact and impressive torque and power.

Addressing customer hesitations by understanding their needs

*2023 Survey- What drawbacks do you see presented by electric motorcycles?

  • Low mile range/battery life- 65%
  • Finding a charging station-53% Charging time for electric motorcycles- 47%
  • Higher initial investment- 33%
  • Inability to repair engine myself- 31%
  • Unsure the power grid can handle EVs- 28%
  • Too quiet- 26%
Drawbacks of electric powersports

While a significant number of consumers are keen on transitioning to electric vehicles, a handful remain on the fence. Their top concerns revolve around battery longevity and range, the availability of charging facilities and the duration required to charge. Those still contemplating the advantages and disadvantages suggest they could be persuaded to choose electric alternatives if there were a broader selection of models available and if they could gain insights from the experiences of current electric motorcycle owners. We also anticipate a surge in competition and consumer options as emerging electric-focused businesses such as Rawrr and Ryvid step onto the scene. Access to educational resources plays a crucial role in guiding consumer understanding as the industry expands.

Our exploration into consumer sentiments highlights key insights into the electric powersports industry’s future. By understanding shifting preferences, dealerships can navigate the challenges and opportunities of the growing electric motorcycle market. Adapting your inventory to these evolving tastes is crucial for leading in this space, ensuring you meet the increasing demand for eco-friendly transportation on Cycle Trader and beyond. This adaptability positions your business as a go-to for sustainable, cutting-edge options in the dynamic powersports industry.

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Nicole Schantz is the vice president of OEM and strategic partnerships at Trader Interactive, parent company of Cycle Trader. Nicole and her team are continually optimizing the online marketplace experience for both dealers and OEM partners.

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