News Article

German Market Grows in All Segments

Sales & Trends 5112

BERLIN, Germany –Thanks to the growing popularity of the e-bike, the German bicycle market is in pretty good condition. In 2014 the market volume increased by 8% while 2015 showed a 6.6% growth to 4,350,000 units, reported the national industry association ZIV.

German Market Grows in All Segments
‘Made in Germany’ e-bikes are much in demand on the local market, but also abroad. – Photo Bike Europe

The 2015 sales statistics showed that the German bike market performed outstandingly last year. “Cycling has become popular again in Germany, resulting in an increase in sales and production of bicycles, e-bikes, parts and components on the home market as well as in export(s),” said Managing Director Siegfried Neuberger of industry association ZIV at the presentation of the 2015 sales statistics.

Everyday mobility

“2014 was already a very positive year for the German bicycle industry. We are therefore all the more pleased that this positive trend continued. There are multiple reasons for this success. Obviously the weather conditions have been in favour of cycling, but we have also noticed an increased use of bicycles in everyday mobility as well as a growing importance of the bicycle as a trendy status symbol. We assess this development as very solid. Therefore we are optimistic about the future.”

E-bike Market Germany (in units *)

2013 2014 2015
Sales 410 480 535
Production 278 254 305
Import 199 230 370
Export 98 102 140

* x 1,000
Source ZIV

Big potential for e-bikes

“Since the bicycle and e-bike have the same legal status, companies can offer them as an attractive alternative for a car to commute,” notes Neuberger. “Also a growing number of transportation companies understand the potential of e-cargobikes for their logistic challenges, especially in cities, and offer a new range of logistic solutions.”

ZIV estimates 2015 sale of bicycles and e-bikes at 4.35 million units. Compared to 2014 this is an increase of 6.6%, a slight decline in growth compared to the previous year, though still bold. The main push in the sales growth came from e-bikes. The sales volume of this product category posted double-digit growth of 11.5% to 535,000 units. In 2014 e-bike sales stood at 480,000 units.

Average price increase

Regular bicycles and e-bikes generated a turnover of €2.42 billion; 12% more than in 2014 and an increase in growth compared to 2013 as well. Thanks to the e-bike the average price of all bicycles sold in Germany also increased – by 5.5% to €557. The industry association notes that the increase in average price is also the result of better overall quality levels resulting in a higher price per unit. Overall, sales of bicycles, parts and components in Germany amounted to approximately €5 billion.

The performance of the German market did not come as a surprise. Previous market updates already indicated a boost in e-MTB sales last year. Accell Group reported in its 2015 annual financial report, “an increase in turnover of bike sales of 16%, in particular thanks to a big growth in e-bike market by the brands Haibike, Winora, and Ghost. In volume sales grew by a big 12%. The increase comes mostly from the skyrocketing sale of e-MTBs. The vast and rapidly growing popularity of such models even surprised the Accell Board and staff.”

Last September at the 2015 Eurobike show, ZIV already reported double digit growth in bicycles sales. At that time ZIV estimated that between January and June some 2.86 million bicycles and e-bikes were sold to German consumers. That was an increase of 2% compared to the same period in 2014. However the German industry association also noted that when taking into account the increased imports domestic deliveries (which is deliveries from suppliers to dealers as well as other distribution channels) were up significantly on 2014 figures and showed double digit growth.

‘Made in Germany’

In Germany the growing popularity of the e-bike is, as in previous years, the result of the expanding range of models and product categories. The target groups have become younger and more sports oriented. But also the e-cargobike shows an increasing popularity. In particular ‘Made in Germany’ e-bikes are much in demand on the local market, but also abroad. The production of e-bikes in Germany increased from 254,000 in 2014, to 305,000 last year. The export of this category rose by 37% to 140,000 units. The volume import went from 230,000 in 2014 to 370,000 in 2015.

Germany’s main import partners were the other European countries who have a market import share of 64% while the Asian countries exported the second biggest share with 34%. The remaining 2% comes from other countries which were not specified by ZIV. Not surprisingly Germany’s main export partners were the EU-28 countries. Their took up 81% of all e-bikes exported from Germany, while the second biggest share, some 15% were destined for other European countries. Only 4% was exported to countries outside Germany.

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