News Article

Swiss E-Mountainbike Sales Doubled

Sales & Trends

BERN, Switzerland – The Swiss e-bike sales broke a new record in 2018. As expected, the e-bike sales volume passed the threshold of 100,000 units. With a total of 111,000 units, almost every third bicycle sold in Switzerland was electrified. In e-bike market share, this puts Switzerland in third place after the Netherlands (40%) and Austria (33%).

Swiss E-Mountainbike Sales Doubled
Swiss companies such as Komenda were still able to deliver even during the peak season. - Photo Peter Hummel

Based on statistics of the industry association Velosuisse a total of 345,313 bicycles and e-bikes were sold last year in Switzerland. This is only a modest 2.1% more bicycles and e-bikes compared with 2017. The increase in the category e-bikes exceeded the results of previous years. While e-bike sales between 2011 and 2017 only increased by 6 to 16 percent, or even declined, the e-bike market grew by a whopping 26.9 percent in 2018. Not only in market share, but also in market expansion, Switzerland ranks third in Europe, behind Germany (+ 36 percent) and the Netherlands (+ 35 percent) but ahead of Austria and France. The category E-MTBs even doubled in volume to 43,220 units.

The boom of E-MTBs, which are sold mainly in the 25 km/h category, can be seen as the main explanation for the decline in speed pedelecs sales from 16,508 units in 2017 to 15,526 units last year. For years the speed pedelecs generated a market share of 25 percent but those days are over. It already declined to 19 percent in 2017 and dropped further to 14 percent last years.

No wonder that the growing e-bike sales figures impacted the sales of regular bicycles. In city and junior bike the decline was striking at – 12.6 percent, but it was limited to – 3.4% in the category sports. This was the result of a hike in road-race bikes (+ 15.7 percent) and a smaller increase in 29-inch mountainbikes (+ 3.9 percent). Obviously 27.5-inch mountainbikes were much less in demand (- 15.5 percent).

Retail trade still going strong

While above statistics of the industry association Velosuisse are based on information from domestic importers, wholesalers and sports retail stores, the Swiss market provides a second source of information on e-bike and bicycle sales. Urs Rosenbaum’s bicycle promotion office Dyna-Mot is publishing surveys based on added value. For years he is focusing on import figures from the Swiss Federal Customs Administration. According to his ‘Marktbulletin Velohandel Schweiz 2019’ another milestone was reached. With a market share of 58.5 percent the e-bike sales were bigger than the number of regular bicycles for the first time. The category e-bikes generated a total market value of CHF 1,087 billion (967 million euro).

According to Dyna-Mot the retail trade is still going strong in the electric bicycles business. More than five out of six e-bikes were purchased at the IBD store. Contrary to the average retail price mentioned by the industry association Velosuisse of 3.500 CHF (3.112 euro), Rosenbaum claims an average price of 4.150 CHF (3,691 euro) per e-bike which puts Switzerland internationally on a very high level. Rosenbaum also stated that the bicycle retail trade has reached yet another milestone. With a total market value of CHF 1.77 billion (1.57 billion euro) it has passed the sports retail trade which generated a total market value of CHF 1.72 billion (1.53 billion euro) according to the GfK market research institute.

Comment on this article