2010 MARKET INTERVIEW
Eric de Seynes: FZ8 and Super Ténéré still have strong growth potential
With 35,779 registrations, Yamaha posted a decline of -10.8% on the French motorcycle market. Éric de Seynes, General Manager Yamaha Motor France, establishes for Site the 2010 assessment of the Japanese brand and unveils its 2011 objectives.
Site: What do you think of the general evolution of the French motorcycle market in 2010? ?
Éric de Seynes, Managing Director Yamaha Motor France : The two-wheeler market certainly fell by 7% in 2010 but remains, with nearly 185,000 units sold, one of the five best commercial years in the history of motorcycles in France. In addition, it can be noted that after two years of crisis and scrapping premium for the automotive market, the total of annual VN + VO transactions (new vehicles and used vehicles, Editor’s note) of two and three-wheel motor vehicles fell only about 3%, demonstrating the very strong strength of our markets.
MNC: What is your assessment of your year in 125 and large cubes? ?
E. D. S. : In 125 cc, Yamaha Motor France remains the leader with more than 20% market share. It can be noted that Yamaha dominates both the scooter category and the motorcycle category. These good results can be explained in part by the remarkable arrival of the new Xmax in March 2010. Completely redesigned, with a reinforced engine character and improved finishing details, it won over journalists, then customers and immediately imposed itself. as the market leader. Finally, the breadth of our 125cc range, from Vity to Xmax and from YBR to YZF-R, allows us to meet most of our customers’ expectations..
In motorcycles, the XJ6 confirms, thanks to all its versions, its good positioning to meet the expectations of the French market. Its success enabled us to make up for the late arrival of the FZ8 and Super Ténéré 1200. With the good sales of these two new models in the second half of the year, we were able to complete our commercial year in line with our objectives. In maxiscooter, the Tmax 500 continues its career in an impressive way, it benefited from a series "WhiteMax SPL" to celebrate its 10 years and was with the Majesty 400 and the Xmax 250 a real commercial success. These models allow us to remain the leader in this segment with nearly 44% of registrations.
MNC: Immates are not everything … How would you qualify your balance sheet? ?
E. D. S. : Yamaha Motor France remains a well-managed company concerned with the financial soundness of its network. This remains difficult at a time when we have suffered for more than two years a strong erosion of the Euro against the Yen.
MNC: Are you fully satisfied with the results of your best sales: Xmax, YBR, XJ6 and Tmax ?
E. D. S. : In light of what we mentioned in the previous answers, yes, we can only be satisfied with these results, especially in such a troubled economic context.
MNC: Which models have you been disappointed with in sales and what was the cause ?
E. D. S. : Motorcycle 125 suffered a slight sag. The YZF 125 R, in particular, sold less. We are now faced with a reality: the difficulty of attracting young people to motorcycles. For this, Yamaha Motor France is working in collaboration with the FFM to create a 125 Junior coupe in which the YZF 125 R could be integrated..
MNC: Did your new products for 2010 (Xmax, Diversion S, FZ8 and Super Ténéré) pass their first year? ?
E. D. S. : Absolutely. Volumes in Xmax 125 are significant with nearly 10,000 units sold. The FZ8s and Super Ténéré, which arrived late on the market, needed to be installed but very quickly they were distributed just in time in the dealerships. They still have strong growth potential ahead of them.
MNC: What was the good surprise 2010 ?
E. D. S. : The first good surprise remains the very strong resistance of our markets (VN + VO) which demonstrates the relevance of the use of a motorized two-wheeler in our company. A second good surprise was being able to quickly develop and consolidate various partnerships at the national level such as those concluded with the national CER network, which will allow us to initiate actions to stimulate the passage of the motorcycle license and to support our customers. in the new 7-hour training course planned for newcomers to the 125. Also with La Poste, which we are now equipping with Neo’s 4-stroke, and the many circuit driving schools that trust our R1 and R6, etc. All of these partnerships demonstrate that the Yamaha Motor France company evolves with its markets, listens to and hears the expectations of its customers whatever their profiles..
MNC: What was the worst ?
E. D. S. : We can say that the announcement of the departure of Valentino Rossi after 7 years of victories, titles and excitement is a less pleasant surprise … Yamaha, its staff, its engineers, its technical team have been in harmony with the pilot upon his arrival in the group. We cannot therefore rejoice to see such a great champion leave, even if we know that he left an indelible mark on Yamaha..
MNC: In your opinion, what was the highlight of 2010 in the world of two-wheelers? ?
E. D. S. : Lorenzo’s Moto GP title, which is the result of extraordinary human, sporting and technological investments.
MNC: How were your 2011 novelties (scooter upgrades) received by your network and by all bikers ?
E. D. S. : Well, if we trust the sales figures and the "realism" of these novelties. We expect the arrival of the 50 electric scooter, the ECO3 in a few weeks (read, NDLR), which will serve as a test for our research work on alternative energies. Finally, we remain convinced, with our network, that our late novelties of 2010 have great commercial success in store for us in 2011..
MNC: In 2011, what will be your objectives ?
E. D. S. : 2011 is taking place in a still difficult economic context and we will already try to do as well as in 2010 by consolidating our positions and providing our network with all the support it will need to meet the expectations of its customers. In terms of communication and image, we will continue to develop our digital communication which offers various opportunities for interactive dialogues with our customers and prospects.
|"On January 1st of each new year, we become challengers again"|
MNC: What will be your major events this year ?
E. D. S. : We can say that the return of the Motorcycle Show in 2011 will be a milestone. We will also be very active through our various agreements with the flight schools of Dominique Sarron, Philippe Monneret, Denis Bouan, Serge Nuques, 4G and even Team Guyot. Off-road, we are taking over the Yamaha MX Riding School which will be supervised by Frédéric Vialle, in charge of detecting young talents and driving them to the highest level. To encourage our customers to ride on the circuit, we are involved in several challenges: the FZ8 Road Cup, the R1 / R6 Trophies set up within the WERC and the Michelin Power Cup, the YZF-R 125 Cup, but also for pure driving pleasure on "Bikers days", among others. We also support many drivers in competition, whether in speed, cross country or rally. Finally, we opened the season with a promising team of four drivers on this Dakar 2011.
MNC: In conclusion, which maxim would best illustrate your 2010 results? ?
E. D. S. : We end 2010 as a leader, but we have a maxim at Yamaha which is that on "January 1 of each new year, we become challengers again". We will therefore strive, with our network and our partners, to provide the best offer to our customers, both in products and in programs of all kinds, to best meet their expectations and continue to earn our position..
Interview by Matthieu BRETILLE
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