Fifteen years ago, everyone wanted to have a quad bike in Spain to do the ‘goat’ in the field, take care of the farm, go to the beach, climb the mountains, wade rivers, get muddy, perform agricultural tasks, and even go from home to work and from work to home. Hundreds of towns were filled overnight with these motorcycle-like but safer, four-wheeled off-road gadgets, to the point where 44,348 units were registered in 2005 (triple in just two years).
The fever for quads ( ATV for its acronym in English) seemed unstoppable, and for every five motorcycles, a quad was marketed in Spain. But, suddenly and almost without warning, they stopped being fashionable (even before the economic crisis of 2008), and environmental regulations began to proliferate that prohibited their circulation in many places and protected areas. Finally, the validation of the A1 card arrived ( the motorcycle) with the B (the car), allowing many drivers to switch to both wheels without signing up for driving school.
The ATV market hit was so vast and dizzying that in just five years, it lost 91% of its volume to 3,866 units in 2010, according to data from the National Association of Two-Wheel Sector Companies (Anesdor). Since then, sales continued to fall, and in 2013 they bottomed out with just 1,356 units registered throughout Spain. Now (almost), no one wanted to know anything about the quads and, in the same way that they came sweeping like a tsunami, they disappeared from the villages and almost wholly vanished until today. Nearly two decades after the irruption of quads in our lives, ATVs are about to be reborn from their ashes thanks to new forms of mobility, which are not only transforming the urban landscape of cities (with fewer cars and more motorcycles, mopeds, bicycles, scooters, etc.) but also in rural areas.
Although it seems incredible, the fashion for quads is about to return (with less virulence, yes), so some brands like Kymco have proposed to take advantage of the increase in demand for leisure vehicles and, above all, the implementation of new mobility alternatives in rural areas due to the coronavirus pandemic. Kymco has just announced that in 2021 it will launch three ATV models with the ambitious goal of recovering in two years the leadership of this off-road market, the same one that gave it its first significant brand recognition at the beginning of this century, as explained in this Monday by Carlos Wang general director of Kymco Spain, during the announcement of the ‘ATV 21/22’ plan of the Taiwanese brand.
2020 will close with significant growth in quad registrations for the second consecutive year. Until November 2020, 2,300 quads had been registered in Spain, almost 10% more than in the same period of 2019, and the forecast is that the market will continue to grow in the coming years. In fact, in countries like Taiwan, a market of 23.6 million inhabitants (half the population of Spain), more than twice as many quads are already sold than in our country.
As announced by the Taiwanese manufacturer, the Kymco ATV range scheduled for 2021 will consist of the MXU 300, MXU 550, and MXU 700 models, the latter in its most innovative version with power steering (EPS) and ABS brakes. They will be available in Spain from April, May, and June, respectively, and the CEO of Kymco has promised that they will have the best value for money on the market”. We believe in the potential of the quad market, Wang said to a pre-series unit of the MXU 700, Kymco’s flagship, and one of only two or three models in the world equipped with ABS brakes.