Honda Starts Selling Bigger Motorcycles in Taiwan after More Than 50 Years

2015 Honda Gold Wing 40th Anniversary Edition 1 photo
Photo: Honda
Honda announces extending their operations in Taiwan, but this time the house of Tokyo means serious business. It’s not about opening a new or a bigger plant, but adding large-sized motorcycles to the roster of the local dealers. Even though for some, such news may seem a bit dull, the move is quite significant, considering the fact that the motorcycle market has only been liberalized in 2002, after the country became a member of the World Trade Organization (WTO). So this is a big thing for the altogether rich Taiwanese market.
The move is scheduled for April this year, and Honda envisions complex operations including the sale of imported bikes, alongside servicing, selling spare parts, maintenance and other after-sale services. In case you were wondering what “large-sized motorcycles” means in the Taiwanese context, we have Honda telling us that the term refers to bikes equipped with an engine larger than 250cc.

Income increase and lifting the large-bikes ban on freeways help the market grow

Taiwan’s large-sized motorcycle market saw a solid 24% increase in 2014, reaching around the 17,000 units mark. The income rise was one of the factors which fueled this growth, backed with the removal of the ban which prohibited large-sized motorcycles from using the freeways. This opened the way for riders eyeing to get bigger bikes and helped the market achieve a significant growth.

No less than four new dealers will be opened by April 2015 in Taiwan but no model line-up was mentioned. We can estimate that Honda will focus on the lower displacement models, with the CBR300R-class machinery playing an important role in the next phase of the Taiwanese operations. At the same time, with all the years of frustrating control over the local market, we can also believe there will be numerous fellows willing to spend big bucks on Honda’s top bikes.

According to official Honda Asia sources, the Japanese maker “began local production of small-sized motorcycles in 1961, mainly 125cc-class models, in the form of a technology licensing agreement with a local company (under a technical collaboration agreement) and continued until 2003.” More than a decade after joining the free WTO market, it’s high time to see Gold Wings and CBR1000RRs on Taiwanese roads, maybe.
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