The Swiss Times - Swiss News in English

Swiss bike suppliers sell less in 2023

After the booming coronavirus years, bicycle suppliers in Switzerland sold fewer bikes again in 2023. Last year, the companies affiliated with the Velosuisse association delivered a total of 395,036 e-bikes and bicycles to their customers, the specialist bicycle retailers.

That is around 100,000 fewer than during the coronavirus years 2020 to 2022, as Velosuisse announced on Tuesday. And yet this figure is higher than in 2019, i.e. before the pandemic. In other words, if it hadn't been for the extraordinary years of the pandemic, which brought thousands of people onto bikes, the Swiss bike market would have grown.

However, not all categories declined year-on-year. For example, sales of electric bikes that can travel up to 45 kilometers per hour grew by almost 17 percent, according to the press release. Suppliers sold 26,559 of these bikes. In contrast, slower e-bikes were no longer as popular as in the previous year. Their number fell by a quarter to 145,928.

Pure muscle power is "out"

Customers looking for a new bike were also apparently less keen on pedaling: sales of bicycles powered solely by muscle power fell by 16 percent (to 222,550 units).

Meanwhile, industry experts were not surprised by this development, according to the press release: "In 2022, consumer sentiment had already cooled considerably due to the war, interest rate hikes and inflation when the record volume of 218,730 e-bikes was delivered to the market, in some cases far too late," it says.

According to Velosuisse, a beautiful spring in 2023 could have eased the situation, but it "failed to materialize". And in the summer, which turned out to be very hot, "it was so hot that the desire to ride a bike literally evaporated". It is therefore only logical that fewer bicycles and e-bikes were sold in the previous year.

©Keystone/SDA

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