Bicycle sales are down by more than a quarter in the UK compared to the first half of 2021, according to new data released by the Bicycle Association.
“The first half of 2022 has seen a continuing downturn in UK cycling sales,” the Bicycle Association’s Head of Insights John Worthington told Zag Daily. “Total market volume and value versus the first half of 2021 have declined by 27% and 25%, respectively.”
Following a boom in 2020, the UK market is experiencing a post-boom dip in demand. Beginning in May 2021, this dip is now colliding with an escalating cost-of-living crisis.
Two of the most popular categories, the sales of hybrid and children’s cycles are worst affected. But even the growth in e-bikes have stalled, which are responsible for much of the market’s growth. However, “enthusiast” categories of road and gravel bikes have grown.
Compounding the issue is that this dip is not keeping pace with cycling levels, which have risen by 33% in the year to 30 July, according to Department for Transport (DFT) figures.
Charity Cycling UK said that the growth in cycling in the first quarter of this year was down to rising fuel prices as bikes provide a cheaper alternative for getting around. But it warned if prices for fuel fall, this growth could be undone if more investment is not made in infrastructure.
The full half year report titled ‘A Bumpier Ride: Challenges and prospects in the UK Cycling Market’ is due to be published in the coming weeks.