Bicycle Sales Volumes in the UK - 2017
According to data provided by HMRC bicycle imports into the UK showed a drop in the bike sector during the first two quarters of 2017. Prompting concerns that the country’s bike market looked to be heading for a 17-year low.
Statistics showed that bike imports are down by 11%. This came after a steep decline in the first quarter. If extrapolated over the full year this could have resulted in one million less than in 2016. The UK is suffering from the greatest decline of bicycle sales in Europe.
The retail bike sector is presenting a complex and changing picture after steadily hovering at around 3.5 million bikes sold annually for several years, prior to 2017. A couple of reasons cited for the decline include a weakness in sterling and the rising average price of bikes. The market decline results in IBD casualties, as the tough selling environment hits the bricks and mortar stores. This has prompted the closure of six of thirty high street Cycle Surgery stores (20%).
The UK’s drop in the import of regular bicycles is in line with the decline in export by Taiwan’s bicycle industry. Taiwan’s total export of regular bikes dropped by 26% during the first half of 2017.
Riding through traffic has presents enough concerns without having to worry about someone opening a car door on you.
Hyundai and Audi will be releasing technology that could prevent that from happening.
The new Audi A8 will build on the existing 'Exit Warning System'; which flashes warning lights if anything is approaching from behind, by extending it to physically lock a door to prevent a collision.
The new Hyundai Santa Fe SUV will feature a similar system, called Safety Exit Assist. This system also uses a radar to detect potential danger and will either warn passengers or lock the doors if a cyclist is passing.
You may be surprised to learn that over a third of British drivers don’t bother to check behind them before opening their car door.
This figure comes from a survey of 1,000 drivers from across the UK , which has also exposed how ill-informed some drivers are when it comes to what cyclists can and can’t do on the road.
73 percent of drivers (and 92 percent of Londoners) believe that cyclists are not allowed to ride two abreast on the road.
81 percent of drivers believe that cyclists are required to remain on the left-hand side of the lane, while it is actually legal for cyclists to ride in the middle of their lane.
65 percent of drivers believe that cyclists are required to cycle within a cycle lane if there is one.
Over half 53 percent believe that cyclists are not allowed on dual carriageways.
This lack of knowledge about the road rights of cyclists contributes to tension between drivers and riders.