Chinese Two-wheeler Exports displayed at 133rd Canton Fair to showcase unique manufacturing charm to global buyers
Preface: After nearly four years of the global pandemic, this year’s Canton Fair has garnered exceptional attention. The 133rd Canton Fair took place in three phases from April 15th to May 5th in Guangzhou, with the first phase running from April 15th to 19th. The fair comprised 20 exhibition zones, including those for motorcycles, electric motorcycles, and bicycles. According to official data, the first phase saw 12,911 offline exhibitors, including 3,856 new participants. As of April 19th, nearly 200,000 buyers from over 200 countries attended the event, accumulating more than 1.26 million visitors. The motorcycle exhibition area was primarily located in Hall 13.1, while the electric vehicle and bicycle exhibition areas were mainly in Hall 12.1. Chinese two-wheeler manufacturers involved in exports were all present, showcasing their products to global buyers and demonstrating the allure of Chinese goods.
Rising Mid-to-Large Displacement Products and Strengthening Awareness of Chinese Independent Brands
The most prominent trend at the 133rd Canton Fair is the rise of mid-to-large displacement products and the increasing awareness of independent brands among leading manufacturers. OEM has always been a direct and effective way for foreign trade export enterprises to achieve product export sales, and the motorcycle industry is no exception. However, with the continuous development of Chinese motorcycle enterprises and increased investment in technological research and development, there has been a growing number of mid-to-large displacement products in recent years. Major motorcycle manufacturers, such as LONCIN, ZONGSHEN, QIANJIANG, LIFAN, and HAOJIN, have established their high-end brands, aiming to achieve overseas sales through their independent brands. MEGA CHINAMOTOR invites you to explore this Canton Fair and appreciate the elegance of Chinese motorcycle manufacturers.
The Zhejiang Taizhou Region has always been the core production base of Chinese scooters. Relying on the clustering advantages of molds and plastic parts, it has formed its unique strengths. However, after experiencing a round of reshuffling in the motorcycle industry, the traditional Taizhou powerhouses have seen changes. Apart from WANGYE and JONWAY, which have maintained their positions, BENZHOU has gradually faded from the two-wheeler motorcycle field. Evergreen QIANJIANG (including QJMOTOR, BENELLI, KEEWAY), the emerging ZNEN (including the acquired Italian MOTO MORINI), ARIIC, TARO, and other new forces have formed Taizhou’s new motorcycle manufacturing momentum. Some emerging Taizhou brands rely on a single product explosion strategy, which is not only present in vehicle manufacturers but also in plastic parts development enterprises. The consistency, stability, and intergenerational planning of products are still insufficient.
At this exhibition, ZNEN showcased not only several fuel-powered scooters, including the ADV150, ADV300, and R9, but also several electric scooters and electric bicycles from ZNEN’s electric vehicle brand FRANK.
WANGYE made an appearance at this Canton Fair with a range of products.
Several new products were exhibited at JONWAY’s booth during the Canton Fair.
QJMOTO, a new high-end brand launched by Qianjiang in May 2020 after being acquired by Geely, features a variety of series, including RR, SRK, NYX, SRT, SRV, Scooter. QJMOTO’s complete absorption of BENELLI’s technology and price reduction has resulted in high sales and profits. At this exhibition, QJMOTO participated in a large scale, showcasing its full range of products from small-displacement road bikes to mid- and large-displacement leisure motorcycles in both import and export exhibition areas. QJMOTO even shared the stage with BENELLI in the import exhibition area, featuring the large-displacement SRK900.
Apart from Taizhou, Hangzhou and Ningbo in Zhejiang Region are worth mentioning, forming the future Hang-Yong Region. This area hosts not only the internationally and domestically successful CFMOTO and the increasingly popular BENDA but also the multi-brand strategy of LONGJIA (LONGJIA, VICTORIA, CHANGJIANG), SKYRICH lithium batteries, outstanding Ningbo JALYN in parts trade, and a vast parts industry cluster.
Focusing on “large displacement” and “intelligent technology,” CFMOTO has become a unique global brand among Chinese power manufacturers in Europe, America, South America, and Australia. It is also a milestone for Chinese manufacturing in the overseas motorcycle industry. CFMOTO’s ATVs/UTVs have ranked first in export sales among Chinese brands for several consecutive years, with a leading market share in Europe. In the two-wheeled vehicle sector, CFMOTO concentrates on 250cc and above mid- and large-displacement models, covering street, cruising, touring, retro, and other niche markets as well as public service vehicles. At this exhibition, CFMOTO showcased impressive large-displacement models such as the 800NK and 450SR.
At JALYN’s booth, we saw a wide range of neatly displayed motorcycle parts and riding accessories.
The Chongqing Region hosts over thirty motorcycle brands. LONCIN and ZONGSHEN lead the way in global product development, benefiting from joint ventures with German BMW and Italian PIAGGIO Group. The companies have invested in engine research and development for over a decade. This platform has allowed the development of best-selling models such as LONCIN’s high-profile VOGE brand and ZONGSHEN’s CYCLONE, centered around mid- and large-displacement rally motorcycles. Other notable brands include GAOKIN with its liter-class breakthrough, distinct British retro style, and impressive high prices, along with SHINERAY’s two-wheel, three-wheel, and four-wheel product strategy, BASHAN’s steady progress, KOVE’s focus on performance, HSUN’s unique UTV/ATV, the rebirth of the veteran state-owned JIALING-JIAPENG, YU’AN’s new sensation of mid- and large-displacement brand YUAN, FUEGO and ANDES, among other electric and fuel motorcycle manufacturers based in the mountain city.
VOGE, LONCIN’s high-end motorcycle brand, launched in September 2018 at CIMA Motor and November 2019 at
EICMA, showcased complete motorcycle products such as DS525X, AC525X, and 350AC at this exhibition.
Launched in 2016, CYCLONE is a high-end motorcycle brand under ZONGSHEN, dedicated to promoting its own line of mid-to-large displacement premium motorcycles. At the exhibition, CYCLONE showcased a variety of complete vehicle models, including the rally-inspired RX401, retro, and sportbike styles.
Founded in 1997 in Chongqing, SHINERAY has a 25-year history of producing entertainment-oriented motorcycles, with products carrying a unique fun-to-ride label. The renowned X2 has been a favorite among off-road enthusiasts, winning numerous awards in off-road competitions, while the Mash Six Hundred 650 series stands out in the classic retro market. The Sidecar series is widely praised by riders for its unique style and enjoyable riding experience. At the exhibition, SHINERAY displayed nearly ten models, ranging from street bikes to off-road motorcycles, including the widely anticipated large cruiser equipped with SHINERAY’s self-developed V1200cc engine.
As a well-established motorcycle brand from Chongqing, LIFAN showcased its KPT400, V310, and KPV series at the exhibition. Although LIFAN launched the π2 brand last year, it wasn’t prominently displayed at the exhibition. Only the V310, known as the “Starship 3” in the domestic market, was on display. According to LIFAN’s representatives, the company has plans to export its π2 brand overseas, but the products have yet to obtain the necessary certifications to meet European standards. It seems LIFAN will need more time to launch its π2 brand internationally.
At the exhibition, BASHAN presented its full range of products, including beach buggies, petrol-powered motorcycles, and electric vehicles. Notably, the two electric vehicles on display attracted many overseas buyers’ attention.
FUEGO showcased several flagship products at the exhibition, primarily featuring the TEKKEN 250.
As one of China’s core automotive and motorcycle production bases, Guangdong is a crucial manufacturing hub for Toyota, Honda, and Nissan in southern China. Motorcycle manufacturing is mainly concentrated in four areas: Jiangmen (Pengjiang, Xinhui, Jianghai, Heshan); Guangzhou (Zengcheng, Conghua, Huadu, Panyu); Dongguan and Shenzhen; Foshan (Shunde, Nanhai). The Pearl River Delta region is home to major petrol and electric motorcycle manufacturers and clustered component enterprises, including DACHANGJIANG HAOJUE, WUYANG-HONDA, ZONTES, SENKE, SANYA, KTM, HAOJIN, DAYUN, TAILG, ZHUJIANG, FEKON, ZHENGHAO, FYM, HUASHA, and TIANHENG.
SENKE is a brand that has excelled in capturing international market demand and understanding customer preferences. Over a decade of overseas development, SENKE has gained deep insights into the driving habits and aesthetic tastes of international users, skillfully developing next-generation models. Several models have won multiple awards, such as the Canton Fair CF Silver Award and the Guangdong Provincial Governor’s Cup Industrial Design Competition Gold Award. At this exhibition, SENKE showcased its latest ADV model, the SK400-KV, attracting the attention of numerous overseas buyers.
Emerging amid the most challenging times in China’s domestic motorcycle market, ZONTES is one of the few Guangdong-based brands pursuing both domestic and international strategies, with products launched simultaneously worldwide. Boasting a state-of-the-art, fully automated robot manufacturing division and an integrated management module based on the independently developed “Tayo Work Platform” software, ZONTES leads the industry in both hardware and software. Modularization, standardization, and platformization form the foundation of their vehicle manufacturing. The 310 series has established ZONTES’ prominence in the motorcycle arena, revolutionizing traditional motorcycle manufacturing.
As an early 21st-century upstart brand from Guangdong, HAOJIN once garnered significant popularity across China. Since the Chinese motorcycle market hit a decade-long trough in 2008, HAOJIN has focused primarily on overseas markets, all but vanishing from the domestic scene. Nonetheless, HAOJIN has maintained a top-ten export ranking for many years, accumulating 28,719 sales in 2022. The resurgence of the domestic market has prompted HAOJIN to refocus on China. During the 2021 Motorcycle Expo, they unveiled the distinctively different EARN scooter and the ARTHUR large-displacement crossover motorcycle. At this year’s Canton Fair, the original HAOJIN booth showcased the brand’s determination for global marketing under the LETBE name, displaying various products such as the Arthur 700 and Island 150.
At the exhibition, SANYA showcased products like the UF200R.
QINGQIKR is a brand under Jinan QINGQIKR Motorcycle Co., Ltd., jointly funded by Jinan QINGQI and South Korea’s KR Motors in 2016. At the exhibition, QINGQIKR’s GV650 and several lightweight off-road motorcycles made their appearance at the booth.
As a leading contender in China’s scooter industry, DAYANG has long adhered to the concept of technological innovation, exploring in-depth core technologies and evolving into a modern manufacturing enterprise encompassing scooters, beam motorcycles, crossover bikes, and electric four-wheelers. DAYANG’s products, renowned for exceptional quality, have won consumers’ favor and been exported worldwide, becoming a symbol of motorcycle manufacturing in China’s northern region. In recent years, DAYANG has introduced attention-grabbing hybrid technology and idle start-stop systems. These new technologies have been applied not only to their distinctive ADV products but also to their conventional 125cc scooters, with plans for gradual integration into the entire product lineup. At this year’s Canton Fair, DAYANG showcased nearly ten new products, including scooters, beam motorcycles, and crossover bikes.
Evident Electrification Trend, but High-End Electric Products Face a Long and Challenging Path
With the decline of the gasoline motorcycle industry in Wuxi, Jiangsu, the surviving Nanjing JINCHENG, PALLA, LINHAI, Changzhou YAMASAKI, Changzhou KYMCO, and Wuxi ZXMCO are scattered throughout the province. The traditional fuel-powered two-wheeler manufacturing base has lost its luster, replaced by a Chinese electric vehicle industry cluster led by electric motorcycle, electric-assist, and electric bicycle brands. Wuxi is represented by complete electric vehicle manufacturers such as YADEA, TAILG, SUNRA, AIMA, AIGENI while Suzhou and other electric vehicle industry bases are represented by integrated solution providers for motors and batteries like BAFANG, SHENGYI, PPHYLION, TOSEVEN, XIONGFENG, and WANJIA.
Native electric vehicle and electric motorcycle transformation manufacturers in Jiangsu are scaling up, with both electric vehicle and motor manufacturers far exceeding the production and sales of traditional fuel-powered motorcycle manufacturers.
YADEA’s 2022 financial report data shows that the group’s operating income reached 31.0594 billion yuan, a year-on-year increase of 15.17%. Its sales volume in 2022 exceeded 14 million units, a year-on-year increase of 1.1%, further strengthening its dominant position as the world’s number one electric vehicle brand. In contrast, HAOJUE, the top fuel-powered motorcycle brand in the Chinese market, sold only 1.92184 million units in 2022, with a total production of 21.2922 million fuel-powered motorcycles in China. This highlights the formidable production and sales capabilities of electric vehicle manufacturers. At this exhibition, YADEA showcased high-end electric motorcycles like KEENESS.
In addition to exhibiting differentiated products at this exhibition, SUNRA held a signing ceremony for procurement agreements with Belgian and French customers on the morning of the 16th, symbolizing the further strengthening of SUNRA’s international cooperation.
TAILG Electric showcased some new products at this Canton Fair.
Electric vehicle manufacturers still need to address the “de-grassroots” issue. After a long and complex series of competition in scale, price, and technology, traditional two-wheeled electric vehicles have become extremely insular. Many small and medium-sized brands are caught in a squeeze between market share compression and zero-profit lines, with short development cycles, rapid iteration, and overly long product lines. This has diminished the traditional durability of electric vehicle manufacturers and has increasingly leaned toward fast-moving consumer goods and entertainment product attributes. Homogenization and standardization remain problematic, making it difficult for classic models to emerge. The rapid replacement of fast-moving consumer goods leads to a certain waste of social resources and increased difficulties in after-sales services.
As the electrification trend continues to develop, creating “high-end” products and retaining classic electric vehicles, like motorcycles with clear product identification and subcategories, remains a long and challenging task for the electric vehicle industry and enterprises. In addition to the traditional electric vehicle brands mentioned above, electric vehicle brands created by leading motorcycle manufacturers such as CFMOTO’s SuperCore, LONCIN’s BICOSE, and ZONGSHEN’s CINECO need to pay more attention and confront this issue directly. However, judging from the booth decorations and product display planning of these companies at this exhibition, achieving this goal is still a long way off.