Motorcycle market in Japan - Statistic & Facts

The Japanese motorcycle industry is dominated by the Big Four: Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki and Kawasaki. Japan is among the biggest two-wheeler markets in the world and those four companies control about one third of it.
The country’s success story within the global motorbike market began after the Second World War, when domestic companies needed to shift their focus from war time machinery to everyday technology. With money coming in from the United States and Allies, the Japanese government was able to start rebuilding the economy by investing into forward-thinking companies.

Today, Japan produces over 600 thousand motorcycles per year, focusing on large engines with a cylinder capacity of 250 and above. However, within Japan, the most common types of two-wheelers in use are those with a cylinder capacity of 50 or below, indicating that large engine bikes are primarily produced for foreign markets.
Japan’s key markets for two-wheeler exports are Europe and North America, splitting almost 80 percent of total motorcycle exports from Japan between them in 2018.

User demographics suggest that Japanese motorcyclists are graying, yet less young folks intend to purchase motorbikes, resulting in an overall decrease of motorcycles in use. At the same time, environmental awareness is spreading among consumers in Japan. While the domestic demand for motorcycles continues to stagnate, sales of electric power assist bicycles, also known as e-bikes, surged in recent years.
However, in early 2019, the country’s four leading motorcycle manufacturers were reported to collaborate on unified standards for electric two-wheelers, setting up the domestic industry for international competition on green technology.

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Motorcycle industry in Japan

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Important key figures

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Domestic market

Japanese manufacturers

Road transport in Japan

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