Bike Tyrestore has announced that Sava’s range of ATV tyres will be available in the New Year and that it is now the manufacturer’s sole UK trade distributor. Bike Tyrestore joint managing director, Peter Smith, told Tyres & Accessories the company would like to make contact with ATV tyre specialists, with a view to setting up area distributorships for this product range.
“This may be of particular interest to farm tyre specialists and anyone else for whom ATV tyres are a major part of their business,” he explained adding: “We’ll be showing this new range at Expo in January (14 to 16 January, Stoneleigh-Park Exhibition Centre).” Quad magazine is expected to publish the first UK test soon. Further information is available from David Nolan on 0800 281 413.
Bike Tyrestore has announced that Sava’s range of ATV tyres will be available in the new year and that it is now sole UK trade distributor. Bike Tyrestore joint managing director, Peter Smith, told Tyres & Accessories the company would like to make contact with ATV tyre specialists, with a view to setting up area distributorships for this product range. “This may be of particular interest to farm tyre specialists and anyone else for whom ATV tyres are a major part of their business,” he explained adding: “We’ll be showing this new range at Expo in January (14 to 16 January, Stoneleigh-Park Exhibition Centre).” Quad magazine is expected to publish the first UK test soon. Further information is available from David Nolan on 0800 281 413
Leading all terrain vehicle manufacturers Honda, Yamaha, and Polaris have accredited Maxxis as an OE tyre supplier for products sold in the American market. While Honda has specified Maxxis for its TRX90 model, six Maxxis patterns are now accredited for use on the Polaris Predator 500, Predator TLD, Hawkeye 2×4 and Hawkeye 4×4 sold in the USA. Maxxis is also OE accredited by Yamaha for a wide range of its US specification Bear Tracker, Bruin, Big Bear, Kodiak, Wolverine and Rhino models.
British quad racing champion, Paul Winrow, will drive on BKT X-Driv quad tyres supplied by RH Claydon throughout the 2006 season. Winrow has been British No1 in Quad Racing for the past two years and has decided to ride BKT X-Driv in all his competitive races in Europe and the US.
Maxxis and Yamaha engineers have partnered to produce OE tyres for all four models of Yamaha’s “cutting edge ATV.” Maxxis will supply the M951 and the M952 tyre for use with the ATV the company calls Rhino. “We’re very pleased with the outcome of this project. The Rhino is on the forefront of the ATV market, and collaborating with Yamaha has allowed us to create a tire perfectly suited for the demands of this special machine,” said Scott Griffin, specialty tyre manager at Maxxis.
The UK’s All Terrain Vehicle market sprung from almost nowhere at the beginning of the 1990s creating a lot of interest for those tyre manufacturers involved. There had always been a consistent utility ATV market but this sudden swell in popularity was due to the increase in ATV sports in America. This surge was, of course, welcome but it was also short lived when the Brits realised the costs involved in the specialist recreation – there was a recession in the mid 90s after all!
In the years since then the sector has quietly developed into a profitable niche for those involved. This happened for two main reasons; farmers found more uses for ATVs and the machinery manufacturers designed a range of new quad bikes opening up the recreational arena to a sea of ATV enthusiasts. The ATV market has been split into these two categories – utility and recreation – since that time, but now there are two new classifications emerging, street legal and racing ATV tyres.
The Agricultural Engineers Association (AEA) estimates that there were some 5,000 utility ATVs on the UK market 10 years ago. According to the AEA’s assistant economist Graham Stannard, 8,955 units were recorded in 2004, a 0.1 per cent increase on the previous year. But these statistics only refer to those machines sold into the agriculture sector. Other ATV specialists estimate that there are currently around 1,000 new ATV bikes sold per month in the UK, that’s 12,000 utility and recreational models combined per year.
Utility ATVs clearly account for the volume of sales in the segment. But Martin Sanders, general manager of Honda UK Power Equipment, suggests that this may change: “The true ATV market (off road vehicles) has been stable over the past few years with all manufacturers and importers working on introducing new CE marked models.” Many industry experts agree, and a shift in volume sales from utility to race is expected in the coming years.
The sporting scene
There are currently three British championships in the ATV arena; ACU Quad Motocross, Speedway and Enduro. ATV enthusiast and championship organiser, Tony Nash, has been involved in quad racing since the early 90s when the sport first took off. It is a relatively cheap sport to engage in at club level explains Mr Nash adding that the increase in more affordable Chinese machinery has been yet another reason why ATV racing has become so popular. As well as an increase in competitors the sport has also seen a sharp rise in spectators. Public awareness has been helped further by Sky Sport transmitting the British Motocross championship to some 30,000 viewers.
With more high profile ATV championships due to be established and new European categories shortly due to begin the sport looks like it will move from strength to strength, which is good news for the tyre manufacturers involved. Maxxis has been involved in the UK Motocross scene for the last four years and became an official sponsor for the first time this year. “It’s becoming a real spectators sport,” commented Derek McMartin, Maxxis UK, adding that the British Championships are just one part of the story. “There are competitions for men and women and it is also becoming more popular for children. There are so many regional races we can put the Maxxis name out to many parts of the country and this has a good effect on brand awareness. Those involved are much more aware of their tyre choices too, as it is a sport where the tyres really come into play and success is not just down to the power of the vehicle. Most spectators have their own bikes at home, so there’s a direct spin off in terms of tyre sales,” explains Mr McMartin. Maxxis’ list of OE fitments (almost 100% for Yamaha) also commands further loyalty in the replacement market.
According to ATV enthusiast Tony Nash Maxxis is now recognised as the manufacturer in ATV tyres, and claims the manufacturer’s tyres can be seen on the bikes of many competitors across each championship. The reason behind this he says is due to the investment the company has put into world brand awareness. At the Quad Motocross Campionship alone the manufacturer has 400m of Maxxis banners and the start tape, even though it doesn’t have sole sponsorship rights. Maxxis seems to have made the right choices when it comes to investing its money and sponsors twice British champion Justin Reid. The competitor is known and respected as an engineer as well as an ATV racing expert and spectators follow his choice of tyre. Mr Nash also explains that most ATV enthusiasts in the UK subscribe to US quad magazines which are littered with Maxxis advertising and editorial, and what’s good for the Americans…need I say more.