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Ural sales up 39% in 2010, but company is still dissappointed with resultsUS retail sales of Ural sidecar motorcycles rose 39% in 2010. Sales were up in each quarter of the year, with the forth quarter sales up twofold compared to the same period in 2009.
â€śWe realize that we have seen some of the best results in the motorcycle industry in terms of growth over the last year, but our goal was to get back to the level of sales we had in 2008. We feel somewhat disappointed that we didnâ€™t reach this goal and fell short of our pre-crisis results by 18%â€ť, â€“ says Madina Merzhoyeva, companyâ€™ VP of marketing and sales.
Ural is the worldâ€™s only OEM manufacturer of sidecar motorcycles. The companyâ€™s top sellers are on- and off-road capable 2wd sidecar motorcycles, including the legendary Gear Up model. Recently introduced lower-priced T-series models are quickly gaining popularity and in 2010 were the second largest segment of the Ural sales. Urals priced from $9,999 to $13,999 MSRP.
In the US Urals are sold through the network of 40 dealers, and company still has quite a few areas open. Ural is probably the only company in the industry which is not offering either retail financing, or flooring options to its dealers. â€śWeâ€™re working with several lenders on retail financingâ€ť, - says Madina Merzhoyeva. â€śAs for flooring - we offer great product, creative marketing, very flexible ordering process, and one of the best margins in the industry. We think it compensates very well for the lack of dealer financing, if you really dig into the numbersâ€ť.
â€śOur goal for 2011 is also very aggressiveâ€ť, - says Madina Merzhoyeva. â€śWe believe, there are very few motorcycles out there which are as simple, fun to ride and at the same time as practical as Ural. And this is what customers are looking for nowâ€ť.
To recap, weâ€™d like to remind you that Irbut Motorworks (IMZ-Ural CJSC) is based in the town of Irbit, in the Sverdlovsk region. The plant became an open joint-stock company in May 2000. Its share capital amounts to RUB 280m. The plant itself, however, dates all the way back to 1941, when it was relocated to Irbit from Moscow after World War II broke out. In 1950, the company rolled its 30,000th motorcycle off its production line. The year 1953 saw the launch of foreign expansion of Irbit bikes â€“ they were mostly exported to developing countries and Eastern Europe, mainly to cater for the needs of the army and law enforcement authorities. In May 1967, IMZ produced its 500,000th motorcycle, shortly followed by the 1,000,000th bike in 1975. In October 1993, it topped the benchmark of 3,000,000 motorcycles produced.
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