Piaggio: Aprilia Up 29%, Guzzi Up 15% in U.S.

Piaggio Group Americas President and CEO Paolo Timoni says the company's Aprilia and Moto Guzzi businesses in the United States marked 2007 with an increase in retail unit sales, a continued expansion of their dealer networks and expanded product lines.

Timoni says Aprilia USA's retail sales of motorcycles in 2007 were up 29 percent compared to 2006, driven mostly by 40 new dealers as well as increased demand for the Tuono 1000 R Factory and the SXV and RXV models. He says the company?s U.S. scooter retail sales, which rose 56 percent over the 12-month period, were aided by the addition of two models: the Scarabeo 500 ie and the SportCity 250.

Regarding Moto Guzzi, Timoni says retail unit sales in 2007 were up 15 percent compared to 2006, aided by the addition of 25 new dealers and the brand?s top-selling Norge.

The Piaggio Group markets products under the Piaggio, Vespa, Gilera, Derbi, Aprilia, Scarabeo and Moto Guzzi brands. Aprilia and Moto Guzzi became part of the Piaggio Group in December 2004.

The Piaggio Group has earmarked Aprilia to represent the group's five-brand portfolio in the medium- and top-end of the high-performance motorcycle market. Piaggio's plan is to use put some serious funding behind Aprilia, allowing the company to ramp up its on-road and off-road product offerings, and then to create excitement for that product through increased participation in on-road and off-road competition.

Regarding Moto Guzzi, Piaggio Group's plan for the U.S. includes expanding consumer awareness of the brand while further building the operation to provide increased customer services. Specifically, the goal is to continue to improve after sales and service and boost market penetration through the introduction of new product.

"In many aspects of our business, we achieved a very positive performance in 2007," Timoni says. "This momentum, which built through the course of the year, has generated a significant amount of excitement and optimism for the year ahead."

Click here to read more about Piaggio Group's plan for the coming year.

Aprilia has had a busy and successful year on the track. The brand won the World S2 Manufacturers' Title in the FIM World Supermoto Championship; captured the 2007 SunTrust MOTO-ST SST Class championship title at the series finale, the 8 Hours of Daytona; and picked up the 2007 MotoGP World Manufacturers? title in the 250cc class.