Romney 'better for business,' say powersports dealers: survey

Publish Date: 
Oct 10, 2012
By Mary Green Slepicka

MOTORCYCLE AND ATV DEALERS expect business to improve if Republican candidate Mitt Romney wins the White House, according to the Baird/Dealernews Q3 Powersports Dealer Survey.

Nearly 60 percent of dealers responding to the survey said that a Romney White House would be better for business. Only 14 percent indicated such if President Barack Obama is re-elected.

"Dealers see better business with a Romney win," said Baird researchers. 

Dealers are wary that the U.S. economy could slump into another recession if Obama wins. "Everyone seems to be waiting until this election is over to get back to buying something," said a motorcycle and scooter dealer. "With the present administration's anti-business stance, if Obama is re-elected it could mean another nasty recession."

"The people with money invested in this economy would breathe a sigh of relief that might loosen the purse strings," said another dealer. "We didn't layoff [staff] due to the economy as much as we did because they raised minimum wage."

"Whoever wins, they need to do something to control the price of gas," said one respondent. "A lot of my customers complain about how much it costs just to get to the camp or second home, let alone play with the motor toys once they get [there.] The $40-$50 extra a week for gas is the same money as a payment for a new ATV or snowmobile."

Nearly one in five answering the survey, however, remained unsure. Just 11 percent of dealers indicated they anticipated little or no impact on their business as a result of the November 2012 election. "Regardless of who wins in November, Washington has to actually accomplish something," said one dealer.


The Baird/Dealernews Powersports Dealer Survey provides a quarterly snapshot of overall dealer health in North America. It is a joint research venture betweenDealernews and Robert W. Baird & Co. Dealers in the U.S. and Canada are surveyed to provide insight into traffic, retail, inventory, credit and sentiment, providing hard data and field commentary behind current business trends. “Our goal is to provide the powersports industry with honest views from the people that make it happen every day – the dealers,” Baird stated.

Further reading:
Dealers optimistic, but sales still too 'up and down,' says Baird/Dealernews survey