The global motorcycle helmet market is poised for substantial growth, projected to achieve a noteworthy valuation of US$ 2.7 Billion by 2023. Projections indicate a commendable Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 7.1% from 2023 to 2033, with an anticipated market valuation of US$ 5.3 Billion by the end of the forecast period.
In terms of market share, North America currently holds a 7.97% share, equivalent to US$ 250.60 million. This region is expected to witness significant expansion, reaching an estimated value of US$ 421.93 million by 2033, reflecting a CAGR of 6.09%.
Contrastingly, the Asia Pacific region is positioned to assert dominance, showcasing a substantial market share exceeding 67.2% and a valuation of US$ 1.8 Billion in 2023. Over the forecast period (2023-2030), the region is forecasted to achieve a market value of US$ 3.11 Billion, fueled by the robust presence of the two-wheeler market in countries such as India, China, Indonesia, and Vietnam. Notably, Thailand leads with a staggering 87% of households owning a two-wheeler, followed closely by Vietnam (86%), Indonesia (85%), and Malaysia (83%), where over 80% of households own either a motorcycle or a scooter.
Key manufacturers, including AGV, HJC Europe S.A.R.L, Shoei Co. Ltd, Arai Helmet Ltd, and Schuberth GmbH, are proactively introducing new mid and low-priced (below $600) helmets to fortify their market presence in the region. For instance, AGV recently unveiled the AGV K1 S and K3 S, both priced below $300, inclusive of their graphics. Simultaneously, Scorpion launched the EXO-XT900 at sub $600, and LS2 introduced the Advant X at under $400. Interestingly, all these new releases are full-face helmets.
Meanwhile, Europe is anticipated to register the highest growth rate during the forecast period, with an expected CAGR of 7.8% from 2022 to 2033. New motorcycle registrations in five of the largest European markets (i.e. France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and the UK) witnessed an impressive growth of over 7.0% in 2022, totaling 949,470 unit registrations.
Which Are Some Prominent Drivers Of The Motorcycle Helmet Market?
Over the past few years, especially following the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been a significant surge in the demand for motorcycle helmets. This increased demand resulted in a growth rate of 4.1% from 2018 to 2022. Notably, this upward trajectory is set to further accelerate, with an impressive projected CAGR of 7.1% during the forecast period from 2023 to 2033.
In both the United States and Asia Pacific markets, a surge in awareness concerning road safety is expected to drive the demand for motorcycle helmets. The increasing number of motorbikes (in Asia Pacific) and sports bike enthusiasts (in the United States), coupled with growing concerns about road traffic injuries, is anticipated to boost the adoption of two-wheeler helmets throughout the forecast period (2023-2033). Road traffic accidents pose a significant challenge for government authorities, necessitating sustained efforts and sustainable solutions for effective prevention.
According to the United Nations Motorcycle Helmet Study, conducted between 2008 and 2020, approximately 3.3 million people globally lost their lives due to motorcycle accidents, and around 1.4 million of these fatalities could have been prevented with the proper use of helmets. Moreover, research by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) indicates that wearing a helmet can increase survival chances by almost 37% and reduce head injuries by 69.0%. The growing awareness and initiatives to promote rider safety are expected to propel market growth.
In the 21st century, where the internet dominates our lives, helmet manufacturers are increasingly focusing on smart helmets with technological advancements. Beyond providing essential protection, smart helmets offer advanced features such as GPS connectivity, tracking systems, voice assistance, cameras, Bluetooth, and Wi-Fi connectivity. Smartphones can also be connected, allowing riders to make, receive, and reject calls. Take, for instance, the recent launch of multifunctional smart motorcycle helmets, exemplified by new entrant Sena Technologies, Inc., which further enhances growth prospects. Sena recently introduced the Momentum Pro Smart Motorcycle Helmet, integrating Sena’s leading Bluetooth® Intercom system with a 2K action camera mounted directly on the helmet.
Moreover, the rising demand for luxury motorcycles — Harley-Davidson CVO Limited (United States), Honda GL1800 GoldWing DCT (Japan), Kawasaki Ninja H2 SX SE (Japan, North America, Europe), BMW K1600 (Europe), Indian Roadmaster (United States), and Triumph Rocket 3 GT (United Kingdom, Europe) — has led to the creation of luxury helmets, exemplified by brands like Hedon – Luxury Motorcycle Helmets.
The growing popularity of motorcycle events and championships also presents favorable prospects for helmet manufacturers. The global popularity of motorsports and racing championships at national and international levels is on the rise, with leading automakers such as Honda, Ducati, Suzuki, Yamaha, and Repsol Honda playing a significant role in success through dealer promotions, advertising, and providing financial and technical support to teams, riders, and track operators.
In established countries, including the United States, two-wheelers are commonly used for recreational purposes, often owned in addition to a car. Conversely, in developing nations, motorcycles serve as a fundamental mode of transportation. Furthermore, bikes are gaining prominence in the commercial sector, particularly for food delivery and the transportation of e-commerce products. The post-lockdown period has witnessed a substantial surge in bike demand, attributed to the momentum gained by the bike-sharing business. Coupled with a growing awareness of on-road safety, these factors are poised to propel market growth throughout the forecast period
What Are the Challenges Projected To be Faced by the Market?
Heavyweight Lack Of Comfort And High Prices Of Advanced Helmets Can Hinder The Market Growth
Despite the life-saving features, some motorcyclists do not prefer riding with a helmet. According to research published by the National Center for Biotechnology Information, the most common reasons for not using a helmet are neck pain, limited head mobility, suffocation, and discomfort due to the heavy weight of the helmet. Additionally, advanced and premium motorcycle helmets have a limited customer base owing to the high cost of the product and partnerships with premium bike users. Hence, all such factors are likely to hamper the growth of the helmet market during the forecast period
The rising prevalence of fake helmet copies continues to restrict market growth. Counterfeit/fake helmets are those helmets that are maliciously sold and marketed at a relatively lower price. According to the World Health Organization report, close to 360,000 fatalities and 1.5 million injuries can be linked to defective and low-quality vehicle parts and gears every year.
These helmets may not be able to provide appropriate comfort and protection to the wearers, as these products are usually manufactured using cheap-quality materials. The presence of counterfeit products also influences the consumer’s perception of the brand. The circulation of counterfeit helmets is more prevalent in Asian markets, particularly in China, Pakistan, and India.
Region-Wise Insights: North America
Surging Demand for Motorcycles and ATVs Boosts the North American Motorcycle Helmet Market, Yet Lags Behind Car Helmet Sales
The motorcycle helmet market of North America was valued at US$ 250.60 Million in 2022 and is projected to reach US$ 421.93 Million by 2033; it is expected to grow at a CAGR of 6.09% from 2023 to 2033.
This growth correlates with the expected rise in demand for motorcycles and all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) in the region. Projections indicate a 3.47% growth in the motorcycle market from 2023 to 2027, culminating in a market volume of US$9.57 billion in 2027. Concurrently, the ATV segment is poised to expand from 6.55 billion to 8.28 billion, reflecting a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 4.81% over the next five years.
A noteworthy trend is the increasing number of riders opting for DOT-compliant helmets, which has seen a steady rise of more than 12% over the past two decades. This growth is remarkable, considering a temporary 8.6% decrease noted since 2018, reflecting a broader commitment to safety standards within the riding community.
And more so in states enforcing universal helmet laws than in those where helmet laws are relaxed or non-existent. 18 states and the District of Columbia have universal motorcycle helmet laws that require all riders to wear helmets, which, in turn, exhibit a significantly higher usage rate, with 86.1% of riders wearing DOT-certified helmets. Conversely, states lacking stringent regulations display a lower usage rate, with only 53.4% of riders adhering to DOT-certified standards. Intriguingly, states with universal helmet laws also experience a higher percentage of riders using non-compliant helmets, standing at 9.8%, in contrast to 3.5% in states without such laws.
From 2010 to 2021, there was a substantial overall increase of 10.6% in helmet usage rates. However, there was a minor decrease of 4.1% in helmet use from 2020 (69.0%) to 2021 (64.9%). Despite this decline in usage, helmets played a pivotal role in reducing the incidence of head injuries by 63.8% and the number of fatalities by 36.2% in 2021. This fact has heightened public awareness, leading to a greater willingness among people to invest in certified helmets.
What’s more, full-face helmets hold a 59% share in North America, and companies mainly focusing on full-face motorcycle helmets will continue to dominate in the forecast period. Furthermore, manufacturers are now shifting to carbon fiber and fiberglass-reinforced shells to reduce the weight of full-face motorcycle helmets, a technology that Arai, AGV, Shoei has perfected. But while these helmet-maker giants are impeccable in terms of safety and continually surpass regulatory standards, they’re poised for unprecedented growth in this space if they can master the art of incorporating advanced technologies, such as Bluetooth communication systems and HUD projectors, to enhance the rider’s safety and experience.
Additionally, the burgeoning middle-class income group, particularly in several rapidly expanding states, has significantly bolstered market growth, presenting numerous profitable business prospects for industry stakeholders in the region. In the United States, occupations with average earnings ranging from $30,000 to $70,000 experienced a notable surge of 19.29% from 2017 to 2021. This employment growth was observed across 47 states, with Arizona leading the way with an impressive increase of 47.68% during the same period. Furthermore, the availability of diverse financing options continues to serve as valuable alternatives for many bikers operating in the region.
However, when compared to car helmet sales, motorcycle helmets are performing underwhelmingly. One contributing factor to the decline in motorcycle helmet sales is the direct connection between helmet sales and motorcycle sales, which has seen a decline in 2022-2023. Luckily, in the US, banks often include expensive helmets, priced between $800-$1,000, in motorcycle financing plans, allowing buyers to afford them when spread over 4-5 years. Nevertheless, if motorcycle sales decrease, the opportunity for motorcycle helmet sales is lost.
Strong Buyer Foothold Augmenting The Market Growth In Asia Pacific
Asia Pacific is anticipated to hold the largest market share of more than 67.2% in 2023 and will account for a market value of US$ 3.11 Billion during the forecast period (2023-2023) owing to the strong buyer foothold of the two-wheeler market in countries such as India, China, Indonesia, and Vietnam. Major manufacturers including, AGV, HJC Europe S.A.R.L, Shoei Co. Ltd, Arai Helmet Ltd, and Schuberth GmbH are launching new products to gain maximum customer penetration in the region.
This region is expected to witness a proliferation in the coming years. An increase in the sales of motorcycles in the region, and the end-users preference and awareness toward enhanced safety and comfort offered by premium helmets are some of the factors fueling the growth of the market. Asia-Pacific is projected to become the fastest-growing and most emerging region for motorcycle helmets in the forthcoming years. Strict government rules and regulations of safety rides and developing economies is the key growth factor in this region.
India is the fastest-growing market for motorcycle helmets in the Asia Pacific due to a large number of two-wheeler buyers in the country. The growth of the helmet industry is not only dominated by commuter motorcycles but even by the larger and more premium two-wheelers. Further, the development of infrastructure in rural areas is also boosting the sales of two-wheelers, and in turn, is expected to boost demand for helmets.
What Are The Growth Trends In The Motorcycle Helmet Market In Europe?
Europe is anticipated to register the highest growth rate during the forecast period. In the global market, Europe is anticipated to witness the highest CAGR of 7.8% from 2022 to 2033. Motorcycle registrations in this region grew by more than 7.0% in 2021, totaling 949,470 unit registrations.
Europe Helmet Market is expected to register sound revenues in the upcoming years underpinned by a rising number of cyclists across the region. Moreover, the growing transportation sector in the entire region is expected to gain traction underpinned by increased e-commerce and retail stores that have boosted online deliveries; hence the purchase of two-wheelers is one of the factors expected to instigate the deployment of helmets as a result, it is anticipated to augment the growth of the Europe helmet market in the upcoming years.
Category-Wise Insights: Full Face Segment Dominates The Motorcycle Helmet Market By Product Type
With a market share of approximately 60.1%, full-face helmets were the largest product segment. It is estimated to maintain its dominance throughout the forecast period. Manufacturers are adopting superior materials including carbon fiber and fiberglass-reinforced plastic to lessen the weight of full-face products as well as to make them safer. In addition, vendors are incorporating advanced communication tools such as Bluetooth in helmets, which in turn is likely to open new business opportunities during the forecast period.
Major manufacturers such as HJC Europe S.A.R.L, Studds Accessories Ltd., AGV, Shoei Co. Ltd, Arai Helmet Ltd., etc., are launching new products to cater to the rising product demand. Recently, in March 2021, Studds Accessories Ltd., one of the major two-wheeler helmet manufacturers, introduced the Studds D5 Decor full-face helmet, with features including UV-resistant paint, hypoallergenic liner, regulated density EPS, and a quick-release chin strap.
By End-User, Rider Segment is leading the Motorcycle Helmet Market
The rider segment held the largest revenue share in the global motorcycle helmet market in 2021, capturing more than 89%. According to the survey held by National Occupant Protection Use, the use of Department of Transportation-compliant helmets was around 64.0 % in 2021.
Although motorcycle helmet use has increased by more than 12.0% since 2002, and decreased to 8.6% since 2018. Recent estimates by the same source show that the use of helmets has decreased to 64.9% in 2021 from 69.0% in 2020.
Convenience In Product Delivery Fueling The Online Distribution Channel
Online channels are expected to expand at the fastest CAGR of 8.1% from 2023 to 2033 due to ease of shopping and convenient product delivery. Moreover, online retailers such as RevZilla, CycleGear, and Amazon among others are concentrating on this product category to capitalize on the rising product demand. In addition, e-commerce platforms, social media, and Google Ads play an essential role in influencing consumer preference.
The availability of high-speed internet and smartphones in developing countries such as India, China, Indonesia, and Vietnam is anticipated to promote the utilization of online platforms for purchasing motorcycle helmets. The companies are launching their exclusive websites where consumers can buy genuine products directly from the source.
Start-Ups in the Motorcycle Helmet Market
The growing interest in technologically advanced products has motivated many start-ups to venture into the motorcycle helmet domain to offer innovative products.
- Founded in 2015, Cosmo Connected is a Paris-based company that provides helmet accessories that can be used by bike riders to improve their visibility. The accessory consists of a LED light that can detect braking and alert others by glowing a bright red light. The device is connected to the mobile app via Bluetooth. The device can detect a fall/accident and sends an alert message with the rider’s GPS coordinates and medical information to the nearest rescue team and family members. The companion app allows the user to set emergency contact numbers and change light settings. It received funding of USD 9 million from Sarona Ventures, Gary Janssens, and 5 others.
- Cardo Systems is a USA-based start-up that Develops Bluetooth-based helmet intercoms. Its features include mobile app integration, media sharing, music playing, graphic equalizer, call conferencing, wireless firmware, cameras, and noise cancellation.
Several companies adopt the strategies of mergers, acquisitions, tie-ups, and partnerships to achieve their common goal. This strategy helps the key players in increasing their market presence and expand their global market. Key players in the Motorcycle helmet market are:
- In October 2021, HJC, a premium helmet manufacturer, announced that the company is working with Red Bull Racing for the launch of the first-ever Red Bull licensed helmets for its consumer base. The company’s forefront partnership with Red Bull helped it to design a very special helmet, i.e., the RPHA 1 Red Bull Austin GP helmet.
- In October 2021, Royal Enfield introduced a new range of its limited-edition helmets amid the celebration of its 120th anniversary. The helmet is an open-face helmet that weighs approximately 1,280 grams. Furthermore, it is launched with a face-covering bubble visor and premium leather material treated with polygene.
- In December 2021, Vega, a Belgaum-based manufacturer from India, announced its partnership with BASF for the production of lightweight, comfortable, and safe motorcycle helmets. Under this partnership, Vega engages in BASF’s material innovation solution to install the best material in the helmets.
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Information for this article was partially sourced and researched from the following authoritative government, educational, corporate, and non-profit organizations: