No More Wheelies Anymore?

In 2009 Right To Ride published, “Motorcycle Safety in Northern Ireland – The Rider’s Perspective”. We highlighted the issue of the motorcycle industry advertising and marketing strategies. We stated that, “Motorcycle manufacturers advertise irresponsible behaviour such as encouraging riders to use the public roads like a race track and promoting stunts.”

We argued then, “Perhaps the time has now come for the motorcycle industry to “grow up” and realise that mobility for all, should not include advertisements that promotes “Action Man” imagery i.e. stunts, speed and power.”

Now it looks like ACEM, the Motorcycle Industry in Europe has finally realized that encouraging riders to use the roads as a race track and imitate their heroes doesn’t help.

The ACEM announcement is a reinforcement of its advertising policy detailing the commitment of ACEM Members to improve the road safety of motorcycle, scooter and moped riders.

Even with this announcement, we still have issues with parts of their latest statement, for example promoting enhanced safety features such as ABS brakes.  We have always said and will continue to say that the most important safety feature is the gadget between the rider’s ears – the brain.

Promoting responsible riding and “boring stuff” like initial rider training and advanced training is in our view, the best solution to enhance riding skills and reduce casualties.

The ACEM set of guidelines outlines a common approach to socially responsible communication, which will be applied across the 27 Member States of the European Union where ACEM members operate. In order to achieve efficient and consistent results across the market manufacturers will deploy training programmes for the effective uptake of this advertising policy throughout their dealer networks.”

This adoption of more stringent rules in favour of safety-oriented communication by motorcycle manufacturers’ members of ACEM comes at the same time as the European Commission announces a new focus on motorcyclists, through the Road Safety Action Programme 2011-2020 which contains proposals on how the “problem” of motorcyclists’ safety should be addressed through a range of actions.

ACEM state,The advertising policy adopted by the European Motorcycle Industry ensures that all promotion and advertisements for motorcycles, scooters and mopeds destined for use on public roads show the vehicle used in a safe and responsible manner.” ACEM adds that this is, “in order to positively influence the attitude of the rider, which is central in motorcycle safety.”

The advertising policy means that, “aggressive riding styles and any depiction of unsafe behaviour on public roads will be banned from ACEM manufacturers’ PR campaigns. Next to encouraging safe and responsible behaviour these measures also aim at promoting safety, enhancing features such as advanced braking systems.”

Stefan Pierer, ACEM President and CEO of Austrian manufacturer KTM Sport Motorcycles, stated: “Motorcycle Manufacturers can play a significant role in improving road safety through communication and marketing. The Motorcycle Industry has therefore agreed to strengthen its commitment toward road safety by following a common advertising policy, which sets clear rules to influence attitudes, change behaviours and thus contribute to make a difference in improving road safety on European roads.”

While at Right To Ride we applaud the ethos of ACEM’s approach, we would like to see more promotion of motorcycling as environmentally friendly and congestion busting, while not forgetting that motorcycling gives riders freedom, mobility, independence and most importantly that motorcycling is fun.


Download ACEM’s Advertising Policy – Click Here

Download ACEM’s Road Safety Action Plan – Click Here

Right To Ride Motorcycle Safety in Northern Ireland – The Rider’s Perspective – Click Here

KTM promotional video – We won’t see this again?


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  1. Right To Ride says

    We found a better – cough – clearer KTM video.

  2. Right To Ride says

    KTM 125 Duke – Gritty City
    Motor Cycle News and the British Motorcyclists Federation seem to be getting their knickers in a twist over the latest video from KTM for their 125 Duke.
    Now maybe KTM have stretched their imagination a bit of, “following a common advertising policy, which sets clear rules to influence attitudes, change behaviours and thus contribute to make a difference in improving road safety on European roads.”
    But the bike and the video is aimed at its target audience there is nothing really outrageous in the video, unless you count the music, which some may find “awesome”.
    MCN and BMF should straighten out their underwear before they induce a hernia.
    If this is it?

    Or this – right near the end!

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