Motorcycle shows in the time of COVID-19.
The continuing novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak has wreaked havoc on annual motorcycle events and production. From the cancellation of this year’s Isle of Man TT to Yamaha, Suzuki, Honda, and Royal Enfield suspending operations in India, the global pandemic will have a lasting impact on the industry far beyond 2020. Though many motorcycle manufacturers focus on the effect COVID-19 has on its bottom line, the unique situation also presents an opportunity for innovation. Suzuki of Japan is seizing the moment by hosting a virtual motorcycle show highlighting its newest models on March 27, 2020.
Similar to Honda, Suzuki was banking on the Osaka and Tokyo Motorcycle Shows to unveil its latest motorcycles for the Japanese market. Following in the footsteps of their fellow countrymen, Suzuki will broadcast a manufacturer-specific showcase to present the new Gixxer 250 SF and Gixxer 250 to the public.
The Suzuki WEB Motorcycle Show will focus on the numerous improvements of the new engine in the Gixxer 250 platform. The four-valve, SOHC, 249cc single boasts a power output of 26 horsepower and achieves a claimed 38.5 km/l (90 mpg). By adopting the latest Suzuki Oil Cooling System (SOCS), the Gixxer 250 sportbike and naked benefit from improved oil flow and cooling efficiency, making the engine run cleaner while producing more power.
While the Gixxer 250 SF and Gixxer 250 look great on paper, Suzuki will need to demonstrate the features and improvements that set the model apart from its competition. Unlike attendees at a motorcycle show, viewers won’t be able to walk around the bike or throw a leg over the display model. The company will need a healthy dose of video footage and extensive presentations to do the live feed justice.
With models like the V-Strom 1050 XT, Katana, and SV650x also sharing flyer real estate with the new Gixxers, we’re confident that Suzuki will have enough content to fill a Friday afternoon in March. The only question is whether this live stream trend will continue beyond 2020, and if it does, what happens to physical motorcycle shows in the future?