“It's like a dream come true: three days straight of just talking about motorcycles,” said a young visitor with a smile as he entered the Motorradwelt Bodensee on Friday morning. Many of the attendees who gathered at the Messe Friedrichshafen exhibition grounds from January 26 to 28 would likely share this sentiment. “The passion for motorcycles was evident throughout all three days of the fair,” says Project Manager Petra Rathgeber, expressing excitement about the start of the season and the strong presence of both the community and the industry. Despite drizzly weather on Friday and frosty temperatures on Saturday and Sunday, more than 1,450 “winter warriors” managed to ride to the event on their own motorcycles.
More than 20 new products were unveiled at the fair, which marked the beginning of the new motorcycle year. Some of the product premieres featured at the event were the 2024 Harley-Davidson Street Glide, the details of which were kept under wraps until shortly before the trade fair began. BMW Motorrad also showcased new motorcycle innovations. After a two-year hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the suspension of its presence at Motorradwelt Bodensee 2023, the leading market player made a triumphant return to Friedrichshafen this year. Dealers Autohaus Munding, Zweirad Mahle, Motorrad Schek, and Auer Group collaborated to operate a joint booth, much to the delight of the visitors: “BMW was definitely sorely missed in recent years,” confirms Yannick Wilke, Sales Consultant at Autohaus Munding. “We returned to our traditional spot in Hall B1 and are pleased to report a very positive outcome. We received excellent feedback on the new models and are eagerly anticipating the upcoming season. We hope to continue building on this positive experience in the years to come.” Additionally, the Kawasaki booth exhibited the world’s first mass-produced high-performance hybrid motorcycle, which was a standout highlight: “The Ninja 7 Hybrid garnered significant interest,” says Christian Schmidl, District Manager Southwest of Kawasaki Motors Europe, adding, “As this was something completely new, the visitors had a lot of questions.” He also notes that the audience exhibited a positive and receptive attitude towards the motorcycle. In addition to the constant presence of crowds at the booth, many people were also signing up to go for test rides at the dealerships.
“The highest number of visitors was on the Saturday of the fair,” report Messe Friedrichshafen CEO Klaus Wellmann and Project Manager Petra Rathgeber. This year’s season opener on Lake Constance drew a crowd of some 39,200 motorcycle fans. The trade fair organizers attribute the slight decline in visitors compared to the previous year to the current situation of challenging economic conditions and compromised public transport due to strikes. The future looks bright: “The participation of many well-known brands and the return to the fair by BMW Motorrad provide us with further impetus to attract a wider range of partners to our upcoming events. The vast majority of the 270 exhibitors were pleased with how the trade fair went and also reported a well-informed, receptive audience and productive discussions.”
Motorradwelt marks anniversary
This past weekend in January was a celebration of all things related to motorized vehicles with two, three, or four wheels, as well as the 30th anniversary of Motorradwelt Bodensee. While the MO special exhibition in the foyer commemorated three decades of motorcycle history, exhibitors from the early days reflected on the evolution of the trade fair from Biker Weekend to today’s Motorradwelt Bodensee. In an online comment, exhibitor K+M Harleyworld GmbH of Staudach near Wangen proudly says, “We have been there with our own company every year since 1996. Thirty years is an incredibly long time and one marked by great success. Congratulations to the trade fair team.” The 30th anniversary was also commemorated in style on Friday evening: Hall A2 was energized by dynamic stage performances of live rock bands, which created a fantastic atmosphere.
Latest program highlights well received
The extensive lecture program of the Travel Stage and Ladies’ World was supplemented for the first time with the addition of the “Gasoline Talks” by Rock Antenne. With its stylish furnishings and decor, the bar in Foyer West provided the perfect setting for networking with industry insiders and key players of the scene. “Motorcycle riding and rock music go together hand in hand. That’s why we think it’s all the better to now be part of the Motorradwelt Bodensee family,” says “Rockboss” Guy Fränkel. “We had a lot of fun working with MO, The Butcher Crew, Messe Friedrichshafen, and the entire community to put on an exciting program featuring high-energy performances, entertainment, and live music on our bar stage." Axel Winterhoff was also a recent addition to our action lineup. Over the weekend, the professional stuntman from Lower Saxony wowed the audience with impressive stunts on his Kawasaki motorcycle. The 20 or so converted and masterfully designed motorcycles that competed against each other in this year’s Best Bike Award were also truly unique. A total of four vehicles were chosen on Sunday afternoon. First place went to Matthias Granacher with a Harley-Davidson Panhead. Matthias Seidl and his Dragbike 140 made by manufacturer Street Dog Motorcycle won the “Best of Show” title.
The next edition of Motorradwelt Bodensee will take place from Friday, January 24, to Sunday, January 26, 2025.