Held at the Orlando Convention Center, for the second year, AIMExpo (American International Motorcycle Expo) took place in mid-October. This trade/public show is based on the European model of shows, where 2 days are only for trade attendees (dealers, distributors, manufacturers and media) and 2 days open to the general public.
I attended this show this year and was surprised by the size of the show but also by the attendance and the number of company/products represented. Traditionally, these trade shows were only for aftermarket exhibitors and open to trade only. This year, many major manufacturers, (Ducati, Yamaha, Suzuki, Kawasaki) used this show to launch new products and see rapidly the market’s reaction since the last 2 days of the show were open to the general public.
There was everything related to the powersports industry. Motorcycles, atvs, side by sides, more than 500 exhibitors were on hand to show the latest products and give information. Another interesting feature of this show was the «demo ride» area. Attendees were taken on a shuttle to the ride area where they had a dirt course to test ride the atvs and SxS. They had street bike rides from Yamaha, Suzuki, and Harley Davidson. There was also a mini lake where we could watch the guys from Gibb’s Quad Ski show off how versatile is the new amphibian atv transfers from land to water and back. I was impressed by how powerful it seems to be in the water, just like a personal watercraft! It’s a fairly big atv on the ground also, and no it is not 4x4L.
For the nostalgic riders out there, there was a section reserved for vintage bikes. More than fifty vintage bikes were there from the 60’s to the 90’s… it’s always fun to see the evolution of motorcycling. Yamaha had reserved a section of their large booth to show vintage bikes also and it really was a hit with attendees.
To my surprise many new electric motorcycle companies were on hand to show the powersports world the latest offerings in this emerging market. And by the interest and the number of people in their booths, I can tell you that the future of e-bikes looks good!
Very interesting show and I’m already signed up to attend next year’s show on Oct. 15-18, 2015.