Suzuki Select Puts Shine On Second-Hand Bikes

American Suzuki is beginning a program for its motorcycles that is a staple of used-car marketing. Starting this quarter, it will be possible to buy a certified pre-owned Suzuki motorcycle.

The new program, Suzuki Select, is limited to street motorcycles and scooters. It gives the company's 1,200 dealers a chance to pick up second-hand Suzuki bikes, and if they are in good shape, sell them with the same full warranty and service package new motorcycles get.

The motorcycles have to be under four years old, with fewer than 30,000 recorded miles. If the motorcycles pass a 77-point inspection, the dealers can sell them for a premium over typical used-bike sales. The buyer gets a vehicle that comes with a warranty that can be extended to two years, and renewable 90-day roadside assistance.

The program is being offered only to dealers who employ Suzuki-trained technicians.

Bob Mueller, Suzuki sales development manager, said the program creates--as it does in cars--a third category between new and used, pumping up the residual value of bikes, while reducing the risk for buyers.



"For that reduced risk, the customer is willing to pay a premium," he said, adding that the benefit for Suzuki is future buyers. "Suzuki wants to prime the pump for future sales; and we want dealers to have another profit center."

The program has its own logo, and will be supported by Suzuki online efforts, point of purchase materials such as posters, brochures, hangtags, headlamp stickers and ad slicks, and local dealer advertising.

To date, BMW Motorcycles is the only other motorcycle manufacturer to offer such a pre-owned program.

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