fbpx

GasGas Gets Serious

As the wraps came off the 2018 model year machine at the EICMA motorcycle expo in Italy last fall, the new ownership team from Grupo Torrot  Electric had just taken over and had something to prove. All the jokes about an e-bike company taking over a company called “GasGas” notwithstanding, the European media was mildly curious in Milan. Dubbed “Project Phoenix” the new EC/XC Enduro bikes stopped the snickering as soon as the smoke cleared!

“This is a model that embodies the re-launch of the brand with more than three decades of tradition at the highest levels of off-road competition,” announced Torrot CEO Ivan Contreras. “A brand which takes the best from the past to challenge the present with the power needed to reinvent itself.” Power is right, the engines are entirely new from the crank to the top end. Ditto for the frame in terms of materials, weight and geometry.

Fast forward to May of 2017 and Gary LaPlante’s MotoVentures training center in Anza, California, for the official GasGas USA launch. This is one of the times when the bikes actually look better without the smoke and mirrors! GasGas USA COO Mark Berg gave the rundown of the new models (which dealers will be getting starting in July) and presented a few surprises of his own.

“The new EC/XC demonstrates the company’s total commitment to the very highest quality components,” says Berg. A dealer himself, Mark understands the challenges and previous frustrations better than any OEM exec possibly could. “We heard complaints that the bikes were heavier than the KTM or slower than the Husky… all these elements have been addressed. With new frame, engine, suspension, geometry and an endless list of new parts such as Kayaba suspension front and rear, and FMF exhausts, the GasGas Enduros are competitive with any bike on the market.”

While the moto media was anxious to go thrash the immaculate Spanish bikes, MPN took a quick minute to speak with Berg about some of the other issues that have plagued GasGas USA in the past. “The brand had a separate importer for trials bikes with Dale Malasek, an importer for the off-road bikes and a third distributor for the parts… not to mention a funny name that nobody knew.” Berg certainly tells it like it is.

“For the first time ever, the entire model line including parts support and technical service is represented in North America by a single factory owned distributor, GasGas Motos North America,” he explains. “Torrot has made significant investments in infrastructure including parts support, technical service and a distribution center in South Dakota and a sales/marketing/product development and racing center coming in California.”

Like GasGas, Grupo Torrot has better name recognition in Europe. “Torrot, it is a successful multi-national company focused on high tech manufacturing and urban mobility… the electric bikes we get from Torrot are just one small piece of their business,” Berg explains. A similar business philosophy and strategy has been implemented by Torrot for GasGas brand and unlike the hype, we have the bikes here to prove just how serious they are about the U.S.market.”

Part of getting serious has been getting some help. The crew in the red shirts at the GasGas launch included 10x AMA Trials Champ Geoff Aaron (promotions manager and our host for the event), industry veteran and Eastern Region sales manager Rod Overstreet, Western Region sales manager Jubal Brown and even “The Beast From The East” Damon Bradshaw. “We have a solid team in place,” says Berg in the ultimate understatement. However it was a couple guys standing outside the tent that caught our attention. Off-road legend Steve Hatch and racer-turned team owner Fred Andrews were cooling their heels waiting for the media riff raff to go riding.

So what’s the scoop with these guys? Normally candid Berg became cagey, saying “we’re here to launch the 250/300 EC/XC models.” With top talent, totally new bikes and a true commitment from Torrot to expand GasGas USA, look for this Phoenix to emerge from the ashes and really take flight!

GasGas Motos USA
505 11th St South East
Watertown, SD, 57201
+1 (605) 878-1005
[email protected]
www.gasgas.com

You May Also Like

NPA Pre-Owned Market Update: April 2024

New and used sales look very similar to 2023.

National Powersport Auctions, NPA, Market Report

The New Normal

As spring nears the end of the runway, dealers continue to report solid retail trends, with some caveats. In speaking with our dealers and reviewing data from dealer management system (DMS) providers and statistical agencies, new and used sales look very similar to 2023. Many dealers reported solid in-dealership foot traffic last month while they spoke candidly about some of their challenges. Increasing costs, adverse interest rate terms and growing inventory levels top the list of many dealers’ concerns. In addition, data suggests longer dealership sales cycles and significant margin compression on both new and used sales versus last year. While the light of spring is quickly fading, April price trends at auction were right in line with our expectations.

NYC Norton Is Vintage Racing Paradise

Kenny Cummings, the owner of NYC Norton, doesn’t want his exact location in Jersey City, NJ, disclosed. But, inside, it’s a vintage Norton and racing heaven.

Kenny Cummings NYC Norton
How Dealers Can Manage the Bloat From Growth

There are four things to add to your “beat the bloat checklist.” This advice applies if you run a department or own the dealership.

The Critical Role of F&I Manager Performance Plans

The performance of F&I staff is critically important in today’s market because the days of passive order-taking are long gone.

customer and salesman discussing deal in motorcycle showroom
Do You Pay Staff on Commission or Hourly?

Keeping staff happy and motivated comes in many forms, but how they’re paid is paramount.

Other Posts

Husqvarna Unveils Enduro and Dual-Sport Ranges For 2025

Chassis and braking updates are paired with distinctive new looks on six class-leading machines.

husqvarna-enduro-dual-sport-feature
2025 Beta RR X-PRO Enduro Models

Designed for enduro enthusiasts seeking versatile trail performance, featuring eight distinct models.

2025-beta-rr-xpro
2025 Beta Xtrainer Model

The number-one-selling entry-level enduro bike.

2025-beta-xtrainer
Mitas Releases TERRA FORCE-EF 2 SM 

The newest addition to the Mitas Enduro tire lineup is a front tire design made for soft to medium terrain.

Mitas TERRA FORCE-EF 2 SM tires