Understanding Indonesian Transportation Needs, What Motorcycle do They Prefer?

Motorcycle has been an integral part of Indonesia’s public transportation. Almost everyone in Indonesia uses a motorcycle. This gasoline-powered two wheels vehicle had become Indonesians’ favorite since dozens of years ago.

But what kind of motorcycle most preferred by Indonesian? let’s take a look at a survey done by Licorice.

PERIOD: 2017/3/29 – 2017/7/29
RESPONDENTS: 250 Jabodetabek and 250 non-Jabodetabek Respondents.

The survey was taken separately by involving Jabodetabek residents and Non-Jabdetabek Residents. Jabodetabek is an abbreviation of four cities name Indonesia, which are Jakarta, Bogor, Depok, Tangerang and Bekasi. Jakarta is not only the capital city of Indonesia but also the center of government and business district. Meanwhile, the other four cities are Jakarta’s satellite city which supports Jakarta’s activity.

Q. What vehicle do you use daily? (MA)

The motorcycle is the most used vehicle in Indonesia, by Jabodetabek respondents (72.4%) or non-Jabodetabek respondents. Those huge percentage is not surprising. If you were in Indonesia, primarily in a big city like Jakarta, you will always see motorcycles in every corner of the roads, whether it is city main roads or suburban alleyway.

The motorcycle is like a half-life of most Indonesian, mostly for lower-middle-class economies. To be noted, the use of emerging online taxi/transportation in Indonesia, specifically in Jabodetabek is also getting higher. The online transportation use motorcycles too!

The motorcycle sales in Indonesia during 2019 experienced a growth of 1.6 percent compared to the previous year. Based on data obtained by the Ministry of Industry, the total production of two-wheeled vehicles in January-December 2019 reached 7,297,648 units. Where, domestic sales accounted for 6,487,460 units, up from the previous 6,383,108 units.

By far, Japanese motorcycle dominates Indonesian roads both in Jabodetabek or Non-Jabodetabek. Let’s take a look at the survey result about Indonesian ownership on motorcycles below:

Q. What motorcycle brand do you have? (SA)

Honda is the most owned motorcycle brand by Jabodetabek (57.2%) and non-Jabodetabek (54.8%) residents.
Yamaha is the second most owned motorcycle brand by Jabodetabek (26%) and non-Jabodetabek (27.6%) residents.
Other than Yamaha and Honda, there are Kawasaki and Suzuki which are owned by both Jabodetabek and non-Jabodetabek residents.

Supporting the survey, the data from the Association of Indonesian Motorcycle Industry show that Indonesian own Japanese motorcycle the most, with Honda as its top. Honda is followed by Yamaha, Suzuki, and Kawasaki.

Motorcycle sales in unit

But how fast motorcycles needed by Indonesian?

Q. How much engine capacity does your motorcycle have? (SA)

50.8% of Jabodetabek residents owned 51-125 cc (centimeter cubic) motorcycle, as well as 56.4% non-Jabodetabek residents. The126-150 cc motorcycle is second most owned motorcycle by both Jabodetabek or non-Jabodetabek respondents. There are only about 8% of respondents from both Jabodetabek or non-Jabodetabek whose motorcycle’s engine capacity is more than 250 cc. Most Indonesian motorcycles are 125 – 150 cc.

The motorcycle is undoubtedly not the safest alternative for vehicle choice. But, it’s the most effective way for Indonesian to reach someplace faster. Moreover, Jabodetabek’s big roads are always jammed every day. To face the crazy traffic jam, a motorcycle would come in handy, since provided transportation is considered not enough for the highly dense population.

125-150cc is considered enough for Indonesian. The speed will not be too fast in most crowded roads, but not to slow as well to catch their needs.

Q. What type of motorcycle do you want the most? (SA)

Both Jabodetabek and non-Jabodetabek residents prefer scooter motorcycle, with both percentages respectively 90.4% and 89.2%. There are only about 8% of both clusters who prefer sport motorcycles.

From the survey, we can say that Indonesian mostly prefer scooter automatic motorcycles. This is primarily because of its convenience. Automatic scooters are considered more practical for Indonesian daily use. On the contrary, sport motorcycle is used more for the style.

Based on the sale data of 2019, the top 5 best-selling motorcycles are all automatic scooter! They are Honda Beat series, Honda Vario ESP, Honda Scoopy, Yamaha Mio M3, and Yamaha NMAX. Honda Beat and Scoopy are 110cc, while Honda Vario is 125 and 150cc. Meanwhile, Yamaha Mio M3 is 125cc and Yamaha NMAX is 150cc. This highest sales contribution from the automatic scooter segment reached more than 80 percent of the total two-wheeler sales in the country.

Thus far, there is no aspect that differs Jabodetabek and non-Jabodetabek respondents in choosing a motorcycle.

So, what is the difference in buying behavior between Jabodetabek residents and non-Jabodetabek residents? Take a look at the survey result below!

Q. How much will you spend to buy your motorcycle? (SA)

The price range becomes the sole difference in buying behavior between Jabodetabek and non-Jabodetabek respondents.

Based on the survey, 24% of Jabodetabek respondents stated that they would pay Rp 15-20 million for a motorcycle. Meanwhile, 30% of non-Jabodetabek respondents prefer Rp 10-15 million for a motorcycle.

Let’s take a look again at the top 5 best-selling motorcycles. Honda Beat, the top-selling motorcycle is priced about Rp 16 million. Honda Vario 125 esp’s price is about Rp 19 million. Honda Scoopy is also about Rp 19 million. Meanwhile, Yamaha Mio M3 is Rp 16 million. Yamaha NMAX is rather more expensive than the other top four, with the price of Rp26 million. To be noted, NMAX’s biggest sale is in Jabodetabek.

Thus, it is safe to say that most Indonesian would like buying a motorcycle which price range is from Rp 15-25 million. There is a slight difference in Jabodetabek and non-Jabodetabek residents in buying motorcycles. Jabodetabek residents are willing to pay more than non-Jabodetabek residents.


Indonesian demand for motorcycles is high. It can be seen from the huge percentage of people who use the motorcycle on a daily basis. Their most preferred motorcycle is Automatic Scooter, due to its compactness and ergonomic. Indonesian would like to pay about 15-25 million for a motorcycle. With those minimum criteria, a motorcycle product would draw attention from Indonesian customers.

In addition, since Jabodetabek residents are willing to pay more than non-Jabodetabek residents, motorcycles distributor should expand their supplies more into Jabodetabek regions for more expensive motorcycles. Meanwhile, cheaper motorcycles should be distributed more to non-Jabodetabek regions.

The detailed report which this article referred to is available.
[Table of contents]

  • Indonesian most used vehicle
  • Most owned motorcycle brand by Indonesian
  • Indonesian motorcycle engine capacity
  • Indonesian most preferred type of motorcycle
  • Where do Indonesian buy motorcycle
  • How much Indonesian will pay for their motorcycle
  • Preferred payment in buying a motorcycle
  • Where Indonesian repair their motorcycle
  • Jabodetabek Residents willingness to using mass rapid transportation
  • Summary


Check description of this report

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  1. Avatar
    • Lucas Barios
    • April 10th, 2020

    Very nice picture of Indonesian automotive market. Is there any chance for European manufacturer to survive in Southeast Asian market?

    • Hi Lucas,
      Thank you very much for the comment!

      There is a chance for European manufacturers to survive in Southeast Asian market, especially in Indonesia.
      Though, the most important thing to consider is understanding the way local people are doing their work. Each country in Southeast Asia has its own working culture, and worker management plays a really big role on the manufacturer’s success.

      Should you have any more questions, feel free to drop us another comment!

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