Author Topic: Harley-Davidson is stumbling  (Read 895 times)

Just Joe

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Harley-Davidson is stumbling
« on: January 30, 2018, 02:23:49 PM »
http://www.chicagotribune.com/business/ct-biz-harley-davidson-shuts-down-plant-20180130-story.html

Our economy changing? Boomers giving up their motorcycles due to age? The traditional customers unable to afford a $15K+ motorcycle? Damn Millennials again?

Johnez

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Re: Harley-Davidson is stumbling
« Reply #1 on: January 30, 2018, 04:02:25 PM »
The problem with spending $15,000 on an image item like a Harley is that it's hard to justify otherwise. With a big ass monster truck you can justify that with "well I can haul shit if I need to," even if 99% of the time it's a single person 30 mile commute lol- a bike not so much. Dirt bikes are cheaper and more fun. Asian bikes are cheaper and generally better all the way around. Who needs a massive bike?

WhiteTrashCash

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Re: Harley-Davidson is stumbling
« Reply #2 on: January 30, 2018, 04:12:19 PM »
Millennials like bicycles better than motorcycles. Preferably fixed gear bicycles.

Darryl

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Re: Harley-Davidson is stumbling
« Reply #3 on: January 30, 2018, 11:22:11 PM »

jinga nation

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Re: Harley-Davidson is stumbling
« Reply #4 on: January 31, 2018, 07:57:50 AM »
Full Disclaimer: I have never owned a HD or any motorbike.

I've worked at manufacturing plants where many of my coworkers rode motorbikes to work. Mostly, HD, with some Honda, Triumph, Victory. One thing in common was all were always kept clean and shiny, well-maintained. The technicians I supervised would say one Saturday a month to do a full once-over. And all weekends a little something to work on the bike. Now I don't know if this was an excuse to drink and shoot the shit. Some were also in bike clubs.

In the end, it seems like quite some time needs to be invested into the motorbike, which millennials either don't have or don't want to do so as to focus on other things.

Now if they married a Tesla/Panasonic battery pack in the HD and sell it as a green, low-maintenance machine while keeping the cool factor.
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bluebelle

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Re: Harley-Davidson is stumbling
« Reply #5 on: January 31, 2018, 08:14:48 AM »
Harley seems to have a knack of reinventing itself and coming back from the brink.  I hope it happens again.  The were on the brink and got bailed out in the earlyl 80s via tariffs, and at some point in the late 90s, Harley figured out that 51% of the population was female, and started really marketing to women, oh lord the pink Harley crap (and pink camo - really WTF?, sorry another rant).....and with all the groups and ralleys made riding a Harley a 'family' or 'couple' thing....good on them I guess.  I've never understood the appeal of a Harley, just not my riding style, I prefer sport touring bikes that corner like they're on rails, and I'm very fond of my skin and brain, so I'm a big fan of full safety gear and full face helmets.
I have never seen a group so loyal to a brand.  It's an image and a US thing, as a Canadian I always got the feeling is was somehow unAmerican to ride a Japenese 'rice burner'....maybe the millenials don't want their parent's ride.   

Just Joe

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Re: Harley-Davidson is stumbling
« Reply #6 on: January 31, 2018, 08:23:52 AM »
Now if they married a Tesla/Panasonic battery pack in the HD and sell it as a green, low-maintenance machine while keeping the cool factor.

https://electrek.co/2018/01/30/harley-davidson-electric-motorcycle/

GuitarStv

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Re: Harley-Davidson is stumbling
« Reply #7 on: January 31, 2018, 10:48:05 AM »
The problem with spending $15,000 on an image item like a Harley is that it's hard to justify otherwise. With a big ass monster truck you can justify that with "well I can haul shit if I need to," even if 99% of the time it's a single person 30 mile commute lol- a bike not so much. Dirt bikes are cheaper and more fun. Asian bikes are cheaper and generally better all the way around. Who needs a massive bike?

Yeah . . . but a motorcycle lets you dress up like a pirate ANY TIME YOU WANT!  Can't do that with an asian bike or a dirt bike.
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bwall

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Re: Harley-Davidson is stumbling
« Reply #8 on: February 01, 2018, 01:41:37 PM »
Nice Harley's start at $25k and then go up from there.  Who can afford that kinda toy? Not a real rebel, just a wanna-be rebel; accountant, doctor, lawyer, etc. white collar types that want to be bad ass in their time off. Ever since the early 1990's, Harley has been catering to that kind of customer.

Now those customers are all too old to ride, their bikes are being sold off and the next generation doesn't want the same bike, thus the V-Rod, sales of which are under-whelming. Harley is stuck to the V-motor set up, which isn't what the market is looking for right now.

I'm sure that they will survive. But, what they'll look like is the question.