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Old 01-22-2003, 12:39 PM   #11
intruderman
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Default Harley Sportbikes

I consider the Buell's to be Harley Sportbikes. The new Firebolt and Lightning's are excellent and I would love to own one, just don't want their cruisers. Take that Longride!
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Old 01-22-2003, 12:51 PM   #12
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Default Re: Hard times coming for Harley?

Harley's decision not to increase its production is a wise one. Many a business has been killed by expanding too fast in response to good sales years, only to be followed by normal business-cycle downturns. Investment of working capital in production is a "forever" kind of thing. In other words, when business slows it's kind of hard to sell off some of your production infrastructure. It would be REAL interesting to know what HD's market research is telling them about the next couple years.



In my opinion, I'd like to see Harley solidify their market share by improving their Buell sportbikes as KPaul mentioned.
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Old 01-22-2003, 01:16 PM   #13
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Default Re: Hard times coming for Harley?

I was just kidding. I was paraphrasing some of the sage advice given to H-D by those here who can't stand its current offerings.
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Old 01-22-2003, 01:22 PM   #14
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Default Re: Hard times coming for Harley? This squid is holding on to the stock for awhile

Probably a smart move on your part. H-D has significantly expanded its presence in South America and other foreign markets. I beleive it's even the number one selling foreign bike in Japan (!) of all places.



I'd like to see the V-Rod line expanded as well. As far as Buell goes, if this current lineup isn't a hit look for H-D to pull the plug or sell it. At least that's the opinion of one of the local dealers here.
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Old 01-22-2003, 01:48 PM   #15
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Default Re: Hard times coming for Harley?

I'd certainly like to see the used HD market soften. Even a shovelhead project basket case is waaaay too much these days.
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Old 01-22-2003, 03:41 PM   #16
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Default Harley Financials...



I think its more that 2003 will be a great year for HD (the 100th anniversary and all) spurring sales. But beyond that, they are starting to hit saturation...



Old guys buy harleys. Young guys generally don't. Old guys can afford Harleys. Young guys generally can't. Harley has been worried about this for years, but...



The V-rod is a start at attracting a younger market with some real (late 20th century) engineering, but it is fugly and if it really caught on, the Japanese could blow it away: just imagine an RC51/TL1000 powered cruiser, an updated V-max, or a chromed-up Busa/ZX12R engine in a cruiser chassis!



Just imagine the marketing: 175 Horsepower of Cruiser Muscle... You can just feel HD cringe at that idea.



The HD solution to the demographic bubble, Buell, is being killed with neglect. Shipments for Buell are up this year, but last year it was pretty much only the Blast, with so many leftover Cyclones that they stopped the production.



The Firebolt seems a nice idea, but damn that engine sucks. And a V-rod powered 'Bolt isn't going to be much better, what it makes up for in power, it's going to lose in compactness, and the V-rod engine wasn't designed to be light.



That Buell was not even told about the V-rod during its development (and could have therefore influenced the motor to be much better for sportbike as well as cruiser purposes) shows just how much care HD is really giving the Buell line.



Harley will remain a strong company, but PE's of 22+ is overvalued compared to Honda's 6, especially since both companies are mature and in a mature market.
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Old 01-22-2003, 04:11 PM   #17
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Default

My prediction is that HD will follow the baby boomers to oblivion. Gen-x-ers and newer consumers aren't buying the retro theme and they are not interested in the "lifestyle".



Of course the Buell brand is suppose to be the answer for the "performance oriented" consumer, but look how successful (?) Buell has been.
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Old 01-22-2003, 04:22 PM   #18
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Default Re: Harley Financials...

I would say there is a lot of wishful thinking in your statement.



If I could search back in time and find a message board with this type of topic I could almost cut and paste word for word your exact thoughts from an ancient message board.



The demise of H-D sales has been predicted now for at least ten years and still has failed to happen.
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Old 01-22-2003, 05:16 PM   #19
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Default Re: Harley Financials...

It has been predicted for different reasons. In this instance, the demographics are obvious.



The poster you responded to seems pretty objective to me. Harley marketing is focused on an increasingly aging market, and Buell hasn't done enough to grab the younger market.



What's "wishful thinking" about recognizing that?
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Old 01-22-2003, 05:17 PM   #20
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Default Re: Hard times coming for Harley?

That's what people said at Enron.
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