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Old 01-29-2003, 07:58 AM   #21
rsheidler
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Default Re: Cannondale Chapter 11

I didn't mean to suggest that it served them right. It was, however, always a risky venture. But nobody ever got very far without taking risks.



I was excited when they kicked off the project and badly wanted it to succeed. I think if they had been able to get the bike to market within the originally planned timeframe, they could have had a shot at success.



I do think their decision to produce their own engine was the key failure (in hindsight, I admit). That was the part of the whole project that went furthest outside of their expertise. If they had, at least initially, gone with a Rotax (or Yamaha) single, they would have been able to have bikes in the showrooms early on.



I agree that the business model probably made more sense than E-Hs or Indian's.



Cheers



Bob
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Old 01-29-2003, 09:14 AM   #22
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Default Re: Cannondale Chapter 11

Yeah, that's what I meant as well---they have lots of experience with aluminum frames and suspension on bicycles; they purportedly had some revolutionary or evolutionary ideas about motorcycle suspension. If they wanted to set themselves apart, they should have gone with their strengths instead of jumping into something like engines with which they had no experience.



I'm glad they did it, and sad they failed. ...and I agree, if they'd brought it to market when they said they would and it had lived up to the ype, they would have had a much better chance at success.



I certainly didnt' mean to single Bob out among the naysayers, but there's lessons even in failure. It was heartening to see them try even if they did fail, and hopefully others can learn what not to do from their example.



OTOH, out local bike shop dropped cannondale years ago because of poor distributor, rep, and factory support as far as support, terms, service, and warranty work.
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Old 01-29-2003, 10:08 AM   #23
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Default Re: Cannondale Chapter 11

There is one ray of hope, according to the post the entire motorsports division is for sale, including the "intellectual property". Victory/Polaris has stated an intent to expand the range of thier bikes. Just an idea, but wouldn't be cool to a Polaris motocrosser competing in AMA compitition.
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Old 01-29-2003, 10:19 AM   #24
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Default Re: Cannondale Chapter 11

You think so? Why I'll bet that people will continue to line up in big numbers to pay $22000 for re-badged Harleys! (sarcasm off).
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Old 01-29-2003, 10:26 AM   #25
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Default Re: Cannondale Chapter 11

I think that Polaris/Victory is being managed in a much more intelligent fashion than Cannondale. The Victorys are right in Harley's price range. And Polaris already has loads of experience successfully producing and selling motorized vehicles and has a nationwide dealer network already.



Now Indian, except for the new Chiefs, sells rebadged Harleys at prices way over comparably equipped Harleys. We'll see just how long the suckers can line up.
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Old 01-29-2003, 11:00 AM   #26
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Default Re: Cannondale Chapter 11

They wouldn't be competing with full-on sportbikes, Harley has an appeal based on crieria other than full on performance, so the Japanese "first or die" competition standard wouldn't apply to them, Something along the Buell lines but with more factory support, or a V-Rod based sport standard, I think would sell. They built the K-model/ Sportster line to compete with the Brit.'s which was a total departure from anything they'ed built up to then, just as the V-Rod line is a departure now, why not expand that into a different style, no one say's they should walk away from their core market, but casting the net a little wider would open them up to a market thats not much different from what they have now.
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Old 01-29-2003, 11:27 AM   #27
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Default Polaris MX

That would be cool. I race ametuer MX, and can tell you from going to the races, at least here in Minnesota, that motocrossers are big into snowmobile in the winter (many trucks have either a Arctic Cat or Polaris sticker, mine has a "not an abandoned vehicle" sticker). I suspect that's true in all northern states. So Polaris wouldn't have to work on developing customers. I suspect that many motocrossers also are very familar with the Polaris four wheelers, which sell like hotcakes here in MN. It would be great to have six different brands racing. (big 4, KTM & Polaris)
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Old 01-29-2003, 11:37 AM   #28
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Default Re: Cannondale Chapter 11

I did see a artist's rendering of a VRod motor in a Monster style bike. It looked good but it's my understanding that the VRod motor is heavy. It was designed to look good and conceal hoses and wiring, not to be light.



Now imagine the Buell with the new KTM twin in it and Harley on the tank! I think you're onto something there.
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Old 01-29-2003, 12:55 PM   #29
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Default Re: Cannondale Chapter 11

Harley just needs to buy Ducati out. Those bikes would look better in black and orange anyway!
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Old 01-29-2003, 01:08 PM   #30
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Default Re: Cannondale Chapter 11

Cool, a V-twin Aerrmachi sprint 1000!!
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