In an effort to make sense out of the end of Victory Motorcycles, Motus founders Brian Case and Lee Conn posted a blog entry that looks not only at Polaris’ decision but all the way back to 2007 to the end of Pontiac. While this is a valid comparison regarding tough business decisions, the posting gains power when it describes the ways in which Victory didn’t adapt to the changing market and points to how those changes may tend to favor the type of bike Motus is building. As proponents of motorcycling at large, we hope that Motus has the opportunity to capitalize on this space that will be opening at some dealerships. The more successful manufacturers there are, especially ones manufacturing motorcycles in the USA, the better it is for motorcycling as a whole.
While we’ve quoted the entire post below, you can read it on the Motus site, here.
The Victory and Pontiac Effect
“This Motus rides like a dream, but will they be around in 5 years?”
We hear that a lot. And, it’s a fair question. Customers buying a Victory in 2016 or a Pontiac in 2007 probably didn’t consider their purchase risky from those brands. But, why not?
As entrepreneurs/patriots/motorcycle nuts, we are saddened by the demise of Victory Motorcycles, but not surprised. Polaris is an incredible American company making the best business decisions for shareholders, as they should. Maybe similar to decisions General Motors made with Pontiac.
Conceived in Polaris’ boardrooms to grab some of the (then growing) v-twin market, Victory remained target fixated as demand for heavy cruisers shrank by half. At the same time, the European brands grew like wildfire by offering appealing bikes in other segments – and there was no American competition. While Victory marketing showed intriguing sportbike concepts under the fuzzy brand promise of an “inextinguishable passion for American performance”, Victory dealers only offered 800 pound/90hp cruisers.
So, what does any of this have to do with Motus? The Motus customer seeks a comfortable American sportbike and values attention to detail, premium quality, and character. For riders with a Motus already in their garage, the test ride sealed the deal. As long as we remain laser focused on providing an incredible customer experience, we will continue to grow and launch additional models in segments that complement our brand promise.
With Victory gone, some great motorcycle dealers are starting to look for alternative lines to represent. We hope that Motus – with our V4-powered, comfortable American sportbikes – will make sense for them and their customers.
Motorcyclists gladly accept more risk than “regular” people as we pursue the magic that is only experienced on two wheels. Every week, riders join the growing Motus family and we are deeply grateful they share our vision.
-Brian Case and Lee Conn, Motus co-founders
Facebook: @motusmotorcycles @ridemotus @AmericanV4