The $119.3 million profit is a dramatic increase from last year’s figures, though the 2010 numbers include a $35.4 million loss related to Harley-Davidson’s shedding of MV Agusta. Most of the profit can be attributed to decreased expenses from Harley-Davidson Financial Services.
Harley-Davidson sales totaled $49.6 million, up 3.5% from the $47.9 million in retail sales reported over the same quarter in 2010. Most of the gains were from Europe where Harley-Davidson sales were up 21.3% at $9.2 million compared to $7.6 million in 2010. Domestic sales remained relatively steady down 0.5% at $33.73 million from $33.74 million.
In the three months ending March 27, 2011, Harley-Davidson sold 49,595 motorcycles, up 3.5% from the 47,925 units sold in the same quarter of 2010. U.S. sales totaled 31,691 units (compared to 31,845 in 2010) while European sales rose to 9,167 units from 7,558 units.
“We are pleased by the growth of our dealers’ new motorcycle sales on a worldwide basis, led by strength in Europe, even as we continue to encounter some headwinds in the U.S. related to the challenging macro-economic conditions,” says Keith Wandell, Harley-Davidson president and chief executive officer.
Though Harley-Davidson was not directly affected by the March 11 earthquake in Japan, the disaster has created a modest interruption in the supply of some parts, forcing Harley-Davidson to reduce its 2011 shipment projections to 215,000-228,000 units from the 221,000-228,000 units previously planned. Japanese suppliers provide a number of electronic parts, most notably a component used in radios installed in some Harley-Davidson models. Harley-Davidson is working with its suppliers to monitor the situation in Japan.
“We continue to assess our supply chains and as a precaution we have decided to modestly reduce the lower end of shipment guidance following the events in Japan,” says Wandell. “Our hearts go out to all the people of Japan, including our community of riders there. We are thankful for the safety of our employees and dealers in Japan and commend them for their tremendous resilience through this difficult period.”