Victory sales down over 50%

Polaris announces third quarter 2009 figures

By Motorcycle.Com Staff, Oct. 16, 2009
Lost in the stunning third quarter 2009 announcements from Harley-Davidson were equally sobering news from Polaris.

Unlike Harley-Davidson, which is discontinuing its Buell line and selling off MV Agusta, Polaris is increasing resources and personnel for its Victory Motorcycles division despite recording dramatic sales decreases.

The Medina, Minn., company announced a 25% drop in total third quarter sales compared the same period in 2008. Most alarmingly, the company’s on-road vehicle division, which is made up almost entirely by Victory Motorcycles, was down 56% ($9.3 million compared to $21 million in 2008.) For the first nine months of 2009, on-road vehicle sales were down 53%.

The struggling North American economy has affected the entire motorcycle industry, but Polaris’ figures are particularly poor. Polaris notes the industry-wide North American retail sales for heavyweight cruisers and touring motorcycles over 1,400cc were down “in the high 20% range” in 2009.

Polaris decreased shipments to North American Victory dealers in 2009 but the company says further reductions are needed. Polaris also plans to streamline the Victory product line-up, increase promotions, expand its international market presence and increase personnel and resources.

Victory introduced the 2010 Cross Roads in July.

“We continued to gain market share in our off-road vehicle business during the quarter and parts, garments and accessories sales were better than anticipated,” says Scott Wine, chief executive officer of Polaris. “While Victory motorcycle sales were down significantly and Victory dealer inventories remain elevated, we have added both personnel and resources to help drive strategic initiatives to improve the Victory business over time.”

Victory added two new touring motorcycles for 2010, the Cross Roads and Cross Country and increased its lower-priced 8-Ball family by two.

Related Reading
2010 Victory Motorcycles Line-up Preview
Harley-Davidson shutting down Buell
Harley-Davidson selling MV Agusta