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Old 06-09-2008, 11:42 AM   #21
The_AirHawk
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Originally Posted by longride View Post
I think H-D should buy Ford's truck division too!
Huh. Thought they already owned that - there's only like an F'n Thousand and fifteen of them Harley-Davidson-Edition F-150's drivin' around this neck of the woods. I think Ford is embarrassed about it too - 'cuz there aren't any "Blue Ovals" on any of 'em................
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Old 06-09-2008, 11:54 AM   #22
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However there is this rule #1 when doing corporate deals with Italian companies: The Gringo Always Loses.
Soooo... both sides lose? I wasn't aware that gringo was anglo specific :P
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Old 06-09-2008, 11:54 AM   #23
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"So, why not buy MV?"

Cause how much money did MV make selling MV's?
In Harley's case I don't think the bottom line is "the bottom line". I think it's the vision of taking a proud Italian Racing marquee and building the heritage once more. MV's are built in the thousands (not hundreds of thousands), by hand to exacting race standards. They are not an assembly line type of marquee and I think HD has the resources to expand the operation yet keep the exclusivity. If HD keeps the racing lineage moving forward it's possible to see MV racing in something other than the Italian Superbike series. Erik may have bikes that are able to run in certain race series, but reality is they are only competitive Twin style racing. Rotax build a "every man's" sportbike motor. I don't think Erik intended the bike for Superbike racing. Otherwise you would have seen it come "full faired" with race pieces available from HQ. MV, on the otherhand, wants it's feet in racing and probably hopes the financial suiters would feel the same. Cross branding the the biggest obsticle. How do you marry Buell and MV without cannibalizing each others sales? Unless the Rotax marriage was done as foresight to let Erik break Buell way from HD in the future things for Mr Buell should be pretty interesting.
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Old 06-09-2008, 11:55 AM   #24
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Did a quick research on MV and found they have had 3 owners since 1991 and had a major refinancing in 2006 to keep them afloat. Sounds like a fantastic investment opportunity. I think H-D should buy Ford's truck division too!
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Old 06-09-2008, 11:56 AM   #25
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I don't see how getting prices down to upper end Ducati levels is going to help them grab a younger market share.

How many squids do you see on 1098s and S4R Monsters?
Seriously. I doubt many of the kids have $20k to plop down on a bike.
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Old 06-09-2008, 11:59 AM   #26
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It's two fold: 1- If prices are lower then the average 30 something Ducati buyer is suddenly in the market for a bike that is a lot more exclusivity. 2- The 675 triple and 1078 four are bound to inspire the inner workings of HD to remarket or rebrand the XL and/or create brand new motorcycles with HD badges on them. It also allows Buell to capture two motors for anything he's working on- kinda like Bimota does/did with Ducati/Yamaha motors.
Aren't F4 1000s and Brutales already similar in price to comparable Ducs?

I can just see the sleeveless t shirt H-D salesman trying to pronounce Brutale! LOL!
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Old 06-09-2008, 12:08 PM   #27
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I don't see how getting prices down to upper end Ducati levels is going to help them grab a younger market share.

How many squids do you see on 1098s and S4R Monsters?
It's two fold: 1- If prices are lower then the average 30 something Ducati buyer is suddenly in the market for a bike that is a lot more exclusivity. 2- The 675 triple and 1078 four are bound to inspire the inner workings of HD to remarket or rebrand the XL and/or create brand new motorcycles with HD badges on them. It also allows Buell to capture two motors for anything he's working on- kinda like Bimota does/did with Ducati/Yamaha motors.
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Old 06-09-2008, 02:08 PM   #28
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Aren't F4 1000s and Brutales already similar in price to comparable Ducs?

I can just see the sleeveless t shirt H-D salesman trying to pronounce Brutale! LOL!
The 910/1078R is about $2k or more than the Ms4rs and the base F4 is $3k higher than the 1098s. Not a lot- but enough of a difference to sway the "wanna-be" crowd to the Duc. Not to mention the specialty F4s that now run between $28k-$70k. In my opinion MV shouldn't even be trying to compete in the "Ultra-expensive" level of bike sales. That's one of the issues it has. Dreamin' big with no capital for investment. Scale back some- concentrate on the "new" triple and drop it in a smaller F4 body and frame and make a 675 Brutale and sell those things for between $9500-$12K and you'll have something to compete with. Oh- keep the two year factory warranty in place. It's a great selling tool.
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Old 06-09-2008, 05:27 PM   #29
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Well, I can't totally figure this one out right now, either, but I think Kirk is in the right ballpark. The rumor mill also said that H-D was eyeing Duc not so long ago.

Given the demographic problem that H-D is facing, they probably see the need to play more seriously in the sport market. E.B. has also stated that Harley will be pumping more resources into Buell, too.

My guess is that MV will remain the high-end, exclusive sport marque and Buell will be the still-funky mid-market brand. I would expect MV to remain primarily run by Claudio Castiglione and his people. I would also expect that they probably won't become profitable any time in the near future. What H-D gets is off-the-shelf technology and a turnkey R&D operation that probably far exceeds what Buell has, and I can envision that tech and know-how being implemented somehow across the H-D and Buell lines.

Whether or not this ultimately will work, I have no idea. Although, I must say the idea of a 675 triple in a Buell chassis is pretty tasty. Or how about an XR675?

I'm not in love with the two-tiered sport brand idea, though. It sounds too much like an auto manufacturer's model. And as we all know, the motorcycle market is quite different than the car market. You can also debate whether or not H-D should simply invest in its own operations instead of taking on MV, but it's certainly a faster way to get proven, credible goodies and it just may be cheaper, too.
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Old 06-09-2008, 07:01 PM   #30
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How about selling the XR1200 Sportster in the USA? This would not take a very big investment - more like zero. Then again, think about a MV with a Sportster push-rod engine. They'd be a lot easier to work on. And the development costs were probably written off fifty years ago just before the K-model evolved into the Sportster.
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