Victory/Polaris Opens New R&D Center

Sean Alexander
by Sean Alexander
This just popped up in my inbox. Wonder if they are going to attempt a competitive sportbike or motocrosser? --Sean


Facility to provide jobs for nearly 200 employees by December 2005

MINNEAPOLIS, June 24, 2005 ~ Polaris Industries Inc. (NYSE/PSE: PII) today announced the opening of its new 126,000-square-foot Product Development Center located in Wyoming, Minn.

Research, development and testing at the facility will include prototype fabrication and assembly, laboratories for structural testing, electrical development, materials engineering and Powertrain assembly and dynamometer testing. Future enhancements will include a noise and vibration laboratory and test tracks for motorcycles and all-terrain vehicles. The $35.5 million facility is essential for Polaris to continue its long tradition of product innovation, which is critical to the company's competitive future.

"This is the single largest investment Polaris has made in product development, and it demonstrates our commitment to creating top-of-the-line, high-quality vehicles for people who love to ride their Polaris or Victory product," said Polaris CEO Tom Tiller. "In selecting Wyoming for this facility, we also are showing our commitment to the State of Minnesota, where our company began and continues to thrive. We look forward to the partnership we've developed with Governor Pawlenty and the Department of Employment and Economic Development, and I'm confident that through the JOBZ program, we will be able to build our company and our brand in Minnesota."

Polaris' expansion in the region will create a significant positive economic impact on Chisago County and the City of Wyoming, including the employment of 143 engineers and 54 managers, administration and other staff at the facility by the end of 2005. That number is expected to grow to nearly 300 employees during the next 10 years. Projected future employment growth will result in a total facility payroll estimated to reach $10 million in 2005, and expanding to nearly $18 million by 2015.

"Polaris is bringing the kind of jobs and high-quality work we need for Minnesota's economy to grow," said Gov. Tim Pawlenty.

The Wyoming facility was designed to achieve LEED Certification (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design). This design approach includes such characteristics as a sustainable site with light pollution reduction and storm water management; water efficiency such as efficient landscaping and water use reduction; energy and atmosphere considerations like minimum energy performance; materials and resources management like diverting construction waste; and indoor environment quality such as carbon monoxide monitoring and use of low-emitting materials.
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