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FDP Forum / Moe's Tavern (_8^(I) / Harley Davidson to close Kansas City plant

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JAFO
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Hemet, SoCal

I detect the El Supremo
Jan 30th, 2018 09:09 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Some 800 jobs are reportedly to be lost. I haven't ridden in quite a while but I'd hate to see HD go under or move manufacturing overseas.

HD news link

Leftee
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VA

Life makes a man tired.
Jan 30th, 2018 09:22 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

At this point I can't see any American company off-shoring.

SS2
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Alexandria, Virginia

Jan 30th, 2018 09:50 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Maybe as HD riders are getting older they're switching to...

THESE

MJB
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Who's we sucka?

Smith, Wesson and me.
Jan 30th, 2018 10:04 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Most (not all) of the folks I see riding HDs these days are probably in their 60s. As this demographic ages further I think the demand for new Harleys will drop into oblivion. It's a shame.

18megohm
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San Antonio, TX

Glad that's over
Jan 30th, 2018 12:23 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

"I think the demand for new Harleys will drop into oblivion. It's a shame."

As a former Harley owner I can say that I'm not surprised. Their products are over priced for what you get. They also have fewer features and less performance that the competition. Their products failed to evolve with the times and all they have is their brand loyalty and the Harley culture. Once those customers die off they're done unless they evolve. That's just my opinion and I could be wrong.

K4
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Being defenseless

does not make you more safe
Jan 30th, 2018 12:34 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

18, you got it correct. HD still is the best selling motorcycle in the US but they need to find a way to get younger riders.

As a whole motorcycle sales are down world wide.

This is a smart move by the motor company.

Maybe they will stay smart and offer a small lower priced machine that kids can afford.

Chris Greene
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Idaho, USA

Nine mile skid on a ten mile ride
Jan 30th, 2018 12:50 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

As the baby boomer generation dies off so will a number of businesses built on that market. Whether H-D can survive the death of their primary customer base remains to be seen. You don't see a lot of young people on Harleys anymore.

Taildragger
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USA

an acquired taste some may never acquire
Jan 30th, 2018 02:02 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

"At this point I can't see any American company off-shoring."

Some HD replacement parts have been made overseas as far back as the 1970s. I knew a guy back then who bought a Harley-branded tailight lens for his Sportster at the dealership and he was chagrined to find that it said "made in Japan" on it.

K4
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Being defenseless

does not make you more safe
Jan 30th, 2018 02:43 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Lots of Motorcycle parts are not made in the US. Been this way forever.

HD needs to make a 350 or 500cc bike that sells for 3000ish to get younger people into the brand. Who can afford a 25,000 dollar toy as a 18 year old?

Next up they need to make bikes that will compete with BMW Honda ect as far as power and handling ect.. The days of people buying the name are over.

rok-a-bill-e
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Nashville,USA

Clawhammer Rules!
Jan 30th, 2018 03:54 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

They will have to change the dealer culture as much as the product line to appeal to younger riders. For a sales organization, some can be quite nasty to potential customers.
Back when Buell first came out I was foolish enough to stop in and ask questions. My only question quickly became just how quickly I could get the hell out of there.

K4
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Being defenseless

does not make you more safe
Jan 30th, 2018 05:28 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I agree roc, I used to love going into HD dealers. Now I avoid them like the plague.

They forced dealers to build multi million dollar palaces and that ran out the mom and pop dealers. Now we have multi dealer conglomerates and 50 dollar tee shirts.

They are not friendly unless you walk in with your banker on your arm.

I needed a clutch basket bearing last fall, dealer wanted 100. No discount. I went to a bearing supplier and it was 7. They need the mark up to pay for the palace, not going to be my money.

jefe46
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State of Jefferson

Jan 30th, 2018 05:39 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Harley Davidson does not make bikes that younger and older riders want to buy.

They are an image, not a motorcycle. The image is passé. The bikes are bloated, heavy, don't handle, don't brake, get lousy fuel mileage, grossly overpriced, and aside from that.. well... just my opinion; unattractive.

Their feeble effort at a smaller bike 750cc etc was a colossal failure. A mini pig with no brakes, overweight, overpriced.. don't know about the handling but considering Harley made it, likely dangerous. And as usual, overpriced for what you get.

I am truly sorry for those who will lose their jobs, but they need to look at Harley's management for their loss, not the customers who don't want what they make.

Harley "dealer culture".. I have restrained from commentary and will continue to do so. as.. I am an adult, not an aged adolescent looking for something that will bring me some attention.

(This message was last edited by jefe46 at 09:26 AM, Jan 31st, 2018)

FlyonNylon
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East Tennessee

Jan 30th, 2018 05:45 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

A 500cc standard-position all-black V-twin Harley with street, custom, and scrambler versions for $5k would be awesome, and competitive with the Ducati Scrambler and other similar offerings.

They'll never build it.

K4
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Being defenseless

does not make you more safe
Jan 30th, 2018 05:59 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Everyone has their own idea of what is good looking.

The only reason older riders buy the overweight pigs, is the looks.

HD's just look sexy.

Most the reason they get sold.

The top line bikes should perform like the top end metrics.

FLY, I'd buy one if they made it. Would be a great around town scooter.

Stratmanx
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Memphis, TN

Jan 30th, 2018 06:41 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I'm a different HD fan, I've always liked the idea of the 883.

I first got hip to them when they initially came out in the mid-80's as I recall.

More nimble than the 1200.

I had a friend that had one in San Diego and I loved it.

I'm checking out the new 883 Iron and the jury's still out, it seems a good bit removed from my earlier days with the 883, though it seems it makes for a great mod platform.

Prefect for us that tweak our guitars, so double benefit there.

I know die hard Harley riders call it a chick's bike, but from a dirt bike racing background, give me one of these in the city and I can maneuver just fine.

And I can get out of the way quick as well. No worries taking up a curb, down a sidewalk, and thru a lawn if I've gotta get out of the way of larger threats.

Oh yeah, back on topic, HD needs to address what the "Income Generating" age group is, and then to meld both HD's history with their needs.

Off that product, fly it up the flagpole and see who salutes.

The old adage, "Follow the Money" is a good marketing lesson as well.


I like this video, seems like a younger guy is diggin' it better than his sport bike.

Harley Sportster 883 iron

(This message was last edited by Stratmanx at 09:48 PM, Jan 30th, 2018)

rok-a-bill-e
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Nashville,USA

Clawhammer Rules!
Jan 30th, 2018 06:42 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I think that their bikes deliver the desired experience for what has been Harley Riders for decades now and many other brands simply do not. A lot of what a motorcycle is about is how you feel riding it rather than any measured performance. So I won't fault them for their designs, and it's simply a different esthetic from those who want high-revving precision machines. Like Gibson, the demographics are against them and they could either go smaller volume, high-end, made in USA---I wish that Levi's had done that---and keep their core or try to widen the market and cheapen the brand both literally and figuratively.

(This message was last edited by rok-a-bill-e at 08:43 PM, Jan 30th, 2018)

K4
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Being defenseless

does not make you more safe
Jan 30th, 2018 07:00 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I don't think it would be too hard for HD to design a decent handling touring motorcycle.

I think they dropped the ball by not putting the revolution engine (V-rod) in a touring frame.

I know at least 50 people who say the same thing. All HD riders.

Harley's business model was to build a bike, then sell all the parts that should have been on it from the factory.

Buy bike, buy SE drop on engine kit, buy SE rear shocks, and so on.

Now a days younger riders don't want to work on anything, much less a 25,000 dollar motorcycle that needs another 5000 in parts to make it run and ride like it should. Even worse is the 40,000 dollar CVO that needs the same upgrades.

I am a die hard HD rider. Facts is facts.

No one buys a Harley expecting it to be a road terror. But for the money charged it should be more than lipstick and rouge.

I'm done ranting,

I thought the new M8 engine was going to be a large step forward. But it suffers from the same lack of QC and engineering the twin cam did at its inception.

reverend mikey
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N of I-90, E of I-29

You're old. Then vintage. Then good!
Jan 30th, 2018 09:34 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

*** "Harley Davidson does not make bikes that younger and older riders want to buy.

They are an image, not a motorcycle. The image is passé. The bikes are bloated, heavy, don't handle, don't brake, get lousy fuel mileage, grossly overpriced, and aside from that.. well... just my opinion; unattractive." ***

Insert Gibson for HD, and it fits...

MJB
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Who's we sucka?

Smith, Wesson and me.
Jan 31st, 2018 06:11 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

"I first got hip to them when they initially came out in the mid-80's as I recall. "

The 883 has been around since 1957.

Gene from Tampa
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Tampa, FL

Press On Irregardless
Jan 31st, 2018 06:18 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Harley-Davidson Is Making an Electric Motorcycle

Harley-Davidson Chief Financial Officer John Olin said the company will spend $25 million to $50 million per year over the next several years on electric motorcycle technology. The goal is to be the world leader in the electric motorcycle market.

Full Details here

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FDP Forum / Moe's Tavern (_8^(I) / Harley Davidson to close Kansas City plant




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