Originally Posted by Scoobynut
They might be too smart for that. Equally -- they're incapable of it, so it's a moot point. The Japanese can spit out cruisers in their sleep, but HD is trapped by their single layout. And why? Because they don't have the engineering capability. It would take them 2 or 3 decades to match a 2013 R1, by which time it would be, uh, pretty obsolete. They have to play the nostalgia angle as it's all they've got. Not trying to offend the Harley faithful out there, but it's the truth.
I think that rather than the company, it's the faithful that are the problem. In creating such a marketing savvy image for the customers, the customers have projected it backward in an interesting yin/yang sort of social construct.
Look at bikes like the XR1200 and VRSC. Without the faithful buying into them as hive mind approved machines, they falter and wither on the floor.
You don't even have to ask if it's a real Harley. Any number of people with DILLIGAF patches will give you their unsolicited opinion, despite their patch's insistence they give 0 fucks about anything. It's not just my participation in the hive mind they want to control, but the factory as well.
Honda has avoided that, to their credit. They can build cutting edge sportbikes and tourers and cruisers without anyone but The Toad(tm) really objecting vociferously.
The MoCo is painted in a corner by their own clever marketing.