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Old 08-05-2013, 07:41 AM   #616
Randy
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Take a look around out on the road. I don't know about where you live and ride, but where I am, the vast majority of bikes I see are cruisers. For whatever reason, for better or worse, they seem to be what most people want and buy. HD is first and foremost a business, and a business's first order of business is to make money. They may only sell v-twin cruisers, but you can't argue with their market share. At this point in the game, why would Harley want to invest millions in developing bikes to compete with so many other manufacturer's offerings in segments that don't offer near as much reward as the one they already dominate. Adventure tourers? How large is that segment, and how many players are already offering very competent bikes for those customers? Sport bikes? Look at what's already out there. What would it cost in time, money and resources to go head to head with the best of Japan and Europe? Even if they could build a world class sport bike, how long would it take to establish themselves as a real player in the game, and how many bikes would they have to sell to make back the money spent?

If you want something else then fine, there's more than one other manufacturer that make and sell all those other types of bikes. Go buy one of those and stop whining about Harley not offering the other models that just don't sell as well as the ones they do offer.

Until recently I wasn't a cruiser rider either and actually had disdain for HD and cruisers in general. But even then, I still saw what I saw out on the road, even though I didn't understand why. They really do have some smart people working in their marketing dept. And, I still never really questioned the MoCo for building and selling what they did. And now, after having my Sporty for a few months I find that I enjoy riding it more than my other bikes for some odd reason. So, I guess my tastes have changed and I'm starting to get it just a little.

Just scheduled my first service appointment for next Saturday morning. I've never had any dealings with my local shop since my wife bought the bike for me and had it delivered as a surprise. Never even been in the place before, but I guess I'll see how it goes next weekend. After the first service I'll be doing everything myself from then on, like with all my other bikes. At least, normal maintenance things. But I am curious to see what the service is like there just in case I ever need it for something that I don't want to tackle myself.

My only other real experience with a HD dealer was at the one that I rode my first Harley. Pretty much the same experience as Krasniewski. No pressure at all, just a casual offer of a test ride. In over 30 years of motorcycling that was a first for me actually. It worked too. I never even wanted a Harley, until I rode one. If I hadn't had that test ride I'd still be thinking what I thought before I actually rode one... That I'd hate it. A few minutes into that ride though I discovered I didn't hate it. And a few minutes further along I realized that I actually sorta liked it.

In the automotive world the test drive is a huge part of the sales tactic. Most places practically beg you to drive their car because they know that putting you behind the wheel is the first step to you mentally owning it. Simple marketing really. Surprising that the motorcycle industry at large never grasped that concept and expect people to make a major purchasing decision based solely on magazine test reports. That may be changing slowly now, but I remember a time not so long ago, that getting a test ride on a bike was damn near impossible. And I know for me it's much easier to get excited about something once I've actually had a taste. Would you buy an HD TV without seeing the picture first? And I still don't think that I've ever had a salesman just up and offer me a test ride anywhere other than at a HD dealership.
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Old 08-05-2013, 10:40 AM   #617
Dranrab Luap
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Originally Posted by 2tallnwide View Post
That's all fine and dandy, unless you want a KLR650 type of motorcycle, or a dirt bike, sport bike, adventure touring bike, sport touring bike, scooter, etc, or simply a motor configuration other than a Vtwin. Sad actually.
Sad that they are narrowly focused and do a tremendous job within that relatively narrow focus?
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Old 08-05-2013, 11:35 AM   #618
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What I get from this type of comment is that no matter how much these folks deride H-D, they still want to buy a motorcycle that says Harley-Davidson on the nameplate. Otherwise, they would just go buy their KLR, dirtbike, sport tourer, etc., and not bother complaining that they couldn't get one from Harley. I never hear anyone complain that Boeing doesn't make a small Cessna type aircraft, or that Apple doesn't make an android powered Iphone. But there are innumerable posts on this board of people complaining that Harley doesn't make the type of bike they want to buy, even though plenty of other companies do. The only reasonable conclusion is that, in spite of all the anti H-D posturing, they'd really rather buy a Harley. Either that, or they just want to join the crowd and bitch about the MoCo.
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davevv screwed with this post 08-05-2013 at 11:46 AM
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Old 08-05-2013, 11:41 AM   #619
Randy
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Originally Posted by davevv View Post
What I get from this type of comment is that no matter how much these folks deride H-D, they still want to buy a motorcycle that says Harley-Davidson on the nameplate. Otherwise, they would just go buy their KLR, dirtbike, sport tourer, etc., and not bother complaining that they couldn't get one from Harley.
Never thought of it quite that way before, but yeah, that does make sense. I know that when I had no interest in anything Harley made, I never gave it a second thought that they didn't make what I wanted. I just bought what I did want.
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Old 08-05-2013, 12:41 PM   #620
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[QUOTE=UnsureFooting;22024341] "Why buy a Harley? Cause they're awesome... But did you see the new Indians?"

I went to the website after the reveal to look up the closest dealer to me.....SERIOUSLY!!! Only 3 within 300 miles of me!!!

Indian has a ways to go to be competitive with H-D.
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Old 08-05-2013, 01:13 PM   #621
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[QUOTE=1/2 Brit;22033382]
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Originally Posted by UnsureFooting View Post
"Why buy a Harley? Cause they're awesome... But did you see the new Indians?"

I went to the website after the reveal to look up the closest dealer to me.....SERIOUSLY!!! Only 3 within 300 miles of me!!!

Indian has a ways to go to be competitive with H-D.
Better than me, though. The CLOSEST dealer to me is 314 miles away... And I live in Dallas!
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Old 08-05-2013, 01:21 PM   #622
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Well, while that's not a good thing, and would certainly impact my buying decision, if I were even in the market for a bike of this type, we really do need to keep this in perspective. The bike WAS just revealed this past weekend, and I'm sure a lot of potential dealers were skeptical of the previous Indian debacles and were waiting to at least see a finished product, and sorta get the feel for customer reactions, before signing on to support the name.

I doubt they'll ever have the dealer network of HD since I doubt they'll ever have the market share to support such a vast network, but I would think that the situation will start to improve now that the bike has actually hit the market. And then, when and if they actually start selling in numbers, more people will be wanting a piece of it. But, in the short term at least, the lack of dealers will hurt sales.

EDIT: Just checked and the closest to me is 111 miles and there are 4 within 252 miles, Didn't look any further than that, but that's too far for me personally too.
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Old 08-05-2013, 01:38 PM   #623
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Originally Posted by davevv View Post
What I get from this type of comment is that no matter how much these folks deride H-D, they still want to buy a motorcycle that says Harley-Davidson on the nameplate. Otherwise, they would just go buy their KLR, dirtbike, sport tourer, etc., and not bother complaining that they couldn't get one from Harley.
Some just want to buy American without buying a cruiser. Can't buy an American sportsbike/enduro/yada yada yada from any manufacturer with decent support.
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Old 08-05-2013, 01:46 PM   #624
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Some just want to buy American without buying a cruiser. Can't buy an American sportsbike/enduro/yada yada yada from any manufacturer with decent support.
That's a valid point. But I guess not enough people want to buy and American bike just because it's American. ATK failed, Cannondale failed, Buell failed (although that may have had a lot to do with HD influence). Cruisers do sell well in the US though. Well enough that we now have three American manufacturers, and all the Japanese, trying to get a piece of the pie. But for something else, now there's Motus... if only for the very well heeled....
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"some might call it a 'midlife crisis', I prefer to call it a renaissance of thought and action"... "Life is too short to do anything other than that about which you are absolutely passionate."..."Adventure is a frame of mind, set upon by action, not defined by equipment."..."It all boils down to your ability to say "SCREW IT" and really mean it"....Randy
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Old 08-05-2013, 02:34 PM   #625
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Randy, you seem very reasonable so when you take the 48 in for service take a test ride on one of the touring models and give us your impression.
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Old 08-05-2013, 02:56 PM   #626
Randy
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Randy, you seem very reasonable so when you take the 48 in for service take a test ride on one of the touring models and give us your impression.
Nah. I'm afraid my impression would be biased. They're just really not my cup of tea at all. At least not at this point in life. I have never been attracted to a cruiser before. In fact, when I first saw a 48 like mine, it was the ONLY bike in the place that even caught my eye. I'm not crazy about the styling on the touring models, and I don't want a bike that big, heavy, and with floorboards just yet. I was never a cruiser guy. And actually, with the exception of just a few Sportsters, I'm still not. I could probably be objective in a test ride, IF I had a point of reference and was comparing it to, say, a new Indian or something similar. But, I really don't want to trouble them, and put miles on a new bike that I know I have no interest in at all.

I am hoping they'll have a used frame mount Sporty, however. I've never been to this dealership before so I have no idea what sort of used selection they stock. But, I'm really wanting to do a project Sportster one day and the frame mount has a few advantages for what I want to build. Vibration seems to be rather subjective and I'd like to see for myself how the frame mount compares to my rubber mount. If they have a frame mount 1200 of any type I will ask for a ride on it for that reason alone.
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Old 08-05-2013, 04:58 PM   #627
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Originally Posted by ADK View Post
Randy, you seem very reasonable so when you take the 48 in for service take a test ride on one of the touring models and give us your impression.
You should just go and ask to take one yourself.

Go to each local dealer and ask and ride different versions.

I did that about 15 or 20 (honest) times before I bought... and I just realized I didn't get put on a single mailing list over any test rides.

Love or hate HD's, I wish car dealers would be so un-annoying with test rides and spamming you with snail mail after getting your DL info as HD dealers are.
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Old 08-05-2013, 05:11 PM   #628
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I've been to Americade quite a few times and ridden a lot of bikes from many manufacturers.
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Old 08-05-2013, 05:39 PM   #629
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Why buy a harley? Because u can take a unique bike, and make it even more unique with a simple seat swap and tank swap. This bike was a great tool for developing my taste for what I want. Panic breaking and lack of ABS made this bike eat pavement, and I feel terrible. However, I broke my shoulder and the bike is almost fixed so I will trade it for my next taste. Why buy a harley? Because I think everyone should own one at least once in their life.



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Old 08-06-2013, 09:33 AM   #630
Krasniewski
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Originally Posted by Dranrab Luap View Post
Sad that they are narrowly focused and do a tremendous job within that relatively narrow focus?
Too bad bikes like the XR bombed recently. Buell... well, let's not go there.
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