Scooters to be made in the USA?

Discussion in 'Battle Scooters' started by approachbears, Nov 17, 2009.

  1. approachbears

    approachbears 250cc is 50cc too many

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  2. Hoseman

    Hoseman pushing rocks.....

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    Sweet!

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  3. Tromper

    Tromper Been here awhile

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    I may just hafta get one just cuz.
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  4. redhandmoto

    redhandmoto Been here awhile

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    Genuine, of Chicago, sells re-badged PGO scooters from Taiwan (Buddy, Rattler, etc.) and re-badged LML scoots from India (Stella). Is Phil McCaleb/Genuine involved in this TNG thing?
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  5. approachbears

    approachbears 250cc is 50cc too many

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    The guy who sent me the link is a Stella rider and mentioned Genuine. Maybe it was just because the photo in the article has the guy behind the purchase sitting on a Buddy in front of a huge Genuine banner.
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  6. gogogordy

    gogogordy Long timer

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    I didn't read anything in the article regarding Genuine Scooter Company...it says National Scooter Company.
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  7. wanna bECO

    wanna bECO Been here awhile

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  8. HBrew

    HBrew Adventurer

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    Not sure I understand the point of buying a company in China and moving it here? And why keep one employee there?

    Even so it would be very very cool to have scooters built in the USA.
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  9. approachbears

    approachbears 250cc is 50cc too many

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    The one person kept there might be to get parts since I expect at least some parts will still be made there. Or maybe they are selling them back to China? that'd be kind of interesting...

    But I think they are buying an American company that basically just imports in scooters to Seattle. So I guess they're getting the brand name, dealer network, maybe some copy rights and legal stuff, etc...
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  10. seraph

    seraph asshole on a scooter

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    As I recall Tn'G was just doing final assembly here in the States, and ultimately their products were just generic Chinese scooters like what Roketa sells.

    But yeah, doesn't look like Genuine is involved in this at all, except that the guy appears to currently be a Genuine dealer.

    I wish him the best and I hope they turn out unique, quality products, but judging by the Tn'G thing the pessimist (realist?) in me says these are basically going to be generic Chinese scooters with added "God bless Amurrica!" advertising.
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  11. farqhuar

    farqhuar Lone Wolf

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    Why would you do this, and why would the Us government support this? - no benefits whatsoever other than selling to fuckwit yanks who are prepared to pay a premium just because of the old "it's made here" syndrome (i.e those who through ignorance misinterpret Johnsons' famous "patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel" speech).
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  12. redhandmoto

    redhandmoto Been here awhile

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    Why, farqy, you Silver-Tongued Devil; don't hold back - tell us what you really think.
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  13. approachbears

    approachbears 250cc is 50cc too many

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    Seriously, you can't envision a good reason to have an internal source of production for a basic good besides patriotism? Do you realize that your post makes you sound like, in your own words, such an "ignorant fuckwit"? The jobs argument is the easiest to make, but its great for us scooter buyers alone even without considering that there needs to be jobs to have buyers.

    Its funny that your only real argument is "paying a premium". That is thoroughly disproven by the fact non-US vehicle manufacturers like Toyota, BMW, Nissan, Subaru, Kia, Honda, Mitsubishi and Isuzu all have US plants paying workers US wages and their vehicles are competitively priced in categories from entry-level to luxury. Maybe the Harley Davidson's sold down in Australia are pricey (they are imports to you after all), but they are inline with the Cruiser Market price here in the US.

    Also take into account the fact that they're hoping to partner with Stephen F. Austin College to reinvigorate design. Foreign vehicle manufacturers big and small have opened US-based design centers (often linked with colleges and Universities like BMW in South Carolina) and the US consumer has thoroughly benefited. One reason I personally don't want a Chinese-scooter is their lack of understanding of US market needs and desires. In-country design means more responsive design. Manufacturers like Toyota and Nissan are popular in the US in part because they produce vehicles spec'd for the US. It wasn't always the case and they suffered for it until they had a better feel for the market.

    For instance, I recently test drove a Euro-spec Ford Fiesta here in the US as part of campaign to introduce the model back into the American market. I've driven cars and scooters in foreign countries before and noted the local quirks. But the differences--especially interior layout, lack of locally standard features like cupholders and cruise control--really stand out in one's home country. The consumer really does benefit from local production.
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  14. tortoise2

    tortoise2 Been here awhile

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    Then there's the "gaming the system" strategy:
    To Outfox the Chicken Tax, Ford Strips Its Own Vans
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  15. shecky

    shecky Adventurer

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    This is a case for designing them in the US, not producing them in the US. In the scooter world, some of the most unique and successful designs seem to be from Japan, which kind of argues against local production. For lots of folks, scooters are cheap transportation. There seems to be plenty of competition on the premium supply. It would be nice to see another player in the field, though I place no significant value on the "Made In The USA" label. A label that ultimately means nothing if it doesn't translate into a good value.

    In any event, it seems Federal and local subsidy sweeten the deal for local production. Stimulus money? Welfare? Let's hope for their success, at least for the sake of the taxpayer.
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  16. approachbears

    approachbears 250cc is 50cc too many

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    Yes, it is a case for designing them in the US. But you show absolutely no evidence why they shouldn't be built in the US. I again offer the evidence that manufacturers like Toyota, BMW, Nissan, Subaru, Kia, Honda, Mitsubishi and Isuzu all have US plants paying workers US wages and their vehicles are competitively priced in categories from entry-level to luxury. Its not all a tax dodge (like the aforementioned Ford Transit Connect van). Its not that Americans can't build them. So why be negative?

    You are correct that it needs to translate into real value and that we won't know one way or another until they start producing them in Texas. However, we do know quite well that the vast majority of Chinese scooters aren't a good value in the long term. However, any company willing to pay US wages to its workers and willing to cooperate with a college in design and worker training is certainly making a longer term investment, which directly relates to the chance for quality, than simply producing out of date Honda designs and dumping them.

    You bring up the idea that Japanese companies have good designs. However, its interesting that two of the best recent Japanese scooter designs--the Sh150i and Sh300i--were Japanese responses to European markets, not Asian markets. It pays to be local. And you do realize that Japanese companies don't just produce in Japan, don't you? They produce in local markets around the world. It would be great if more scooter companies were more responsive to the US market as well.
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  17. shecky

    shecky Adventurer

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    That's because I never argued that point.

    You mention the success of several foreign companies with domestic production. Interestingly, you don't mention the domestic companies with domestic plants that have done abysmally for decades, even to the point of receiving significant amounts of government aid. Given the global economy, I'd say local production is largely irrelevant to good end products. To the extent that the venture needs government capital to make it a viable enterprise doesn't really count in it's favor.

    I hope they can make a go of it. But I suspect being a domestically operated factory alone isn't going to translate into success, or even marginally better products.
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  18. approachbears

    approachbears 250cc is 50cc too many

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    Uh, yes you did argue the point that it wasn't evidence for domestic production. You said "This is a case for designing them in the US, not producing them in the US." Maybe you meant to say something else, but that's what you said.

    About your point of abysmal domestic production; Ford would seem to belie that since they didn't take recent bailout money and they've been producing very well regarded vehicles for a long while. H-D would also seem to be contrary to that. Yes, in this near depression they have taken a hit. But so have everyone else. Before that they were doing very, very well when not everyone else was. In fact, one reason Chrysler did so poorly is because it let local products really go down hill under Mercedes' ownership. Mercedes eventually sold it off at a loss and had to refocus themselves.

    Finally, you're wrong to think that there is vehicle production anywhere with out some gov't help. There's no such thing as a truly free market except in very shitty countries like Somalia that can't fed or govern themselves, much less produce vehicles. Governments around the world, from national to local, support industry with tax breaks, loans, infrastructure, concessions, worker training, insurance, and on and on.

    Do you know that Germany, not China, is the world's biggest exporter? Its a country that gives its businesses vast gov't help (including in vehicle production, ie. Opel in the news lately) and does tremendously well because of it. At the same time it produces much for a very specific local market that is pretty satisfied with its products. Germany is successful because its local. The winners in the current global economy are the countries with the MOST gov't support of business and industry. Not the one's blindly hoping for free trade.

    What evidence do you have for the claim that "Given the global economy, I'd say local production is largely irrelevant to good end products."?
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  19. Human Ills

    Human Ills Useful Idiom

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    Do threads from the scooter forum ever get kicked to the basement? :1drink
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  20. brockster

    brockster Despair & Repair Garage

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    Post something naked and I bet it will.:1drink:D
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