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The Future of Harley; and now let us pray.

Discussion in 'Moto Club' started by hitecrednek, Dec 13, 2005.

  1. so I'm wondering what HD will look like 10 or 20 years in the future......

    the current bikes are great, but....

    at least around here, there is no shortage of used Harleys, so maybe the prices in the used market will start to go down, which will hurt the sale of new bikes.

    jap bikes are taking a big market share.

    the MoCo isn't known for innovation; even the technology of the V-rod is stuck in the '70s.

    so we have the same big bikes, the same (although much improved) Sportster and a Vrod, that isn't a cruiser and isn't a sportbike. Maybe the MoCo needs to create a few new bikes in the sportbike/adventure/dirt catagories??? I would love to have a sportbike ( and not the strange buell) made by HD, or something to compete with the BMW GS bikes....

    your predictions?
  2. fnfalman

    fnfalman Chicks Dig It

    Oct 23, 2000
    California & New Mexico, US
    I think that H-D will do just fine, if not better. Why? There are plenty of people that want old school Harleys. That's a fact. Regardless of the reasons why they want to own one, they want to own one. And the V-Rod and Street Rod are drawing in power cruiser owners from other brands who always wanted a decently fast American cruiser.

  3. mdvctry


    Nov 25, 2005
    What will H-D look like in the future? Probably a lot like the Victorys and BMWs. MC buyers today aren't the lemmings that they once were, who would buy anything with H-D on it.... Well not the majority of new buyers. THat's why Victorys, metrics and European bike (especially Triumph and Ducati) are so popuar again. You can't change a H-D rider, but times they are a changing and so will the look and feel of bikes.
  4. stinx

    stinx Millennium Member

    Jul 7, 1999
    I think with all this talk of new EPA regulations coming for New bikes, the value of any used bike, especially Harley's will go up. Some of the new regulations are pretty scary.
  5. "maybe the prices in the used market will start to go down"

    Already happening. Remember when used Harleys cost as much or higher than the list on new ones? last May I bought a 2000 two-tone Electraglide Classic with 10,000 miles and a couple of grand of upgrades for $14,500.

    I feel for the guys who bought new Harleys a few years ago thinking that they could at least get back what they paid for them. Now that the MC has stepped up production to meet demand prices of used bikes are plummeting. Just look at what's on Ebay (which is where I bought the EG).

    2000 Electraglide
    1934 VLD
  6. Markcuda

    Markcuda A gun a month

    I'm sure Harley will make small changes over the next few years, like they do every year.
    Look for the Electra Glides going to water cooled motors, probably the Ultra being first :)
    Harley will be fine. That is what my little cristle ball says;)
  7. Stop CPR

    Stop CPR

    Feb 6, 2005
    It never ceases to astound me to all the Harley Davidson bashing that goes on in this forum. If you don’t like HD then ride your German, Italian or Jap bike and wave as you drive by. In November 2005 the USA trade deficit exceeded 69 billion dollars. The United States is importing 69 billon dollars more than it exports. Which side of this very dangerous balance do you contribute to?
  8. mitchshrader

    mitchshrader Deceased

    Jun 14, 2005
    have a polymer frame and burn alcohol, or MAYBE propane. it'll likely still be a V-Twin.
  9. Three-Five-Seven

    Three-Five-Seven Señor Mombo Millennium Member

    Aug 8, 1999
    Great Southwest
    Well, duh.... the company has made its mark by NOT changing. That's probably the way it will continue. My Road King tests at One Thousandth the allowable limit for O2, SO2, and NO at the emmisions testing station. You might see some vapor recovery mechanism before long, but the motors (in stock livery) burn very clean, thank you.

    Harley does not cultivate brand loyalty. They don't have to. There are more people that want a Harley than can afford one. People who really ride motorcycles -- you know, motorcyclists -- are always looking for a better mousetrap. Seems like most of them end up on Hondas in the end.

    If you are around Harley for any length of time you become alienated by their business practices, the way they treat little people, and their arrogant dealer network. Most folks end up disillusioned about the company and the scoot.

    In the end, their greed and crappy dealer network will be their downfall. Ironic, now that their bikes are good quality and dependable. In my opinion, H-D made a big mistake trying to grow their top line into the new millenium. They should have focused on galvanizing their market, strenthening their dealerships, and maximizing their capital investments from the '90s. The Motor Company should be working toward being a lean, mean, customer satisfaction machine. Sadly, the ethic of H-D brass is greed. In the end, that ethic will not work.
  10. Which side of this very dangerous balance do you contribute to? asks CPR-

    My 883 got rear ended in August, traded my R1100s in for another 883. And It lives in the garage with an FXST. Blew my life savings on HD. No regrets.

    However, I was raised right; my uncle was a WWII vet who steered me away from rice burners. But what about the next generation? As the WWII influence fades away, and the global economy blurs national pride ( like Hondas made in the USA killing GM deader than a whores heart), will bikers in the future keep the faith or will they look for the best bike???

    thats why I'd like to see HD come out with some more diverse offerings like ,say, a sport-touring bike with a 90 degree L twin, oil cooled with enough fairing to make long 80 mph drones on the highway comfortable. Put the same motor in a crotch rocket. And make a dirt bike that would rule BAJA.

    anyhow, thanks for the great opinions.
  11. Compy

    Compy CompensateWhat?

    Feb 28, 2000
    Neither here nor there
    When HD makes a bike that has an inline 4, a seating position that allows me to command the bike and a lean angle of over 10°, I'll buy one.

    This is coming from a former Night Train owner.

    HD doesn't make anything I want. Even if I were looking for a cruiser, Victory makes a better product as do most the imports. While Victory has yet to really affect HDs bottom line, I think in the next 10 years we'll start to see them change their tune quite a bit if Victory continues their current growth. I know 2 people so far that have switched and a third that REALLY wanted a Harley, but started to look closely and ordered a Victory. They have some compeition again and they can't let their arogance fool them into thinking that this is just another temporary Indian uprisal again.

    I see a lot of HD owners tout "American pride", yet they have $5k worth of bolt-on chrome and other crap made in China.
  12. fnfalman

    fnfalman Chicks Dig It

    Oct 23, 2000
    California & New Mexico, US
    OK, I'm a bit confused. You were raised right and your WWII vet uncle steered you away from Jap products but you had no problems with owning Kraut products? Unless the R1100S you were talking about isn't a BMW, then I apologize.
  13. yeah, I had a BMW.....lost my mind for a while there.

  14. fnfalman

    fnfalman Chicks Dig It

    Oct 23, 2000
    California & New Mexico, US
    I think that by marketing correctly, H-D had earned itself a niche in the motorcycling world. Let's be honest here, if the people were to want the best bikes that money can buy, H-D, BMW, Ducati and a host of other bikes won't be it. Everybody would be buying rice burners. They make the best bikes. Period. Not the best bikes for money. Best bikes. Period. Be they crotch rockets, dirt bikes or cruisers.

    Whether or not H-D's customer base will expand greatly, I don't know. But if they keep up with reasonable quality and reliability, then they won't have to ever worry about going bankrupt again.
  15. Markcuda

    Markcuda A gun a month

    My 03 Ultra went 167,205 miles and the crank bearing went out, I think that shows that the air cooled Harley Vtwin is pretty reliable.
    I hope to get the bike back today or Saturday:cool:
  16. Well, I guess I agree that the Jap bikes have it all over everything else in all objective categories. But let's be honest. If we approached motorcycling objectively none of us would go near one of the things. Motorcycling is, at its heart, a useless and stupid thing to do.

    So those of us who live for it do so for subjective, emotional reasons. I've been thinking about this because I got bit by the Harley bug a few years ago. Prior to that I had ridden Hondas and a BMW. Now there were tidbits of mastery in both of those designs. I had a BMW K100RS that had a wonderfully designed fairing. It was small and unobtrusive. Yet it managed air so well that you could ride through a rainstorm at 60mph almost without getting wet. It created this air pocket that flowed right around you on all sides. That was really cool.

    But the BMW didn't seem to have any soul. And this is what I can't quite figure out. I love my new ElectraGlide Classic in a way that I've never loved a motorcycle before. But it clearly is outdated engineering. The wind management on it is awful. Your head is right in the buffet zone. No matter what windshield you put on it you seem to get rained on not only from the front, but from both sides as well. Its fuel mileage is marginal at best, etc., etc. But I wouldn't trade it for the world. Somehow its shortcomings become appealing character, whereas if a Honda had similar shortcomings it would be up for sale the next day.

    I mention this not to make a point, but rather to express confusion on my part. I don't know where this love for Harleys with all their idiosyncrasies comes from. But it's there. And it's somehow impossible to justify, let alone explain. I think there's a gene some researcher is going to find called the Harley gene. If you have it then nothing but a Harley works for you. If you don't then you look at people who spend $20,000 on outdated equipment that rattles and snorts as if they're retarded.


  17. Texas T

    Texas T TX expatriate CLM

    Jan 25, 2000
    We do wave, but all we get in return is a one-finger salute. `l

    JK ;)
  18. fnfalman

    fnfalman Chicks Dig It

    Oct 23, 2000
    California & New Mexico, US
    There's the problem right there. You should have gone with the flat twin instead of the I-4 sewing machine.

    As for me, it's the other way around, I love the flat twin engine and the various quirky designs that distinguish BMW from everything else. And by quirks I don't mean reliability the way Ducatis are defined as character.;)
  19. NMGlocker

    NMGlocker BOOM headshot

    Jun 29, 2001
    New Mexico
    What brand forks and rear shock are on that H-D (Kayaba, Showa)?
    What electronics are on that H-D (NipponDenso)?
    What brand tires are on that H-D (Michelin)?
    What brand carbs are on that H-D (Keihin, Mikuni)?
    If you look very close you'll realize that more than likely all those parts (and many, many more) were manufactured in Japan or Europe.
    Trying to justify owning a H-D by wrapping youself in the American flag is ignorant.
    Harley makes a good cruiser, especially for the retro crowd.
    Stricter emissions standards will force them into fuel injected, water cooled motors with more restrictive exhausts. In the future I see Harley sticking to retro designs with more "modern" motors.
    There will always be a market for those.