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blueglassman
07-20-2006, 08:54 AM
I was wondering if anyone knows where to find the invoice prices on bikes, like edmunds.com does for cars. i went to a suzuki dealership yesterday and the guy wouldn't budge on the msrp. i don't particularly want to buy new, but as the 07's start coming in, maybe i'll consider a leftover '06. it would be nice to know the invoice on it though. any suggestions?

thanks.

mediajackl
07-20-2006, 11:20 AM
Short answer: No, I don't know of any.
But I think your instincts are correct...for popular models in the current model year, the price is the price.
But when the new ones come out, so do the red pens that write "Sale!"
Some local metric dealerships in Miami still have new 05's still in the crate at - what appear to be, based on advertised prices - really sweet deals.

Some day, I am going to solve the mystery of what Harley does with its unsold new bikes in a new model year. The Company never reduces prices. But during a stop at Orlando Harley this week, there were dozens of 06 bikes on the floor, and the 07s are on the way. Where they gonna go?

GRYDE001
07-20-2006, 11:24 AM
I looked for the invoice prices when I was in the new bike market last year. From what I found, they can't be obtained like auto invoices. There is one website (can't remember name) that will sell you the invoices, but I don't think there is a site for free invoice prices. Your best bet is to go to a website/forum for whatever particular bike you want and ask "who got the best deal?"

I ended up getting about $450 off of a $7k bike (05 Suzi C50), but I've talked to people that got $600 and others that didn't get anything. On bikes, you aren't going to get a huge discount like cars....there's just not as much mark-up. Good luck! :biker:

Galaxieman
07-20-2006, 01:34 PM
http://www.cyclebuy.com/invoice.htm

Used these guys purchasing both my Superhawk and Amanda's V-star. Lets you know the price where they make no profit. Figure in the local Tags & Taxes, and you can make an offer based on that, knowing exactly how much they're going to make off of your purchase. 'Dealer fees' are for the most part complete bulls#it. Note, the Cyclebuy guys have a factory estimated assembly rate, so you will notice things like the dealer listing $250 (or whatever) for assembly, and the factory estimates that cost at $75... you get the picture.

OBX-RIDER
07-20-2006, 01:47 PM
There are a few places I look to figure out what is a 'good deal'.

Lake Hill Motors ( www.hondadiscountprices.com ) in Corinth Mississippi is the deal in Hondas and Yamahas.. Their prices are "out the door" exclusive of state sales tax (that is the only figure to 'deal' in...screw all that dealer prep title and fees crap).

Honda East in Toledo ( www.hondadiscountprices.com ) is the deal in almost all the Japanese brands. Another dealer that will talk "out the door" prices.

There are other volume dealers out there. I've taken their quotes to my local dealer before and negotiated a price that worked for both of us. This works best on bikes that aren't fast movers thru the showroom. A bike that comes to mind is the Honda 599, great bike but it just hasn't sold well here. My '99 VFR800 is my all time favorite bike but it didn't sell well in Norfolk VA where all the Navy boys (a whole new level of squidom :twisted: ) had to have the latest core sportbike. I bought the bike for $1,200 under MSRP...

mbossman2
07-20-2006, 07:13 PM
Short answer: No, I don't know of any.
But I think your instincts are correct...for popular models in the current model year, the price is the price.
But when the new ones come out, so do the red pens that write "Sale!"
Some local metric dealerships in Miami still have new 05's still in the crate at - what appear to be, based on advertised prices - really sweet deals.

Some day, I am going to solve the mystery of what Harley does with its unsold new bikes in a new model year. The Company never reduces prices. But during a stop at Orlando Harley this week, there were dozens of 06 bikes on the floor, and the 07s are on the way. Where they gonna go?

I think a few things are at work here:

1) Harley is outstanding at supply chain and demand management. They have an excellent gauge of what they need and when they need it (it helps to have 100 years of purchasing and manufacturing data over just about every kind of economic climate right at your finger tips). this allows them to make just enough bikes to meet demand and occasionally create a shortage (adds to the prestige and status - not just anyone can have one - when they want one) which in turn helps keep the prices up - no surfeit of bikes for an end of year blow out devaluing your brand.

2) I also think that Harley may move these bikes overseas as needed to keep the inventory levels where they need to be to maintain dealer prices.

3) I also think that they may move leftovers into their rental fleets...Daily and weekly rentals can be phenomenal marketing vehicles. Not sure you want one? Take it out for the day. Take it to Daytona or Myrtle Beach bike week. See how you like it. If you like it, we'll credit you the rental fee onto your purchase.

(I am willing to bet that amongst the many dealer services Harley offers is dealer floor planning. Built into those contracts are the right of Harley to shuffle bike inventories around to meet their needs for #'s 2 & 3).

Harley is a finely tuned marketing and manufacturing engine - they have this down to a science. The science of making money for themselves, their dealers and providing incredible customer satisfaction and loyalty among their customers.

I, personally, think that their bikes are overpriced but if I was building a manufacturing company aimed at a niche market Harley is the company i would want to emulate.

OBX-RIDER
07-20-2006, 07:48 PM
Lake Hill Motors ( www.hondadiscountprices.com ) in Corinth Mississippi is the deal in Hondas and Yamahas.. Their prices are "out the door" exclusive of state sales tax (that is the only figure to 'deal' in...screw all that dealer prep title and fees crap).

Honda East in Toledo ( www.hondadiscountprices.com ) is the deal in almost all the Japanese brands. Another dealer that will talk "out the door" prices.


What the heck was I thinkin' NOT. Honda East Toledo is http://www.hondaeasttoledo.com/ and they carry all the Japanese brands...

OBX-RIDER
07-20-2006, 08:41 PM
Harley is a finely tuned marketing and manufacturing engine - they have this down to a science. The science of making money for themselves, their dealers and providing incredible customer satisfaction and loyalty among their customers..

I'm not quite buying all that. I don't think Harley has done badly, but the driver here was supply /demand economics fed by the baby boomer 'rebel' wannabees trying to regain the youthful revolution of the late 60's and 70's. (If you can remember the 70's you weren't there... I can't remember :thumbsup: ) Better than viagra to the middle age ego and unlike surfing, a big fat belly need be no handicap to the 'wild easyrider' riding all the way to the local bar. Being out of shape is part of the 'uniform'.

Five years ago it was such a sellers market that you could buy a Harley at msrp, ride it a year and sell it for more than you paid for it. That ain't happening anymore. Every year used Harleys sit on the market longer and longer and bring less and less. I remember when the used Harleys on Ebay passed the number of used Hondas. (Breaks my heart to think of those 'Hollister rebels' going back to their couches and their chrome polishing muscles getting flabby...) When you can buy a used Road King w/ 5,000 mis. on it at half the price of new what do you reckons going to happen.

And the 'riders' in the group are increasingly opting for bikes like the Yam FJR etc. Two of my riding buddies have recently come over to the 'dark side', one with a fijjer, the other with a RC51(?) from a Dynaglide and a Road King.

I don't mean to be dissin' Harleys, I rode one :biker: when it was part of a a bowling equipment company (Harley likes to pretend the AMF years never happened but I was there...). And as long as the road is straight and boring I'm happy riding one now. I just can't stand the whole 'badass boutique' crap w/ the company label mystique... I just try and put Lee Marvin or Marlon Brandos characters in The Wild One in one of those places and it just don't compute.

Only time will tell which of us is right but my money is on Adam Smith rather than Harley Davidson...

mbossman2
07-21-2006, 07:54 AM
I would have to respectfully disagree.

Harley has transformed itself from a near bankrupt disaster (a bowling equipment manufacturer building motorcycles?) to an incredibly vibrant and prosperous company. They have done that by marketing just about everything about themselves, making themselves profitable, their resellers profitable and driving (continuing) incredible brand loyalty.

This is not a flash in the pan event. they have been growing like this for almost 20 years.

Now you can argue was it Harley's campaign that drove the "wannabees trying to regain the youthful revolution of the late 60's and 70's" or the other way around (but that's a chicken and the egg argument).

It is HOW they have done it is the truly impressive thing. The only way you can:

Keep demand up and continuing
Manufacturer's profits up
Their reseller partner's profits up

is to master both the marketing (to drive & maintain demand) and the supply chain (to feed the demand but not sate it). Marketing and delivery is a very fine balance. Too much of one and not enough of the other can have incredible impact on your (and your partners') profitability (short and long term).

Now, will this continue? Not overly sure, as you have pointed out the sportier tourers are starting to come into vogue (probably because they provide a good balance between "comfort" and "usability", better than most crusiers...especially in urban traffic settings) but even there Harley is positioned (some would say poised) to benefit their thru their Buell brand, which has turned out some good attempts at a sportier bike.

Companies have to re-invent themselves periodically to ensure long term survival (they failed miserably with the AMF acquisition but succeeded wildly after being spun off) and, if this growing popularity does pan out long term, how HD deals with it and adjusts will be a really good indicator. In addition, the looming shift away from fossil fuels to a more eco-friendly, sustainable, renewable energy source and the decrease in overall emissions will have a great impact on all manufacturers of motor vehicles.

IMO they will do just fine. they will continue to grow (albeit at a slower pace) and their core customer base will not shift their brand loyalty (I don't believe that Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki or Kawasaki have the same intense brand loyalty that HD enjoys) and THAT is what will keep them continuing forward.

Now, if I were king of Harley:
1) I would take some of those profits and make some strategic investments in alternative energy technologies.
2) I would begin to retool my engines to be flexfuel engines.
3) develop some sort of strategy to help migrate my current customer base to whatever fuel source comes out on top (a customer loyalty trade in bonus towards the purchase of a "new" Harley maybe) and make sure that it is agressive enough and rolled out fast enough so that instead of reacting to the metric manufacturers I am forcing them to act quickly (and hopefully at a loss).
4) Once I have sufficient flexfuelers out their I would begin a targeted marketing campaign targeting the tree-huggers pointing out that HD is an eco friendly company by providing quality, American made products that are high milegage, low emission, and are not resource intensive to manufacture.

Sorry about the hijack.

E-Man
07-21-2006, 10:17 AM
As for the Harley discount, it is dealer specific. I have seen past year models with discounts (such as $1000 off MSRP), or with added "free" accessories.

I don't really fit into the Harley-type you decribe OBX, but I have seen people like that. Then again, there are the SQUIDS from the sportbike side of things too. Each has good and bad apples.

Harley's are just plain popular, so there will be a bunch of used bikes to be had.

OBX-RIDER
07-21-2006, 11:30 AM
I don't really fit into the Harley-type you decribe OBX, but I have seen people like that. Then again, there are the SQUIDS from the sportbike side of things too. Each has good and bad apples.

Absolutely. If I implied otherwise I was wrong. My friend, who now has the fijjer, rode his Dyna 20,000 mis. a year and could ride better in the twisties than half the sportbike riders (that's saying something on a dynaglide) and is the nicest person you'd ever want to meet. He is 'motorcyclist' to the core... It's the "if it ain't a Harley it ain't sh*t" pukes that chap my a$$. I was riding a motorcycle when they were on their first Huffy (w/ training wheels) ...


Harley's are just plain popular, so there will be a bunch of used bikes to be had.

Used Harleys are selling much slower and for significantly less than just a couple of years ago and this in the biggest motorcycle boom (all brands) in history. Bikes like the Suzuki SV650 are selling faster.

E-Man
07-21-2006, 11:37 AM
Yeah, totally understandable. For me it is hard as a newer rider to deal with all of the hype/my ride is better blah blah. You can read for hours about brand loyalty, and then motorcycle clubs and just keep going. Very overwhelming. I chose my bike because it fit me well and I liked the way it looked.

True on the used Harleys-maybe because people try to sell them for a higher price and the supply is there if you want to buy a new one?

OBX-RIDER
07-21-2006, 11:43 AM
I would have to respectfully disagree.

Harley has transformed itself from a near bankrupt disaster (a bowling equipment manufacturer building motorcycles?) to an incredibly vibrant and prosperous company. They have done that by marketing just about everything about themselves, making themselves profitable, their resellers profitable and driving (continuing) incredible brand loyalty.

This is not a flash in the pan event. they have been growing like this for almost 20 years.

Now you can argue was it Harley's campaign that drove the "wannabees trying to regain the youthful revolution of the late 60's and 70's" or the other way around (but that's a chicken and the egg argument).

It is HOW they have done it is the truly impressive thing. The only way you can:

Keep demand up and continuing
Manufacturer's profits up
Their reseller partner's profits up

is to master both the marketing (to drive & maintain demand) and the supply chain (to feed the demand but not sate it). Marketing and delivery is a very fine balance. Too much of one and not enough of the other can have incredible impact on your (and your partners') profitability (short and long term).

Now, will this continue? Not overly sure, as you have pointed out the sportier tourers are starting to come into vogue (probably because they provide a good balance between "comfort" and "usability", better than most crusiers...especially in urban traffic settings) but even there Harley is positioned (some would say poised) to benefit their thru their Buell brand, which has turned out some good attempts at a sportier bike.

Companies have to re-invent themselves periodically to ensure long term survival (they failed miserably with the AMF acquisition but succeeded wildly after being spun off) and, if this growing popularity does pan out long term, how HD deals with it and adjusts will be a really good indicator. In addition, the looming shift away from fossil fuels to a more eco-friendly, sustainable, renewable energy source and the decrease in overall emissions will have a great impact on all manufacturers of motor vehicles.

IMO they will do just fine. they will continue to grow (albeit at a slower pace) and their core customer base will not shift their brand loyalty (I don't believe that Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki or Kawasaki have the same intense brand loyalty that HD enjoys) and THAT is what will keep them continuing forward.

Now, if I were king of Harley:
1) I would take some of those profits and make some strategic investments in alternative energy technologies.
2) I would begin to retool my engines to be flexfuel engines.
3) develop some sort of strategy to help migrate my current customer base to whatever fuel source comes out on top (a customer loyalty trade in bonus towards the purchase of a "new" Harley maybe) and make sure that it is agressive enough and rolled out fast enough so that instead of reacting to the metric manufacturers I am forcing them to act quickly (and hopefully at a loss).
4) Once I have sufficient flexfuelers out their I would begin a targeted marketing campaign targeting the tree-huggers pointing out that HD is an eco friendly company by providing quality, American made products that are high milegage, low emission, and are not resource intensive to manufacture.

Sorry about the hijack.

Take a look at Harley stock performance(HDI) over the last few years. The word that comes to mind is abysmal. Virtually every analyst (for what they are worth) has downgraded HDI in the last year. If you bought HDI one year ago, or five years ago you would be out money. You can prove me wrong by buying a 100 shares of HDI and bragging about the money you've made 5 years from now. I'd rather put my money in a CD or in a hole in my backyard... Of course I've been wrong about companies before and have the tax deductions to prove it...:???:

mbossman2
07-21-2006, 12:36 PM
Take a look at Harley stock performance(HDI) over the last few years. The word that comes to mind is abysmal. Virtually every analyst (for what they are worth) has downgraded HDI in the last year. If you bought HDI one year ago, or five years ago you would be out money. You can prove me wrong by buying a 100 shares of HDI and bragging about the money you've made 5 years from now. I'd rather put my money in a CD or in a hole in my backyard... Of course I've been wrong about companies before and have the tax deductions to prove it...:???:

u2 huh? many dead bodies strewn along the road.

analysts:

Rule #1 analysts are morons (and shills)
Rule #2 see rule #1

But seeing you would want my comment on their downgrades:

The overall consumer spending numbers are beginning to lag and motorcycles being a luxury item a (perceived) "drop" in discretionary income = "drop" in sales. so whole sectors get lambasted simultaneously and this market is one of them)

The stock market is no longer a good gauge as to the quality of a company (and IMO hasn't been since mid 90's). there are far too many "stock market as a casino" types floating around the market which make the market far more volatile than it should be. A stock can go from "fair haired golden child" to "yesterday's fish wrappings" in a heart beat...over nothing.

Looking at fundamentals:

Revenue
Profits
Units sold
ROE
both vs previous years and the motorcycle industry as a whole.

In all of the above, they track or exceed the overall motorcycle market.

So excluding the stock market valuation, in all the other things that are (or were) important:
selling more than last time and making money HDI clearly succeeds.

Now is that to say that they will continue on towards the sunset in an up and to right mode? nope. they will need to adapt to the new landscape and i beleive that they have the knowledge, skill and talent to adjust quite nicely and successfully. They have done it before, far better than any of the cast to the wayside motorcycle manufacturers that litter history.

E-Man
07-21-2006, 12:36 PM
Has any sector (besides real estate) done extemely well in the stock market the past 6 years?

Harley Davidson seems to be doing fine which is more than we can say for the American Car Companies.

Here is the link for HD's 2nd Qtr results. (http://www.harley-davidson.com/CO/NEW/en/PressRelease_Date.asp?locale=en_US&bmLocale=en_US&HDCWPSession=GBQ1zmFT90SpYQjnvhpknpyspFsyYzQCX8yQh XZQtkywld6QpvyM!-733775578!-1132656820&id_in=983&dspmm=4&dspyy=2006)

E-Man
07-21-2006, 12:37 PM
What a minute LOL! Is this Sanglant or that Zixxer guy?

C_H_R_I_S
07-21-2006, 12:38 PM
These guys (http://www.wantfacts.com)

Are former researchers in the automotive industry. When Auto-by-tel bought their research company, they went out on their own to provide the same info for the rest of the motor vehicles.

MarcS
07-22-2006, 08:11 PM
I really don't know how this thread got jacked into a Harley-bashing thread...but...

http://www.cyclebuy.com will sell you invoices fairly cheaply.

Keep in mind money is just money and building a good relationship with a good dealer is priceless. I bought my GS at Mortons and paid more than another dealer, because Mortons is a much better shop. Or so it seems. Time will tell.

Oh, and right now you can find some nice deals on '06 Harleys, with the 07s coming out soon, and too many sitting in crates. Houses are starting to devalue now and loans are starting to convert, and people just don't have as much $ lying around for a $15k toy.

OBX-RIDER
07-22-2006, 09:54 PM
Keep in mind money is just money and building a good relationship with a good dealer is priceless. .

I would say that statement is subject to debate. Why is money just money for me, and not the dealer? Why shouldn't he be concerned with building a good relationship with me; after all I'm the guy with more than a dozen motorcycles, three kids and a wife who ride and a dozen folks who consider me the local bike guru. I've found that most sales guy's promises are near meaningless once the bike is sold. (There are often bad feelings between the wrenches and sales in a shop.)

I give the nearest dealers (local for me is 90 mis. away) a shot at my business, but if I can get the same bike for significantly less and the local guy won't deal, it's time for a road trip.

The 'relationship' I want to work on is the one with a competent mechanic at a shop. I don't want to talk to the dealership manager or the service manager, I want to talk to the mechanic. I do 80% of the work on my bikes but the 20% is just beyond me. There is one guy at the Harley shop that I have work on my Buell. He cares about peformance and knows I do to. There is one local mechanic that works on my Japanese bikes. He knows I want a torque wrench put on anything critical and that I'm willing to pay for the extra time. I know just enough about motorcycle maintenance to know these guys know what they're doing and I let them know I appreciate their skill.

OBX-RIDER
07-22-2006, 11:07 PM
The overall consumer spending numbers are beginning to lag and motorcycles being a luxury item a (perceived) "drop" in discretionary income = "drop" in sales. so whole sectors get lambasted simultaneously and this market is one of them)



Motorcycle sales as a whole are not down... http://www.theautochannel.com/news/2006/07/20/015390.html According to this they are experiencing the best year ever in 2006 with 14 straight years of increasing sales (just a quick look at the prices of used bikes[non-Harleys] told me this, they are at the highest percentage of msrp I've ever seen). But for the first time in years (like since the AMF days) Harley is having to offer discounts to clear the way for next years model.

I'm not "bashing" the machine (that's for you MarcS) but I think HDI has had more than their share of serendipity in their success which is more about "sizzle" than it is about "steak". I think the reception to the V-Rod has been lukewarm at best and I see very few Buells on the track (except my own which doesn't stand a ghost of a chance against me gixxer or my son's Honda 'goof'.)

They have done a great job of riding the rainbow but they've got some serious work to do (and trying to copyright "potato-potato-potato" ain't it) to have any chance at continueing their success. Like coming up with a competitive AMA Superbike or Supersport or developing a MotoGP machine. I don't think they're doing it and I think their salad days are just about done...

Five years should tell... How about tickets to the 2011 AMA Superbike races at VIR. If the consensus is that HDI is a paragon of corporate wisdom by then, I'll buy you a weekend pass, if the consensus is it's prime day has passed, you buy me a weekend pass....

mbossman2
07-23-2006, 06:51 AM
Motorcycle sales as a whole are not down... http://www.theautochannel.com/news/2006/07/20/015390.html

no, they are not. What the analysts are doing is predicting that they will drop which will cut into sales which will cut into revenue which will (unless counterbalanced with cost cutting) cut into profits which will make a stock less valuable --- hence the downgrade, warning their clients to look to other places to put their money.

Being an analyst is like being a tea leaf or tarot card reader: try to "see" the future and then see how a company (and their stock) will be affected by this future.

There are outside factors that can and do impact even the most well run companies. You could be the greatest business manager/director/operator in the history of the world, have the slickest, most smoothly operating, efficient company in the entire economy...but if the economy tanks and no mney is being spent - you are going to go down the tubes.



But for the first time in years (like since the AMF days) Harley is having to offer discounts to clear the way for next years model.

you overlook that the current economy has the potential to tumble more now than anytime since the spinoff and consumers are getting a little jittery and when they are nervous, they don't spend money and if given a choice they may opt for the lower priced option even though they may value more the more expensive option, but, when $$$ frees up again, they will spend the money on something they value more (and it is pretty obvious that HD's value proposition is not price, but image and image has, does and will sell - and many times over price - contrary to popular belief, price is not the overriding deciding factor in a purchase - otherwise we would all be driving Yugos)

OBX, you are doing the same thing analysts are doing, you are trying to predict and justify the future - so far, you feel that HD is not well managed because of 1 data point but not looking at the overall picture. I believe that HD's management's history has shown them to be highly capable in turning a company around from "one foot in the grave and the other on a banana peel" to an extremely potent, effective and efficient company and molding them and shaping them in such a way to weather any upcoming economic hiccups. In fact, they have more of a job to do that than the big 4 Japanese as in this sector, HDI relies almost solely on motorcycles for their revenue stream and any slip in the US economy will hit them disproportionately as compared to Honda (who makes cars), Yamaha (who makes musical insturments, A/V products and other electronic gizmos), Suzuki (cars and engines) and Kawasaki (electronics, heavy industrial equipment, ships, airplanes etc - in fact they are the best diversified of the lot) plus those companies also do not depend as heavily on the US market for their profitability.

Prognostication is a tough job (Iwouldn't want to rely on it for my sole source of income) and those predictions (propechies?) are sometimes misinterpreted...not the events themselves, but the underlying background reasons. B is the future, but is B caused by: A? J? Z? or that guy sitting out in the beachers eating a hotdog and drinking a beer? In highly complex situations (the economy and its effect and impact upon a wider ranging scope of companies certainly qualifies), there are so many variables that the "what" is far easier (relatively) to predict than the "why".


Like coming up with a competitive AMA Superbike or Supersport or developing a MotoGP machine. I don't think they're doing it and I think their salad days are just about done...

why? racing can be a great test bed for new technology but the cost benefit of fielding a top flight bike/team may not work out for thier overall structure. The rule of diminishing returns pops up: (hypothetical #'s). it may cost :

$100K to field a "good" team
$200K to field a "better" team
$400K to field a "best" team.

With a "good" team, you see a $110K increase in sales
with a "better" team you see a $199K increase in sales
with a "best" team you see a $250K increase in sales


Does that make sense beyond #1? all of the above are increases to be sure (and they might even make OBX slightly happy) BUT you spend money to make money...and all but the "good" team lose money so the effort is wasted.

Plus, does your "core" market watch (or even care about) AMA superbike? If not, the marketing and engineering executives who pushed for entry here would be looking for new jobs as the ROI is probably not there and technology developed may not be seen as a benefit to your customers (people by benefits, not features). IE: "Hey, this highly engineered, precisely machined doo-hickey dealie bobber will increase the handling of your bike. Almost makes you feel like you are riding a sports bike, like a gixxer!!!" Customer: "I came in to buy a Road King as I like the way it looks and makes me look" (Translation: "So what? You want me to spend my money on this? Why? Shut up and tell me about those really loud pipes and chromed "DILLIGAF" license plate holder.")

OBX-RIDER
07-23-2006, 09:04 AM
This is a fruitless argument.

When I demonstrate your argument is wrong via documentation ie. "drop in sales', you just change your position that some unknown and undocumented analyst predicts a drop in sales.

Then you put words in my mouth to wit I "feel that HD is not well managed"; please give me my quote where I said that. I have never even come close to saying that and don't believe it at all. I just feel that a significant amount of their success is due to factors outside of the 'boardroom'.

Where did I "predict and justify (?) the future"? I have pointed out trends that are factually occurring right now (building inventory of unsold product, decreasing price of product, (partial) failure of new product) and made a logical extrapolation that has historical basis. (This is very fundamental micro-economics ie. Adam Smith...)

Then you admittedly ("hypothetical #'s) make up a set of numbers to further refute my arguments. Can I ask what possible validity that has? Do you think the adage "win on Sunday, sell on Monday" is just a clever saying? Do you think that HD doesn't have and isn't proud of their racing history http://www.harley-davidson.com/wcm/content/pages/racing/racing_history.jsp?HDCWPSession=GD2FK3DW0fBRsHXkXY LxDGlyT7qBJSDt17VDfThFyShnk4LNXbbh!2014642736!-510673066&locale=en_us That is on the HD website. It's not something I 'made up'. Why would they so proudly post it if racing is so irrelevant to their marketing?

Never mind...

FlyingTndrbox
07-23-2006, 08:13 PM
I don't mean to be dissin' Harleys, I rode one :biker: when it was part of a a bowling equipment company (Harley likes to pretend the AMF years never happened but I was there...). And as long as the road is straight and boring I'm happy riding one now. I just can't stand the whole 'badass boutique' crap w/ the company label mystique... I just try and put Lee Marvin or Marlon Brandos characters in The Wild One in one of those places and it just don't compute.

Shouldn't the modern Brando character be riding a Triumph anyway? :mrgreen: The question is whether it should be a Rocket Three, Thruxton, or Speed Triple.

The idea of a flex-fuel bike is interesting, but most of the alternative fuel sources are pretty hard to find. There aren't any ethanol stations where I live. But if it does become successful, retooling a fuel injected bike is so easy it's not really worth the effort to invest in getting such things built now. Just a couple of extra sensors, some alternate materials in a few places, and a little more computer programming.

A flex-fuel bike that could run on either gasoline or a gaseous fuel like propane or CNG would require a second, rather strange looking, high pressure fuel tank - something I couldn't see integrating into the style of a normal cruiser. So I guess that would have the opposite problem, needing an extensive redesign instead of a tiny one, and it's a lot of money sunk after something that may never take off.

mbossman2
07-24-2006, 08:11 AM
This is a fruitless argument.

When I demonstrate your argument is wrong via documentation ie. "drop in sales', you just change your position that some unknown and undocumented analyst predicts a drop in sales.

Then you put words in my mouth to wit I "feel that HD is not well managed"; please give me my quote where I said that. I have never even come close to saying that and don't believe it at all. I just feel that a significant amount of their success is due to factors outside of the 'boardroom'.

Where did I "predict and justify (?) the future"? I have pointed out trends that are factually occurring right now (building inventory of unsold product, decreasing price of product, (partial) failure of new product) and made a logical extrapolation that has historical basis. (This is very fundamental micro-economics ie. Adam Smith...)

Then you admittedly ("hypothetical #'s) make up a set of numbers to further refute my arguments. Can I ask what possible validity that has? Do you think the adage "win on Sunday, sell on Monday" is just a clever saying? Do you think that HD doesn't have and isn't proud of their racing history http://www.harley-davidson.com/wcm/content/pages/racing/racing_history.jsp?HDCWPSession=GD2FK3DW0fBRsHXkXY LxDGlyT7qBJSDt17VDfThFyShnk4LNXbbh!2014642736!-510673066&locale=en_us That is on the HD website. It's not something I 'made up'. Why would they so proudly post it if racing is so irrelevant to their marketing?

Never mind...

not at all....we are just approaching the issue from 2 different POV's.

lets going point by point:

Analysts and their downgrades and "drop in sales":
Why do analysts downgrade a stock? it is because they anticipate a drop (or slowing pace of increase) in stock value. The main driver of stock value is profit and the main impact on profit is "top line revenue" (overall sales). So it follows that a drop in sales is what is being forecast by analysts. Now, why would sales drop? ther are several reasons, but the one that sticks out the most is an overall decline in consumer spending/discretionary income. My point here is that ANALYSTS are, thru their downgrades, predicting a shift and that shift in a consumer focused product segment is, 9 time out of 10, a drop in sales. Looking at the overall economic #'s of late, they may be correct (in a slow down in the economy) but that slow down is well outside the control of any manufacturer.

My putting words in your mouth:
While you did not say specifically that HD is poorly managed, you indicated that their growth had more to do with the environment than any other factor (which BTW does not explain their run up in the years prior to 1990 or so), which intimates pretty strongly your stance. if my interpretation is inccorrect, I apologize.

Racing and the "numbers": My point here is 2 fold:

1) AMA racing's "flagship" is superbike racing. Something from my eye that holds little or no attraction to the average Harley rider. So why would Harley put any money into a superbike team when little or none of their target market watches? they put their $$$ where they believe it will have the most impact and "superbike" type racing is not it. (and I base my perception of your view of racing upon the bikes listed in your sig)

2) $$$'s. The point I was trying to make is to develop a basic racing team costs x, to be twice as good costs more than 2x, and to be better still has an even higher incremental cost. to use a sound analogy: to double the volume requires a power increase by a square (power to produce 3 costs 3. power necessary to produce 6 is 9, the power to produce 12 is 81). this increase is something that is not confined to racing but just about any improving process. Eventually increases are no longer cost effective.


Build up of inventory (new and used):

there are 2 components to an inventory increase: the manufacturer's production and the retailers purchases. The 2 are tightly interconnected: HD makes as many bikes as their retailers expect to sell (+/- a few for "flex"). Now, if the dealers forecasted to sell 348,000 motorclycles last year (and did) and then expect to sell 352,000 this year (close to what HD is predicting) wouldn't it behoove HD to build that many bikes? and if the retailers don't execute and sell as many bikes as they had planned, tell me, how is that the fault of HD as a company? or a reflection upon them? They made product based upon a historically accurate forecasting mechansim.

Now, could HDI be "stuffing the channel"? they might be, but that is not a long term effective strategy (it has the immediate impact of eroding "street" pricing and has the long term effect of devaluing their brand. Stuffing is contrary to the apparent strategy of this current management.

Ditto with the number of used bikes on the market. HD's are pricey (more than the average) and many folks do buy them with "eyes bigger than their stomachs". So they have a wallet driven buyers remorse. In addition, if a consumer is feeling a little jittery about their $$$ prospects, might it not be a good thing to liquidate some of their "luxury" high dollar assets? Both of these lead to increases in used bike inventories. Again, how is tha related to the manufacturer? they didn't force these folks into buying their bike, they did so of their own free will.

My point is that there are a lot more factors at work here than just the manufactuer driven ones.

mbossman2
07-24-2006, 08:18 AM
A flex-fuel bike that could run on either gasoline or a gaseous fuel like propane or CNG would require a second, rather strange looking, high pressure fuel tank - something I couldn't see integrating into the style of a normal cruiser. So I guess that would have the opposite problem, needing an extensive redesign instead of a tiny one, and it's a lot of money sunk after something that may never take off.

the flexfuel design mentioned above is more focused on the ability to run "regular" 100% gasoline, the current 85/15 mix of gas/ethanol and the future (?) mix of 85/15 ethanol/gas than a pressurzed CNG (in fact I would be deathly afraid to have such a high pressure thank sitting between my legs).

the ability to run the E85 mix is not something (as I understand it) that can be easily retrofitted onto an engine. The engine must be built from scratch with that in mind. Now, with the wider adoption of EFI (and the increased use of computers to control them), presents a new opportunity for manufacturers to implement the more flexible design. Harley, with its strong US marketshare, especially on larger bikes, could be a leader in this area.

OBX-RIDER
07-25-2006, 09:30 PM
Just to show that neither one of us(mbossman2 and myself but more mbossman2 :twisted: ) knows what the f*ck we are talking about, Harley Davidson is sponsoring an AMA Race team this year.... Jeremy McWilliams on a Buell XBRR in Formula Extreme. It's a 'fronted' sponsorship so HD has cover if it does poorly but look at the Sponsors... Harley-Davidson Financial Services, Screamin' Eagle SYN3 Synthetic Motorcycle Lubricant, and Harley-Davidson Visa...thru two flagship dealerships, Warr's of London Harley-Davidson/Buell (Great Britain) and Hal's Harley-Davidson/Buell ( New Berlin, WI).

And the rider is Jeremy McWilliams, a former MotoGP rider with serious development credentials.

I mean if HD were to want to get in the AMA racing game on the development level while maintaining a ghost of corporate deniability if the effort sucked, how else would you do it...? Only an idiot would think that these sponsors are acting on their own without Big HD's okay.

Mbossman2 please explain to me again why HD isn't interested in AMA racing??? :lol2: