Harley-Davidson Stopping Buell Motorcycles Production, Putting MV Agusta For Sale.

logo1This morning, Harley-Davidson announced its 3rd quarter results, and unveiled that production of Buell motorcycles are immediately discontinued and that the company will look for a buyer for MV Augusta. Chief Executive Officer of Harley-Davidson, Inc. Wandell stated “Moving forward our strategy is designed to strengthen Harley-Davidson for long-term growth and deliver results through increased focus. As our announcement regarding Buell and MV Agusta indicates, we are moving with the speed and decisiveness required to bring our business strategy to life. The fact is we must focus both our effort and our investment on the Harley-Davidson brand, as we believe this provides an optimal path to sustained, meaningful, long-term growth.”
    
logo2Worldwide retail sales of new Harley-Davidson® motorcycles declined 21.3 percent in the third quarter compared to last year’s third quarter, an improvement from the 30.1 percent decline in this year’s second quarter. An 84.1 percent decline in net income and an 84.5 percent decline in diluted earnings per share from the year-ago quarter reflected lower motorcycle shipments and the effects of the economy on retail and wholesale loan performance at Harley-Davidson Financial Services.

For 2009 compared to 2008 through nine months, retail sales of Harley-Davidson motorcycles decreased 22.9 percent worldwide, 25.5 percent in the U.S. and 16.5 percent in international markets. Industry-wide U.S. retail heavyweight motorcycle sales declined 38.7 percent year to date in 2009, compared to 2008.

logo3In a press conference, a very emotional Erik Buell announced that his company will discontinue production of Buell motorcycles. Remaining inventories of Buell motorcycles, accessories and apparel, while they last, will continue to be sold through authorized dealerships. Warranty coverage will continue as normal for Buell motorcycles and the Company will provide replacement parts and service through dealerships.

Zipper's

44 Responses to “Harley-Davidson Stopping Buell Motorcycles Production, Putting MV Agusta For Sale.”


  1. 1 Strada Oct 15th, 2009 at 3:12 pm
  2. 2 BD Oct 15th, 2009 at 3:19 pm

    Too bad HD did not represent more people. If so because of their voting power they could get a bail out from the feds. This won’t ever happen here. Too bad!!!

  3. 3 just my opinion Oct 15th, 2009 at 3:23 pm

    It is about time that someone started making these tough choices at hd maybe now they will survive.wonder why they did not include the v rod?

  4. 4 Strada Oct 15th, 2009 at 3:32 pm

    If BMW can sell Mini’s from a BMW dealership, many M-B dealers sell smart from their dealership. Why can’t H-D dealers sell Buell and MV Agusta from their dealership?

  5. 5 Darin Maltsbeerger Oct 15th, 2009 at 5:04 pm

    A truly sad day………what few of us realize is that the giant is killing off their perceived “niche market sales” divisions in an attempt to save itself. Generation Y doesn’t want a Fatboy , they want sport bikes. I know because I have 30-40 of them every year in my classroom. H-D thinks that building bikes in India and bringing them back over here is another part of the answer…………..Not hardly. I for one, have always believed in what Harley-Davidson stood for………These new plans to save itself only turn my stomach the same way General Motors’ plan to save itself has. For over twenty-five years I have only owned GM automobiles………but I won’t support a company that does not believe in supporting my lifestyle and my community……or my Country. The same goes for my motorcycles. I’ll buy a Buell, Ride it for twenty-five years and give the finger to the giant just for spite!

  6. 6 fuji Oct 15th, 2009 at 5:11 pm

    Total turn around in corporate thnking from just a year ago. HD bought MV Agusta in oct 2008.

    Unloading of Buell doesn’t surprise me. The sell off of MV Agusta does.

    I really thought MV Agusta was Harleys future epecially in Europe/younger buyers.

  7. 7 J Oct 15th, 2009 at 5:20 pm

    Well, the MV Agusta purchase was a disaster from day one- Harley got stuck with a huge writedown of goodwill that I can’t believe they didn’t research before the purchase…. Chances are what they receive for MV will be only a fraction of what they paid for it- sucks getting slapped going in and out of a deal…. Besides that, they never did explain to anyone what exactly they planned to do with MV- doubt they ever knew.

    Buell is tougher to understand. I can’t believe that the margin on Buells isn’t pretty fat- not like they update tooling every month, plus I think there are intangibles- they make the showroom more interesting to me, anyway….. I wonder why they didn’t focus more on European sales?

    All in all, perhaps a sign that Harley has kicked the investment bankers out of the room, and the adults are running the zoo again; They don’t project any improvement in margins or sales for the next quarter tho, so more pain to come, looks like to me.

    Wow- stock price is way too high for these numbers, tho… Look for Harley to issue a secondary offering soon- do it the Obama way and print their way out oft trouble…..

  8. 8 Dave Blevins Oct 15th, 2009 at 5:51 pm

    I had high hopes for a Buell/MV Augusta meeting of the minds and bikes… looks like that dream has died.
    Darn shame too.

  9. 9 jatinder pal Oct 16th, 2009 at 6:51 am

    Dave said right…..shame on harley and their strategy…..Harley does blow the job…

  10. 10 Frank Rainieri Oct 16th, 2009 at 7:47 am

    A hamburger giant, M-something, once said that to include a healty veggie burger on their menu would suggest that something was wrong with their main dish, the fatburger. Health food is another market and they knew that. If you take notice, the emphasis is on indulgence, not nutrition in their marketing. With that said, take a look at the high dollar HD bikes. Bikes for beginners who only need to admire the machine, not concentrate on riding technique or what People who think with their wallet and know very little about riding. To suggest that Buell is a worthwhile machine undercuts the philosophy that riding is all about a shining moment, not learning proper technique to hit the corners.

    Sportbikes are heresy to cruisers, that’s why the V-Rod will never have rearsets or even approach correct ergonomics to qualify as a sports machine. Harley deserves what it will get.

  11. 11 Grayhawk Oct 16th, 2009 at 8:15 am

    Buell the motorcycle is what it is but not the main line revenue driver that would contribute the incoming revenue needed to stand alone half as much add to the coffers of the parent, sad but true.

    Buell the brand in the US was a hit and miss for dealers as it seemed to do well if the dealer was located in a twisty area of the country or near a military base or ideally both combined otherwise it was minimal sales and huge overhead/sitting/money eating inventory. Doomed if not held up by the parent but the parent HD made the decision it had to go lean go baseline product only.

    MV although stacked with potential needed HD funding to further its goals thus the couple new models after acquisition, but the burden of further HD revenue losses combined with new tax burden changes in Milwaukee last year probably made that decision appropriate no matter the sentiment.

    Seems like Milwaukee as well as York need to look into the burdening of cost of doing business in their respective areas for their respective reasons or ?

    Erik is the consumate passionate enthusiast/engineer/ visionary/designer, etc. and is still a part of the HD company and as I understand it in talks on a new advisory/contirbutive role, a plus to retain for sure but having said that am sure he could forge ahead on his own both financially and from a mc developer position. Well wishes to Eric whichever path he takes.

    HDFS still the anchor as well as lendor issues and discretionary spending concerns of the worried.

    Ride out the storm, pull in the sails of multiple paths and slow Washingtons ass down.

  12. 12 Mike Kiwi Tomas, Kiwi Indian Motorcycles Oct 16th, 2009 at 8:20 am

    It will be interesting to see how this new plan works out. I’d be one to see better engineering created with such an American Iconic brand rather the status quo. The aftermarket has a lot to do with fueling Harleys successful days but trying to drive them away and control their own market creates incest. The financial nuclear melt down that happened a year ago to the US was not created by us (genuine Americans) nor Harley Davidson but it is one we are all having to pay for. Take the high road and don’t take any Government handouts and lead like Ford, not GM and Chrysler. Earn respect which is what the Harley brand has stood for.

  13. 13 Dar - Brass Balls Bobbers & Choppers Oct 16th, 2009 at 8:29 am

    So sad for Erik Buell and his company. My heart goes out to the men and women who are loosing a job and to a man who is loosing his life’s work. Job well done Erik. The world should stand up and take notice of what you have done. The dreamer created his dream. Though I understand the Harley decision… well actually I don’t… there are some things you just don’t do, somethings you stick with. They should have stuck with Buell.

  14. 14 Grayhawk Oct 16th, 2009 at 9:25 am

    There is another path here and that is future model line, the model linesof a given brand come and go in a brand and with all the separate coorporate issues and costs associated with a subsiderary coorporation as was the Buell entity to HD and all the co-mingling issues, separate, duplicating/duplicated and compounding costs and burdens and positions, etc., etc., etc. associated with Buell the Corporation; one might not be stretching to far to see some potential for a Buell like model line or should I say a HD sport bike line in the future especially if the discussions with Mr. Buell reflect a continuing role within HD proper.

  15. 15 Z-Man Oct 16th, 2009 at 10:25 am

    While it may make sense to the motor company from a financial perspective, on a personal level, the sudden elimination of Buell saddens me and makes me feel like a sucker. I purchased my first Buell this summer after owning a couple of Harleys and a Sucker Punch Sally. Though I am 48, the Buell makes me feel like a kid every time I hop on it. And I also have a sense of pride because it isn’t just another Asian import. The bike is a joy to ride, and the price point didn’t leave me gasping for air. I was looking forward to purchasing new models in the future, and now there is no future. Hopefully someone will pick up where Mr Buell was forced to stop.

  16. 16 Cade Oct 16th, 2009 at 10:34 am

    Grayhawk,
    Very good points made here by you. The only problem being is the way this nation is going nothing Harley and others may do can turn or save this snowball from it’s roll into the abysis.And remember it’s the change the majority wanted.

  17. 17 Dale Oct 16th, 2009 at 10:56 am

    Reposting my comments from the “Thank You Erik Buell” thread:

    I agree with many that this is a VERY sad time for the industry. Erik Buell is a genius and world-class innovator of the industry. Personally, I am a down to the bone Harley enthusiast. I own two H-Ds, saving up for a third and have many thousands of dollars invested in H-D memorabilia. I know times are tough but I think this is a shortsighted decision by the motor company to eliminate Buell.

    It has been clear that the motor company has been targeting their efforts on customer demographics other than the traditional middle aged male — more specifically they have been targeting women and younger customer and rightly so. In my mind with the elimination of Buell, they have closed a door on many of the younger customers. Yes, the Sportster Nightster and Iron 883 are cool retro looking machines that some of the young customers will gravitate to but let’s face it many of them are into sport bikes.

    Buell gave the younger customers sport bike products and as these same customers get older a bond to the Harley-Davidson brand which would be beneficial when they would be more interested moving into the larger cruiser motorcycle market. In addition, Buell gave those who want to buy American and wanted a sport bike an option to a quality, attractive machines at a competitive price. I guess the motor company can create sport bikes with the H-D brand but I do not think H-D resonates well with the younger crowd. Buell gave them a separate identity with a VERY strong bond to the H-D family tree.

    I wish Erik Buell and all of the employees of Buell the very best. You can tell that they all had a deep passion and dedication to the brand and the products they created. As a motorcycle enthusiast, I deeply admire and appreciate. THANK YOU!

  18. 18 Michael Schacht Crocker Motorcycle Co. Oct 16th, 2009 at 11:32 am

    We are very sorry to hear the bad news. Not so much for MV, although we have always liked their products, but especially for Eric Buell and his talented team. Seeing another American Motorcycle manufacturer cease to exist is cause for us all to mourn!

  19. 19 Dang it all Oct 16th, 2009 at 11:37 am

    Congrats to Erk Buell for a beautiful run. No shame in your game…you made a beautiful thing come to life, and you will persevere. There has to be somebody out there ready to reinvent this wheel, even if it’s on hold for a couple years.
    Maybe Lorenzo Lamas has some more money to invest.

    I wish you well Erik.

  20. 20 Grayhawk Oct 16th, 2009 at 1:11 pm

    Yea Cade the last point about slowing Washington is the biggest factor by far across the industry and as the economic whole, also I should have said Buell Motorcycle Company not cooporation not knowing the exact coorporate breakdowns but point is the same Buell was complicated being so entwined with HD on one hand but having coorporate buildup structure as a stand alone hurt the ability to just sell it off as in MV thus the resulting demise of brand name. That along with the amounts of required cash investment by HD into Buell.

    Excerpt From the Milwaukee Business Journal in regards to the Buell brand investments by HD:

    Wandell said that the company intends to reinvest capital that would have gone into the Buell brand into the Harley-Davidson brand. The corporation made a $6.6 million capital investment in Buell last year and a $4 million investment so far this year. In return, the brand lost $18 million in 2008 and $27 million so far in 2009, including the $14.2 million impairment charge, he said.

    Those dollars will be better spent on the key Harley-Davidson brand, Wandell said, despite the fact that he still believes Buell is a “great product” with “passionate employees.”

    Wandell said the Buell brand wasn’t put on the selling block, like MV Agusta, because it was too integrated with Harley-Davidson’s operations. MV Agusta, on the other hand, was still quite independent from Harley-Davidson.

    “It was very easy to package and sell that business (MV Agusta) as a stand-alone business,” Wandell said.

    Also an interesting timeline line of the past year in regards to HD, below.

    http://milwaukee.bizjournals.com/milwaukee/stories/2009/10/12/daily64.html

  21. 21 Jeff Nicklus Oct 16th, 2009 at 3:45 pm

    All I can say is: It is about time someone at Harley got their head out of their ass and starting making some of the tough business decisions that should have been made several years ago. Hopefully this is not too little too late …….

    Over & Out,

    Jeff

  22. 22 OVER THE HILL &PICKING UP SPEED Oct 16th, 2009 at 4:23 pm

    smart move H.D. i’m in my late fifty’s with two tricked out Harley’s and a superbike. but to stop production of the Buells which would hook many customers with a 40-50 year life span still on a Harley and go for the Trike market with most people with a ten year life span?
    BRILLIANT!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  23. 23 Jeff Nicklus Oct 16th, 2009 at 4:58 pm

    Over the Hill,

    Have you given any thought to the fact that if Buells were selling HD would have never dumped them? It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure that one out. HD is in a much more critical financial situation that requires immediate action to survive. The company must first get the leaks in the ship stopped before they worry about anything 10-20-30 years down the road. They can always build another Buell style bike ….. if the company survives, if not the Buell plant scrapping is a moot point!

    Over & Out,

    Jeff

  24. 24 OVER THE HILL &PICKING UP SPEED Oct 16th, 2009 at 5:08 pm

    and the 33thousand dollar trikes are just flying out the doors,

  25. 25 1550tc Oct 16th, 2009 at 6:05 pm

    Jeff

    Look at the positive, look at those hi powered buel engined cutoms we can except in the future…….Vince and the boys at redneck should come up with a new frame for these late model buel engine to fit into………….mmmmmmmm 140hp on a 350 lbs custom, sounds awesome to me.

    Jeff i forget which model i rode a 2002 something with bags ect, nice sport touring bike that if it broke down in, Upperbumfuck , AK i could get fixed.

    Iam curious what the dealers are saying about this. The dealer i spoke with said he was ready to blow off his 4 09’s at 50% off if he had too!! He was just waiting to see how much HD was offereing in dealer incentives.

  26. 26 just my opinion Oct 16th, 2009 at 10:05 pm

    Jeff; As much as it pains me I must agree with your comments here. I was wondering why they kept the V-Rod but after some thought, I think I may understand. If HD was to stop the v-rod line they would be admitting that a HD brand bike failed. Much easier to admit Buell and Agusta are failed attempts than to let people think a Harley was a bad idea. I bet V-Rod will be next thou. I was talking to a finance manager for a HD dealer last week and asked about their finance options. I asked if HD is paying 15% interest on those bonds they sold, how much are they charging their customers? Answer if you have perfect or near perfect credit you can finance a new bike at 10% but if the customer has any blemishes at all they will pay between 20 and 25%. Who in their right mind would finance a bike at 20 or 25% interest ? Small wonder why they are in trouble, how can their dealers sell bikes to the average guy and expect him or her to pay 500 a month in interest. I may not be the smartest business man but I do understand that if a company charges such high rates they will cost themselves sales and if they cost them selves sales they will have a hard time paying the high interest rates they promised when they sold the bonds. Its a vicious cycle ” no pun intended” I personally hope that HD can pull this all together but it is not looking good.

  27. 27 1550tc Oct 16th, 2009 at 11:52 pm

    JMO

    Answer if you have perfect or near perfect credit you can finance a new bike at 10% but if the customer has any blemishes at all they will pay between 20 and 25%

    i think you or this guy have your % rate wrong……….dude i know the us market & economy are in rough shape but, its not 1980 is it??

  28. 28 Bonneville´s fastest naked man... Oct 17th, 2009 at 4:41 am

    In previous posts i´ve been very hard about HD and its last moves. It is quite logical that a big company becomes an international holding more related to financial profits than to keep the wheels on the ground and don´t forget from where they come from. It seems that they have learn nothing about their own history. It is not the first time ( and it will not be the last one) in wich the Company is having financial problems. I remember when they have targeted building 500.000 ( half a million) bikes a year…..I think that it speaks for itself.They have been sooo ambitious that they have lost the point of view…
    And now they have to kill a brand they support and trust from the begining. As a Buellist i am sad about this news, and things like this make me feel each time more and more angry about this self proclaimed MOTOR COMPANY guys….

  29. 29 just my opinion Oct 17th, 2009 at 11:45 am

    1550tc.I wish I could tell you it is not true but it is those are the numbers I was told. Like I said before it is not looking good for hd.I hope they can work thru all this it would be a horible thing for all of us in the industry if they fail.

  30. 30 Jeff Nicklus Oct 17th, 2009 at 5:16 pm

    Over the Hill,

    Actually from what I am told sales of the HD Trike is exceeding the pace that HD had projected …. what those numbers are I have no idea ….. I will say this however: I have seen a bunch of the new trikes on the roads at events and I have yet to see my second Buell at those same events. One would hope that if the trike’s sales start to resemble the Buell they would discontinue the trike. One more thing: The Trike demographics are geared toward the 50-60 something’s who can afford the $33K per bike whereas the Buell is directed at the 20 something’s who do not have two nickels to rub together. Think about that for a minute and get back to me.

    Just My Opinion,

    ……”Jeff; As much as it pains me I must agree with your comments here.” …….

    Sorta flows off the tongue doesn’t it?

    Over & Out,

    Jeff

  31. 31 just my opinion Oct 17th, 2009 at 5:46 pm

    ……”Jeff; As much as it pains me I must agree with your comments here.” …….

    Sorta flows off the tongue doesn’t it?

    Yes but it left a bad taste in my mouth. LOL I think I need a drink, maybe scotch would kill that taste. Going home to try and kill the pain now.

  32. 32 Jeff Nicklus Oct 17th, 2009 at 6:29 pm

    Just my Opinion,

    12 year old Dewars always works for me ………

    You guys have any snow yet?

    Over & Out,

    Jeff

  33. 33 CA Oct 17th, 2009 at 7:08 pm

    Capitalism at its best!

  34. 34 OVER THE HILL AND PICKING UP SPEED Oct 17th, 2009 at 8:34 pm

    jeff, looks like you spend to much time on a computer and not making it to any major events or out riding
    if you did you would have noticed the major growth in the last 4 years at sturgis, daytona, etc. etc. where i have seen a ever increasing growth of 30-40 thousand and stock sport and superbikes.
    get out and ride

  35. 35 Todd8080 Oct 18th, 2009 at 3:21 am

    I’m sorry for the demise of Buell Motorcycles, but does this really come as a shock to anyone?

    Buell always seemed out of place as part of the MoCo, and to be honest, it never sat well with me when Harley bought MV Agusta, too.

    Yes, I can appreciate both Buell and MV Agusta’s products, but they’re so far removed from my idea of what a motorcycle should be that I see it as a plus that Harley’s decided to go it alone and concentrate on doing what they do best.

    Look back at Harley history. Every single time they introduced “little” bikes or “trendy” bikes, they failed to do well. The XLCR was a great machine but it didn’t follow Harley tradition, so it didn’t sell.

    All the little Aermacchis were a failure. The horizontally opposed 584cc Sport lasted five years and they couldn’t give ’em away. The XA and the Nova never even made it to production. All because they weren’t Big Twins.

    Look at the millions Harley invested in the V-Rod and we all know sales of them have been consistently stagnant since they introduced them in 2001.

    Hell, the Sportster is barely tolerated by most Harley owners as it is, and that’s only because it’s basically a smaller version of the Big Twin. If it was a single or vertical twin it would have been dropped from the lineup in the late Fifties due to pathetic sales.

    Frankly it wouldn’t bother me in the least if the MoCo announced tomorrow that it was discontinuing the Sportster. What do I care?

    Like it or not, the MoCo got where it is by making Big Twins. There are plenty of companies making sport bikes, but Harley’s Big Twin will always be the king of American highways.

    Let the Japanese make disposable plastic wheelie toys, if the Motor Company dies with our generation, then future riders can buy foreign junk and electric treehugger bikes and wallow in their own crapulence. It’ll serve ’em right for having such bad taste.

  36. 36 Grayhawk Oct 18th, 2009 at 7:54 am

    Todd Are ya sure about those facts ?

    Nova:
    The Motor Company began moving in a new direction, one that included the Nova project. In the years of 1978 through 1980, the motorcycle division was perhaps AMF’s largest profit center, according to Bleustein.
    Then Gott retired, Tom York took over AMF, and the outlook suddenly changed. Previously AMF’s business was roughly half industrial and half leisure, Harley being part of the latter group. In a major shift in strategy, York ordered the expansion of the industrial side, and financed it with profits from the leisure side. Under this plan Harley-Davidson, AMF’s largest profit generator, would become the cash cow, milked of capital to feed other business interests. The Nova project, ultimately considered expensive and risky, fell victim to the bottom line, and was terminated.

    In a way, however, the Nova’s demise sparked Harley-Davidson’s resurgence. Cutting Nova funds was one of the reasons Beals led the so-called “gang of 13″ to propose buying the company back from AMF. AMF agreed, and by mid-1981 Harley-Davidson became a privately held company. Highly leveraged with an enormous bank debt, Harley’s future options boiled down to just two-either continue development of the Evolution V-twin, or build the Nova. The Nova was the long-range hope, the 10-year promise. But air-cooled twins promised the most immediate cash flow. And so the Nova died yet another death.

    XA:

    The XA was a ,military only project because the WLA’s were dying in the desert from heat on the rear cylinder, as horizontially opposed BMW copied design lended to air cooling better and the shaft drive would eliminate the problem of WLA’s eating chains in the sand. But the end reason was;

    Blame the Jeep.

    That’s why this bike never made it into full production—and why, incidentally, military motorcycles of any kind fell out of favor during World War II.

    Back in the early 1940s, the U.S. Army asked Harley-Davidson to design a next-generation military motorcycle. The company was already producing the WLA, based on its traditional 45-degree V-twin. But the army wanted a bike with one feature the WLA didn’t have: shaft drive.

    Sportster:

    The Sportser is the longest running model with only the 45 flatty/servi motor to compare, 1932 to 1973, Sportster 1957 till ”

    Little Bikes;

    As far as the little bikes the British and then the Japanese had far more to do with the demise of HD’s youth products as they captured the youth and younger sets purse strings and hearts with their lines.

  37. 37 Jeff Nicklus Oct 18th, 2009 at 3:52 pm

    Over the hill,

    You need to look up who I am before you say I don’t make the events. In your response concerning the sport bikes all I can say is: When one attends the Honda Hoot etc you will likely see many more sport bikes than at the Sturgis and Daytonas. As for Sturgis, Daytona etc ….. I attend them all and have for many years …. and as I said I don’t see Buells …. I never said anything about the ricers ….

    Over & Out,

    Jeff

  38. 38 Todd8080 Oct 18th, 2009 at 4:18 pm

    Greyhawk:

    Yes, I’m sure.

    If the Nova was such a good idea, why did it not go into production when finance was no longer an issue? Because Harley management realized it would never sell. Not then, not now, not ever.

    In 1942 the tooling for the XA was 100% complete and Harley could have gone into full-scale civilian production any time after the war. But they learned their lesson with the Sport and knew it simply wouldn’t sell because it wasn’t a Big Twin.

    Today the British and the Japanese make large-displacement “cruisers” designed solely to compete with Harley. If they were responsible for poor sales of small Harleys in the ’70s, why aren’t they causing poor sales of Big Twins today? Because Big Twins are Harley’s thing, not cheap little commuter bikes.

    Concerning the Sportster, I never said it didn’t have a long production run, I said “if it was a single or vertical twin it would have been dropped from the lineup in the late Fifties due to pathetic sales.”

    The bottom line is, when people think Harley they think Big Twin. If they want something else they turn to a different manufacturer. That’s why Buell and MV Agusta were bad ideas and that’s why they’re being excluded from Harley’s product line.

  39. 39 FUJI Oct 18th, 2009 at 4:23 pm

    Grayhawk .

    You could not have explained the true/correct history any better.
    A mystery to me why it contiNues to fall on deaf ears

    ALMOST LIKE SOMEONE TELLING SOMEONE THAT THEIR GRANDMOTHER WAS A HOOKER AND YOU DIDN’T FIND OUT UNTIL YOU WERE EIGHTY YEARS OLD ” NO WAY, CAN’T BE.

    I WAS TOLD THAT SHE PLAYED THE ORGAN IN CHURCH. ORGAN YES, CHURCH ?
    IT’S ALL INTERPRETATION AND WHO TOLD THE REAL STORY.

  40. 40 Todd8080 Oct 19th, 2009 at 1:14 am

    I thought that Nova text looked familiar. Greyhawk simply copied & pasted from this page:

    http://www.bikerenews.com/AntiqueBikes/CodeNameNova.htm

    And the XA text is copied (and paraphrased) from here:

    http://jeffdean2.home.att.net/h-d.htm

    Yeah, you’re quite the historian, Greyhawk.

    Anyway, all you did was change the subject and cloud the issue. I wasn’t questioning the origins of the XA or the Nova, I was explaining why they didn’t go into production.

    Harley most certainly COULD have manufactured the XA in the late Forties and the Nova in the Eighties but they didn’t, and it had nothing to do with Jeep or AMF.

    After the war was over, Jeep didn’t even figure in the equasion. Then 35 years later when AMF was out of the picture and Harley started making serious money, they could have produced any bike they wanted. They didn’t because Big Twins were (and are) their bread & butter.

    But every couple of decades someone in the MoCo decides it would be a good idea to stray from the formula and every time they do it’s met with failure. Buell is just one more example.

  41. 41 Grayhawk Oct 19th, 2009 at 2:45 am

    Todd Todd did not say it was my facts or I was an historian just reiterated documented history no more no less in respect to your stated facts.

    You do not get points or one ups for/from commenting on a blog nor should one care and excerpts of the what’s/why’s are from AMCA files as well as others as it is history documented. Hope you did not work yourself up into too much of a sweat searching for facts. LOL

    People have always knocked the Sportster and its size being a so-called small twin, the “Sportster”, of today the 1200cc/74ci version that is, is as big cc wise as the so called HD big twins of the past that were no larger than 61 ci up to 74 ci until about around the 1980 80 ci Shovelhead, “big twin” came out, outside of the 1936 80ci VLH flatty and the 80 ci UL versions of HD models to drop a name ot two. Fact be noted HD’s as a whole are among the smallest big twins on the market.

    Happen to have/own a 36 VLH and some reminents of an XA still among quite a few others as I am not only a history excerpting key puncher but have a bit of history lived/owned of my own.

    I often do excerpts so as to not cloud an issue or challenge my memory.

    Buell was never a HD model line just that a Buell Motorcycle using a HD drivetrain by Erik Buell’s company that was purchased by HD no more than an OEM of another an S&S brand motorcycle because it has an S&S motor in it..

    Also it is Grayhawk not Greyhawk as excerpted from the post heading above.

    Changes/models come and go from all OEM’s not always considered failures but model runs some longer and more profitable than others for sure. I would say that Sportster line has mad the motor company a profit or two overtime.

    No need to feel the need to go back and forth on this as I won’t and most do not care as its just that ones comment.

    Peace

  42. 42 Todd8080 Oct 19th, 2009 at 7:02 am

    Gosh, you mean Big Twins weren’t always 96 cubic inches? I’ve only been riding 41 years and build Harleys for a living, so this is all news to me.

    What do changes in displacement have to do with this conversation? Your ramblings are consistently off-topic. This thread is about the Motor Company discontinuing products.

    Peace yourself.

  43. 43 Donny Jan 17th, 2011 at 4:53 pm

    I no guys that are scared to buy HD now. I for one em freaked out. What harley will be next ?…. If you own a harley product. One day it can be worth ten thousand and the next one thousand ,spooky!

  44. 44 Donny Jan 17th, 2011 at 4:57 pm

    I no guys that are scared to buy HD now. One day a bike is worth ten thousand and the next day one thousand,SPOOKY!

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