In February 2011, Harley-Davidson is going to launch a new “1200 Custom Motorcycle”. Although I don’t have any specific info about this new model, nor it seems any Harley dealer at this time, the very interesting part is that in conjunction with this new model, the factory is going to launch a H-D1 customization program specifically conceived for it.
Code named HD-1, this program will let buyers personalize the “1200 Custom” with a selection of Harley options, and this before their bike arrives at the dealership.
I would bet that the basic “1200 Custom Motorcycle” is going to be a very raw/naked model easy to manufacture at a low cost, the objective being to sell each client as many factory options as possible, a very profitable marketing approach. At the same time, it can certainly be a very attractive option for the customer who can personalize, from paint job to accessories, without having to pay at the dealership for parts on his bike that he already knows he will later replace by other after-market ones.
We all know, after delivery of a standard model, a new Harley owner may want to change from 20% to 50% of his bike with after market parts, having already paid Harley for parts he never used or kept on his ride. For the dealer it is also a great advantage to be able to offer customers and deliver to them on the show floor a new model already personalized the way they wants it. I think that this new Harley marketing approach is very interesting, and if well executed, can help dealers attract new interest, generate new profitable sales and at the same time increase clients’ satisfaction. Harley-Davidson offering his clients to ride what they want is a very smart strategy. If successful, it is conceivable that Harley-Davidson would want to extend the HD-1 customization program to other models of the line. To follow…