Harley-Davidson In China. Did You Know?

You may argue about the fact that we already or will soon belong to China. Not only the US but Europe and more. While they lend us money to shrink our deficits, succeed at selling us their own products and knock-offs of ours, American companies, including Harley-Davidson, still try to get a small share of the huge Chinese market. But the world’s most populous nation knows how to put barriers to prevent us from selling to them while they are almost free to sell anything they want to us. Harley-Davidson is actively lobbying the Chinese and American governments to ease those “barrier laws” in an effort to increase sales in China. But what I learned is that this country has its own very unusual motorcycling regulations affecting their own citizens.

1- More than 100 cities in China, including Beijing and Shanghai, have restrictions that include banning two-wheel vehicles from elevated highways and major thoroughfares to curb noise and theft, with these regulations being different for one province to the other. Beijing has not allowed new registrations since 1985. Guangzhou banned motorcycles in 2007 after a surge in drive-by purse snatching. 2- Motorcycles and scooters have to be scrapped after 11 years (!) 3- There is a 30% added dues and tax on all imported scooters and motorcycles (!) International sales represented 35 percent of Harley-Davidson revenue last year, but the company sold only 268 motorcycles in China, less than what most Harley Dealers each sell.

It will take much more effort in lobbying and more innovative ways than organizing HOG chapters for Harley to enter the Chinese market. Harley continues to look for opportunities to gain market share abroad. No wonder the company is primarily focusing on India, not China.

21 Responses to “Harley-Davidson In China. Did You Know?”

  1. 1 Ken Brestich Sep 20th, 2011 at 8:04 am

    Cyril. Always learning something interesting in your blog.

  2. 2 Luis Sep 20th, 2011 at 8:10 am

    IMO china is against motorcycles for image purposes. Until the current mercantile era common folk road bicycles and if you were lucky you got a scooter or a 125cc honda knockoff. I think they want to look modern so they built these huge roads and highway systems to encourage car use to seem like a 1st world nation.

  3. 3 Bruce Sep 20th, 2011 at 9:43 am

    China rules and it’s our fault.

  4. 4 Roady Sep 20th, 2011 at 9:48 am

    What did our politicians do, republicans and democrats, to prevent China from owning us? Nothing. And in 10 years China will make better products than Americans. They steal and learn very fast. Game over America.

  5. 5 Harry from OK Sep 20th, 2011 at 10:14 am

    Agree w/ Roady; and we can only blame ourselves for this damn mess we are in.

  6. 6 Kirk Perry Sep 20th, 2011 at 10:18 am

    Who cares?
    If America is so stupid to see what’s happening, then let the Chinese have it. Take it.

    Just make it easy for us to learn to read and write in Chinese or teach the world Esperanto.

    And knock God on his butt. Change the name of that A. Hole.
    Everybody worships one deity. We’ll all vote on a single name. Majority wins.

    And religion gets kicked to the curb. It’s too confusing and their too many books of opinions on the subject, not to mention the perverts that ascend to “priests”. F–k a bunch of cockroaches.

  7. 7 Matt Sep 20th, 2011 at 10:40 am

    Very informative write up. Harley’s current management is known for focusing more the brand rather then bikes and I think that is their intent in foreign markets like China as well. I predict there will be more floor space devoted to apparel and house goods rather then motorcycles.

  8. 8 burnout Sep 20th, 2011 at 10:50 am

    11 years………………………………………Their bikes/scooters probably won’t live that long anyway judging by the examples I see here. I wonder if scrappers steal copper from THEIR cemeteries! peace

  9. 9 fuji Sep 20th, 2011 at 12:23 pm

    One thing one will not have to concern themselves with is that of China steeling HD technology. LOL

  10. 10 Petter Sep 20th, 2011 at 2:49 pm

    to Fuji – what techonology? Yet to be found from any I’ve owned so far… But I still like’em

  11. 11 Kroeter Sep 20th, 2011 at 3:34 pm

    I never put the Chinese and Catholic priests together until I read Kirk’s post. Awesome rant, , ,rock on, brother!

  12. 12 Mad dog Sep 20th, 2011 at 5:13 pm

    Was in Shanghai a couple of months ago & was offered a ride by a local on his Harley, it never happened and frankly I was relieved since the roads and traffic were chaos , 33yrs riding experience told me that was a suicide mission.
    Kirk, like your work, read some Dawkins, Hitchens & Harris and your anger will make sense.

  13. 13 morpion Sep 20th, 2011 at 5:25 pm

    my next set of false teeths i am sure will be signed,,,,made in china,,,,

  14. 14 just my opinion Sep 21st, 2011 at 10:08 am

    The real question would be. How much of the Harley is made in China?

  15. 15 t holland Sep 21st, 2011 at 11:07 am

    I wonder if the HD custom parts & accessories have to come from HD USA, or do they just pick them up at the manufacturer?

    Recently purchased Genuine HD floating rotors, only to find the “Made In China” label….What a disappointment, but it is easier for the mfg to do business there than here (no EPA or Ironworkers Union and low corp tax)….Sad

  16. 16 fuji Sep 21st, 2011 at 3:26 pm

    Will the future prduce, a Chinese ” Charley Chavidson “.

  17. 17 Kustoms and Choppers Sep 21st, 2011 at 4:38 pm

    This is exactly why I like Choppers more USA available parts. Just hopefully S & S never makes there motors overseas.

  18. 18 martin Twofeather Sep 21st, 2011 at 8:24 pm

    Does this mean we are going to save more money on parts or are we going to start more business in the USA and keep our Harley’s American?

  19. 19 bigalyts Sep 23rd, 2011 at 1:45 pm

    I will bet there is more China at the HD Factory in the US then there is HD in China < want to bet ?

  20. 20 Evo Al Sep 26th, 2011 at 9:32 am

    I love how while I read all the rants about China taking over I can check out all the made in china 250cc chopper adds on the right column of the blog. Just sayin. :>

  21. 21 Joe Skonecki Oct 2nd, 2011 at 1:56 am

    To Kirk Perry,

    You are fulfilling Bible prophecy. You are trying to persuade people to give up their faith, and put their faith in mankind. That is the very problem with our falling state of mind. You deny a higher power and turn-to government as your god/ socialism. You then become a slave to the very people/politicians you put in power: the very people our Christian Forefathers died and bled to fight against, so that we could be free men.
    Our problems in this world are spiritual: not physical. God blessed us when we followed Him. Now he is pulling away His blessings and protection from our country and we are getting destroyed by the very mentality that you have.

    God bless the USA!
    “Give me Liberty, or Give me Death!”
    Patrick Henry, March 23, 1775

    Socialism/Communism sucks! the life out of you!

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Cyril Huze