Breaking News. Lehman Trikes To Close Its Spearfish, South Dakota Operation. Moving To California.

Lehman1Craig Arrojo, CEO of Champion Investments, owner since 2012 of Lehman Trikes, announced that the Spearfish manufacturing facility will close. The operation will progressively be moved during the next couple of months to a new 43,000-square-foot facility in Garden Grove, California.

Arroyo justifies his decision by the fact that the Spearfish location is isolated in the middle of the country, making exportation of its trikes to Asian markets more difficult and expensive.

LehmanbisLehman Trikes is producing many motorcycle trike conversion kits for numerous motorcycle brands such as Harley- Davidson, Honda, Suzuki, Kawasaki, and Victory.

Besides motorcycle trikes, the company also specializes in trike accessories for different trike motorcycle brands. Lehman has earned a reputation for offering premium trikes and is committed exclusively to the tree-wheel motorcycle experience summarized in the slogan “Leader Of The Three World”

Lehman moved from Canada to Spearfish, South Dakota in 2004. In 2008, Lehman signed a supplier agreement with Harley-Davidson to manufacture the Tri-Glide Trike. The agreement was broken in 2010 when Harley-Davidson decided to build its trikes in York, PA. Lehman founder John Lehman passed away in January 2012 and the company closed its doors. Six months later Champion Investments, Inc., purchased Lehman Trikes and restarted production, promising the creation of 50 jobs, a workforce never reached. The Spearfish operation is going to close with its dozen employees being laid-off.

17 Responses to “Breaking News. Lehman Trikes To Close Its Spearfish, South Dakota Operation. Moving To California.”

  1. 1 P. Hamilton Mar 24th, 2015 at 9:28 am

    Have the feeling that Lehman is not doing so well.

  2. 2 Jessie Mar 24th, 2015 at 9:31 am

    Lehman didn’t recover from the blow of Harley-Davidson breaking the agreement to have the Tri-Glide made in Spearfish.

  3. 3 Sammy Mar 24th, 2015 at 9:55 am

    With 1/4 of the US population being now baby boomers, I wonder why the sidecar market didn’t take off. Maybe Lehman should offer sidecar conversions for diversification.

  4. 4 Rodent Mar 24th, 2015 at 10:15 am

    John Lehman was one of the good guys of the “motorcycle Industry”

  5. 5 richards Mar 24th, 2015 at 10:37 am

    Sammy, I have an “older” than me friend who went from two wheels to a side car. He rode it for 7/8 years and has gone to a trike. He said the sidecar just took too much physical effort on his upper body as he aged.

  6. 6 Fritz Mar 24th, 2015 at 10:52 am

    What happened when H-D broke the agreement? Was there some kind of financial restitution for Lehman or was the contract written so Lehman could go suck a hind tit in such a case? Or was there even a contract? I never heard the outcome of that event.

    Richards is right. Sidecar riding takes a whole new skill set and a lot of upper body strength. If the price of trikes came down (a lot) they would sell like crazy with the geezer set.

  7. 7 marcus Mar 24th, 2015 at 11:03 am

    There were a ton of trike converters at Daytona. All kinds of models with some very nice conversions. It’s looking like this manufacturing segment is getting crowded. Prices will come down.

  8. 8 TJ Martin Mar 24th, 2015 at 11:47 am

    Now there’s a switch . Somebody moving To California … just as the waves of production / manufacturing / WHQ’s etc [ along with much of the entertainment industry ] are bailing out of the state in droves . Which kind of makes one wonder …. why is Lehman bucking the trend ? Here’s hoping Lehman can hang in there 😉

    As to Sidecars vs Trikes … yup … there’s a whole lot more of us Boomers reaching a certain age that are either by choice or by circumstance moving from two wheels to three . And … though Sidecars are by far the cooler choice [ as well as my personal choice ] … they are a handful on the upper body unless specifically re-engineered [ new fork etc ] for sidecars …. though even then they do take some effort .. driving many to the Trike option

  9. 9 Zenaldo Mar 24th, 2015 at 6:19 pm

    Sorry, Im not believing its going to be a better business environment to manufacture these in CA…or that they’ll have a better work force either…Theres a reason a number of notable motorcycle accessory builders left CA to to move TO South Dakota… What am I missing here ?

  10. 10 Axel Mar 24th, 2015 at 6:43 pm

    First of all, Harley didn’t break any agreement with Lehman Trikes. They simply didn’t renew it, and frankly, all parties knew it wouldn’t be renewed as soon as it became feasible for Harley to build their own trikes.
    Secondly, when I get so old and geezerly that I can’t ride a motorcycle any more, I’ll buy a convertible rather than a bastard stepchild three-wheeler, so I can have something that can handle the curves.

  11. 11 nicker Mar 24th, 2015 at 9:35 pm

    “…. Somebody moving To California…”

    Move to the socialist Republic of California…???
    Purely from a business perspective…. that’s a BAD move…….


  12. 12 RT Mar 24th, 2015 at 10:08 pm

    As stated in the article,Lehman was purchased by Champion Investments ,which owns Champion Sidecars /Trikes.They are already in CA,so consolidating I would guess.

  13. 13 The Supreme Team Mar 25th, 2015 at 10:01 am

    Good luck in the move folks. Unfortunately, having lived in CA my entire life, I can tell you it is the LEAST business friendly move you will make, and thus the reason I have transitioned into slowly moving our company to NV. CA seems to “make up” taxes, fees, licenses, etc. It’s actually astonishing what it costs to do business there.

    Just the same…best of luck guys. Hope to see the move be fruitful to your success.

  14. 14 Steve Hog Radio Show Producer Mar 26th, 2015 at 1:09 pm

    Southern Cal is the home to all Japanese Motorcycle American Headquarters its also the major location for most after market companies not to mention home of many long time Industry Professionals who sit various cycle industry orgs.

    Top it off, you get 360 days of riding weather and lane splitting!

    No, I don’t live in Southern Cal but always enjoy spending time there when I can.

  15. 15 cafesportytc Mar 26th, 2015 at 1:29 pm

    Steve… couldn’t pay me enough to move back to southern California… a wise man once said in reference to the so-cal, LA area… “Learn to swim” I hope In Lehman’s case it will be profitable

  16. 16 Blackmax Mar 27th, 2015 at 4:52 pm

    ANYONE who is in the motorcycle business that stays in Cali is crazy !!
    Anyone in the business who would move BACK to Cali, is crazier still !!!
    With all the laws & crap going against you, for goodness sake, WHY ?????
    Will expect to see an “out of business” or a “Moving” article here soon

  17. 17 Mike Mar 30th, 2015 at 8:31 am

    John was one of the pioneers of the modern day trike and an exceptionally wonderful man !

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Cyril Huze