What To Expect From Harley-Davidson On Tuesday morning? Harley-Davidson Inc has taken the rare step of offering rebates on its 2016 motorcycles to U.S. dealers as an incentive for them to shift a backlog that has restricted sales of its latest models, three dealers and two analysts said.
Keen to protect its premium-brand image, Harley-Davidson does not discount its bikes. The unusual promotion, which the dealers expect to run until the end of April, is likely to weigh on the U.S. motorcycle maker’s margins in the first half of the year, the analysts said.
After announcing a few months ago that Harley-Davidson is plotting a full-scale aassault on the motorcycle market (50 models in five years in an historic promise), such a promotion will probably limit shipments of its 2017 models, including the new “Milwaukee-Eight” engine touring motorcycles. Three U.S. dealers and two analysts said Harley was offering rebates of up to $1,000 on each sale of its 2016 motorcycles, including its higher-end touring bike, cruisers and Sportsters.
The dealers spoke to Reuters on condition of anonymity as the information is confidential. Dozens of other dealers declined to comment on the rebates. Harley did not respond to a request for comment on whether it had offered rebates to its dealers. As of Dec. 31, Harley had 701 U.S. dealerships. Harley is scheduled to report its first-quarter results on Tuesday April 18 at 8 a.m.