Friday, 19 October, 2018

Harley Davidson forays into entry-level 250-500cc class motorcycles

Harley-Davidson Live Wire production bike Harley-Davidson Live Wire production bike +1
Orlando Vargas | 31 July, 2018, 17:50

FBN's Susan Li on Harley-Davidson unveiling its electric bike "Livewire" for release in 2019.

The announcement comes as part of a new business model for the Milwaukee-based company, which is looking to engage with a wider range of customers as demand dwindles for its iconic petrol-hungry bikes.

Harley-Davidson's President and CEO Matt Levatich has stated that he is pushing hard to reverse the company's state of affairs, and defended the decision to shift production elsewhere from USA due to increased European Union tariffs - fuelled by Donald Trump's domestic enforcements.

FILE PHOTO: Harley Davidson motorcycles are displayed for sale at a showroom in London, Britain, June 22 2018.

Levatich, a 24-year veteran in the company, hopes to make China another promise land for Harley-Davidson with the new path being laid out for the future.

Next year, Harley Davidson will launch its electric cruiser motorcycle - the LiveWire.

Harley-Davidson sells 16 models in India ranging from Street 750 with starting price of Rs 5.25 lakh to CVO LIMITED tagged at Rs 49.99 lakh.

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To help bring their bikes to more riders, the company is also targeting an update of the company web portal and new retail formats like smaller urban stores.

What do you think of the Harley Davidson Pan America? The American motorcycle manufacturer shared details of its growth plan leading to the year 2022, and highlighted several new products in the pipeline that'll surely have fans of the brand excited for what's to come. During that time, the company wants to gain 2 million new riders to reverse declining sales.

Harley will be developing a new flexible architecture to spawn motorcycles from 500-1250 cc segments while the 250-500 cc bikes in the pipeline will appeal for the masses in India.

Last year Pandya launched 'Give A Shift, ' a volunteer group discussing ideas to promote motorcycling. Levatich has emphasised that Harley will produce lightweight urban bikes specifically for young consumers living in "dense urban spaces". "It might bypass licensing requirements in certain states, which is a real game-changer".

About 46 per cent of riders are over 50 and only about 10 per cent are 30-34. But electric motorcycles are a very niche area, so it's unclear whether Harley will be able to use the technology to reverse its fortunes.

Already affected by the Trump administration's 25% tax on steel and aluminum exported from the European Union, the Wisconsin-based company announced in June it would move production of bikes sold in Europe out of the USA due to retaliatory tariffs imposed by the EU.

USA sales slid 6.4 percent in the most recent quarter, and they're down 8.7 percent at the halfway point of the year.

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