Slight of hand, and the shell game

Discussion in 'Victory General Discussion' started by Phideaux, Jan 10, 2017.

  1. Phideaux

    Phideaux Active Member

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    I've been mulling this "ceasing of operations" for the Victory Motorcycle, and the situation that Polaris is now in. Several things occur to me.

    1. Polaris has been acquiring quite a bit a liability with two of their product segments; the RZR's that are ablaze, and the atrocious Slingshot gizmo.
    2. Recalls on these have been capital intensive, and has taxed their cash resources.
    3. The Slingshot is neither a motorcycle nor an ATV, and their sales don't appear to be anywhere near what the Victory Motorcycles sales were.
    There are two legitimate ways for a business to make profit; sell a lot of product with a modicum of profit, or sell a few products with a high profit margin. The recent history of Polaris (pre motorcycle entry) has been volume sales of ATV's as opposed to their more distant history of limited sales of specialty equipment (i.e. snowmobiles).

    The issues with recalls are two-fold; cost to fix, and number of affected product. With the Slingshot, just how many are being recalled and what does it cost to fix them? With the RZR's, there are a LARGER number of them to fix, and the costs to fix each and every one of them are growing daily. This is compounded by the fact that this is where Polaris makes the bulk of its profit, and the problems with the RZRs are beginning to affect sales of their other ATVs.

    Notice I haven't mentioned the purchase of the Indian brand and associated redesign/startup costs, the Brammo purchase and development, and promotional costs for both.

    What's a company to do? Can you feasibly sell your base ATV business now that it is in some trouble? Nope. Can you sell the atrocity that's acting badly? Nope. Can you sell the electricycle that there apparently has little interest to anyone? Nope.

    That leaves the company with two assets; both motorcycle companies, that can be easily viewed as competition to each other.

    Victory is a growing, but still niche market. It doesn't make profit year over year, but overall it is profitable in the long term. Indian, on the other hand, was/is instantly profitable largely due to its venerable name and its now well engineered and technically current design. It is a product that is moving, and making more profit/item than Victory.

    Looking at the two assets, by "ceasing operations" for the Victory motorcycle, it allows the Indian to be a truly "stand alone" asset with even higher profit/item now that Victory is not out there as an alternative that could take away sales. This makes Indian a fatter hog for slaughter.

    It may take a year, two years, or 5 years, but my money is on Polaris selling Indian off when the Victory line is no longer on the dealerships floors. Polaris needs the capital to rescue the true money makers, the 1,000's of ATV's whose sales are being affected by the RZR's problems.

    Should this be the case, the dust will settle when the RZR's issues have been suitably solved and Polaris will once again be profitable by way of volume sales.

    At that point, Victory may be brought back to life to once again to make profit for Polaris by being the recipient of all the efforts that were expended on the Indian.

    Just idly thinking . . .
     
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2017
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  2. Ranger510

    Ranger510 Active Member

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    IMHO, the recalls and sad numbers for the slingshot are probably coincidental to what happened to the Victory line. They do, as luck would have, make a great excuse for what they decided to do back when they acquired Indian. The minute they got Indian, the Victory line was left essentially abandoned for the new Indian line. Models were slashed, paint was slashed, no new upgrades to current models for those 5 years, and projected new models were given to the Indian line up. Victory was kept running long enough to find out if Indians would sell. 5 years later the Indian line was selling, time to dump Victory. It would have happened regardless of the recalls.
     
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  3. WickedWebby

    WickedWebby Active Member

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    I also have thought of this...
    I know they said before that they would never do this before...
    BUT...
    Who's to stop them.....Its their stuff.
    I wouldnt doubt if they re-badged their best selling Vic products as Indians.

    WW
     
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  4. Ranger510

    Ranger510 Active Member

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    After reading what little real info Polaris has released, not only wouldn't I doubt it, I kinda expect it.
     
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  5. MagVic CCT

    MagVic CCT Well-Known Member

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    Weren't there some people who were receiving questionaires to the effect , "how would your react to seeing Indian parts on Victory's or some such nonsense?
     
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  6. Ranger510

    Ranger510 Active Member

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    I looked into the sister Indian site and read they had a similar questionaire. One post over there stated certain people were contacted personally for some type of interview.
     
  7. WickedWebby

    WickedWebby Active Member

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    Not sure on that...
    I have to laugh though.
    I remember right before Christmas getting a Victory flyer for the new XC bikes and accessories.
    Worked, I bought a couple accessories (gifts for other Vic owners).

    WW
     
  8. MagVic CCT

    MagVic CCT Well-Known Member

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    Yeah. Well, there it is, sometime before that, the plan was underway.
     
  9. Bartcanoe

    Bartcanoe Active Member

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    The local dealer told me that he expects Polaris will tweak the steel frames and rebadge them as Indians
     
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  10. triumph900

    triumph900 Active Member

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    Never happen.
     
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  11. hd vic

    hd vic Member

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    Victory is temporarily dead . Like I've been telling my harley buddies, the main road block has been polaris marketing. You cant spend all the resources on building a better harley then bad mouthing the bike that you used as a bench mark !! Those idiots bash harley then expect harley fans to buy your bike!! Did indian marketers bash harley?? I see some of my harley buddies buying indians! Victory is the best built bike ,but polaris sit the bed, in my opinion !! Now the best thing that could happen , if harley had vision ,when they know they need a better power train , would buy out victory cheap, build real power full ,great handling bike line,badge them Soaring Eagle .I've been telling my harley buddies since I bought my cross country that this is the bike that Harley should be selling !! They would sell at lease 20 times more bikes than polaris!! At least 10% of my harley buddies like the power and longtivity of a great bike !!
     
  12. babs

    babs Active Member

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    I'm skeptical as well.. I don't believe we'll see anything remotely associated with the Freedom 106 platform again, as much as it grieves me. The 111 Indian platform is well established and fits the mold of the nostalgic classic finned and chromed single-pin push rodder. It would be foolish to stick an instantly recognizable drivetrain into a completely different brand. The Vic platform is dead. Sorry to be far from a ray of sunshine.

    And no.. No one is or will buy Victory. Polaris would never in a million years allow such a thing out into the market as a competitor. They know what they have, and they're going to bury it alive. All development, design and engineering will be archived in their vault.

    There are only a few winners in this whole deal... Harley shareholders since they just got some big stimulus bump combined with the death of their enemy, and Polaris shareholders if their bet pays off the way they believe it will and losing the "dead weight" will boost profits. Wouldn't doubt it if the two board member groups sip 30 year old scotch together in the Hamptons and discuss the next plans.
     
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2017
  13. BillyVOG

    BillyVOG Member

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    I like this post and show how the guys at Polaris are incompetent at there best.

    It is very simple to see that they could have used some of the steel frames Victory into the Indian line up, kinda like what Harley does with the Dyna etc.
    I mean Vegas, Gunner, and Hammer are different bikes to both of Chief cruiser series. They could have also called them Indian Vic series or something along those lines.
    With the baggers the matters are bit more complicated, since a Cross Country is competing very much against a Chieftain.
     
  14. CPT PYRO

    CPT PYRO Well-Known Member

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    That's kinda what I'm hoping for
     
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  15. slickvic

    slickvic Well-Known Member

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    Amazing in 2017 a company would kill a modern performance machine in favor of old school looks and a push rod motor.
    Kill the best in comfort and travel.
    The best at receiving after market performance at such a minimal cost to its de dictated followers.

    I have yet to see an INDIAN owner as excited about their bike as a Victory owner or want to do more to their bike as a Victory owner.

    Polaris has become the new breed of sheep! We are now the wolves.
     
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