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Discussion Starter · #1 ·

From The Milwaukee Business Journal:
Harley-Davidson Motor Co. has introduced its latest Dark Custom series Sportster motorcycle, the Iron 883.
Painted black from fender-to-fender, the new motorcycle features an 883 Evolution engine backed up by what Harley-Davidson is describing as a combination of "gritty, old-school garage features," such as front fork gaiters, a drag-style handlebar and side-mounted license plate holder.
The bike has a manufacturer's suggested retail price of $7,899.
"The Iron 883 defies the plastic conventions of other motorcycles at this price," said Mark-Hans Richer, Harley-Davidson' chief marketing officer. "It's got old-school style, a new-school ride and gives the owner a platform for creative customization."
Dark Custom motorcycles tend to attract the youngest riders among buyers of Harley-Davidson motorcycles, according to the company. Other Dark Custom motorcycles include the Nightster, Night Train, Cross Bones, Fat Bob and Street Bob.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Drew said:
Smart move by HD.

Do you think this bike qualifies for the other HD promotion (Ride for a year/trade in/get full MSRP value)?

Any pics Andy?
I don't know if it qualifies on H-D's trade in program or when it will be in dealerships. I do think it's a smart move having a very low priced entry level bike. It will be interesting to see how it's accepted and if it sells well.

Opinions Anyone?

 

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Do you ever notice when HD promotes a new bike it throws out sayings and descriptions instead of actual info. They never really go into detail about there engineering or specs. It's like they are trying to sell the bike through image and not what the bike actually does for you, IMO. My 2 cents.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
oachs83 said:
Do you ever notice when HD promotes a new bike it throws out sayings and descriptions instead of actual info. They never really go into detail about there engineering or specs. It's like they are trying to sell the bike through image and not what the bike actually does for you, IMO. My 2 cents.
That is a very interesting observation.
 

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oachs83 said:
Do you ever notice when HD promotes a new bike it throws out sayings and descriptions instead of actual info. They never really go into detail about there engineering or specs. It's like they are trying to sell the bike through image and not what the bike actually does for you, IMO. My 2 cents.
I believe that HD learned long ago that it was better to sell "freedom", "independence", and a vision of riding rather than selling an actual machine. That's been their appoach to marketing for a very long time.

Victory, on the other hand, seems to be pushing "custom" and "performance."
 

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Not my cup of tea but it is a decent looking bike. I would have blacked out the exhaust to make it complete. But I am sure they will get quite a few takers for a bikeunder 8k and the equivalent Suzuki(S50) is about 7k. It's wouldn't be a far stretch for someone to pay 1k more for an HD. It's alot better then when you compare a Heritage Classicto an C50T with an 8k premium for the Heritage. Iwas really hoping that Victory's new concept bike would be an entry level, I thought that would firm up and expand their product line.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I owned a Sportster once and it just wasn't for me. I traded my Heritage Softail Special for a fully customized 1200 Sportster and after coming off the Softail, it felt like I was riding a toothpick. It was nice on the back roads, but at highway speeds, it just didn't feel right for the type of ride I was seeking at that time. It was very well made and the custom work made it a real looker. The pipes the dealer installed delivered a great sound. I kept it a month and traded it for a Road King.
 

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This is something Victory really needs to look at building an entry level bike to get people involved in the brand as HD has done for years. My last bike was a 95 Sportster which is a fun bike to ride just a little uncomfortable for long distance riding. My new Kingpin should be the ticket for doing long distance stuff for me. I just can't quite get into the full on touring bike just yet. lol All that being said i think the best thing Victorycan do to compete andget customers really into the dealers and buying is to put an entry level bike on the market.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
In a way, the motorcycle industry is much like the automotive industry. While I can't tell you how long it takes to take a new bike from the drawing board to the production line, I can only "assume" that with all the EPA regulations, tooling costs and all the other elements involved in the production process, that like the car industry, it takes quite a bit of time to bring a new bike to market.

I can only guess that the motorcycle companies, like the car companies, got caught off guard when gas prices soared last year and were not prepared for the increased demand for affordable, high mileage bikes. I do know that when the gas prices hit the $4 level, there was a large demand for scooters and smaller CC bikes. Dual purpose bikes also reported increased demand. While gas prices are more affordable now, many experts are predicting this is a temporary decline and they could soon rise again.

Then, when the economy started going down the toilet, and few if any of the manufacturers saw this "perfect storm" approaching, we have to feel the pain of the manufacturers for not having the right product at the right time. These current market conditions caught even the most savvy investors off guard.

Personally, I would like to see Victory produce an entry level bike. I remember one thread where the poster stated he would like to see a smaller scale, Vision style bike for the entry level market. But if I can make some assumptions for a moment and say that it takes a minimum of two years to bring a bike into production, if you turn the clock back to 2007, the demands of the potential purchasers were different than they are today. With that in mind and from reading numerous posts about the rider's desire to have a new bagger, I can only "assume" this is what is coming from Victory in 2010 and not an entry level bike.

When you look at H-D's new 883 Iron, there's really nothing new here. It's built on an existing platform with an existing engine. While I don't have all the details, it appears to be a stripped, naked 883 Sportster that carries an affordable price tag. If my "assumptions" on this bike are correct, the time it would take for a manufacturer to bring a bike like this to market is months, not years and it's simply a reaction to the current market conditions.

Possibly, that's what Victory is thinking with its CORE concept bike. Maybe the CORE is Victory's way to develop a new platform that can be built in numerous configurations and allow them to build it in many different ways...similiar to what the automakers do with car chassis.

It would be nice though for Victory to have an entry level bike in the showrooms today. But I can only guess that like other manufactures, they are more concerned about moving out the existing inventory and not accumulating a stockpile of bikes collecting dust in the warehouse. I can only predict that some creative purchasing/trade-in programs are on the horizon for the riding season, but like much of what I've stated here, this is purely speculation.
 

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H-D will sell a boat load of those things. H-D's marketing skills defenetly do work for them. It's easy to sell a HarleyDavidson to someone who has been brain washed with thare marketing aproach. Hell just look at all the people you know that don't know the first thing about changing a spark plug in a lawnmower let alone know anything about motorcycles and they will tell you that Harley Davidson is the best motorcycle out thare hands down and then they question you with " why did you buy that brand and not a harley?" That is when I say to my self look what H-D has done hear over the past 100 years! I myself love Harley's and always will but they will never ever do to me what they have done to so many others. Thats one of many reasons I ride a VICTORY and am very proud of it too!! O.K thats it for my ran't thoe I could go on and on with this subject. lmfao!
 

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Marketing, marketing, marketing, and Harley does it the best. They have found a way to touch their customers without them ever before having owned a Harley they just KNOW they want one.

This bike is another good move for them because as we all have stated numerous times ALL brands need a lower level entry bike and once the hook is set they will most likely remain brand loyal from there on out.

That's where the people on this sight get a bit wonky to me. Seems we all started out on different brand bikes, some of us owned numerous different brands, and yet here we are happy Victory owners, it just doesn't make sense to me. I guess we all enjoy quality bikes that look kick ass. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Steve471 said:
That's where the people on this sight get a bit wonky to me. Seems we all started out on different brand bikes, some of us owned numerous different brands, and yet here we are happy Victory owners, it just doesn't make sense to me. I guess we all enjoy quality bikes that look kick ass. :)
I think you hit the nail on the head Steve. We're "educated" consumers and we know what we're looking for in our rides. Our experience with other brands brought us to give our Vics a try.

Yes, building a brand is a difficult task and even with deep pockets it can take decades to accomplish. I'm still miffed that Victory missed out on the opportunity to incorporate an illuminated "cyclops" brake/running light with the Victory name or logo into the upper rear edge of the Vision's trunk. Not only would this increase the visibility of the bike, it would elevate the visibility of the brand. This area of the trunk currently has a raised letter VICTORY nameplate that is only visible when you're up close.

Heck, Harley places their logo on everything from Jackets to Underwear. You would think that it's flagship bike would have a higher level of brand recognition. As other Vision owners will attest, it draws a crowd and typically the first question is: What is that thing?
 

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Steve471 said:
That's where the people on this sight get a bit wonky to me. Seems we all started out on different brand bikes, some of us owned numerous different brands, and yet here we are happy Victory owners, it just doesn't make sense to me. I guess we all enjoy quality bikes that look kick ass. :)
I love Suzuki bikes and honestly my C90T is a better riding, tighter,more comfortable bike then my Victory. But I still love my Vic. The C90 looks just like the C50, V-Star, Harley and every other cruiser out there. When I go somewhere on my Vic I always get great comments. I don't ride as much as alot of you out there I am pretty much a weekend warrior. If I had to choose a bike for the long haul I would be on a Honda Goldwing, if it was for daily transportation it would be a C50T (great gas milage and easy to ride). To me Victory fits a niche for the people that want an American bike but also want to stand out from the typical Harley crowd.
 
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