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I'm glad to see smaller bikes coming back. Power density, material science and engineering are better than they used to be so you don't need to get into the viscous circle of: more power = more weight = sturdier parts = more weight etc. IMHO lighter bikes are a lot more fun to ride. Maybe more people are discovering it's fun to ride, instead of out "egoing" each other.

I hope it's not just a sign of declining affluence.
 

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The 500cc-750cc worldwide market is a tough one to compete in but if the Street turns out to be a reliable, reasonably priced bike it might stand a chance. Harley has the network and brand loyalty but a lot of their demographic is getting older and sales to that group is getting smaller as some retire from riding and some move to the other notable brands. If Harley is going to hold market share they know they have to focus on younger riders with less disposable income. I'd like to see them do well this time. They've had a terrible history introducing new models in the past such as the Sprint, Bobcat, Topper and such. They were just too far away from what "Harley" meant to it's customers.

I just hope they're ready to butt head to head with the experienced companies they're competing with. I don't know if they have to reinvent their brand identification but they do need to evolve it to compete, in my opinion.
 

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I hope it's not just a sign of declining affluence.
It is.

The number of people selling their big HDs because of "back problems" is directly correlated to the decline of their salaries/pensions/home values.

A sore back is easier to acknowledge than:

  • I can't afford the payments,
  • I can't afford the truck to haul it to Daytona or Sturgis, or the motel, if I ever got there.
  • in fact I can't even afford the gas to get there.
 

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It is.

The number of people selling their big HDs because of "back problems" is directly correlated to the decline of their salaries/pensions/home values.

A sore back is easier to acknowledge than:

  • I can't afford the payments,
  • I can't afford the truck to haul it to Daytona or Sturgis, or the motel, if I ever got there.
  • in fact I can't even afford the gas to get there.
You might be right about that. On CL, you see so so many Harleys. I often wonder when the time comes to sell mine if I will get anything near what it's worth.
 

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The street 500 is a nice bike, they aren't out yet for purchase, but the riders edge course has them for training.. My GF and I took the BRC 2 weekends ago, we were the 4th class to be on them for training... It's a basic bike with FI and Liquid cooling... And for first and 2nd gear it felt great in the parking lot we were training on 馃憤 the 500 had plenty of power. My GF is undecided if she wants one of those, an 883 iron, or a TW of her own... I think if they offer the street in voodoo purple flake she will be getting one of those

If it was available now I may have been tempted to buy it instead of the TW... But I've got my Tdub, don't plan on getting rid of it, but I'd like to own a street glide for longer / highway / weekend rides


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I like that the street retains Harley Davidson look and sound. It might do very well overseas where the look might be desirable but not the purchase and operating costs of traditional HDs.
 

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I like that the street retains Harley Davidson look and sound. It might do very well overseas where the look might be desirable but not the purchase and operating costs of traditional HDs.
They are gonna need some pipes for the sound, the ones we were riding were quiet... Could be something just for training however... They were outfitted with anti roll over bars as well



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They are gonna need some pipes for the sound, the ones we were riding were quiet... Could be something just for training however... They were outfitted with anti roll over bars as well



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Looks awfully familiar to me.

Buell_Blast.jpg

The fact is that HD's brand is built on big, heavy, noisy American Iron. That's what most Harley fans love them for. As can be seen by the interest expressed here and in the comments below the linked article, there are definitely some potential customers but it's my guess that most people who want a Harley don't want a 500cc bike and most people who really do want a smaller displacement bike don't want a Harley.
 

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I would love to see Harley do a retro style dual sport like a Triumph Scrambler, or a Husqvarna Moab concept bike. Maybe since this bike is much lighter than the typical Hog, it could be in the works for the future.
 

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Big move in North American motorcycle demographics was to trikes, but those are expensive and difficult to take for a ride on a trailer. As riders age they have a choice, trike or a smaller bike. After losses in retirement accounts due to "too big to fail" instead of law enforcement, many can't afford trikes. Others try trikes, but they lean the wrong way in the corners. I see the market for these smaller Harleys as aging pirates as much as any appeal to entry level riders.
 

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IMHO...

Pros: Smaller displacement, lower cost, lower weight, correct manufacturing strategy, water cooled.

Cons: Ugly as hell radiator, style, color.

I really think, if Harley was paying REAL attention to target the market they say they are after, they would take the sportster platform, trim down the weight, size, use the exact same engine design, which is very reliable & durable, and scale that engine down to 450cc. Offer it in 3 colors, and try like hell to get the price to around $5K.

OK, I realize this would not fly at all with Milwaukee iron loving, leather covered, (insert stereo type here) hog riders, who's old ladies would not even be caught dead on the mosh I just dreamt up. BUT, I had a VSTAR 250 for a while, and not only was it a beautiful looking little bike, it was fun to ride. I would love to have a VSTAR 450, if such a thing existed... and I'd buy it from HD if they made it. The problem for HD, is I would be the only one to buy one. They have a name to think of, & that has trapped them! Now if Yamaha makes that VSTAR 450... I'd like mine metal flake blue, please...

Ah, sweet pipe dreams... :D m.
 

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I think H~D is starting to realize that they are about to get their asses kicked by Victory on quality and price....and thinking people aren't buying what they are selling....just MO...but, the game has changed!

Oh yes, if Victory would come out with their version of a sportster , HD would be in grave danger . HD's sportster is their most reliable bike.
 

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Personally I can't buy into the Harley thing. Owning two TW's a V twin and a goldwing I just don't care for belt drives. Same reason I have a honda quad, no belts. With a couple spare links and masters it is an easy fix in the boonies or the open road, it happens. Having to be towed or left in the outback is the pits.
 

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Personally I can't buy into the Harley thing. Owning two TW's a V twin and a goldwing I just don't care for belt drives. Same reason I have a honda quad, no belts. With a couple spare links and masters it is an easy fix in the boonies or the open road, it happens. Having to be towed or left in the outback is the pits.
Belts ain't what they used to be...I have an 03 FXDL, had a Victory Touring bike, Polaris 700 twin with a belt, 2 snowmacines and even a Long Wing Challenger with a belt...they work. BTW, I do like the shaft drive on my l '81 Gold Wing...a fine bike by any measure.
 
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