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Back in Black
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Well, I read about half of that before I got tired of his moaning, bitching, and griping, tho I do agree with a lot of what he has to say.

The main exception is this:

"Only posers and wannabes buy Harleys."

Far from the truth imo. My boss is definately the exception. He got his 03 Electra Glide 2 weeks before I got my 03 SV. I've got 18k miles on mine, and he's got nearly 60k on his. He's not a wannabe badass or a poser.

It seems to me, that most ppl that ride are posers... Maybe 1 in 5 ppl I meet, actually ride their bike, regardless of what brand of bike it is. When I say "ride", I don't mean to the local hangout or bar. I mean RIDE...go to wherever the rd takes them too, ride to the beach for the hell of it, etc.

He's bashing HD's (on grounds that I pretty much agree with) and HD riders, when he should be bashing most so called riders.
 

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Lowlife
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His generalities take away from the gist IMO. He has good thoughts though.
In many ways, he is asolutely correcet. Who wouldn't buy a sexy, fast, reliable state of the art machine made in the US? I would much rather have American made over Japanese or Eurobikes..
He is correct in saying HD has worshippers...their branding is everywhere and is passed on from generation to the next.
Good find.
 

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Banned
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To each his/her own. I can relate with what he is saying but there are wannabes in everything, everywhere. Its funny that tragik brings up the mileage factor, my old boss has an older electra glide and has almost 70K on it, he rides about 50 miles to and from work each day, but he rides every day nonetheless.wheras my boss now has a brand new 05 roadstar midnight and probably hasnt even hit the 600 service yet. In the end it boils down to the rider.
 

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Nihongo Hanaseruzo!
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Yeah, the point that I believe he does have gets lost in all the steroetyping insulting crap that comprises 90% of the essay.

The only thing that does make sense to me is his point about America being on the cutting edge of a lot of stuff, why not motorcycles? That and I do agree that Harley relies way too much on image to sell their junk bikes.

Also, a lot of what he says about people buying bikes just for image applies just as much to sportbikers, if not more. harley dudes may be trying to say "yeah, I'm a badass" with their bike, but sportbikers are trying to say "yeah, I'm the fastest shit out on the road, I'm cool" with theirs. It works both ways. I just don't think sportbike manufacturers rely on that image as an excuse to slack in the performance department. Thats where the difference lies.

Interesting read...even though he said the same thing about 50 times. Way too long.
 

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Back in Black
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ThePhorest said:
The only thing that does make sense to me is his point about America being on the cutting edge of a lot of stuff, why not motorcycles? That and I do agree that Harley relies way too much on image to sell their junk bikes.
What are we on the cutting edge of that the Japs haven't already beat us to?

Harley may rely on their image, but it's for one reason only. THEY KEEP SELLING THEM based on the image alone. If I could make half the money that HD makes, doing what they do, I'd do the exact same thing. They rarely have to re-tool up for anything. Same gas tanks, same body pieces, same engines (for the last, how many years???), just the same. The same old oil leaking no HP make pile they've always been with nothing more than an "image" to sell bikes.

Surely all they're tooling is paid for now, they're R&D department (obviously) doesn't exist, and every bike they sell is basically PURE PROFIT. Why would they change?
 

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Nihongo Hanaseruzo!
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TRaGiK said:
What are we on the cutting edge of that the Japs haven't already beat us to?

Harley may rely on their image, but it's for one reason only. THEY KEEP SELLING THEM based on the image alone. If I could make half the money that HD makes, doing what they do, I'd do the exact same thing. They rarely have to re-tool up for anything. Same gas tanks, same body pieces, same engines (for the last, how many years???), just the same. The same old oil leaking no HP make pile they've always been with nothing more than an "image" to sell bikes.

Surely all they're tooling is paid for now, they're R&D department (obviously) doesn't exist, and every bike they sell is basically PURE PROFIT. Why would they change?
I guess I should restate that. America WAS on the cutting edge of a lot of stuff. At the moment Japan is kicking our ass. So I guess its not a huge surprise that their motorcycles rock ours too. I'm just agreeing that its sad to see.

And, I can see the business-sense of Harley in not retooling their bikes at all and just making a profit. Yes it makes them tons of money. But again, its sad to see. And like the dude pointed out...the only people to blame for THAT is ourselves. So, I still think harley relies too much on image to sell their bikes. I wish they'd get over themselves and innovate.
 

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Back in Black
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ThePhorest said:
I guess I should restate that. America WAS on the cutting edge of a lot of stuff. At the moment Japan is kicking our ass. So I guess its not a huge surprise that their motorcycles rock ours too. I'm just agreeing that its sad to see.

And, I can see the business-sense of Harley in not retooling their bikes at all and just making a profit. Yes it makes them tons of money. But again, its sad to see. And like the dude pointed out...the only people to blame for THAT is ourselves. So, I still think harley relies too much on image to sell their bikes. I wish they'd get over themselves and innovate.
Japan has been kicking our ass for quite some time as well. I can't think of one time in my lifetime, that we've been ahead of them... Hell...look at they're cars. They've made much better cars (reliability, not HP) then we ever could until about 10 - 15 years ago. They last longer, get better gas mileage, and in some cases, handle better and make more power (tho these 2 are few and far between).

America does as a whole as HD does. Outsource parts, labor, etc etc, and make more money. Period....it's all about the money. So long as we can get stuff done cheaply, and make tons of money doing it, we will continue to do so.

Yeah, we have ourselves to blame for HD, and HD knows this. Hasn't the V-Rod been somewhat of a flop? They try to up the ante to Jap standards, and it flops (relative to their other bikes).

I'd be willing to bet that if tomorrow, we woke up and HD announced that all upcoming HD motorcycles will now be watercooled, and significant styling changes, that they're sales would drop off significantly.

Nobody to blame but our own stupid self....sad as it may be.
 

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Nihongo Hanaseruzo!
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Well no kidding they've been ahead of us forever...

We pay for and supply their national defense. They spend less than 1% GNP on defense, and hence have a lottt of government money to kick into industries. They pretty much sniped our electronics and car industries out from under us. They picked a target market, dropped the prices so low that they put all the American manufacturers outta business, then brought the prices back up once they had loyal customers. It took us a long time to recover on the car side of things, and the electronics industry is still almost entirely Japanese.

You would think with all this money Harley makes that they could throw some into R&D and make some cool next-level stuff. I guess thats the bottom line really...Harley are a bunch of greedy bastards.
 

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Ride Naked
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ThePhorest said:
I guess I should restate that. America WAS on the cutting edge of a lot of stuff. At the moment Japan is kicking our ass. So I guess its not a huge surprise that their motorcycles rock ours too. I'm just agreeing that its sad to see.
And, I can see the business-sense of Harley in not retooling their bikes at all and just making a profit. Yes it makes them tons of money. But again, its sad to see. And like the dude pointed out...the only people to blame for THAT is ourselves. So, I still think harley relies too much on image to sell their bikes. I wish they'd get over themselves and innovate.

Maybe Harley isn't the problem then. As you stated, they are selling image, and image is much cheaper than R&D and retooling all their plants. They are keeping profits high by staying as is. Maybe the real disappointment should be Buell then. They could have been anything they wanted. They do have some interesting ideas, but rely on the ancient Harley running gear. They could have brought American sport bikes to the cutting edge, but chose not to. Instead, they are Hardly sportbikes.
 

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Did anyone else get serious wood when he talked about a 600cc v8??......maby I'm just weird.

He does make some good points. But the continues bashing got on my nerves. I do agree with his basis of "image only" but ThoPhorest is correct, it affects every brand.

Good find though
 

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Back in Black
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ThePhorest said:
I guess thats the bottom line really...Harley are a bunch of greedy bastards.
Greedy? Sure. Smart? Hell yes!

I think their only R&D dept. is for Buell....and only for Buell's chassis/suspension. Still the same old sportster engine (relatively).... And they wonder why the Buell's don't sell.....

If they put half of the Buell's R&D into HD's engines, maybe they could make a "good" bike then?
 

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Back in Black
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crx81 said:
Maybe the real disappointment should be Buell then. They could have been anything they wanted. They do have some interesting ideas, but rely on the ancient Harley running gear. They could have brought American sport bikes to the cutting edge, but chose not to. Instead, they are Hardly sportbikes.
I love the Buell's actually. Phenominal chassis, brakes, etc. But the engine is a letdown, and for $9k+, to hell with 'em. If they'd just figure out that a watercooled engine can make more power more reliably....

Or, if they'd just cut about $2500 off of the price of the Buell....

HD - yesterday's technology at tomorrow's prices.
 

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Ride Naked
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TRaGiK said:
I love the Buell's actually. Phenominal chassis, brakes, etc. But the engine is a letdown, and for $9k+, to hell with 'em. If they'd just figure out that a watercooled engine can make more power more reliably....
Or, if they'd just cut about $2500 off of the price of the Buell....
HD - yesterday's technology at tomorrow's prices.

Exactly. I was really considering the Firebolt before I got my current bike. I loved the look of it, as well as the chassis. It's that engine that killed the deal. If they are going to INSIST on using Harley engines, maybe if they'd go with a specially tuned engine from the V-Rod....
 

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SBN's bad luck charm
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I liked that posting when I first read it on www.goingfaster.com. I think the dude lifted it from there.
 

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You got that right.
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Long article, no premise. It was going in circles. Maybe I'll read it in full later. Basically he's bashing HD riders because they're focused on image, rather than performance. Big deal. Everybody has their value system. Some people its price, other its reliability, and for others is performance, etc. He's upset that HD doesn't focus on performance and relies on its brand name to sell its product. Coke, Levis, McDonalds, etc. do the same thing. It sounds like he had a run-in with an HD rider and it didn't bode well for him. The author obviously as a bone to pick with them.

Oh, and a lot of SB riders are "sheep" too. They're mostly posers, same thing with HD and cruiser riders. Less than half are real riders. They're in it for the image, babes, etc. You'll see them. They look like runner-ups in a Vanilla Ice look-a-like contest. Whatever. To each his own.
 

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mikem317 said:
Oh, and a lot of SB riders are "sheep" too. They're mostly posers, same thing with HD and cruiser riders. Less than half are real riders. They're in it for the image, babes, etc. You'll see them. They look like runner-ups in a Vanilla Ice look-a-like contest. Whatever. To each his own.
:cheers
 

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Buell is kind of stuck in this whole deal. To bring them to the level they are at now, they had to be almost completely bought out by Harley. Now, to do any kind of major R&D for Buell is a bitch. As for the engines, people have been talking about a hopped up VROD engine in next generation buells, but the problem with that is that the VROD engine outweighs the current engine by something like 30 pounds or so. The only good thing about those buell engines is that they are great with emissions, and you can still do simple mods and get big HP gains.

Many 'buellers' aren't the biggest fans of Harleys just for the way that they hold the buell line back. We've seen america do crazy shit in the past (Ford GT40 that was pretty much just built to kick porsches or ferraris ass right?) I think the same thing could happen with buell, if only the hated 'mothership' would let it happen. Then again, 2006 buells are being released in about a month, so you never know...

I think what's really funny is how people rag on buells about performance. Remember that sport rider web page with all the rollon and quarter mile times for about a million bikes? Check that and look at the rollon times between an XB12 and an RC51, kind of interesting. I think that's a fair comparison, as the RC is liquid cooled at 1000 CC's, but the buell is air cooled at 1200 CC's.
 

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Back in Black
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Well, Buell, AFAIK, has never said they make "race" bikes. They make bikes to "own the road" or something like that. Definately NOT targeted for the race track.

Even comparing an XB12 to a RC is a little bit of a stretch. Buell makes around 100hp, where as the RC makes around 125ish... Yet again, overhead cams and water cooling make more HP. Always has and always will.

You can easily get more hp out of the buell, but it starts affecting reliability GREATLY. As they come off the showroom floor, they dead reliable (XB series anyway)...start playing with them much, and bad things happen due to it making much more heat.

When I said the Buell engine is a letdown, I meant...well...it's a letdown. I cannot see spending close to $11k (XB12r) for 1940's engine technology. Might make around 100hp, but for 11k, I can buy a much better bike. What's funny, is my $5,900 SV, puts down similar 1/4 mile figures down as the 11k buell. Buell has better suspension, sure, but with the $5k I've got leftover from NOT buying it, I can do enough suspension mods and HP mods, to whoop up on a Buell in EVERY way....and still have cash left over.

If they'd only drop they're prices by about $3 - 4k....
 
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