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(Marketwatch)   Harley-Davidson falls 33% after Baby Boomers decide their mid-life crisis should be funding their retirement rather than a desire to own a Harley   (marketwatch.com) divider line 133
    More: Fail, Harley-Davidson, production system, baby boomers  
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1269 clicks; posted to Business » on 29 Jan 2013 at 11:02 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-01-29 10:10:08 AM  
fark mid-life crisis expenditures that do absolutely nothing for a person besides serve as a slight penis extension. All that money would be better spent on a road bike and cycling gear - at least then they wouldn't just look like a sad smelly fat man dressed in ill-fitting leather...
 
2013-01-29 10:55:14 AM  
img19.imageshack.us

Except of course, when riding is a lifestyle, not a prop.
 
2013-01-29 11:07:03 AM  

Godscrack: [img19.imageshack.us image 794x432]

Except of course, when riding is a lifestyle, not a prop.


Yeah except boots that shiny don't exactly portray a life on the open road.
 
2013-01-29 11:08:33 AM  
Motorcycles are gay
 
2013-01-29 11:10:00 AM  
Which is sad because in the past few years HD has put out a few nice sportsters and 900-1300 cc cruisers while they have upped their reliability.

However, when you have to pay at least a 2k premium just to hear the trademarked sound that the HD make don't be surprised when people opt for Yamaha or Honda (Yamaha for smaller engine cruisers and Honda for the bigger engine).
 
2013-01-29 11:14:17 AM  
Baby Boomers are in their mid-60s, I thought.

It's the Gen-X'ers who are getting the mid-life crises.

/I'm "Gen Y" and in my 30's, subby
//Time flies quickly, deal with it
 
2013-01-29 11:16:34 AM  
I'd rather that Enfield got around to making their Thunderbird for the US market.
 
2013-01-29 11:16:46 AM  
They should have never rubber-mounted the Sportsters. They lost their soul by doing that, IMHO, and the additional sixty pounds is inexcusable.
 
2013-01-29 11:18:35 AM  
I wouldn't mind one, but they're overpriced, and the one I like has a Porsche designed engine in it... I'd really like a Ducati Monster though. But being in HD country, having short legs, and being an idiot, I think I'll stick to 4 wheels at the moment
 
2013-01-29 11:19:46 AM  

ddam: However, when you have to pay at least a 2k premium just to hear the trademarked sound that the HD make don't be surprised when people opt for Yamaha or Honda (Yamaha for smaller engine cruisers and Honda for the bigger engine).


Or you could get over yourself and ride a KLR650.
 
2013-01-29 11:23:06 AM  

H31N0US: Godscrack: [img19.imageshack.us image 794x432]

Except of course, when riding is a lifestyle, not a prop.

Yeah except boots that shiny don't exactly portray a life on the open road.


You're not supposed to wear pumps Mary.
 
2013-01-29 11:23:07 AM  

H31N0US: Godscrack: [img19.imageshack.us image 794x432]

Except of course, when riding is a lifestyle, not a prop.

Yeah except boots that shiny don't exactly portray a life on the open road.


Maybe he's riding to a wedding. he's dressed up fancy and his hair's all combed and such.
 
2013-01-29 11:28:46 AM  
I have been riding Harleys since the 70's, so I am old school. Then Hollywood became Harleywood with lots of movie stars becoming "bikers" and brought more idiots on the road. Then the baby boomers thought that they would be cool and ride, more idiots. Now it is all the custom bikes ridden by posers. I avoid anything to do with these groups. They buy all the gear to look like bikers, ride to the bar, and try to act cool. If you ask any of them to grab their tents and sleeping bags and go for for a 2 week road trip, they act like you are crazy. They might get wet or out of cell phone range. They are all just a bunch of wannabes.
 
2013-01-29 11:28:52 AM  

ddam: Which is sad because in the past few years HD has put out a few nice sportsters and 900-1300 cc cruisers while they have upped their reliability.

However, when you have to pay at least a 2k premium just to hear the trademarked sound that the HD make don't be surprised when people opt for Yamaha or Honda (Yamaha for smaller engine cruisers and Honda for the bigger engine).


At least a 2k premium? Ha! Try more like $7k, for antiquated technology more suited to running generators than road bikes.

Bought my Honda 919 for $6,500 new a few years back. A kickass bike. I've done a number of 1,600+ mile weekends to Yellowstone and back on it.
sphotos-a.xx.fbcdn.net

Now looking to add to my collection with a more comfortable long distance hauler: I'm thinking a NC700X ($6,999).
miles-by-motorcycle.com

If Harley can deliver me a new, reliable bike that gets 60+ mpg for under $10k - then I'd seriously think about it. The truth of the matter is that I can buy two awesome Hondas for the price of one barebones Harley - and I bet between the two Hondas I'll have half the maintenance and each will have 2x's the performance. Harley isn't cost effective, doesn't offer a better performance or nearly as reliable as the European or Japanese brands. They're a brand that's been coasting on baby-boomer nostalgia.

/they would look nice next to my '64 BSA and '69 Triumph
 
2013-01-29 11:29:54 AM  
Let's see for short weekend rides I can get a Yamaha Vstar deluxe for $14,000 or a Harley Ultra Classic for $38,000 which one to choose.
 
2013-01-29 11:36:06 AM  

MrSteve007: ddam: Which is sad because in the past few years HD has put out a few nice sportsters and 900-1300 cc cruisers while they have upped their reliability.

However, when you have to pay at least a 2k premium just to hear the trademarked sound that the HD make don't be surprised when people opt for Yamaha or Honda (Yamaha for smaller engine cruisers and Honda for the bigger engine).

At least a 2k premium? Ha! Try more like $7k, for antiquated technology more suited to running generators than road bikes.

Bought my Honda 919 for $6,500 new a few years back. A kickass bike. I've done a number of 1,600+ mile weekends to Yellowstone and back on it.
[sphotos-a.xx.fbcdn.net image 720x507]

Now looking to add to my collection with a more comfortable long distance hauler: I'm thinking a NC700X ($6,999).
[miles-by-motorcycle.com image 450x300]

If Harley can deliver me a new, reliable bike that gets 60+ mpg for under $10k - then I'd seriously think about it. The truth of the matter is that I can buy two awesome Hondas for the price of one barebones Harley - and I bet between the two Hondas I'll have half the maintenance and each will have 2x's the performance. Harley isn't cost effective, doesn't offer a better performance or nearly as reliable as the European or Japanese brands. They're a brand that's been coasting on baby-boomer nostalgia.

/they would look nice next to my '64 BSA and '69 Triumph


The poster boy for reliability. In fact you never even have to change the oil, you just keep putting new oil in every couple weeks.
 
2013-01-29 11:38:20 AM  

MusicMakeMyHeadPound: Baby Boomers are in their mid-60s, I thought.

It's the Gen-X'ers who are getting the mid-life crises.

/I'm "Gen Y" and in my 30's, subby
//Time flies quickly, deal with it


THIS THIS THIS THIS THIS

Seriously, people, it's not 2001 anymore.
 
2013-01-29 11:38:30 AM  

ddam: 2k premium just to hear the trademarked sound


Uh, no. The attempt to trademark the sound was shot down, as well it should be, since that would have given permanent patent-like protection to an engine design whose patent expired in 1927.
 
2013-01-29 11:38:52 AM  

ddam: Which is sad because in the past few years HD has put out a few nice sportsters and 900-1300 cc cruisers while they have upped their reliability.


HD will eventually be doomed if they don't step up the effort to appeal to GenX and younger riders. Nearly everyone under 40 would sooner ride a 1984 Honda Elite than some bombastic, antiquated, pushrod battleship. I'm not even talking about performance; I mean the whole 'lifestyle.' It's pathetic.

HD is about attention, right down to the old "loud pipes save lives" canard. If you were that concerned about safety, you dolts would be wearing real motorcycle gear instead of carnival beanie helmets and ass-less, fashion-weight chaps. Finger-less gloves. T-shirts under a studded vest.

You rebels! Hell, at least other cult-ish companies like Apple put out new and interesting products now and again. HD just keeps making the same sh*t for a dwindling demo.

Anyway, I've always enjoyed the 1200 Sportsters, especially some of the recent models. But it's a day late and a dollar short for a company that buttered it's bread with a generation that will literally die off fairly soon. There seems to be no real aggressive plan to win over the up and comers, who are going Big 4, Triumph, Ducati, etc in droves.

/Triumph Speed Triple
//finished the Iron Butt on a BMW K1100RS
 
2013-01-29 11:40:27 AM  

MusicMakeMyHeadPound: /I'm "Gen Y" and in my 30's, subby


Those numbers vary depending on who's telling them. I'm 38 and most people tell me I'm an X'er, so that's what I run with.
 
2013-01-29 11:40:30 AM  
well, anyone who buys a motorcycle because it's loud is a horrible person that didn't get enough attention as a child.
 
2013-01-29 11:40:36 AM  
Subby, the Boomers are past mid-life and beginning end of life/retirement. It is Gen-X who is deciding that Harly's are for big hairy bears and any respectable person would drive a Prius.
 
2013-01-29 11:43:15 AM  

dickfreckle: MusicMakeMyHeadPound: /I'm "Gen Y" and in my 30's, subby

Those numbers vary depending on who's telling them. I'm 38 and most people tell me I'm an X'er, so that's what I run with.


i'm gen Y and I'm in my 30s. the cut off is 1980. pre-1980 = gen X, post 1980 = gen Y... but, i don't know what you are if you were born 1980.
 
2013-01-29 11:45:05 AM  

sure haven't: MusicMakeMyHeadPound: Baby Boomers are in their mid-60s, I thought.

It's the Gen-X'ers who are getting the mid-life crises.

/I'm "Gen Y" and in my 30's, subby
//Time flies quickly, deal with it

THIS THIS THIS THIS THIS

Seriously, people, it's not 2001 anymore.


Yes and Gen-X refuses to buy stupid shiat, we have fully funded our retirement after looking at the Boomers and going fools. We have homes that are fully paid for, large savings accounts, and a very happy life vs. work balance by the time we approach 40. We are not going to spend more then 20K on a car, let alone a motorcycle.

Or am I just assuming that because my family and friends live like I do every one else does also?
 
2013-01-29 11:48:15 AM  

wiseolddude: I have been riding Harleys since the 70's, so I am old school. Then Hollywood became Harleywood with lots of movie stars becoming "bikers" and brought more idiots on the road. Then the baby boomers thought that they would be cool and ride, more idiots. Now it is all the custom bikes ridden by posers. I avoid anything to do with these groups. They buy all the gear to look like bikers, ride to the bar, and try to act cool. If you ask any of them to grab their tents and sleeping bags and go for for a 2 week road trip, they act like you are crazy. They might get wet or out of cell phone range. They are all just a bunch of wannabes.


You do realize not everyone can just up and take off for two weeks whenever the hell they feel like right? There's things like jobs, and families. Now given some vacation time and the ability to ship my kid off to my parents for a week or so and I'm game. Granted I've never claimed to live the biker lifestyle either, I just enjoy riding when I can.
 
2013-01-29 11:50:04 AM  

Fubegra: ddam: 2k premium just to hear the trademarked sound

Uh, no. The attempt to trademark the sound was shot down, as well it should be, since that would have given permanent patent-like protection to an engine design whose patent expired in 1927.


IIRC that 'sound' was written out as "potato...potato...potato".

my motorcycle can count to potato?
 
2013-01-29 11:52:24 AM  

pute kisses like a man: i'm gen Y and I'm in my 30s. the cut off is 1980. pre-1980 = gen X, post 1980 = gen Y... but, i don't know what you are if you were born 1980.


I was born in 81 and never really get lumped into either it seems. For those few years around 1980 there seems to be an identity transition that blurs the lines and makes us "the unlabeled", since I don't really seem to identify with either group, but elements from each group.
 
2013-01-29 11:52:30 AM  

MrSteve007:
The truth of the matter is that I can buy two awesome Hondas for the price of one barebones Harley - and I bet between the two Hondas I'll have half the maintenance and each will have 2x's the performance. Harley isn't cost effective, doesn't offer a better performance or nearly as reliable as the European or Japanese brands. They're a brand that's been coasting on baby-boomer nostalgia.

/they would look nice next to my '64 BSA and '69 Triumph


So Harley bikes are the Apple products of motorcycles.
 
2013-01-29 11:55:17 AM  

pute kisses like a man: dickfreckle: MusicMakeMyHeadPound: /I'm "Gen Y" and in my 30's, subby

Those numbers vary depending on who's telling them. I'm 38 and most people tell me I'm an X'er, so that's what I run with.

i'm gen Y and I'm in my 30s. the cut off is 1980. pre-1980 = gen X, post 1980 = gen Y... but, i don't know what you are if you were born 1980.


Depends on who is doing the defining, there is no hard and fast rules for where generations break. Most accept that 1965-1983 are Gen-X and anyone born between 1984-2002 are Gen-Y or Mellinials. I.e. Most accept Struass and Howes breakdown that generations are 18 years, but there are others who define generations as cohort groups and break them up even smaller.
 
2013-01-29 11:56:47 AM  

TNel: MrSteve007:
The truth of the matter is that I can buy two awesome Hondas for the price of one barebones Harley - and I bet between the two Hondas I'll have half the maintenance and each will have 2x's the performance. Harley isn't cost effective, doesn't offer a better performance or nearly as reliable as the European or Japanese brands. They're a brand that's been coasting on baby-boomer nostalgia.

/they would look nice next to my '64 BSA and '69 Triumph

So Harley bikes are the Apple products of motorcycles.


Sadly, they kind of are. They do make some nice looking bikes, but dear god are they over priced, then the cost of customizing them starts to get into the pretty ridiculous range too.
 
kab
2013-01-29 11:58:19 AM  

Slaves2Darkness: Yes and Gen-X refuses to buy stupid shiat


Now THAT's a good one.

In other news, who would have thought that motorcycles aren't the disposable, new one every year objects that iPhones are? If you honestly thought a company like HD would experience constant growth, you're absolutely retarded.
 
2013-01-29 11:58:20 AM  

Fubegra: ddam: 2k premium just to hear the trademarked sound

Uh, no. The attempt to trademark the sound was shot down, as well it should be, since that would have given permanent patent-like protection to an engine design whose patent expired in 1927.


I didn't know that they got shot down but the point stands. No other manufacturer will make a motor to sound like that because HD "owns" that sound. It is recognized by everyone and it does get attention (more attention than it should). I ride a Yamaha V-star 950 2009 version which is the first year they changed to fuel injection and I love it. Get about 45-50 mpg and is my commuter for 9 months. I used to ride the Malibu canyons every weekend but since I got married and had a kid it's tough to find excuses to take off for a few hours and ride around.
 
2013-01-29 11:58:32 AM  
Wow, they are struggling financially despite their releasing 30 versions of the same POS, underpowered, overpriced bikes?

"Hey, let's put really fat wheels on this one and call it the, uh, fatbobberskullcrusherconvertible and paint it with some candy apple red flake paint, that'll save us!"
 
2013-01-29 11:59:56 AM  

Slaves2Darkness: pute kisses like a man: dickfreckle: MusicMakeMyHeadPound: /I'm "Gen Y" and in my 30's, subby

Those numbers vary depending on who's telling them. I'm 38 and most people tell me I'm an X'er, so that's what I run with.

i'm gen Y and I'm in my 30s. the cut off is 1980. pre-1980 = gen X, post 1980 = gen Y... but, i don't know what you are if you were born 1980.

Depends on who is doing the defining, there is no hard and fast rules for where generations break. Most accept that 1965-1983 are Gen-X and anyone born between 1984-2002 are Gen-Y or Mellinials. I.e. Most accept Struass and Howes breakdown that generations are 18 years, but there are others who define generations as cohort groups and break them up even smaller.


I've always roughly considered people who are the children of the boomers to be Gen X, and people who are children of Gen X to be Gen Y. Obviously its not a clean cut, but it kind of represents the generational and societal shift.

/1978, so I still remember life without cordless remote controls.
 
2013-01-29 12:00:13 PM  

max_pooper: The poster boy for reliability. In fact you never even have to change the oil, you just keep putting new oil in every couple weeks.


This is very true! Notice I didn't say that I ride those bikes anymore - I should have been more specific to say that Harley would look nice *sitting* next to my old bike, because that's all they do these days.

As someone who owns vintage British bikes, I can assure you I know a thing or two about maintenance. For every hour of riding, they require at least two hours of maintenance - and that is if the parts don't shake off first. Frankly, they're always trying to kill me one way or another (be it carbs that stick wide open, chains that snap and wrap around the wheel, or just vibrates me into numbness). There's a reason why I choose Hondas for my daily riders.

steveallwine.com
/was a basket-case, barn find near my parent's house
//my first restoration - it was all choppered out in the 70's
///think in the coming months I'll drain out all of her fluids and put her in my office.
 
2013-01-29 12:02:55 PM  

TNel: MrSteve007:
The truth of the matter is that I can buy two awesome Hondas for the price of one barebones Harley - and I bet between the two Hondas I'll have half the maintenance and each will have 2x's the performance. Harley isn't cost effective, doesn't offer a better performance or nearly as reliable as the European or Japanese brands. They're a brand that's been coasting on baby-boomer nostalgia.

/they would look nice next to my '64 BSA and '69 Triumph

So Harley bikes are the Apple products of motorcycles.


When it comes to cost, yes. Performance is fine, but not out of the box. You have to pay for it. Alternative bikes come already charged up - that's their selling point. A Harley's selling point is that it's a Harley.

Additionally, if you wear a sweater or fashion scarf with a logo similar to the Sacramento iPhone user's group, you won't get your ass beat bloody like you would for wearing a t-shirt with crossed pistons.
 
2013-01-29 12:11:47 PM  
Meh. I just want a third wheel so I don't have to worry about balance:
i1151.photobucket.com
Thrice the price of a Harley but just as death-trappy.
 
kab
2013-01-29 12:13:05 PM  

ddam: No other manufacturer will make a motor to sound like that because HD "owns" that sound.


Most of that sound comes from the shared crankpin, cylinder angle, pushrod cam setup, firing order etc that HD uses, not to mention straight pipes :) Most other v-twins on the market alter these things for less vibration / more power, and thus the sound changes. It's probably less about that sound specifically, but more about trying to make a more efficient motor while still trying to retain enough of the v-twin *lump*
 
2013-01-29 12:13:25 PM  
I've always wanted a Harley. Not for the badassdom, poserism, or clubbiness of it.

I grew up near the Capitol factory, live near the Falls factory now, and just like old-fashioned machinery.

Probably will never get one though. One of the things the wife won't let me do now that she's a cripple.
 
2013-01-29 12:13:34 PM  

janeuner: ddam: However, when you have to pay at least a 2k premium just to hear the trademarked sound that the HD make don't be surprised when people opt for Yamaha or Honda (Yamaha for smaller engine cruisers and Honda for the bigger engine).

Or you could get over yourself and ride a KLR650.


Agreed.

img534.imageshack.us
 
2013-01-29 12:14:28 PM  
When it comes to motorcycles, especially Harleys - I pretty much think the South Park episode was dead on.

pute kisses like a man: i'm gen Y and I'm in my 30s. the cut off is 1980. pre-1980 = gen X, post 1980 = gen Y... but, i don't know what you are if you were born 1980.


According to a friend (who gives a really good Generational Diversity presentation to professional organizations), people on the transitional overlaps (3-5 years overlap per generation) will simply end up identifying clearly with one or the other, and essentially stick with it for life. I was born in '80, but am firmly a Gen Xer. I tend to be more comfortable and sociable around people my age or a bit older, not as much with people a bit younger. I liked/like late 70s and almost all 80s music, movies, toys, PC/video games, cartoons... and have zero nostalgia for anything from the 90s.

Others I know (who graduated high school when I did and shared most of the same life experiences as me) consider themselves to be firmly Gen Y.
 
kab
2013-01-29 12:15:17 PM  

oldfarthenry: Thrice the price of a Harley but just as death-trappy.


Absolutely LOVE those vehicles.
 
2013-01-29 12:15:28 PM  

Elzar: fark mid-life crisis expenditures that do absolutely nothing for a person besides serve as a slight penis extension. All that money would be better spent on a road bike and cycling gear - at least then they wouldn't just look like a sad smelly fat man dressed in ill-fitting leather...


Even if you like the idea of a large comfy cruiser the Japanese cruisers look the same, cost less, and run better.

www.galaxymotorcycles.com

www.coolhunting.com
The Yamaha

st.gdefon.ru
A mostly stock Honda Rune.

The metric cruisers are water cooled and modern tech. Harley's are for real bikers and posers who think they can buy street cred.
Q: You know why Harley's cost so much?
A: The price includes the EPA fees for all the oil it will leak.
 
2013-01-29 12:15:50 PM  

Grapple: H31N0US: Godscrack: [img19.imageshack.us image 794x432]

Except of course, when riding is a lifestyle, not a prop.

Yeah except boots that shiny don't exactly portray a life on the open road.

Maybe he's riding to a wedding. he's dressed up fancy and his hair's all combed and such.


...or just posing for a photo.
 
2013-01-29 12:18:13 PM  

Tom_Slick: Let's see for short weekend rides I can get a Yamaha Vstar deluxe for $14,000 or a Harley Ultra Classic for $38,000 which one to choose.


Right there with you. I went with a Kawasaki Vulcan 1500 and occasionally some guy on a Harley still asks me "which Harley is that!?!?"
 
kab
2013-01-29 12:25:12 PM  

Elzar: fark mid-life crisis expenditures that do absolutely nothing for a person besides serve as a slight penis extension. All that money would be better spent on a road bike and cycling gear - at least then they wouldn't just look like a sad smelly fat man dressed in ill-fitting leather... Stop liking what I don't like

 
2013-01-29 12:25:50 PM  
What's the difference between a vaccum cleaner and a Harley Davidson?

With a vacuum cleaner, the dirtbag mounts on the inside.....

*ba-dum-tish.jpg*
 
2013-01-29 12:27:16 PM  

SpectroBoy: Tom_Slick: Let's see for short weekend rides I can get a Yamaha Vstar deluxe for $14,000 or a Harley Ultra Classic for $38,000 which one to choose.

Right there with you. I went with a Kawasaki Vulcan 1500 and occasionally some guy on a Harley still asks me "which Harley is that!?!?"


I had one of those before I bought my Harley. While I did pay a lot less for the Kawasaki, and I did enjoy the ride, I got sick of putting money into it left and right to fix little issues that cropped up here and there. It nickel and dimed me to death and was always in the shop.
I also had new pipes put on it, and while it was 1/3 of the cost of putting the exact same pipes on my Harley, my Harley doesn't backfire when I turn it off.

IMHO, the Asian bikes are like Windows. You can get 'em cheap, and they'll be great for the first 6 months, but everyone and their mother is tinkering with them and some MCSE can easily destroy the whole thing.
 
2013-01-29 12:27:19 PM  
www.ybstmotor-trade.com

How many Boomers are foregoing Harleys for trikes?
 
2013-01-29 12:28:55 PM  

SpectroBoy: Elzar: fark mid-life crisis expenditures that do absolutely nothing for a person besides serve as a slight penis extension. All that money would be better spent on a road bike and cycling gear - at least then they wouldn't just look like a sad smelly fat man dressed in ill-fitting leather...

Even if you like the idea of a large comfy cruiser the Japanese cruisers look the same, cost less, and run better.

[www.galaxymotorcycles.com image 850x637]

[www.coolhunting.com image 620x413]
The Yamaha

[st.gdefon.ru image 850x531]
A mostly stock Honda Rune.

.


I want ALL of these bikes.

/ Gen-X
// but too poor to spend money on a "mid-life" crisis, sadly enough...
 
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