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(Stuff.co.nz)   America's oldest motorcycle brand gets kick-started back into production   (stuff.co.nz) divider line 134
    More: Spiffy, Hugh Bonneville, Polaris, Harley-Davidson  
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7713 clicks; posted to Business » on 03 Mar 2013 at 11:36 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-03-03 06:10:19 AM
Never ridden a motorcycle, but that looks nice.
 
2013-03-03 09:09:26 AM
This is not a repeat from 1963, 1977, 1999 or 2006.

Hopefully, Polaris will be able to make the brand profitable.  Always did like the look of those bikes.
 
2013-03-03 10:07:05 AM
I don't think I'll be paying $35k for a stock motorcycle.
 
NFA [TotalFark]
2013-03-03 10:53:18 AM
I believe the new Indians (produced since 2006) are the best looking motorcycles on the road.  The prices are too steep and need to be brought down to Harley range prices before they'll be competitive.


www.mineyouth.com
 
2013-03-03 11:53:23 AM

BunkyBrewman: This is not a repeat from 1963, 1977, 1999 or 2006.

Hopefully, Polaris will be able to make the brand profitable.  Always did like the look of those bikes.


Pretty much this. I was interested in building a 'real' Indian from parts from the Kiwi Motorcycle Company,but hells bells, they want a ton of money. So, no.
 
2013-03-03 11:57:47 AM
Again?

i105.photobucket.com
Aw Bullwinkle, that trick never works!
 
2013-03-03 12:00:48 PM
Made in India?

If not, not interested.

/only 1/16 Chippewa, but I work for a Dravidian.
 
2013-03-03 12:06:40 PM
great... another overpriced, under performing motorcycle. pretty sure we already had the "mid life crisis accountant" market filled with crappy Harleys. now we're getting a "mid life crisis CIO" market?
 
2013-03-03 12:13:02 PM
The Kawasaki Vulcan Drifter was a pretty good knockoff - and reliable, and affordable.
If the PolarIndian can approach that reliabilty (beat the fark out of HD, IOW), I'd think about it ... a little.

/ wife won't hear about 2-wheel motor vehicles, have to settle for roadsters.
 
2013-03-03 12:17:37 PM
It looks like a modern art version of the FSTC.
 
2013-03-03 12:35:32 PM

Still waiting for the return of Vincent Black Lightnings:

static.guim.co.uk



/Obscure?
//On Fark, I don't think so.
 
2013-03-03 12:43:52 PM
Burt Munro approves.
 
2013-03-03 12:44:19 PM
As long as they don't make an obnoxious "blapblapblap" noise while idling, I'm fine with this.

/maybe they could get Russel Peters to be a spokes-indian?
 
2013-03-03 12:50:50 PM
As much as I'd love an Indian, I'm not buying a Polaris.
 
2013-03-03 12:52:03 PM
Again?

Can't we just let the brand die already?  People have been trying to revive Indian for longer than Indian even existed.

And, the current crop is beyond insanely overpriced anyway.
 
2013-03-03 01:11:46 PM

Pentaxian: Still waiting for the return of Vincent Black Lightnings:

[static.guim.co.uk image 460x276]

/Obscure?
//On Fark, I don't think so.



Have you got an MGB-GT?
 
2013-03-03 01:13:33 PM
Why can't someone build an American motorcycle that isn't a cruiser or a cruiser bagger?
 
2013-03-03 01:17:45 PM

germ78: As long as they don't make an obnoxious "blapblapblap" noise while idling, I'm fine with this.

/maybe they could get Russel Peters to be a spokes-indian?


You want them not to do that? Better start lobbying for Polaris to revive the Indian Four. Narrow- angle, single crankpin V-Twins always sound like that.
 
2013-03-03 01:25:35 PM
Wish some American company would start to make 4 bangers instead of this V twin heavy iron crap.  Harley types rides like shait, Handle like shait, sounds like shait, unreliable, poor performance and as expensive as all getout.
 
2013-03-03 01:34:37 PM

forgotmydamnusername: germ78: As long as they don't make an obnoxious "blapblapblap" noise while idling, I'm fine with this.

/maybe they could get Russel Peters to be a spokes-indian?

You want them not to do that? Better start lobbying for Polaris to revive the Indian Four. Narrow- angle, single crankpin V-Twins always sound like that.


I thought that noise was the "patented" feature of HD's bikes?

/not a gearhead
 
2013-03-03 01:34:55 PM
Yawn.

Looks like they reinvented the panhead cruiser. Somebody wake me up when it repeats around to the panhead chopper.
 
2013-03-03 01:38:35 PM
That leather looks pretty tasteless, if you ask me.
 
2013-03-03 01:38:58 PM
Why can't someone build an American motorcycle that isn't a cruiser or a cruiser bagger?

http://www.erikbuellracing.com/
 
2013-03-03 01:44:18 PM

PsychoPhil: Why can't someone build an American motorcycle that isn't a cruiser or a cruiser bagger?

http://www.erikbuellracing.com/


True, but I should have added "affordable:.
 
2013-03-03 01:51:45 PM

catzilla: PsychoPhil: Why can't someone build an American motorcycle that isn't a cruiser or a cruiser bagger?

http://www.erikbuellracing.com/

True, but I should have added "affordable:.


I think that ship has sailed. To get the economies of scale needed to put up with fairly low profit margins on state-of-the-art bikes, you need to already be Kawasaki, Yamaha, or Honda.
 
2013-03-03 01:51:55 PM

mutterfark: Burt Munro approves.


Damn right he does.  Then he nails another broad.
 
2013-03-03 01:57:10 PM
Hopefully they will change the name.
So very not politically correct
 
2013-03-03 02:09:45 PM

germ78: forgotmydamnusername: germ78: As long as they don't make an obnoxious "blapblapblap" noise while idling, I'm fine with this.

/maybe they could get Russel Peters to be a spokes-indian?

You want them not to do that? Better start lobbying for Polaris to revive the Indian Four. Narrow- angle, single crankpin V-Twins always sound like that.

I thought that noise was the "patented" feature of HD's bikes?

/not a gearhead


Hardley tried to get a design patent on that sound, but public outcry and bad press led them to drop it. It would have given H-D a monopoly on that style of engine, had they succeeded. This despite the fact that Harley didn't invent the configuration, Gottlieb Daimler did, and other manufacturers had made bikes powered by such engines for years, Indian among them.
 
2013-03-03 02:38:23 PM

catzilla: Why can't someone build an American motorcycle that isn't a cruiser or a cruiser bagger?


http://confederate.com/

/also too much but nice to look at
 
2013-03-03 02:40:42 PM

germ78: forgotmydamnusername: germ78: As long as they don't make an obnoxious "blapblapblap" noise while idling, I'm fine with this.

/maybe they could get Russel Peters to be a spokes-indian?

You want them not to do that? Better start lobbying for Polaris to revive the Indian Four. Narrow- angle, single crankpin V-Twins always sound like that.

I thought that noise was the "patented" feature of HD's bikes?

/not a gearhead


The sound you're talking about isn't blapblapblap, it's more like potatopotatopotatopotato.

forgotmydamnusername: germ78: forgotmydamnusername: germ78: As long as they don't make an obnoxious "blapblapblap" noise while idling, I'm fine with this.

/maybe they could get Russel Peters to be a spokes-indian?

You want them not to do that? Better start lobbying for Polaris to revive the Indian Four. Narrow- angle, single crankpin V-Twins always sound like that.

I thought that noise was the "patented" feature of HD's bikes?

/not a gearhead

Hardley tried to get a design patent on that sound, but public outcry and bad press led them to drop it. It would have given H-D a monopoly on that style of engine, had they succeeded. This despite the fact that Harley didn't invent the configuration, Gottlieb Daimler did, and other manufacturers had made bikes powered by such engines for years, Indian among them.


My understanding was that it's not the engine style so much as it's the tuning of that engine style that created the potato idle.
 
2013-03-03 02:43:08 PM

catzilla: Why can't someone build an American motorcycle that isn't a cruiser or a cruiser bagger?

I'd love to see some dirt bikes or dual-sports again.  Right now the only alternative is the Sportster.

SomeoneDumb: As much as I'd love an Indian, I'm not buying a Polaris.

I'm totally ignorant about Polaris - do they suck?

NFA: I believe the new Indians (produced since 2006) are the best looking motorcycles on the road.  The prices are too steep and need to be brought down to Harley range prices before they'll be competitive.
FTA:

Polaris boss, Wine, says that the Chief will definitely be more affordable than the equivalent Harley model.

Even so, I suspect it will be absurdly expensive.  I'd never pay more than $5k for a bike.
 
2013-03-03 02:50:49 PM

forgotmydamnusername: catzilla: PsychoPhil: Why can't someone build an American motorcycle that isn't a cruiser or a cruiser bagger?

http://www.erikbuellracing.com/

True, but I should have added "affordable:.

I think that ship has sailed. To get the economies of scale needed to put up with fairly low profit margins on state-of-the-art bikes, you need to already be Kawasaki, Yamaha, or Honda.



You don't need to be state of the art to make a range of very good non-cruisers as most of the difficult bits like the brakes, suspension and electronics are all done by other people. A sports bike is now more of a liability in your model range as it will suck down so much r&d to keep current for very little sales (world wide sports bike sales are in the toilet).

What the hypothetical American bike maker would need is a unique selling point. Just look at the current Triumph, they started from scratch with just the name and now they are going great guns.


Buell could of been that brand if Harley didn't try and kill it at every opotunuty. A bike range based on the v-rod water cooled engine (with a bit of weight loss) would of done very well and insured Harley against a fall in cruiser sales.
 
2013-03-03 02:58:34 PM
They'd best be staying with air cooling, pushrods and chrome. That shiat is sweet.
 
2013-03-03 03:08:41 PM

Pentaxian: Still waiting for the return of Vincent Black Lightnings:
/Obscure?
//On Fark, I don't think so.



Obscure? Hardly. The new model is something like two thousand cubic inches, developing two hundred brake-horsepower at four thousand revolutions per minute on a magnesium frame with two styrofoam seats and a total curb weight of exactly two hundred pounds.

/only know this because I'm on the factory team
 
2013-03-03 03:17:25 PM
that's pretty farked up of HD to dump their other brands so easily. many of those customers tried to show loyalty toward HD when buying those products and they just got spat at.
 
2013-03-03 03:17:34 PM

Dingleberry Dickwad: germ78: forgotmydamnusername:

My understanding was that it's not the engine style so much as it's the tuning of that engine style that created the potato idle.


It's the uneven firing order, and it occurs with any narrow angle, single crankpin V-twin. Because there's only one crankpin, you can't change when TDC arrives unless you alter the angle of the cylinders or go to an offset crank, both requiring a total engine redesign. You can emphasize the sound by setting your idle slower, I suppose, but then your bike runs like shiat.
 
2013-03-03 03:19:59 PM

CoonAce: I'm totally ignorant about Polaris - do they suck?


They're just not common.  You can get parts/service for a Harley all over the place, but a Victory shop is harder to find.  Also, they're a bit weird design wise.  No weirder than a Harley I guess.

They're supposed to be nice bikes.  I dunno, I haven't seen many out there.
 
2013-03-03 03:26:56 PM

mrlewish: Wish some American company would start to make 4 bangers instead of this V twin heavy iron crap.  Harley types rides like shait, Handle like shait, sounds like shait, unreliable, poor performance and as expensive as all getout.


http://www.motusmotorcycles.com/mst-01.html
 
2013-03-03 03:28:55 PM
From How Stuff Works, cause it's a good explanation:

A Harley engine has  two pistons. The difference in the Harley engine is that the crankshaft has only  one pin, and both piston rods connect to it. This design, combined with the V arrangement of the cylinders, means that the pistons cannot fire at even intervals. Instead of one piston firing every 360 degrees, a Harley engine goes like this:

A piston fires.The next piston fires at 315 degrees.There is a 405-degree gap.A piston fires.The next piston fires at 315 degrees.There is a 405-degree gap.And the cycle continues.
-------------
It's kind of a cheap way of doing things. Less machining costs.

At idle, you can hear the  pop-pop sound followed by a pause. So the sound of a Harley is  pop-pop...pop-pop...pop-pop.
 
2013-03-03 03:31:13 PM

KrispyKritter: that's pretty farked up of HD to dump their other brands so easily. many of those customers tried to show loyalty toward HD when buying those products and they just got spat at.


They were cutting into sales of the higher priced Harleys.

As the baby boomers turn 65 and start dieing off, Harley's business will quickly follow.
 
2013-03-03 03:31:20 PM
0.tqn.com
 
2013-03-03 03:34:35 PM

PsychoPhil: They're just not common. You can get parts/service for a Harley all over the place, but a Victory shop is harder to find. Also, they're a bit weird design wise. No weirder than a Harley I guess.

They're supposed to be nice bikes. I dunno, I haven't seen many out there.


2 of my friends owned them and they were fantastic. very comfortable and reliable. a bit boring (imo) but not everything can be my k75
 
2013-03-03 03:38:08 PM

Norfolking Chance: forgotmydamnusername: catzilla: PsychoPhil: Why can't someone build an American motorcycle that isn't a cruiser or a cruiser bagger?

http://www.erikbuellracing.com/

True, but I should have added "affordable:.

I think that ship has sailed. To get the economies of scale needed to put up with fairly low profit margins on state-of-the-art bikes, you need to already be Kawasaki, Yamaha, or Honda.


You don't need to be state of the art to make a range of very good non-cruisers as most of the difficult bits like the brakes, suspension and electronics are all done by other people. A sports bike is now more of a liability in your model range as it will suck down so much r&d to keep current for very little sales (world wide sports bike sales are in the toilet).

What the hypothetical American bike maker would need is a unique selling point. Just look at the current Triumph, they started from scratch with just the name and now they are going great guns.


Buell could of been that brand if Harley didn't try and kill it at every opotunuty. A bike range based on the v-rod water cooled engine (with a bit of weight loss) would of done very well and insured Harley against a fall in cruiser sales.


Harley abandoned Buell largely because they didn't like the profit margins. One of the things Triumph did was move a lot of their production process to Thailand. I'm not sure such an arrangement would be quite what the people wanting something "made in USA" had in mind.
 
2013-03-03 03:41:50 PM

forgotmydamnusername: Harley abandoned Buell largely because they didn't like the profit margins. One of the things Triumph did was move a lot of their production process to Thailand. I'm not sure such an arrangement would be quite what the people wanting something "made in USA" had in mind.


isn't triumph a british brand?
 
2013-03-03 03:44:07 PM
What an Indian motorcycle looks like:

www.enfieldmotorcycles.com
 
2013-03-03 03:44:13 PM
None of those bikes are priced competitively to...anything.

I think I'd rather have a Suzuki.
 
2013-03-03 03:48:12 PM

IamSporko: catzilla: Why can't someone build an American motorcycle that isn't a cruiser or a cruiser bagger?

http://confederate.com/

/also too much but nice to look at


I like cruisers, but I quite like the X132 there.

The Indians looks like an outrageous ripoff.
 
2013-03-03 03:50:09 PM

jaytkay: What an Indian motorcycle looks like:

[www.enfieldmotorcycles.com image 598x328]


I've been hearing that those have gotten a lot better recently, in terms of quality and reliability... if I was in the market for a classic-style standard, I might consider one.
 
2013-03-03 03:51:39 PM

tlchwi02: forgotmydamnusername: Harley abandoned Buell largely because they didn't like the profit margins. One of the things Triumph did was move a lot of their production process to Thailand. I'm not sure such an arrangement would be quite what the people wanting something "made in USA" had in mind.

isn't triumph a british brand?


Sure, but they have a plant in Thailand that makes most of their parts, IIRC, with final assembly occurring in the UK. There might even be some entirely Thai-made bikes. There are Chinese, Taiwanese, and Japanese parts on Harleys, too, but it's still rather less Asian content and labor than on a Triumph.
 
2013-03-03 04:01:55 PM

forgotmydamnusername: Sure, but they have a plant in Thailand that makes most of their parts, IIRC, with final assembly occurring in the UK. There might even be some entirely Thai-made bikes. There are Chinese, Taiwanese, and Japanese parts on Harleys, too, but it's still rather less Asian content and labor than on a Triumph.


tbh, considering the modern british reliability of motor vehicles and quality, i'd almost prefer that the Thai's do the mechanical stuff and the brits do the design. I owned a speed triple for about a month (bought one that was pretty neglected on CL, cleaned it up and flipped it for a few grand profit) and it was an incredible bike. way better than the yzf, fz1, and equal to the hawk (ok better than the hawk, but the hawk is so cool it gets bonus points.) It was so good though that it scared me. you'd get out on that thing and goose the throttle *slightly* and you'd be a mile down the road before you even knew what was going on. closest thing to flying I've ever experienced. but I like to think i'm smart enough to know when i'm getting myself into trouble so with some regret I sold it.
 
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