Think Stellican has been watching what Polaris has done with Victory? I would love to see them do justice to the venerable Indian marque that has taken so much abuse recently. More options/competition in the 2-wheeled space is never a bad thing.
If they follow John Bloor's lead with Triumph and come up with their own designs they might make it. If all they're going to do is make yet another Harley clone (w/ fat fenders) they'll tank in no time.
The key IMO is to build something similar to the Kawi. Drifter for their "heritage" line and come up with a more distinctive performance model like the Speed Triple or Monster.
Someone might point them in Victory's direction before they go spouting off about "the only American made heavyweight". Statements like that show pretty shallow knowledge of the market.
Sounds like they have the funding and buisness acumen to not copy E-H's no-motorcycle-10-thousand-T-shirt fiasco, let's hope so anyway.
About three years ago, I went into the local Indian dealership out of curiosity. I found some motorcycles with $23,000 price tags. There was also a used Road King on the floor. The Indian's fit and finish was poor compared to the Harley. I suggested to the dealer that he move the Harley out of there, since no one in their right mind would pay thousands more for the inferior Indian, especially if the Harley was there for comparison. I'm afraid he didn't appreciate my free advice and got a little grouchy.
Painful both to read and watch the history of Indian Motorcycles being dragged through the streets of stupidity only conjuring the unnecessary road rash that need not be. Why people keep trying to infuse history into that which cannot be done and instead simply honor that which was great in its time is a motorcycling crime. Each failed attempt, is greater than the combinations of all the attempts before and this last vile fiasco of erector set motorcycle design just downright lambast the very sacred design they tried to emulate, but had no understanding of what it was and how it was done. Americans do great things when done right and will continue to do so, but for Pete's sake will someone please lockup what is left of the Indian name until the right people come along and do respect to it for all the right reasons? These new owners are not enthusiasts--they are money men. What was their name again...Stealicans? Damn.
I'm not big into boats, but I recognise the cris-craft name. Do any of you MOrons have any knoledge about the suposed turn around these guys have done for Cris-Craft. Please speak up, are they any good, did they just start making boutique boats, that look good but don't run worth a sh!t.
Please fill us in if you can.
I also am getting tired of the Indian name getting draged around by speculators and frauds. Leave it to die, or be serious, and do what they have done with Triumph. You know, invest, invest, invest, and don't expect a profit for the first few years.
Also, Don't be a Harley clone, sure sell some cruisers, but give us an all around line of bikes.
Indian was a great brand when they made motorcycles that they believed in. If these guys just try to cash in on the name they might as well buy E-H too. I guess we can wait and see what comes of the acquisition, but I doubt great things are on the horizon for this trainwreck of a brand.
I'd love to see another brand in the market, especially Indian. But they'd better do this right. Victory does has a significant head start on them, contrary to what this press release says. Oh, that's right, actually, they don't even acknowledge Victory. The Indian brand is indeed valuable, but with the way it's been shat upon recently, and the memories of all those owners and dealers who got stuck with expensive and rapidly-depreciating reminders of the fiasco, my guess is that most people would rather roll the dice on a Victory. The new Indian is going to have to prove themselves before they'll see any real heritage brand benefit.
I just don't see how much more room there is for another strictly-cruiser manufactuer. Going head to head with a giant in a given market like H-D--with a nearly identical product--is usually suicide. Victory has at least positioned themselves as something like the "american performance cruiser alternative" brand. Even with the name, Indian is far behind. In fact, in the short term, the Indian brand could be a handicap untill they build public confidence.
Sure, some people will go out and buy one just because of the name on the tank. But that won't be enough to grow a healthy company.
They'd better come up with some interesting product. How 'bout giving us a broader range of bikes--not just Harley-like cruisers? If handled deftly, that's also one way to deposition H-D, and perhaps, lessen their stranglehold on the U.S. market.
One thing to consider is - just how big is the potential of the novelty bike market for big twin cruisers? If you look at the current market it appears to be slowing. There are loads of used HDs for sale and they don't seem to be moving too well because the owners don't understand that something is only worth what someone is willing to pay for it. A 5 year old HD isn't worth more than a new one any more, no matter how much gingerbread and doodads you bolt on it. The waiting list is a thing of the past.
If indeed the bike market is slowing up, and the frantic attempts by the Big 4 to get their bikes to move are an indication of this, then this is not a good time to try to introduce a new brand. The dealers in Salt Lake are chock full of bikes this summer. In fact, the only brands which appear to be moving are Triumph, HD and Ducati. Sportbikes galore and V-twins gather dust at the Japanese shops. The only bikes that fly out the door this year are Dual Purposes. A guy at Honda Suzuki Salt Lake told me that he can't keep Suzuki's DR400s on the floor.
The market does cycle up and down. A down market is a stupid time to re-introduce the Indian name if all they are going to offer is yet another big twin... and especially if the price is as ridiculous and the product is as shytty as the last ones.
Maybe they can pull it off if they offer a whole line of basically reliable bikes like Triumph did. And if they improve the bikes rapidly like Triumph did. And if they can piggyback on an established line of dealerships like Triumph did with Harley at first. If if if if.....
Thats basically my thoughts also. Yea sell a cruiser style, but toss in a hooligan bike, with real sporting parts, than a sport tourer (leaning more to the sport). A nice diverse line up to catch the differing winds. All goes without saying they better have the quality down pat out the door.
The Triumph analogy is a proper one, it seems theses guys have deeeeep pockets. So a year or three (like triumph) of losses on the books won't hurt them. Then they can get a new engine (I hear rotax has some for sale) put it in say three different frames (cruiser, standard/hooligan, ST) toss a catalog of options at them, and see what the market decides.
If they give me something other than a cruiser, I'll walk in the door and kick the tires, maybe even buy one if the quality is there.
Excellent! As an owner of a '99 Victory I've waited 5 years to be able to accuse another brand of being a Victory clone !
Seriously though. Why the heck does loyalty to the legacy mean that they have to build giant rumbling chrome boat anchors? Didn't Indain used to race... and even win? MAYBE, just MAYBE they ought to view their legacy in performance not just ponderousness?
Can we get some go fast wheels made in America for crying out loud !
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