Yep you nailed it Like KTM just because you are small doesn't mean you can't create and market innovative bikes. I would argue it's because they are small they can do it. Our buddy, longride has this notion that you can't compete with the Japanese and do it right i.e. it's his justification for Buell using the inferior engine. HD chooses not because they are short sighted like the rest of American Business. Thank God for passionate Italians, Germans, Brits etc. These guys say hey we can build a new engine... American MBA types would rather outsource an engine from overseas and assemble it here or in HD's case continue to use inferior technology. After awhile all you have left is just a brand name, no engineering talent etc.
By the way longride felt that this wasn't newsworthy. I posted this yesterday...
Way, way off base, but forgot to mention to you LR...I was at school in the Loop a few weeks ago when the Printer's Row fire broke out. Watched the live footage online and got a good glimpse from the Brown line on the way home. Wow. I've not seen a fire like that in person before and much respect to the boys from the CFD. That looked like a doozie and how they keep the whole damn city from catching on fire again is beyond me.
I'm not sure about your characterization of H-D. It seems to me that the boys in Milwaukee know a thing or two about making money. It is, however, quite confusing why they seem not to want to cater to the segment of the market that would prefer to buy a 100% US-made sport bike.
I mean, it's not as if H-D *couldn't* build a sport bike (besides a Buell) that could sell well. The technology involved is not really all that complex.
I think that the bikes that Harley really needs to watch out for are the Ducati SportClassics. The GT1000, at $10K, is everything that H-D doesn't make (but could), and is encroaching on H-D's pricing territory and mystique. If Harley-Davidson could make something competitive, I'd consider it before I'd buy an Italian bike.
Still, it's a shame, that as it is, it'll be a GT1000 or Thruxton 900 for me long before it will ever be even a Sporty 883.
I guess I didn't explain myself that well. I agree with you. HD could build an engine that is modern yet distinctive. Ducati does it. Aprilia does it, KTM does it, Triumph does it. Sorry no excuses for HD in my book. Is short-sided thinking? Greed? Lack of talent? Boomers are going to die off get it in gear HD or you will be next GM, Ford or Chrysler.
For the record, I'm not sucking up to anyone. I'm simply showing respect where it is due, thanking those who have come before me, and expressing gratitude for those who are willing to do that which would force me to urinate myself. It's really not hard to do if you are just a man about it. Sad you have to learn these lessons from a 26 year old.
Oh, and why especially NYFD? You live in Seattle right? I don't live in NYC so I really don't have any great attachment to the NYFD but is there a reason NYC firefighters are better than Chicago firefighters, or those of any other city?? Is it harder to protect Seattle from fire than it is New York? Do buildings burn especially slow in your place of residence? Quick, post a link....
Oh. I don't know about that. I think about buying a Buell everytime I see one. As the son of a Boomer with a Harley, it would be the best of both worlds. I could ride with the Harley crowd (b/c Buells are finally being excepted as 'real' Harleys) and I could have my sportbike too. The only thing that holds me back is the question of reliability. Why buy Buell when I can get more horsepower and a bullet proof engine for 4K less from one of the big four? I think about it all the time actually and I am sure I am not the only guy that falls into the same boat.
Euro-weenies will get the cool bikes about 6 mos before we get them. As for the Superbike- at 210hp they are down on power to their WSB counter-parts. The real bike to pay attention to is the AMA entry of the MV from Ferracci. Ferracci said that they've already got a 20% gain in power from a stock F4 1000r- That would put the power at 212hp. He hasn't even scratched the surface hard. Bet he gets 225 out of the MV motor, easy. He is a master tuner and all.