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Trump warms to Harley Davidson, says EU tariffs ‘unfair’

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WASHINGTON: US President Donald Trump on Tuesday appeared to reverse course on Harley Davidson Inc, saying European tariffs facing the motorcycle manufacturer were “unfair” and vowing to reciprocate, after urging a boycott of the company last year amid a steel spat.

The Wisconsin-based company last year announced plans to move production of its motorcycles destined for the European Union to its overseas facilities from the United States to avoid EU tariffs imposed in response to Trump’s duties on steel and aluminum imports.

Trump retaliated by calling for higher taxes, threatening to lure foreign motorcycles to the United States, and backing a boycott of the iconic American motorcycle maker.

On Tuesday, Trump appeared more sympathetic, calling the EU tariffs “unfair” but giving no other details about any planned U.S. action in a tweet citing comments by a Fox Business Network host.

“So unfair to U.S. We will Reciprocate!” Trump wrote.

On Saturday, Trump is scheduled to travel to Wisconsin to hold a campaign rally as he seeks reelection in the 2020 presidential election.

Representatives for the White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment on any planned actions, as both the EU and the United States prepared to launch larger trade talks.

Representatives for Harley Davidson could not be immediately reached for comment on Trump’s tweet.

The company on Tuesday reported quarterly profit that surged past expectations and stuck to its full-year shipment forecasts amid concerns over falling U.S. sales and European import tariffs, sending its shares up 3 percent.

0 Units Of Harley Davidson Street 750 Sold In Feb 2019

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Harley Davidson was not able to sell even a single unit of their popular entry-level model in India during the month of February 2019 Harley Davidson’s Street 750 posted its worst sales number ever in the month of February 2019. The renowned American cruiser manufacturer was not able to sell 0 units of their entry level-offering Street 750 in the month of February 2019 and saw a 100 per cent drop in the YOY sales report.

Not only that, the HD Street Rod also did not get a single buyer during the same month. The Royal Enfield 650 twins’ popularity could be one of the main reasons for their decline in sales number. The Royal Enfield 650 twins are the cheapest twin cylinder motorcycle available in the market today and they offer the same amount of power and torque at almost half the price.

The price of the Harley Davidson Street 750 starts at around Rs 5.57 lakhs (ex-showroom) for the vivid black colour. The owners will have to spend an additional Rs 10,000 if they want to get their hands on any other single tone colour. On the other hand, the Royal Enfield Interceptor price starts at Rs 2.50 lakhs (ex-showroom) for the base variant and Rs 2.58 Lakhs for the dual tone and Rs 2.70 lakhs for the chrome shade.

The most expensive model which is the Continental GT 650 Chrome will cost you only Rs. 2.85 lakhs (ex-showroom). Just like the Street 750, the higher price is also the reason why the Street Rod too saw a massive drop in its sales number.

The Harley Davidson Street Rod is also priced at around Rs. 6.55 Lakhs (ex-showroom) while the buyers will have to spend Rs 6.81 Lakhs (ex-showroom) for the dual tone shade. If we compare their powertrains, both the Street 750 and the Street Rod 750 are powered by the same 749cc, High Output Revolution X V-Twin engine that produces around 47 bhp of peak power and 62 Nm of peak torque output at 4,000 rpm.

The engine is paired with a 6-speed gearbox. The 650 twins, on the other hand, is powered by a 648cc, twin cylinder motor that produces around 47 bhp of peak power and 52 Nm of peak torque. The engine is paired with a 6-speed gearbox as well with slip assist clutch as standard.

Yamaha Expects India to Become its Largest Production Base in 5 yrs

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Markets in Indonesia, Vietnam saturating; India priority No. 1, says top executive.

Japanese auto major Yamaha Motor Company (YMC) expects India to overtake Indonesia to emerge as its largest base in terms of production output in the next five years.

“India sells more than 20 million two-wheelers annually and the numbers are growing. Our company’s market share is in single digits. We want to improve this. There is a lot of opportunity,” says Yamaha India Chairman Shitara.

Two-wheeler sales in India increased 6.95% to 19,740,727 units till February this fiscal. In the same period, India Yamaha Motor’s sales remained largely flat at around 732,006 units. The company additionally exported 226,010 units.

Yamaha Motor India’s group chairman Motofumi Shitara was speaking on the sidelines of the launch of MT-15 priced at ₹1.36 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi).

“India is priority number one for us worldwide. We aim to have production volume of 2.5 million units in India in the next five years,” he said.

Going ahead, Shitara said the company would steer clear of the mass segment and focus on launching premium motorcycles in the domestic market. The company has also commenced a study on introducing electric two-wheelers in India.

Shitara is currently defining the mid-term roadmap for the company till 2025 to lay the foundation on how the brand Yamaha takes shape the country. Apart from growing volumes, Shitara said a focus area for him is to project a strong image for the Yamaha brand in the local market.

Yamaha MT-15 was launched on Friday – a 155cc bike with liquid-cooled four-stroke engine mated to a six-speed transmission. MT-15 is priced at Rs 1.36 lakh ex-showroom. It has ABS and fuel injected variable valve actuation (VBA).

On the idea of electric motorcycles, the Yamaha Chairman says – “Three points are important, one is performance. Second, is price control. And third, infrastructure for battery charging. These three issues we should answer (for electric vehicles to take off)”, Shitara said.

Harley-Davidson looks to consolidate position in big bike segment in India

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One of the India Showrooms of Harley-Davidson

Last year, Harley-Davidson had reported sale of over 3,000 units in the country.

New Delhi: American cult bike manufacturer Harley-Davidson Thursday said it aims to further consolidate its position in the over 1,600-cc segment in India, which it currently dominates with over 90 per cent market share.

Economic Times Article: https://auto.economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/two-wheelers/motorcycles/harley-looks-to-consolidate-position-in-big-bike-segment-in-india/68414005

The company launched its 1200-cc model Forty-Eight Special in India priced at Rs 10.98 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi) here. It currently has four models in its big bike (over 1,600-cc) portfolio in the country.

“We definitely will be consolidating in the big bike segment,” Harley-Davidson India Managing Director Sajeev Rajasekharan told .

Sales in the 1,600-cc plus bike segment in India currently stands at over 600 units annually.

Rajasekharan said last few years have witnessed consistent growth in terms of big bikes; and the company has been able to maintain its leadership position.

“We expect the market to grow from this year as the trends have been positive. More models are there and road infrastructure has been improving. There is more awareness and all these factors will trigger further growth in the market,” he added.

Last year, Harley-Davidson had reported sale of over 3,000 units in the country. The company’s bikes are priced between Rs 5.33 lakh (Street 750) and Rs 50.53 lakh (CVO Limited).

When asked about the time-frame for introducing small capacity bikes in India, Rajasekharan said there is “not much to share on that”.

Last year, Harley-Davidson had announced plans to develop a 200-500 cc motorcycle through a strategic alliance in Asia which will be used to primarily fuel its growth in India.

On introducing its Livewire electric bike, he said, “We would launch it in the US and Europe; and when infrastructure is ready, Harley would look at spreading out to other markets as well.”

He said that there is a lot of emphasis on electric mobility in India and the company is very happy with the positive changes that are happening to get the environment more conducive for launch of such vehicles.

The company on Thursday also introduced an updated version of its touring bike Street Glide Special priced at Rs 30.53 lakh .

Commenting on this new edition, Rajasekharan said the bike now comes with an upgraded 1,868-cc engine and other accessories.

The model is one of the three touring models that Harley-Davidson sells in country right now. Other two have already been updated and launched.

Commenting on company completing ten years in India, Rajasekharan said this “is just the beginning as we remain the cruiser of choice for many riders. With the all-new Forty-Eight Special, the company takes its motorcycle line up in the country to 17 models”.

Over the past ten years one of every two big bikes sold in the country has been a Harley, he added.

Elaborating on company’s plans for the current year, Rajasekharan said Harley would add two more dealerships during the course of the year taking the total count to 33 from current 31 outlets.

“We also plan to add three lifestyle stores taking the count to 10. In the tenth year of operations in India we will have 43 touch points in all,” he added.

Harley-Davidson Acquires Company That Makes Electric Bikes for Kids

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Harley-Davidson is trying to attract a new generation of riders at a very young age. The iconic motorcycle company announced Tuesday that it was buying StaCyc, which makes two-wheel electric bikes for kids.

StaCyc has two models — the 12eDrive and 16eDrive — that the company describes as “the perfect choice for little rippers” between the ages of 3 and 7.

The bikes have a top speed of about 10 miles per hour and sell for a range of $649 to $699.

Harley-Davidson said in a statement that Harley-Davidson branded versions of StaCyc’s two models will be available at select Harley-Davidson dealers in the United States in the third quarter of 2019.

“The StaCyc team shares the same vision we have for building the next generation of riders globally and we believe that together, we will have a significant impact in bringing the fun and enjoyment of riding to kids everywhere,” said Heather Malenshek, Harley-Davidson senior vice president of marketing and brand, in the statement.

Harley-Davidson is increasing its bets on electric vehicles as sales of traditional bikes slow.

The company has already announced plans to launch the LiveWire premium electric motorcycle this fall. It is also developing other electric bikes that it plans to start selling in 2021.

Harley-Davidson needs new growth opportunities as the company struggles to deal with tariffs from the Trump administration that have hurt earnings.

Sales and profits are expected to fall this year and revenue is only expected to rebound slightly in 2020.

Shares of Harley-Davidson have rallied this year with the rest of the market, rising 10% so far in 2019. But the stock is trading nearly 20% below its 52-week high.