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H-D Future???

  • May 3, 2010 5:42 PM PDT
    MILWAUKEE (AP) -- Harley-Davidson Inc. has warned its employees it may have to move its Milwaukee manufacturing operations if it can't cut millions of dollars in costs.

    The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports that company officials told employees Thursday there are significant "cost gaps" that must be filled.

    Harley spokesman Bob Klein says the company's preference is to keep the production operations in Wisconsin. But he says the company will also explore other U.S. sites in case it can't achieve the type of "concrete workable solutions," it needs.

    Hundreds of Milwaukee jobs could be at risk.

    The Milwaukee-based company has struggled with sluggish sales, particularly of its high-end bikes. It reported last week that its first-quarter profit plunged 72 percent.


    So I am curious what thoughts are from here since many are H-D riders on here.... Mainly because H-D is not only entertaining U.S. sites but also sites out of country, mainly India.

    Ben
  • May 3, 2010 6:46 PM PDT
    Hopefully it doesn't occur.....leaving Milwaukee that is......but, other U.S. sites might be alright.....but, not overseas....that would suck!!! Being in the computer world, I'm so sick of all our operations going overseas to India,
  • May 3, 2010 10:24 PM PDT
     Times are hard for all the manufacturers.  Honda cut back Gold Wing production.  I heard that Suzuki didn't even produce ANY 2010 models as they had too many 2009 models left over.  Things will certainly turn around though.  I would rather doubt that Harley would move any actual manufacturing to India.  That would cost them FAR too much in the long run.  Let alone the fact it would be a slap in the face to those who are "brand loyal".

    There has been FAR too much in the way of moving crap to India anyway.  I am also in the computer field and I am REALLY sick and tired of not being able to understand someone on the other end of a phone line.  I usually just hang up and call back HOPING to get SOMEONE, ANYONE, that can speak a LITTLE English.

    • 352 posts
    May 3, 2010 11:40 PM PDT
    I am a Harley owner and I do have 1 major gripe with HD - for the prices they charge for motorcloths (and some other items)...why the hell do they all come from China??

    I am sorry but HD is supposed to be "American" so how about we keep it American and stop the support of the Chinese takeover of our country. They already own most of the debt.

    Harley Davidson - I hope you listen here and hope others get on the band wagon, let's get HD being an American company again and keep the money here supporting jobs for our people.
    • Moderator
    • 16641 posts
    May 4, 2010 12:49 AM PDT
    TheBullDog wrote...
    I am a Harley owner and I do have 1 major gripe with HD - for the prices they charge for motorcloths (and some other items)...why the hell do they all come from China??

    I am sorry but HD is supposed to be "American" so how about we keep it American and stop the support of the Chinese takeover of our country. They already own most of the debt.

    Harley Davidson - I hope you listen here and hope others get on the band wagon, let's get HD being an American company again and keep the money here supporting jobs for our people.


    Pretty close to EXACTLY right Bulldog

    • 1781 posts
    May 4, 2010 12:54 AM PDT
    Maybe we could get Obama to tour America on an HD to show support for American made products.......Yea when Monkeys jump out of my butt
    Dragon
  • May 4, 2010 12:56 AM PDT
    Im from Milwaukee, It will never happen, but i do remember the devastation of the Milwaukee Braves leaving in 65.
  • May 4, 2010 1:32 AM PDT
    If Harley moves to India, my Harleys will be gotten rid of!!! I'll switch to Indian. Made in North Carolina! Are you listening Harley-Davidson??? And Yeah, I'm sick of Chineese made Harley motorclothes and accessories!!!!!!!
    • 0 posts
    May 4, 2010 3:29 AM PDT
    From Tradingmarkets.com;
    "The company ended the first quarter with cash and cash equivalents of $1.44 billion, compared to $884.62 million at end of the prior-year quarter."
    also;
    "The company also continues to expect gross margins for the full-year 2010 in a range of 32.0% and 33.5%."

    What they are saying is that they had a loss of profits. Not a loss. Totally different. They just didn't make as much money as they were expecting. No division of H-D has shown a loss with the exception of finance and even that is back in the black as of this quarter.

    Like it or not, this is a global economy and H-D is not an "All American" made bike. Hasn't been foe years. It is just more American than most. You can continue to see more parts being outsourced, even though, In my opinion, they will not move headquarters, or production to another country.

    And yes, I agree, H-D is making a mistake in the clothing department, by buying cheap imports..

    Just my opinions. :-)
    • 468 posts
    May 4, 2010 3:38 AM PDT
    To legally qualify as "made in the USA" it only needs to be made of 40% American made parts. The HD Bikes have barely been able to qualify for that title for more than 20 years. Go into the parts bins in any HD shop and you will see just how many parts are labeled "made in China". They may be "assembled" here, but they are sure not made here and haven't been since long before I started working for them.
  • May 4, 2010 5:23 AM PDT
    nightdragon wrote...
    Maybe we could get Obama to tour America on an HD to show support for American made products.......Yea when Monkeys jump out of my butt
    Dragon




    CAREFUL.....remember what happened in "Bruce Almighty".................

    • Moderator
    • 16641 posts
    May 4, 2010 5:42 AM PDT
    While the clothes are being discussed I agree. I have only one item of clothing that says Harley on it and they are my T shirts. NOTHING ELSE! And then only ones I have ridden to with special names, IE, Bear-tooth, Rough Rider etc. I stopped even looking at the clothing back in the mid nineties when I saw they were made overseas and WAY over priced.
    • 1067 posts
    May 4, 2010 5:53 AM PDT
    i don't think H D is losing too much money! The shop that i bought my bike from is moving new iron into the showroom two or three times a week, because they sell everything coming in. The day i bought mine, they probably sold 6 bikes while i was there.
    • 352 posts
    May 4, 2010 6:33 AM PDT
    I realize labor is far cheaper in China, but we are not paying basement prices on this stuff either. I actually asked one of the shop owners why all the cloths come from China - their answer was that "we can't dye leather in the U.S" which was news to me in the first place...but then what about the rest of the stuff - textiles, t-shirts, denim, leather bags, etc.

    Maybe we need to start firing e-mails to HD or invite them to read these comments.

    - just venting
  • May 4, 2010 7:39 AM PDT
    When a company get so big that pure profits are more important than anything, this happens. Buy cheap shit overseas and sell at inflated prices here. Whether you ride a Harley or not, whether they have a lot of foreign parts or not, Harley Davidson is still an American iconic symbol. They should stay in Milwaukee at damn near any cost.
    • 2072 posts
    May 4, 2010 7:44 AM PDT
    I had heard a "Rumor" that Harley was thinking about selling and that Honda was looking at them (Came from a mechanic at our local Harley shop). Wonder IF that happens if they will change the name to Honda Davidson. This is just another fine example of "The Selling Out Of America"........
  • May 4, 2010 9:28 AM PDT
    Gee, maybe HD should have kept their focus on being American bike builders rather than becoming banking, GMAC wannabes. Ridiculous. They lost their focus long ago and this is the result. A business plan, yeah... not a Master Plan. Yes, they should be kicking themselves in the @ss for losing their focus on the American spirit and passion. Ole Will, perhaps, lost sight and the meaning behind it all. What a shame. JMO Like Sarge, I might just be looking at another manufacturer..., but man, I love drippy, rich chrome...
  • May 4, 2010 10:45 AM PDT
    RexTheRoadDog wrote...
    TheBullDog wrote...
    I am a Harley owner and I do have 1 major gripe with HD - for the prices they charge for motorcloths (and some other items)...why the hell do they all come from China??

    I am sorry but HD is supposed to be "American" so how about we keep it American and stop the support of the Chinese takeover of our country. They already own most of the debt.

    Harley Davidson - I hope you listen here and hope others get on the band wagon, let's get HD being an American company again and keep the money here supporting jobs for our people.


    Pretty close to EXACTLY right Bulldog

    I also hope they get back to making their clothes in the USA. I bought a Tee shirt  and after one wash the sewing was coming apart. Not a happy camper. Have many Tee shirts and other clothing but all made in CHINA and not HAPPY at all. Pay top price for cheap CRAP.




     

  • May 20, 2010 3:15 PM PDT
    You know, ..... there are so many rumors floating around about Harley that it's hard to figure what to believe! I have been told that most of the motorcycles are built either in Kansas City, Mo. (where my FXD was built) or York, Pa. with the Milwaukee plant building chassis' and engines. Harley has been downsizing Milwaukee for years so for them to consolidate more wouldn't be surprising. Unfortunate, but not surprising. Today's business outlook requires that all manufacturers be as cost efficient as they can. The Harley dealers here in Fla. are selling bikes. Not as many as before the economic crunch, but they are selling. It's hard to even imagine Harley selling out to a foreign company considering how hard they worked to get out from under AMF!

    I totally agree that Harley should focus on being as much AMERICAN built as possible. Many of their accessories come from China and the quality leaves allot to be desired.
  • May 20, 2010 3:22 PM PDT
    nightdragon wrote...
    Maybe we could get Obama to tour America on an HD to show support for American made products.......Yea when Monkeys jump out of my butt
    Dragon

    never know! fireball!  on another note, if they do choose to move operations out of the country, i'll never buy another one.badinfluence
  • May 20, 2010 3:51 PM PDT
    Polaris is selling out a Wisconsin Engine plant in Oseola. 500 employees loose jobs to Mexico. They made rv and Victory engines for an Iowa assembly plant and Snowmobile engines for Roseo Mn. Opened in 1999 close by 2012. Made in the USA kinda maybe. Sorry I can't say more and be civil.
    • 1067 posts
    May 20, 2010 4:08 PM PDT
    For the prices they charge us for our bikes, and parts, they ought to give us better prices on the shirts, jackets, hats, etc. I was in one of my local shops today. I picked up a ball-type cap to buy, nothing special, just a ragged lookin cap that had Harley Davidson on it. Twenty five bucks on the tag, tossed it back on the shelf. Come on H D give us a break!!! Somebody correct me if i'm wrong here. We are spending American Money, right!!! What's wrong with expecting" AMERICAN" Merchandise? Keep H D American, made in U.S.A.
  • May 21, 2010 1:01 AM PDT
    H D has had a long and good run on bike sales. No real new innovations other than the V-Rod in the past few years has hurt them. The Rocker C was about the only other significant new thing, and I personally don't like the looks of it. Lots of used bikes flooding the market have also hurt them. If they start getting more parts and assemblies from overseas, they will be sealing their own coffin. Like many previous writers stated, it's really sad to go into the "American Made" dealer and pay $25 bucks for a cheap ass hat made in China, by sweatshop labor, that cost HD less than $5. But then again, HD riders have always paid for the name. That's why I build my own bikes. I'm not paying for a name.
  • May 21, 2010 2:55 AM PDT
    All they have to do is build a decent bike like Europe and Japan does. If a man could buy an American made bike that could keep up with the rest of the world they would. It's a damn shame America can't do it.
  • May 21, 2010 11:49 PM PDT
    Harley-Davidson reported $33.3 million in profit in the first-quarter of 2010, a 72% decline from the same period in 2009. So why do they need to cut $54 million bucks in production costs?