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Appreciate its not a Strom topic, but many of the business news papers over here have a speculative piece about Honda possibly taking over Harley Davidson. ( for instance - http://www.bloomberg.co.uk/apps/news?pid=20601084&sid=a811DndrzS08&refer=stocks )

Most agree its unlikely that US federal agencies would allow an American icon to be taken over by a Japanese company ( what ever you think on free trade etc ).

Is it getting any coverage out there? And what would you guys think about it?

I saw an article in a respectable mag a while back about Harley possibly doing some production work overseas. And from what I read Harley are not posting teh results they expected.
 

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This is a hot topic on the Sport-Touring forum. Lots of speculation, including:

1. a rumor that Honda already has a stake in HD in Canada (unsubstantiated)

2. a rumor that Honda is also looking at buying Ducati.

3. a rumor that HD is buying Ducati.

4. speculation on advertising slogans: "You meet the nicest people on a Harley"

5. a sense that it would result in a target-rich environment. My favorite:

"Oh I just can't wait to go down to the local Tim Horton's, walk up to that little group of Pirate's and ask them why they ride that Jap crap!"

Lord, I love the internet!
 

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Honda won't take over HD. If they wanted something that was overpriced, overweight, and underpowered they'd just buy Oprah ;)

Of course, if they did buy HD they might do something to shut the noisy things up somewhat.
 

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I think that would be poetic justice and would separate real bikers who ride for the love of it to the many posers who only ride HD as they smirk at the other brands! < NOW I KNOW THIS DOES NOT APPLY TO ALL HD RIDERS................JUST A FEW.

Please Honda...............buy them!:D
 

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I thought it was interesting that I saw H-D ads on TV this past weekend - they usually only do that when they are in a sales slump.

If (and that's a big IF) Honda were to buy H-D, I doubt much would change - the bikes would still say "Harley-Davidson" on the tank - and for a bunch of folks, that's all they care about.

I give the Ducati/H-D rumor more possibility - about the same as the BMW/H-D one that was out a year or so ago...

Take care,
Bob S.
 

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I hope this comes to pass as H.D. is one of the very few companies left in this country that truely places a value in the words " MADE IN AMERICA"
My chevy's are made in mexico, all the crap at walmart made overseas, most everything made is cloned by an asian nation, Call your credit card company its "Karen" in india,WHERE DOES IT END?
America was built on ideas and ingenuity all created here at home and i wish the global economy we all share can still have a sizable amount of products put forth with the letters U.S.A. printed or stamped somewhere on them. If we lose H.D. to another foreign investment interest, we have lost another icon in the long line of them now owned outside our country.
H.D has had to go looking for technology outside our shore but so what? Just good business there. I for one hope H.D. keeps on doing what its doing and someday i hope i have enough extra cash to get one myself. If it has made in Japan stamped on it, They can keep it. Just my thoughts...J.R.
 

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First, it is not HD that makes the bikes so loud, it is the owners. Kind of like those annoying 4 cylinder cars with loud mufflers the kids like. Many of them Hondas by the way:mrgreen: Second, as a HD owner, I hope they aren't bought by Honda. I just don't think the corporations mesh very well. HD is all about nostalgia and form. Honda is much more function and technology oriented. I don't think the HD crowd would welcome Honda ownership very happily. I also don't think a Ducati merger would be good. They have too much similarity to Buell in many ways I think. Personally, I like it just the way it is. And I know this won't be particularly popular here, but I do see a definite fit and finish advantage to HD over most other motorcycle. If you are looking at cruisers, HD is just head and shoulders the quality leader. Of course you pay for that quality.

OK, I'm going back to sleep now.

Dan
 

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And I know this won't be particularly popular here, but I do see a definite fit and finish advantage to HD over most other motorcycle. If you are looking at cruisers, HD is just head and shoulders the quality leader. Of course you pay for that quality.

OK, I'm going back to sleep now.

Dan

I have to disagree:D I think Harley had fit and finish over every other motorcycle except maybe custom bikes


Honda is lookin at Harley for one reason, profits, I doubt they would change much



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MotorcycleConsumerNews magazine reported that HD had an 18% drop in 1st quarter earnings compared to last year, which they said was due to the 3 week strike. I'm sure they'll pull out of it. I just hope they don't bring back that import tariff again from the early 80's! I like HD for the fact that they're a part of American history & they're unique in the marketplace for that. On the other hand, they've never made a motorcycle I'd be interested in buying. That would be a sight; high-vis ATGATT, stock muffler & Doan's pills for my back. I do like Buells though.
 

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I'd love to know exactly what proportion of your typical Harley is currently made in America anyway.
Assembled in America yes, made in America no!
Most of the alloy wheels and shock springs are made in Australia.
I bet the majority of the electrical components are made in Asia.
Tyres?
Accessories?
The engines and frames may be of US origin but I suspect that's about it.

Having said all that I can't really see what the fit between Honda and HD would be HD have shrinking market issues (long term) they effectively have no unique technology to bring to the table and any Japanese ownership would be likely to create a huge consumer back lash in their prime market. The fit between Ducati and HD is much more logical where HD can diversify in the US through their dealer network into the sport market with Ducati and can leverage the existing Ducati network in Europe to sell Harleys. The combined operation would have greater ecomonies of scale for sourcing parts.
 

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First off, I think any of these mergers seems unlikely at best.

My father (an older gentleman to be sure) always purchases American cars. He does so out of patriotism. I respect that, I like that in him. I also think he is a fool... his cars always fall apart while he is still paying for them. Unfortunately, we Americans just don't have something (dedication, work ethic, integrity) I don't know what it is... not these words, but something. We used to make Dodge Chargers, Chevy BelAires, and Ford F-___ that had style, quality, emotion... then we made the "K" car in the 80's when Honda made the Accord... neither of which have any style... but at least theirs kept running... and we never recovered.

I like to think we are different (motorcyclists), and many I feel are. But why can't we build quality products? Is it beyond us?

Sorry, I just realized this is most certainly off topic / a rant.
 

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MotorcycleConsumerNews magazine reported that HD had an 18% drop in 1st quarter earnings compared to last year, which they said was due to the 3 week strike. I'm sure they'll pull out of it. I just hope they don't bring back that import tariff again from the early 80's! I like HD for the fact that they're a part of American history & they're unique in the marketplace for that. On the other hand, they've never made a motorcycle I'd be interested in buying. That would be a sight; high-vis ATGATT, stock muffler & Doan's pills for my back. I do like Buells though.
Yup, things were tough for Harley back in the day. Little known fact is that the Army had sizeable contracts with HD to make bomb bodies during those thin years. Those contracts did more to keep HD afloat than any tariffs.

The Army contracting officer worked out of the Rock Island Arsenal on the Mississippi at Moline/Rock Island, Illinois. When he bought a HD it raised a few eyebrows around the watercoolers.
 
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