Iconic US Motorcycle manufacturer Harley Davidson faced a year-over-year profit decline in the fourth quarter of 2017 of more than 80%. Facing years of decline, due to campaigns economizing gas-mileage (including in motorcycles), an aging demographic, and cultural shifts, they are set to close a Kansas City, MO plant this year, in a consolidation move to a factory in York, Pennsylvania.
Trying to catch up on generation shifts, they are set to release an electric variant in the near future, but the larger shift relates to their cultural perception as a maker of high priced, particularly loud, and old fashioned touring bikes, more favored by aging baby-boomers than millenials driving current motorcycle sales in the US.
The lackluster interest has been industry wide though, with competitor Ducati a reporting 2% annual sales increase, with total sales still numbering under 10,000, a meager fraction of the sales in the auto sector.
Staff Writer: Ari B