Published: Tue, July 31, 2018
Money | By Michele Stevens

Harley-Davidson's new strategy: Smaller bikes, more foreign sales

Harley-Davidson's new strategy: Smaller bikes, more foreign sales

The Harley-Davidson Streetfighter, which will be one of the three new models launched in 2020 by the American motorcycle manufacturer, has been designed by Harley-Davidson's Senior Designer Chetaan Shedjale.

Harley-Davidson isn't giving out any more technical information just yet.

It will also associate with third party e-commerce companies to help leverage its popularity in apparel and merchandise.

Within two years, the company hopes to unveil a lightweight motorcycle in India through an alliance with an Asian manufacturer, Harley Chief Executive Officer Matt Levatich said on a conference call with analysts, the report added.

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This new product and broader distribution are meant to fuel Harley-Davidson's customer access and growth in India, one of the largest, fastest growing markets in the world, and other Asia markets.

The company said it expects to spend $675 million-to-$825 million on these initiatives and expects the new plan to generate more than $1 billion of incremental annual revenue in 2022 as compared to 2017.

Lastly, the company announced that it will be launching its first-ever electric motorcycle, the LiveWire, in 2019.

The news comes as part of Harley-Davidson's self-described accelerated strategy to inspire the next generation of bikers with its products. More electric models, including smaller and lighter bikes, will arrive through 2022. It will also make moves to enhance dealerships and introduce smaller urban retail stores in global markets to reach potential customers who are the key for volume sales.

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Harley-Davidson sells 16 models in India ranging from Street 750 with starting price of Rs 5.25 lakh to CVO LIMITED tagged at Rs 49.99 lakh.

Harley will be developing a new flexible architecture to spawn motorcycles from 500-1250 cc segments while the 250-500 cc bikes in the pipeline will appeal for the masses in India.

Rather, Harley - which recently said it would close a factory in Missouri to concentrate manufacturing in the U.S. - is up against three distinct challenges.

Harley last week forecast a lower-than-expected hit to profit margins from Trump's trade tariffs, despite rising raw materials costs and higher tariffs on bikes shipped to Europe. While BMW recently introduced a 310cc bike (its smallest globally) in a manufacturing partnership with TVS, Triumph - the British cult bikemaker - has joined hands with Bajaj Auto for smaller-displacement motorcycles.

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