Visited my local Honda dealer - VTXOA
  • 1 Post By dezzy7
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-16-2017, 05:02 PM Thread Starter
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Visited my local Honda dealer

How things have changed in the last 10 years. There use to be 3 motorcycle dealers fairly close to my house, not counting the HS dealership. Now 2 have either gone out of business or moved and I stay in a fairly large city, about 250,000 . The only dealers left are a HD and Honda/Yamaha dealership or so I thought. Well I needed a new pair of gloves so I thought I would drop by the Honda dealership. To my surprise the dealer ship had 5 sportsbikes, 4 cruisers, and a F6B on the showroom. The rest of the showroom were dirtbikes or dual purpose bikes and the parking lot was full of ATVs and used bikes. I couldn't believe it was a Honda motorcycle shop. 10 years ago the showroom floor was full of cruiers, sportbikes, and Goldwings.

More to the point, they weren't a large size of leather riding gloves in the house. When I asked the salesperson about the gloves he said, "we can order them for you". I told him, " no thanks I can order them myself". I guess the online motorcycle accessory business has moved or is moving to a totally online business. Likewise I guess the demand for motorcycles has decreased to the point where dealers have found it more advantageous to sell ATVs and dirtbikes versus cruisers or even Goldwings.

Hard to believe the industry has changed so much in 10 years.
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-16-2017, 09:05 PM
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Yep. The local Honda dealer closest to me (25 miles) also sells Yamaha, Suzuki and Spyder. The only new Hondas on the floor are 2 Wings, 1 F6B and a Valkyrie. They have 5 different Spyders and tons of Yamaha, Suzuki and dirt bikes. Back when they were strictly Honda I would go in and talk to a couple of the guys and pick up a few things. They would always ask me when I was bringing my bike in for service and I would laugh. They did use to give me free crush washers for the oil change though, but not anymore.

I still wear a set of leather gloves I bought in '06 that are starting to tear a little, so I too am looking for gloves. Luckily I'm heading to Daytona tomorrow and might find some there. LOL

Now that I am thinking about it I have had my 1800N for nine years at the beginning of this month (March 3, I believe) and there was a whole bunch of cruisers on the floor back then. I do believe when Honda stopped production on the VTX they killed a big portion of their sales in the US. Who lnows, maybe they will bring the X back in 5 years or so like they did the Valk. But I doubt it. Like I have been saying, if my X dies before I do then next up will be the Victory. But now Polaris is dropping the Vic. so who knows what will be next for me. Oh well, I'll keep riding my X.

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'07 1800N, Leather Lyke bags, Kumho Ecsta 195/60-16 tire, MCHitch trailer hitch, Cycle Mate CM2000 trailer
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-17-2017, 06:56 AM
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With the economy the way it is there been a major shift in consumer spending, you see in the news more retail stores are closing like Sears, Kmart, Macy's, J C Penny and HHgreg in 2017. People don't have the money to buy new motorcycles anymore, especially the under 40 age there not buying new motorcycles, less new riders coming into the sport. Your right a Honda dealership looked a whole lot different 10 years back. When you walk into a Honda dealership today its sad its almost like walking into a grave yard.
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-17-2017, 08:30 AM
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people want service quality and cheap prices with the latter taking top spot. One needs to shell a little for, trying it on, an informed salesman opinion, etc... oops wrong tangent

We have a gear dealer at his excellent roadside shop where the coffee is always hot, other riders stopping in, decent prices, and lots of smiles. About the same distance as the city and a lot more scenic trip. Drasco. We have also seen some dealers go to few, if any, of the big road bikes.

Your mileage may vary
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-17-2017, 08:51 AM
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I said the very same thing here.. 4 years ago...

2 dealers closed... 1 open.. mainly a dirt/utv shop... and 1 goldwing.

and this is in a large city..

2005 VTX1800 "F" type II, Silver Tribal, 73,000 Miles, Purchased Feb, 2005.
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-17-2017, 09:32 AM
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Yep, I said this about 8 years ago that Honda no longer wants to be in the cruiser market. That Honda is focused mainly on off road bikes, sportbikes and the Wing. This was after Honda dropped the VTX line, the Shadow 1100 line, the Sabre, the ACE and several others
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-17-2017, 12:09 PM
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I think like most manufacturers, Honda is after the new / young rider demographic. Bringing back the revised Rebel in 2 sizes is one way. The number of bikes they have at 500cc and smaller is bigger that it has been in decades.

I've wondered about all of those off-road bikes they are selling though. I know around here there are options for where to ride, but in my home town just a few hours from here, there are very few options. I even asked the dealer in my home town who's buying them and where do they ride? He said young families are buying them, and who knows where they are riding? BUT, they are selling ... so go figure. Dirt bikes too are a great sale for dealers. They have parking lot warranty. That is, you leave the lot, the bike is yours .... ALL YOURS! So no worries about warranty repairs or such. Just cash in, product out.

For what we'd consider real cruisers, the used market is very busy. I saw a '01 Valk the other day with over 75K Mi on it for $8K. And a '98 with 69K mi for $7900. Nice bikes, but $8K! AND, he'll get it!
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-17-2017, 03:22 PM
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Almost 2 hours ride for me to get to a PAY TO USE off road biking land.

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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-18-2017, 06:50 AM
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It isn't just Honda. All Japanese dealers are the same. Only Kawasaki is still dangling about with their Vulcan 1700s but they're already killing their Vulcan line in Europe due to the tough Euro 4 emission standards (this is in part why the Vulcan 1700s are so dang slow in Europe). No more big Japanese V-Twins in Europe.

I've seen the Honda range of bikes where I live and I'm ashamed to own a Honda. They're bent on making bland futuristic-looking machines that are a galactic distance away from the macho sexy-looking cruiser line of 14 years ago that it makes me shed a tear.

You know what's listed under the "cruiser" line in Honda's website in Euro countries? The 750 Shadow Phantom (that blackenned thing that gets blown away on highways and has no passing ability), that new 500cc Rebel hipster sh*t that will be killed off in 2 years when the hpster trend finally ends and the, wait for it, Vultus NM4. I've yet to see one of those ugly things around here. The VT line of cruisers is no longer available in Europe and I think only the Honda Fury is available as a 2017 model in the USA.

When you look back and think of the VTX 1800 being the first machine to really up the ante in the CC war and technology in cruisers. The VTX 1300 as one of the best selling cruisers of all times that would beat any Harley of the time (up until their 103in models), the Valkyrie with its standard setup yet cruiser look, the many Shadows over the decades starting in the 1980s... And now all that's left is a crappy 750cc and 500cc for hipsters. It really makes the toughest of men shed a tear.

Unfortunately the same applies to all Japanese brands. To this day I don't understand how Victory was pulled out of the race by Polaris. Polaris and Harley have a VERY EASY way ahead with no competition from the Japanese ever again. Compare that to the Japanese competition in the early to mid 2000s, both Victory and Harley were very scared (which caused them to improve their machines to remain in the race, a good thing for Harley actually).

I'm sorry, folks, but we won't get the VTX 1300/1800 back nor any big Japanese V-Twin. The tough Euro 4 emissions have made making a big V-Twin almost impossible for the European market (while the little 600cc/1000cc widow makers are still running around in tears of joy).

In the USA, the folks who bought the VTX 1800, Vulcan 2000, Vulcan 1600, VTX 1300 or C109 are now 10 to 15 years older and many are no longer interested in motorcycling or in these rumbling heavy machines (because of older age or because of kids). The very few left have jumped into Harley as their income has risen (doctor in his 50s makes more than doctor i his late 30s). You know, because an even heavier machine that costs 3 times as much is a wise decision when you are 15 years older in your 60s and have arthritis and your wife (who no longer is a slim 120 lbs) also wants to come with you and her luggage on the tour trunk adding 250 lbs to the bike's capacity.

Then there's us, the minority. Actually, I'd say it again. Then there's you, and then there's me (the absolute minimum minority), since I'm one of the younger guys in this forum. I should be on one of those trendy hipster cafe racer crap stuff according to marketing studies from the big motorcycle manufacturers.

I've asked Honda and Kawasaki dealers about the chances of bringing back their big V-Twins. Their reply? A blank look on their faces (they did also explain the issue about Euro 4 emission laws killing all chances of big V-Twins too).

Tsukayu VTX hard bags & Tour trunk, Saddlemen touring seat with backrest, NC custom windshield, Risers, LED lightbar, Engine guard LED lights, Cobra fatty guard, Rear engine guards, Fender rail guard, Leather tank bib, Passenger floorboards, 12v socket, ISO grips WITH bar weights, Engine chrome, Triple tree cover, Shaft cover, Fenders chrome, Progressive forks & 12.5 inch shocks, All Balls mod, Chrome clock, Adjustable trunk rack

Last edited by EuroDude; 03-18-2017 at 06:57 AM.
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-19-2017, 12:14 AM
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Retail is being hit the hardest by internet shopping. Most riders around me are spending their recreation dollars on very expensive UTV's.
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