Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘Gender’

Ice Racing -- Franky Zorn

Yes, it’s been ten years!

Magazines and newspapers with decade-ending rankings have started to appear.

Over the next month, we’re going to be deluged with statistics.  Telling us who the winners were.  People who provided fodder for the system, that you consumed, and forgot.  Best movies, best athlete, best TV shows, best songs, best companies etc.  So, I thought it would be good to go back and compile highlights on the Harley-Davidson decade.

It wasn’t all good news—marked by the roughest economy since the Great Depression.  In pulling together the data I was reminded of a song by James McMurtry’s “We Can’t Make It Here”.  It’s a favorite and one I would vote as the “best” song of the twenty first century, yet it never seems to get air play.  But, this isn’t a rant about how they killed radio and now have us anesthetized in front of the flat screen, selling us products we don’t need, that we put on credit cards that charge 29%.  Sure, McMurtry’s lyrics are poignant, but there’s a hypnotic groove that hooks the listener.  It makes me want to play the song again and again.  But, I’ve moved a little off topic… here is a look back:

2000 — The Softail Deuce is introduced.  All 2000 Softail models have the Twin Cam 88B engine, a counter-balanced version of the Twin Cam 88.

2001 — The V-Rod is introduced for the 2002 model year. Inspired by the VR-1000 racing motorcycle, the V-Rod is H-D’s first motorcycle to combine fuel injection, overhead cams and liquid cooling.  It delivered 115 horsepower.

2002 — The all-new Buell Firebolt is launched.

2003 — Buell launches the Lightning XB9S.  More than 250,000 people come to Milwaukee for the final stop of the Open Road Tour and the H-D 100th Anniversary Celebration.

2004 – The Sportster family models receive rubber engine mounting, a new frame, and a wider rear tire. The Road King Custom is introduced with a low rear suspension and wide handlebars it brings a beach cruiser look to a classic motorcycle.

2005 — The XL 883L Sportster 883 Low brings a lowered seating position to the Sportster line.  H-D and the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) mark the 25th anniversary of their partnership.

2006 — The first of the 6-speed transmissions are made available on 2006 model year Dyna motorcycles. The 2006 model year includes the all-new Street Glide, a lower profile touring motorcycle. H-D appoints Beijing Feng Huo Lun (FHL) as the first authorized H-D dealer on mainland China.

2007 — Union rejected a proposed new collective bargaining agreement for employees and went on a strike at its final assembly operations in York, Pa.  H-D launch the Sportster XL 1200N Nightster. The H-D Foundation and the Disabled American Veterans (DAV) Mobile Service Offices (MSOs) launched the Harley’s Heroes Tour.  H-D celebrated 100 years of Police Motorcycle Sales.

2008 – H-D teamed up with the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC).  H-D holds its 105th Anniversary Celebration and the H.O.G. 25th Anniversary.  H.O.G. launched the Million Mile Monday ride. A H-D Softail stars in the new Indiana Jones movie. H-D acquires MV Agusta Group expanding presence in Europe.  The H-D museum opens to the public. H-D introduces the 2009 Tri Glide Ultra Classic motorcycle (3-wheel).  For 2009 touring models H-D introduces the all-new frame, swingarm, engine mounting system, wheels and tires and new chassis.   The H-D XR1200 is launched in the U.S.

2009 — CEO James Ziemer retires and is replaced by Keith Wandell. H-D reports decreased revenue, net income and diluted earnings per share and provides a new strategy and restructuring update. Buell named Official Pace and Safety Bikes of AMA Pro Road Racing. H.O.G. set a 5 Million Mile Monday goal, but falls just short of the goal. H-D launched the Ride Free II Guarantee program.  H-D rolls out nine new motorcycle models for 2010 across six model platforms. H-D formally enters the motorcycle market in India. H-D unveils long-term business strategy after poor Q3 revenue and announced the discontinue of its Buell product line and plans to divest its MV Agusta unit.  Erik Buell leaves the company to establish Erik Buell Racing.  H-D announced it will keep its motorcycle operations in York, Pa., that includes a restructuring plan which eliminates almost 50% of the workforce.

H-D Revenue: 2000 = $2.24 Billion (2000 was the 15th consecutive year of record revenue); **2009 = $4.08 Billion (back-to-back yearly declines — in ’06 revenue = $4.55B)

H-D U.S. & Canada Market Share (651+cc): 2000 = 45.9%; **2009 = 45%

H-D Gender:  2000 = Male (90%); Female (10%); **2009 = Male (89%); Female (11%)

H-D Median Age: 2000 = 44.2; **2009 = 48.1

H.O.G. Membership: 2000 = 582,400; **2009 = 1.3 Million

Unit Shipments: 2000 = 204,592; **2009 = 225,000

(** indicates estimates as final results not tabulated/reported and subject to change)

From record revenue and income to record downsizing and decline.  I didn’t mean to get you reaching for the Prozac, but it’s not all that bad.  Just like ice racing in winter months can be slippery with the occasional crash, H-D will continue to modify, adapt and adjust to come out on top.

Photo courtesy of Rutger Pauw;  Statistical Sources: H-D; H-D Investor; Google Finance and various analyst estimates.

All Rights Reserved © Northwest Harley Blog

Read Full Post »

Have you noticed the increase in women riding their own motorcycles?  I noticed many during my riding adventures this year. Every year more and more women are sitt’n in the saddle and riding solo on the open road.  Female riders have increased from 4% in 1990 to 12% today.  This aligns perfectly with Harley-Davidsons marketing plans and key product messages as the female demographic represents a significant expansion for the company.

To help “drive” the gal’s to or into their products, Harley introduced a special website and included a laser targeted publication.  Called “We Ride“, there is a lot of information on choosing models, basic handling techniques and how best to customize your ride.  Don’t be confuse.  It provides Harley-centric information about getting into motorcycling.  It’s called “soft” marketing to push product messaging at a key audience and ultimately sell more motorcycles.

I have no idea if similar to the best selling novel by Ann Brashares whether women wearing chaps gain insight into their life or are emboldened to change it.  I’m the first to admit I need help from the “sisters” on that front.

You can download sections or the entire (23Mb) PDF from the jump site here.

Photo courtsey of HD website.

Read Full Post »

Girls Oatman It’s true. Just like there are differences in how men and women communicate there are differences in how they ride.

Whether you’re at work, at home or going for a Harley ride, understanding these gender-related differences – and learning the “tips and tricks” will help you navigate through them.

For example:

You’ll never hear a guy say:

  • Here honey, let me ride “bitch”
  • Do these chaps make my belly look big?
  • I know we just filled up, but lets stop and grab a latte
  • You’ll never hear a gal say:

  • Don’t stop for directions, I’m sure you’ll be able to figure it out
  • I can sure feel the difference of the $4000 in that “103” kit
  • Let’s smile at that car load of college girls
  • If you don’t get these differences then stop reading here. The biker babe is somewhat stereotypical, but it does make a point. Traveling with the opposite sex can be incredibly fun, entertaining, but if you’re not careful or didn’t think it thru it can be frustrating.

    In fact, Female riders are no longer satisfied hanging on to their significant other and want to grab the handlebars and do their own gig. I’ve never had the pleasure of a female lead driving our posse on a route. I’m sure it will soon come and I expect it be uneventful. How do I know this?

    The demographics for female motorcyclists are:

  • 1 in 10 motorcycle owners is a woman
  • In ’03 of the 23.5M people in the U.S. that operated a motorcycle about 4.3M were women
  • Median age of female motorcyclist is 42
  • 28% of female motorcyclist have a college or post-grad degree
  • 35% of female motorcyclist are in a technical/professional occupation
  • (Source: 2003 Motorcycle Industry Council (most recent))

    As you can see above women are straddling Bold Blue with flame motorcycles. Mostly for the same reason men ride – desire of freedom, relaxing from stress, friendship, garage parties, camaraderie. Now you know why the cycle industry is trying to figure out “How to speak to women?” There are a couple hundred “Queens Together” or “Chicks ‘N Chaps” motorcycle clubs for the sisterhood. In the Northwest there is GRIP (Girls Riding Independently Proud – “Gripsters”) and a couple other groups Women in the Wind (WIW) and Chrome Divas out of South Florida. The “Divas” are women only…both riders and passengers…hummmm?

    This isn’t about who can ride more aggressive or wrench a spark plug best. I really wanted to acknowledge the fact that more riders are women and that we need to understand the differences in how we communicate. I suspect many don’t give a hoot what I think. If the truth be told I got a fortune cookie after eating Chinese and it stated You should enhance your feminine side at this time…so, here is a blog about women…?!

    Point being that if we don’t learn to communicate better (at work, at home or going for a Harley ride) — that off-ramp you just took might be a result of “Sally” checking out a broken finger nail…not a right turn signal! I couldn’t resist.

    Yes, honey I’ll gladly sleep on the sofa tonight… Have I told you how wonderful you look in those chaps?! What color roses do you like?

    Read Full Post »

    %d bloggers like this: