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Old 27th November 2015, 12:20   #1
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Default Harley India's Sales: Apr-Oct 2015

The big bike segment is fresh, but already flattening out .

Is it that a lot of non-serious bikers realised they have no time / inclination for weekend rides? One frequently sees ~year old Harleys on sale on Indian classified websites.

Or is it because Anoop Prakash moved out? Related Thread (Anoop Prakash moves to Harley-Davidson Canada).

Source & full article

Quote:
After posting a robust growth in the last financial year, this segment costing Rs 5 lakh and above recorded sales of 4,089 units during the same period, a fall of nearly two per cent against 4,158 units sold in the corresponding period last year,
Quote:
Harley’s sales fell to 2,625 units in the April-October 2015 period against 2,739 units in the year-ago period

Harley's Street 750, was a disappointment in the Apr-Oct 2015 period as sales fell 25 per cent to 1,433 units, compared with 1,904 units a year ago
An excellent post by neil.jericho:

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Originally Posted by neil.jericho View Post
A closer look at the numbers will reveal that it isnt all doom n gloom for HD. While their sales numbers have fallen just over 4% (114 units) when compared to the same period last year, the fact that they have sold 25% less Street 750s is good news for them in more ways than one.

From the Street 750 contributing 69% of their sales for the same quarter last year (1904 out of 2739), it has dropped down to 54% this year (1433 out of 2625). Plain and simple, HD sold 835 bikes that were above the Street 750 last year but that has jumped to 1192 this year. Thats a 42% jump in the sales of non Street 750 bikes!

So the numbers prove a lot of buyers are moving up the product range (either as HD upgraders or new ones). Also if I were to assume that these bikes are more profitable for HD than the Street 750, isnt it good news after all?

Interestingly Triumph sales are up 8 - 9 % as per the article. Looks like detunegate hasnt really hit them after all.

Last edited by GTO : 28th November 2015 at 15:00. Reason: Quoting Neil's post which adds a clearer picture
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Old 27th November 2015, 12:25   #2
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Default re: Harley India's Sales: Apr-Oct 2015

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Originally Posted by GTO View Post
The big bike segment is fresh, but is already flattening out .

Is it that a lot of non-serious bikers realised they have no time / inclination for weekend rides? One frequently sees ~year old Harleys on sale on Indian classified websites.

Or is it because Anoop Prakash moved out? Related Thread (Anoop Prakash moves to Harley-Davidson Canada).

Source & full article
it is also on account of the callous attitude and pathetic service at harley dealerships.

in my rider group (all harleys) a lot of us are clear that our next upgrade (due next fiscal) will NOT be a harley. we are looking at Ducatis and Indian as an alternative.

What Harley is failing to realise is that their customer is not the same as a customer for a commuter bike. These bikes are lifestyle products which by definition demand a highly competent customer support.

If anyone has been unfortunate to call upon the services of Harley RSA (Road Side Assistance) they would recount tales of horror- left stranded for hours, flimsy excuses, exorbitant towing charges, damaged bikes etc.

I feel that the adage- Pride comes before a fall, is playing out in case of HD-India.
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Old 27th November 2015, 13:56   #3
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Default re: Harley India's Sales: Apr-Oct 2015

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Originally Posted by himanshugoswami View Post
What Harley is failing to realise is that their customer is not the same as a customer for a commuter bike. These bikes are lifestyle products which by definition demand a highly competent customer support.
Completely agree!
More than a lifestyle product, it is also a product, which needs to be serviced only by the expert hands.
A normal commuter bike such as a Splendor can be fixed by any road side mechanic, if it faces a problem. But a bike such as Harley cannot be given to just anybody to fix it. Which is why customer service is very relevant and important to these products.
Plus, the customer who buys this, buys it for his passion, or for the brand image. Companies should realize that vague replies and meaningless excuses from service centres will only antagonize the buyers who have come to the service centre with a problem.
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Old 27th November 2015, 14:23   #4
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Default re: Harley India's Sales: Apr-Oct 2015

A closer look at the numbers will reveal that it isnt all doom n gloom for HD. While their sales numbers have fallen just over 4% (114 units) when compared to the same period last year, the fact that they have sold 25% less Street 750s is good news for them in more ways than one.


From the Street 750 contributing 69% of their sales for the same quarter last year (1904 out of 2739), it has dropped down to 54% this year (1433 out of 2625). Plain and simple, HD sold 835 bikes that were above the Street 750 last year but that has jumped to 1192 this year. Thats a 42% jump in the sales of non Street 750 bikes!


So the numbers prove a lot of buyers are moving up the product range (either as HD upgraders or new ones). Also if I were to assume that these bikes are more profitable for HD than the Street 750, isnt it good news after all?


Interestingly Triumph sales are up 8 - 9 % as per the article. Looks like detunegate hasnt really hit them after all.

Last edited by neil.jericho : 27th November 2015 at 14:26.
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Old 27th November 2015, 14:53   #5
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Default re: Harley India's Sales: Apr-Oct 2015

Its actually boom time for big bikes segment in India, so the sales can't flatten out.Period. I think its got to do with Harley's customer approach in the country. I've myself experienced poor handling of of both pre & post sales customers. Then the atrocious service, spares, accessories don't help much either. Lets not forget indian consumers are inherently "economical", so the heavily priced services & spares won't cut ice with them for long.

After the initial euphoria is over, the customers will sit back, take stock of the situation & say, "well its not worth the money"! & the word spreads, fast. Also the riders group thing which has been alien dropped into the country, well I think is not made for India. Atleast I never aspire to ride among a group of "cult group of harley riders". For India, Harley has to customise the experience according to Indian needs & tastes.
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Old 27th November 2015, 16:04   #6
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Default re: Harley India's Sales: Apr-Oct 2015

Good platform for Harley Haters to bash up the brand now!

Harley sales are down -- Only because of poor customer service? - Wrong!

People buying Harley will nevertheless buy it for the brand value! Customer service / availability of spare parts etc are only small parts which are usually overshadowed by the Brand.

Just that - Bike scene has opened up. People have more choices. The real enthusiast will not let "Poor customer service" alone to move to another brand.

and if you look at it - As Neil put it very aptly its a small change 4% compared to last year.

AWD sir - You say "For India, Harley has to customise the experience according to Indian needs & tastes" -- Can you please help us understand this? Which brand does customize the experience to Indian needs v/s what HD brand doesn't?

Its not just with Harley - People have complained similarly about Triumph too -- now would you attribute increase / decrease in sales because of poor customer service?

I hope you are not comparing the experience of a Suzuki/Honda/Yamaha bike showroom experience v/s a Harley/Ducati/Triumph?
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Old 27th November 2015, 16:29   #7
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Default re: Harley India's Sales: Apr-Oct 2015

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Originally Posted by Shubz View Post

I hope you are not comparing the experience of a Suzuki/Honda/Yamaha bike showroom experience v/s a Harley/Ducati/Triumph?
Now this is a very interesting point! I take it when you say Suzuki/Honda/Yamaha you are basically looking down at the commuter segment bikes and implying that premium category is very different and can't be compared to these bikes.

If I read that correct then I wonder, if a bike priced at 1/10th or even lesser the price of such premium category bikes (read fatter profit margins) can have an approach that tunes itself to the Indian tastes and needs even with lesser margins to play with what is the justification to suggest that bikes earning the big moolah should be spared that expectation and Indians should make do with whatever is being handed out to them? As a customer my business goes to the one who fits my needs and not vice versa.
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Old 27th November 2015, 16:40   #8
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Default re: Harley India's Sales: Apr-Oct 2015

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Originally Posted by Shubz View Post
Good platform for Harley Haters to bash up the brand now!

Harley sales are down -- Only because of poor customer service? - Wrong!

People buying Harley will nevertheless buy it for the brand value! Customer service / availability of spare parts etc are only small parts which are usually overshadowed by the Brand.
Shubz

I am a Harley owner and bought into the brand. I love the brotherhood and camaraderie.

But a large number of my fellow HOGs, me included, are so fed up with HD's customer service and callous attitude, that we are looking at Ducati or Indians as our next bikes.

We know about the horror stories of Triumph so are not considering Triumph. Another case of bad customer support costing sales. (both for Harley and triumph). Brand can get you initial sales but customer experience is what keeps your existing owners loyal and attracts more to the fold by word of mouth. conversely negative feedback will drive people away.

At least in NCR Ducati service and customer care is top notch. and of course bikes like the Monster and Diavel are to die for!!
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Old 27th November 2015, 16:47   #9
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Default re: Harley India's Sales: Apr-Oct 2015

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Originally Posted by Zappo View Post
Now this is a very interesting point! I take it when you say Suzuki/Honda/Yamaha you are basically looking down at the commuter segment bikes and implying that premium category is very different and can't be compared to these bikes.

If I read that correct then I wonder, if a bike priced at 1/10th or even lesser the price of such premium category bikes (read fatter profit margins) can have an approach that tunes itself to the Indian tastes and needs even with lesser margins to play with what is the justification to suggest that bikes earning the big moolah should be spared that expectation and Indians should make do with whatever is being handed out to them? As a customer my business goes to the one who fits my needs and not vice versa.
Sir, I believe he is referring to the big Japs. Not the little tiddly commuters.

Shubz might confirm.
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Old 27th November 2015, 16:54   #10
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Default re: Harley India's Sales: Apr-Oct 2015

With the exception of Kawasaki, I do not see the other 3 Jap brands being serious on their big bikes in India.




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Old 27th November 2015, 17:03   #11
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Default re: Harley India's Sales: Apr-Oct 2015

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With the exception of Kawasaki, I do not see the other 3 Jap brands being serious on their big bikes in India.
Agree to some extent. But things might change soon.

Yamaha is of course non existent.

Suzuki does sell its imports officially though its dealers (DSG in Pune being one).

And Honda while late is now one up on Kawasaki in the middleweight segment with its CBR 650F. And slots in between Kawasaki's middleweight and heavy middleweight offerings.

Personally though, I would still have a lot more faith (and peace of mind) in buying from Kawasaki or Honda than from Triumph or HD or Ducati or Benelli or Aprilia.

And not just because of the products.
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Old 27th November 2015, 17:06   #12
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Default re: Harley India's Sales: Apr-Oct 2015

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Yamaha is of course non existent.

And come to think of it.. it was Yamaha that was the FIRST (in 2007) to get the R1 and MT-01 as first CBU Big Bikes to India...

.. of course it was the R15 and FZ16 that made the most out of it eventually.




Last edited by payeng : 27th November 2015 at 17:08.
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Old 27th November 2015, 17:36   #13
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Default re: Harley India's Sales: Apr-Oct 2015

I definitely was not talking about the consumer segment.

As Payeng put it -- Except Kawasaki - no other Japs are serious about bringing in bigger bikes in here.

Himanshu sir -- Even I am a Harley owner - 2nd Harley to be precise and I am not any happy with the customer service / Parts availability either.

But I still love my Harley for the bike it is. add a pinch of camaraderie blah & blah if anyone wishes to.

And what I mentioned was personal opinion / experience. I wasn't treated so great at the Triumph Store even though they knew I was on the verge of changing bikes (upgrading / changing brand etc) The Aprilia guys were literally on my nerves -- they didn't want to lose out on a potential customer if he even flinched for 1 second on his Harley decision.

The P&A story is the same with Triumph as well. It is going to be the same with Ducati as well. Even Kawasaki doesn't have parts & accessories off the shelf.

So no matter what the brand is - situation remains the same. I still stand by my (personal) point -- its not because of just the customer service situation that the sales have dropped.
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Old 27th November 2015, 17:50   #14
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Default re: Harley India's Sales: Apr-Oct 2015

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Originally Posted by Shubz View Post
I still stand by my (personal) point -- its not because of just the customer service situation that the sales have dropped.
Shubz, can you share what factors you believe are additionally responsible?

I think all those who wanted to buy a Harley, have bought one by now.

That explains the first rush.

Then the HD marketing machine takes over.

Which is why you see many re-purchases (upgrades).

As the up-graders move up the pointy end of the chain, and as new buyers (aspirational, younger lot moving up the income ladder, etc.) get thinner on the ground, overall sales slow.

In sales segmental changes are seen. Which is what Jeroen was referring to.

Last edited by ebonho : 27th November 2015 at 17:51.
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Old 27th November 2015, 17:54   #15
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Default re: Harley India's Sales: Apr-Oct 2015

Ironically Parts & Accessories for the "Indian Made" Street 750 should be good because of the fact that its "Made in India"

Still early days for the Premium Motorcycle segment in India.. by the way the current scene a far cry from the days Big Bikes in India mostly meant Grey Imports.

Lets count our blessings, things should get only better in the future.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shubz View Post
As Payeng put it -- Except Kawasaki - no other Japs are serious about bringing in bigger bikes in here.
Well, getting their Big Bikes isn't really an issue. To be honest they have got a few (of their big bikes) to India.

.. but being serious about these Big Bikes, apart from being "Halo Brands" for its smaller offerings, is a different ball game.



Quote:
Originally Posted by ebonho View Post
Shubz, can you share what factors you believe are additionally responsible?
My 2 Cents:

1. Its the Market Settling down after the initial Hype

2. Ducati, Indian, Benelli, Aprilia, Moto Guzzi do not "yet" share their numbers with SIAM




Last edited by payeng : 27th November 2015 at 18:20.
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