Ruh-Roh!!! It looks like Polaris industries has kicked the Victory motorcycle brand to the curb, ouch. Polaris plans to wind down their manufacturing facility for the Victory motorcycle in the next few weeks. This is a big blow to the owners of Victory motorcycles and definitely a tragic event for those who were employed bringing the brand to market.
Polaris will provide parts and service for the next 10 years per what I read in their press release. I kinda get the parts thing because I think it’s a federal law that they are required to manufacture repair parts. But I’m kind of curious how many dealers will continue to service a product that they no longer sell. There is no federal law forcing prior dealers to honor the verbiage in Polaris press release.
I don’t want to be one of those people who say I saw this coming. But I can’t control myself, so I guess, I’m going to be one of them. I’ve ridden several Victory motorcycles at various demo rides over the years. I really like the product, but I noticed there was never any substantial changes to make the product more marketable. Polaris would change the paint jobs, add bigger stereo systems, change the size of the front wheel and incorporate LED lighting. But, no major R&D investment.
Polaris has also brought a competing product to market when they resurrected the Indian motorcycle brand. I’ve read where Polaris thinks that the Indian brand is a better rival to reduce Harley Davidson’s market share. This particular market segment is a battleground of epic proportion. Many other motorcycle manufacturers have fallen due to Harley Davidson’s dominance. A shrinking demographics doesn’t help the situation either.
I’m no expert with stocks and bonds, but it looks like Polaris industries stock has been sliding in the wrong direction. I’m going to guess this was another of the driving forces to shut down the production of the Victory motorcycle. The CEO of Polaris has a responsibility to the board of directors and the stockholders. So, in the end it’s really not a tough decision to make.
Although, if Polaris industries needed money why didn’t they sell the Victory brand. It’s already established, they already have a dealer network and a loyal following. Sounds like a really good idea to sell the Victory brand. I guess they just don’t want another brand competing with their Indian motorcycle brand.