Where’s my Dealer Network, Dude?

Okay I’m no different than anybody else who likes motorcycles. I don’t know if like is the correct word but I’m going to go with it. I’ve been checking the Internet over and over again to get a glimpse of the new Indian motorcycles. I want a front row seat to the big event. I’ve seen a  few pictures and videos for the ” Thunder Stroke 111 engine.” But I want more, damn it!

So I fired up the old Google search engine today. I typed in “Indian Motorcycles” in the search bar. Right at top of the web page was the link. Polaris is probably dishing out some big monies to Google AdWords for this placement. Clicked on link to the Indian motorcycle homepage and then my life finally became complete.  After staring at the webpage in a comatose state for a few minutes, I’ve come to terms with which Indian motorcycle I’d like to buy. I’m in! Where do I send the check? Do I need to get on waiting list? Hope there’s still some room in the garage. The wife will be so happy to see another motorcycle in the garage.

My choice would be the Indian Chief Classic. No bags or windshield for me. I like the wind in my face!  I guess it would be considered the base model or essentially the cheapest one of the three. It really has a lot of nice features for a base model. Cruise control and anti-lock brakes are nice standard features. It’s listed on the web site for$18,999. That’s in the same ballpark as one of Harley Davidson’s motorcycles. So I guess the price is not too far out of whack. A lot more competitively priced than their previous models.

I would definitely go with the Springfield blue paint job. I’ve never owned a blue motorcycle. Now that I think about it, I’ve never owned a blue anything. It might be time to own something  painted blue. I wonder what the color blue says about me. The blue paint job is going to cost a little extra, but it’s only money. So now my future Indian Chief Classic is $19,399 without taxes and other fees. Blue paint must be really hard to come by. Well I guess it’s still under $20,000.

Up at the top right corner of the Indian Motorcycle web page is the find dealer button. I moved the mouse pointer over it and click! Up pops a map, nice! As I scan the directions looking for the most important piece of data. The distance from our house to the Indian dealer. The dealer is just a little over 60 miles one way. Let’s do some math, 60 miles plus 60 miles equals 120 miles. So the dealer is actually 120 miles away from me. Okay, not the end of the world.

I travel 110 miles round-trip to the dealer that sold and services my Moto Guzzi motorcycle. But Moto Guzzi has no interest in going toe to toe with the Harley-Davidson motorcycle manufacturing machine. Moto Guzzi would be happy to sell a couple hundred extra motorcycles a year. The Indian brand on the other hand would like to go toe to toe with Harley-Davidson. I’m pretty damn sure Polaris knows exactly what they’re up against. I sure as hell hope Polaris isn’t using the ” we will build it and they will buy it” strategy.

I would have thought that Scott Wine, the CEO of Polaris Industries, would have been working to increase their dealer network before they unleashed their new motorcycles. It almost seems like they put the proverbial “cart before the horse.” I know potential buyers are very excited about these motorcycles and most likely thinking “Where’s my dealer network, dude?” I know I sure am.

I sure hope Polaris doesn’t try to put the Indian motorcycles and the Victory motorcycles in the same dealership. I really believe this would dilute the Victory brand which is a really good product. I’ve ridden a lot of Victory motorcycles and if I wasn’t partial to Harley-Davidson’s motorcycles I definitely would have my butt on a Victory motorcycle.

Where I live I could set off a thermonuclear bomb and destroy at least five Harley-Davidson dealerships. Let’s pray that homeland security doesn’t read my blog like everyone else. Having dealerships close by really helps support the brand marketing strategies. Trying to take away market share from Harley-Davidson is going to be an epic battle. All of the current manufacturers have tried and several have failed which cause them to stop participating in this particular market segment. A lot of you haters are not going to like this, but Harley-Davidson kicks ass in this market segment.

I’m going to guess the Polaris dumped a  lot of monies into this Indian Motorcycle venture.  So Scott should’ve been driving around pounding on every potential dealer’s door offering them just about anything they want to get their motorcycles on the dealer’s showroom floors. Without a strong dealer network, I see troubles ahead for the Indian motorcycles. Not everyone is like me willing to drive 120 odd miles to a dealership for particular motorcycle.

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