Category Archives: Middle Of The Road

Common Sense With Face Masks and New Limited Edition Balance Bikes

In these uncertain times, we need to use common sense when away from home. This includes wearing face masks, do we wear them under our helmets or not? Here at AMERiders we don’t want to completely keep the frowny faces on, we want to let you know about Harley-Davidson’s Limited Edition Balance Bikes also.

So the big question Do we wear face masks under our Helmet?

Come on people this is actually common sense.

No matter where you live, by now you’ve no doubt heard that wearing a mask can help prevent the spread of COVID-19. If you’re unable to stay home and must be around other people, the CDC and similar public health organizations around the world recommend both the wearing of masks and also maintaining a 6-foot (or 2 meter) social distance from other people.  

What about when you’re on a motorcycle, though? Do you need to wear a mask if you’re on your bike? What about if you’re wearing a full-face helmet? Even before the pandemic struck, some riders, such as myself, chose to wear balaclavas under our helmets for various reasons. Among other things, they help keep the inside of your helmet from getting gunked up with sweat, hair products, sunscreen, and makeup. In the winter, they can help keep you warm, and moisture-wicking ones are great for summer riding comfort, as well. However, they’re a choice and not a requirement anywhere, as far as I know. 

The surgical and cloth face masks that most medical authorities advise wearing to stop the spread of COVID-19 are a different matter, however. Rules and recommendations vary by health authority, so you should check with your local health department to see what is legally required and also what is advised for your health. Just because a mask is not legally required certainly doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t wear one if you prefer to do so.  

common sense

However, wearing a mask underneath a full-face motorcycle helmet seems like it might be overkill. In fact, back when obtaining personal protective equipment was almost universally difficult for medical providers in the U.S., the Journal of the American Medical Association actually recommended wearing full-face motorcycle helmets with visors as a valid alternative to medical-grade PPE, in a pinch. The consensus seemed to be that while it wasn’t ideal, it was at least something. Welding masks and ice hockey face shields started showing up as alternative options around the same time, for the same reason. 

Obviously, good full-face motorcycle helmets offer ventilation and airflow. While that makes them good for riding your bike, that also means that they’re far from perfect tools to prevent the spread of viral droplets. However, all the other types of masks that aren’t N95-grade also don’t do a whole lot to block tiny coronavirus particles. It’s not difficult to see why the idea of some type of physical barrier might be preferable to none, even if they’re not completely ideal. 

The thing about motorcyclists is, we’re everywhere. We’re in every profession, have every type of job, and many of us ride to and from those jobs every day. It should come as no surprise that a doctor who’s also a rider has publicly considered the question of wearing a mask under a full-face helmet during the current pandemic. 

“Surgical masks restrict your breathing. This can be fatal at high speeds when your adrenalin kicks in. Adrenalin will cause your heartbeat to double depending on your speed. This, in effect, will make you breathe faster and these masks will restrict your breathing and give your heart a hard time. Next, your brain will also suffer due to lack of oxygen until you blackout,” Dr. Tommy Lim told MotoPinas

He went on to add that several other factors, both predictable and not, could contribute to difficulties breathing with a mask under a full-face helmet. Heat, humidity, a sudden accident up ahead that brings traffic to a hot and sticky crawl, you name it.  

For our safety, both while riding and functioning in the world off our bikes during the pandemic, carrying our masks tucked safely away in a pocket is probably a good idea. It’s also probably best to clean our hands after taking our helmets off, and before putting those masks on our faces. The current CDC recommendation is to either wash your hands for at least 20 seconds or use a hand sanitizer that has greater than 60 percent ethanol or 70 percent isopropanol content. Carrying a small bottle of hand sanitizer on our bikes is probably the most practical thing to do if we want to put masks on our faces right after taking our helmets off.

My two cents on the matter…. Use common sense.

New Limited Edition Balance Bikes from H-D

Sooner or later, the day arrives when the kids in your life start learning how to balance on bicycles. Whether it’s your kid, a niece or nephew, or even your best friend’s kid, it’s a pretty standard rite of passage. That’s why Harley-Davidson is asking if you’re a motorcycle fan, why not get the kid in your life an IRONe balance bike instead of just a regular old bicycle?  

These electric bikes help teach kids aged 3 to 7 years old and under 75 pounds about hand-eye coordination and balance, like a bicycle. Then, when the child is ready, there’s a powered mode complete with a throttle. If a kid in your circle gets excited when they see your motorcycle, this is a great way to encourage that budding motorcycle love and build valuable skills that they’ll use for a lifetime.  

common sense

While both the IRONe12 and the IRONe16 have already been available at Harley-Davidson dealerships across the U.S., the Motor Company just announced a special Limited Edition version. Only 550 units will be available, and they come in the LiveWire Yellow Fuse colorway. Make the kid in your life giggle with glee when your yellow LiveWire matches their balance bike.

“The Limited Edition IRONe12 and IRONe16 are impressively custom and extremely limited,” said Jon Bekefy, general manager of brand marketing at Harley-Davidson Motor Company. “No other Harley-Davidson shares the Yellow Fuse color exclusive to LiveWire, which is the halo of the H-D EV portfolio.” 

These Limited Edition bikes also get a custom graphic treatment that sets them apart from the regular IRONe12 and IRONe16 bikes. While you’d normally expect a Limited Edition variant to carry a premium price as compared to its non-limited version, both limited IRONe bikes only cost US $50 over the base price. The standard IRONe12 carries an MSRP of $649, while the Limited Edition IRONe12 is $699. Meanwhile, the standard IRONe16 starts at $699 and the limited IRONe16 starts at $749.  Not bad for limited edition pricing.

Remember though, think hard and use common sense before spending a large amount of money on a “toy” like this some children don’t play with certain toys for very long and they sit by the wayside after a month. You don’t want to spend near $800 bucks for a dust collector.

~And as always…

~Live Free Ride Hard~

~AMERiders

and

Mistakes

Let AMERiders keep you up to date with information on Common Sense With Face Masks and New Limited Edition Balance Bikes.

And as always don’t forget to send us your stories, pictures, and events for posting to GALLERY.AMERIDERS @ GMAIL.COM  and we will post them for you. The more people that know about your event the better and we are offering free advertising. We would also love to hear about your rides and love to see those bikes so send those stories and pictures.

Like what you just read? Share it on social media ( Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, and Instagram) with others and let them get the information and benefit from it as well.

2020 Sturgis Bike Rally Is Still Expected to Proceed in Light of COVID-19

It is so on! The hundreds-of-thousands of leather-clad bikers are saying regarding the 2020 Sturgis Bike rally that is still expected to proceed this August in light of the coronavirus pandemic. Could the current coronavirus outbreak put a damper on the party? We don’t think a virus is going to hold a few bikers back. AMERiders has the story.

For ten days every August, the sleepy little town of Sturgis, South Dakota, roars to life with the rumble of exhaust as the entire region is inundated with hundreds-of-thousands of leather-clad bikers. This year the (80th) 2020 Sturgis Motorcycle Rally is scheduled for August 7 through August 16, Amidst COVID-19.

Director of the rally and events, Jerry Cole, expects that this year’s rally will proceed as usual. Cole says that while things are still uncertain, the rally is still almost five months out and he’s optimistic that things will get better before then. With that in mind, he and his staff are still planning for the event as they always have. He’s not ignoring the threat, however. Cole and his team are staying up to date with regards to the virus and are in contact with the state health authority and the governor’s office. 

“We’re hoping that things will get under control, and we will go from there. If things change, we will let people know,” Says Cole. 

“We’re 100 % on planning the rally,” said Sturgis Mayor Mark Carstensen at a news briefing at Sturgis’ City Hall on March 25th. He went on to say that with the rally five months away, he hopes that the virus will have run much of its course by then. The city council has said it would make an official decision in mid-June on whether to go forward with hosting the event.

That’s good news, considering that this year is the 80th Sturgis Rally so it promises to be bigger than usual as banner years usually are. People travel from all over the world to participate in the wild party that is Sturgis. 

The Sturgis Motorcycle Rally was founded by the Jackpine Gypsies motorcycle club in 1938, and has been held every year except for when it was put on hiatus for a couple of years during World War Two. While for years, it was exclusive to American made bikes like Harleys and Indians, these days, all bikes are welcome. 

In April the Sturgis Rally posted the City of Sturgis Motorcycle Rally Consideration Protocols which shows just how much the city relies on the rally.

2020 Strugis

The legendary Buffalo Chip has already booked big name acts like Willie Nelson, ZZ Top, Shinedown, Puddle of Mudd, and the very last show for classic rockers Lynyrd Skynyrd. Meanwhile, the Iron Horse Saloon offers nightly free concerts featuring bands such as Skillet, Fozzy, and Killswitch Engage. While the Full Throttle Saloon hasn’t named much more than Jackyl, you can expect them to have some amazing acts as well. Considering that it’s only March, you can count on more bands being announced between now and August.

~And as always…

~Live Free Ride Hard~

~AMERiders

and

Mistakes

Let AMERiders keep you up to date with information on the 2020 Sturgis Bike Rally.

And as always don’t forget to send us your stories, pictures, and events for posting to GALLERY.AMERIDERS @ GMAIL.COM  and we will post them for you. The more people that know about your event the better and we are offering free advertising. We would also love to hear about your rides and love to see those bikes so send those stories and pictures.

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A Transparent Harley-Davidson Gas Tank? Why Yes Please!

We talked to you about the Apex Predator last week the winner that was crowned King of Kings custom bike building competition. The Predator was, of course, a great build, but that doesn’t mean the ones who lost are anything less. One of the 15 entries the “Daytona’s Red” had a transparent Harley-Davidson Gas Tank which is just way too cool, AMERiders has the story.

King of Kings was the culmination of a years-old custom bike challenge called Battle of the Kings (BOTK). All the entries for the final, bikes customized by the bike maker’s international dealers, were previous winners of BOTK.

Among the most exciting projects was that of the Harley-Davidson Barcelona shop. The bike, called Daytona’s Red, was initially a Harley-Davidson Roadster, and even if the custom work is done to it didn’t make it something else entirely, this two-wheeled machine sure does look different than any other roadsters out there.

The thing that stands out the most is the crazy fuel tank the bike is fitted with. At its origins a stock Harley tank, it has been modified by hand to include a transparent section through which the gasoline and even the fuel pump in operation can be seen.

The garage chose the Roadster for its project because “it is the most racing bike in the Harley-Davidson range.”

“We have been inspired by the history of Harley-Davidson racing looking for a more racing style of motorcycle, differentiating ourselves from the most common styles in customization contests,” the garage says.

The bike has been modified with more than just the exclusive tank. Several other parts were added, most of them built in house, including the exhaust, grips, and headlights. As a touch of class, the turn signals were integrated in the brake lever, it too built by hand.

Even with all those remade parts, the Barcelona crew stayed true to the rules of the competition. They state that the base motorcycle needs to be a Harley-Davidson, the customization be worth at most €6,000 ($6,500), and the bike be road legal.

~And as always…

~Live Free Ride Hard~

~AMERiders

and

Mistakes

Let AMERiders keep you up to date with information on the Transparent Harley-Davidson Gas Tank.

And as always don’t forget to send us your stories, pictures, and events for posting to GALLERY.AMERIDERS @ GMAIL.COM  and we will post them for you. The more people that know about your event the better and we are offering free advertising. We would also love to hear about your rides and love to see those bikes so send those stories and pictures.

Like what you just read? Share it on social media ( Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, and Instagram) with others and let them get the information and benefit from it as well.

Will the Future of Harley Include New the New Models We’ve Seen or Not?

While 2020 has been an eventful year in general for Harley-Davidson, the past few weeks have been particularly intense. After two months of uncertainty, interim CEO Jochen Zeitz was officially offered a spot at the helm at the beginning of May 2020.  AMERiders has your story.

Along with a new boss, the Motor Company also completely overhauled its corporate strategy, cutting back on its new market ambitions and refocusing its attention on the segments it already has a foothold in. That’s a drastic 180-degree from what the previous CEO was hoping to accomplish with the brand. Now that Harley is going back to basics, what will happen with all the new designs it has in the bank?

We don’t know for sure—Harley hasn’t openly discussed their fate yet. To be fair, the new “Rewire” strategy announced at the end of April 2020, was far less detailed than the previous one.  What we know for sure is that Harley is going back to basics, refocusing on its core clientele, and reworking its launch timeline. That apparently means that Harley is going back to a more cruiser-focused approach to regain momentum. Innovation isn’t part of the plan anymore, at least for the time being.   

This could ultimately mean that the chances of seeing new, un-Harley-like models join the ranks are now much smaller, and that’s a shame.

After Levatich announced the “More Roads to Harley” plan in 2018, a slew of concepts renders, and patents surfaced. The list included patents for an electric scooter, for two café racer and flat-track-inspired models, as well as a projected small-displacement model for the Chinese market.  

These projects had a lot of potential and proved that the company was willing to step out of its comfort zone and try something different. It’s not an easy mission when you’re Harley, but definitely a commendable one. Bottom line: we were totally onboard with how the Harley landscape was taking shape.  

Sadly, these out-of-the-box designs that made many people excited about the company’s future could now be in jeopardy. None of them fit the Harley cookie cutter—which is what makes them so appealing to non-Harlistas but also places them outside of the company’s new scope.  

Thankfully, not all the models are at risk right now. The Pan America and the Bronx remain part of the plan which makes sense—the two models are pretty much ready for their big launch and it was probably a bigger waste to scrap them than to keep them at this point. Harley confirmed the decision by stating that it remains committed to its expansion in the adventure, streetfighter, and electric segments (read: Pan America, Bronx, and LiveWire.) 

Now, I might surprise you by saying this but I’m not mad at the company for scaling back. When your numbers have been in freefall for years, going back to a proven formula isn’t a bad way to start fresh and give you the space to reassess your plans for the future. One way or the other, Harley needs to take aggressive measures if it wants to survive. Those aggressive measures were simply not the ones many of us expected.  

Because the new, bolder designs showed a side of Harley’s personality we had yet to discover, it’s understandably disappointing to think that these projects might get axed. What do you guys think? Do you think Harley will eventually use these designs or do you think that they will be going to be forgo them all together?

~And as always…

~Live Free Ride Hard~

~AMERiders

and

Mistakes

Let AMERiders keep you up to date with information the Future of Harley & will the New Models We’ve Seen or Not be included?

And as always don’t forget to send us your stories, pictures, and events for posting to GALLERY.AMERIDERS @ GMAIL.COM  and we will post them for you. The more people that know about your event the better and we are offering free advertising. We would also love to hear about your rides and love to see those bikes so send those stories and pictures.

Like what you just read? Share it on social media ( Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, and Instagram) with others and let them get the information and benefit from it as well.

The Apex Predator: One Bad Mama Jamma and a King of Beasts.

At the beginning of April, Harley-Davidson announced the winner of this year’s King of Kings competition, a mashup of the best 15 previous winners of the Battle of the Kings. Its name is Apex Predator, and with it, we’re kicking off a series that will bring all the participants to light over the following days. AMERiders has the story.

Known in the industry as BOTK, Battle of the Kings kicked off in 2015 as a custom build competition for Harley dealers worldwide. It is, if you like, a competition of ideas Harley itself was incapable of having, but recognized by the bike maker as possibly game-changing for the custom industry.

The rules of the competition are simple: the base motorcycle needs to be a Harley-Davidson bike, the customization must not cost over €6,000 ($6,500) and it must have at least half of the parts used taken from the Harley inventory, and the final bike must be road legal.

Over the years, many competed in the Battle of Kings, but in April 2020 Harley crowned one of them ruler of the pack. And as fate would have it, that King of Kings is the Apex Predator.

Built by a dealer in Mexico called Harley-Davidson Queretaro, the Apex is based on the Sportster XR1200 with the stock engine, and it is supposed to be a “retro-futuristic XR-based track monster meets street fighter.”

Peralta and his team were inspired by their motto “Born to attack without a challenge. Born to live without rival,” as they made the one-off custom hand and foot controls and Alcantara seat. 

The Predator appears to use stock Harley calipers combined with wavy rotors for stopping power. Inverted Showa Big Piston Forks provide suspension in the front while twin shocks handle the rear. The team borrowed an LED Daymaker headlight from a Harley-Davidson Breakout to light the way. The control center of the bike is a high-tech, full color, TFT, Bluetooth instrument panel, which doesn’t detract from the lines of the machine. 

Peralta and his team, made up of Agustin Anguino, Luis Fernando Perea, Rodrigo Perez, Eduardo Trejo, and Yeyo, chose a deep sterling green powder coat to finish the bike. They then chose to contrast the dark green with Amarillo Intenso highlights on the calipers, rear springs, and seat. 

As for the Sportster line, it was introduced by Harley back in 1957 and has been produced continuously ever since. The XR1200 has been around globally since 2006. We reckon not many would mind if it were to sell in the Apex Predator configuration.

~And as always…

~Live Free Ride Hard~

~AMERiders

and

Mistakes

Let AMERiders keep you up to date with information on The Apex Predator: One Bad Mama Jamma and a King of Beasts.

And as always don’t forget to send us your stories, pictures, and events for posting to GALLERY.AMERIDERS @ GMAIL.COM  and we will post them for you. The more people that know about your event the better and we are offering free advertising. We would also love to hear about your rides and love to see those bikes so send those stories and pictures.

Like what you just read? Share it on social media ( Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, and Instagram) with others and let them get the information and benefit from it as well.

GreenMo UK, Harley & the United Way Offer Donations to Combat COVID-19

I know we have been doing a lot of COVID-19 reporting lately but some like this need to be reported. Many manufacturers and companies have hopped on the bandwagon when it comes to donations to combat COVID-19 and more are still doing so the most recent are GreenMo UK and Harley-Davidson. AMERiders has the story.

Donations of Electric Mopeds for Food Delivery Services by GreenMo UK

donations

This pandemic has changed what we would consider as normal. We’ve been under one form of lockdown or another for nearly three months now—that’s a quarter of a year, and for some countries, the pandemic shows no sign of slowing down. Luckily however, technology has aided us in coping with the difficulties this rather strange time has presented to us. With dozens of platforms designed for virtual communication, people can conduct business as usual through various video conferencing applications. Additionally, food delivery services have mostly gone online, making it easier for us to order our favorite meals from the comfort and safety of our homes. 

One UK company focused on a greener future, has taken it upon itself to help the food delivery sector in the UK. GreenMo UK, an electric motorcycle fleet and the rental provider is helping some of England’s most loved food and restaurant chains fulfill deliveries across major cities. Their donations of several machines to Waltham Forest food bank, have helped to provide emission-free, lightweight mobility for delivery personnel, enabling them to fulfill orders much more quickly while adhering to government policies on social distancing.

As of this writing, GreenMo has donated three mopeds and two e-bikes to Waltham Forest food bank in light of the crisis. This is indeed very relevant as companies that used to rely on delivery vans for fulfilling deliveries are now making the shift to two-wheelers in order to maximize efficiency and speed of service. 

Richard Jordan, Director of GreenMo UK said, “We are seeing an all-time high in terms of inquiries and are working hard to provide vehicles to riders and fleets and keep them on the road so that they can, in turn, deliver the provisions that people so desperately need. We’re very proud to be supporting Waltham Forest. If any other charities or food banks need our help, we’re here and will do everything we can.” Places like this that give donations like this are on my “to be commended” list.

Harley-Davidson is teaming up to help the United Way in its fight against COVID-19.

Harley-Davidson and the auctioneers at Bonhams are teaming up to help the United Way in its fight against COVID-19. To raise funds, they’re auctioning off a unique Harley-Davidson LiveWire, one that’s being specially-built for this cause.

Often, when you see OEMs giving away bikes for charity or promotional contests, the motorcycles are bare-bones, no-frills base models. This machine breaks out of that dull stereotype. The LiveWire is an expensive, luxurious electric motorcycle in stock trim, with $29,799 MSRP in the US. The machine they’re auctioning off is even flashier (they’re still finishing the build). It has a one-off paint scheme and graphics, created by Harley-Davidson’s styling and design team specifically for this event. The MoCo also added pricey parts and accessories from the company’s catalog, with add-ons like carbon-fiber bodywork.  

The auction bike will be signed by members of the Harley-Davidson family, and it will be #500 of the First Strike series LiveWires. The First Strike bikes are specially numbered to celebrate the first 500 models to roll off the line, so this will be the last motorcycle in that special-edition line. 

Interested? You can learn more about the bike at the Bonhams website, and check out the current bid. The auction ends on May 26, 2020, at 16:00 EDT. Bonhams is hoping to sell the bike for between $35,000 and $45,000 US; all the money raised, minus taxes and fees, will go to the United Way Worldwide’s COVID-19 Community Response and Recovery Fund. The organization’s president/CEO said the funds from the auction will help it “provide needed services for individuals and families recovering from COVID-19 and support our efforts to bring communities back stronger than before.” 

According to Harley-Davidson’s press release, bidding “is available for participants from the United States.” Harley-Davidson also encourages riders to battle COVID-19 by acting responsibly and staying up-to-date on guidelines from the CDC, WHO, and other regional authorities. 

~And as always…

~Live Free Ride Hard~

~AMERiders

and

Mistakes

Let AMERiders keep you up to date with information on GreenMo, Harley & the United Way offer Donations to Combat COVID-19.

And as always don’t forget to send us your stories, pictures, and events for posting to GALLERY.AMERIDERS @ GMAIL.COM  and we will post them for you. The more people that know about your event the better and we are offering free advertising. We would also love to hear about your rides and love to see those bikes so send those stories and pictures.

Like what you just read? Share it on social media ( Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, and Instagram) with others and let them get the information and benefit from it as well.

When You Own a Lamborghini Aventador Why Not Make It a Mini Sidekick

When you own a Lamborghini Aventador, that in itself is reason enough to be proud. Often times, however, supercar owners find themselves in need of some other motorized sidekick contraption for their cars. AMERiders gives you the story.

One German Aventador owner thought there must have been something missing from his garage, maybe that should also be its sidekick sort of. So he turned to custom German bike builder Thunderbike for help.

The German shop started out in the 1980s as a repair place for Japanese motorcycles, but a few decades later found themselves to be quite good at either customizing Harleys or building their own custom frames with Harley engineering inside. The Black Star 110 and the RS Lambo are perfect examples of their prowess in both fields.

For this Aventador mentioned above, they came up with a design called Outerlimit. Finished in 2016, it was specced as “super sporty appearance, neat pressure in the engine, big wheels and powerful brakes.”

The custom frame of the bike was gifted with a Harley-Davidson twin-cam 120R engine linked to a 6-speed manual transmission, which gives the bike a power output of 140 ps and 190 Nm of torque. Not quite Aventador levels, but for a motorcycle, it’s not half bad.

The performance of the bike was not necessarily the main goal of the build, but the appearance of it was. As per customer specification, the Outerlimit had to exactly match the colors of the supercar, and that task seems to have been met nicely: both the design and the paint job that cover the various portions of the motorcycle’s body replicate the black and white panels seen on the Aventador body and roof. Basically it is a mini-Aventador

We didn’t find out how much Outerlimit cost to make, but the result must have definitely pleased the man who commissioned it. I know it would have me.

~And as always…

~Live Free Ride Hard~

~AMERiders

and

Mistakes

AMERiders says When You Own a Lamborghini Aventador Why Not Make It a Mini Sidekick.

And as always don’t forget to send us your stories, pictures, and events for posting to GALLERY.AMERIDERS @ GMAIL.COM  and we will post them for you. The more people that know about your event the better and we are offering free advertising. We would also love to hear about your rides and love to see those bikes so send those stories and pictures.

Like what you just read? Share it on social media ( Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, and Instagram) with others and let them get the information and benefit from it as well.

The Search Is Over Harley Appoints Jochen Zeitz as New CEO & President

We still don’t know if a new CEO can save Harley-Davidson, but we do know now that Jochen Zeitz is here to stay. The Motor Company officially announced on May 7, 2020, that Zeitz has been named CEO and president, with no need for the ‘acting’ in front of either title anymore. Additionally, he’ll also remain chairman of the board.  AMERiders has the story

“During this extraordinary time of crisis my first priority is the well-being of our H-D community as I execute our COVID-19 response plan efforts to stabilize the business, resume operations, and recover. I am also leading a necessary and comprehensive overhaul of the company structure, operating model, and strategy as we adjust to the new post COVID-19 realities,” Zeitz said in a press release. 

“Over the next few months, we will rewire the business and define a new 5-year strategic plan later this year. I will then oversee the implementation of these changes and reignite Harley-Davidson as one of the most revered and iconic brands in the world,” he continued. 

Presiding director Thomas Linebarger added, “As the uncertainty surrounding the COVID-19 crisis and recovery persists and given the significant changes that are needed at the company, solidifying Jochen as CEO demonstrates both the board’s confidence in him and Jochen’s commitment to leading the company through this extraordinary time. His two decades of experience as Chairman & CEO of a leading global company and brand [Puma], and his enthusiasm and determination to challenge everything about the company based on his turnaround experience is exactly what we need right now to lead Harley-Davidson to long term success.” 

The challenge is vast, but Zeitz has faced down a seemingly insurmountable company turnaround challenge before, with Puma. Can he do it again? Only time will tell. Here’s hoping that Zeitz is the breath of fresh air the company needs to find its way and make itself matter to new riders, as well as its longtime faithful fans. 

~And as always…

~Live Free Ride Hard~

~AMERiders

and

New CEO

Let AMERiders keep you up to date with information on The Search Is Over Harley Appoints Jochen Zeitz New CEO & President.

And as always don’t forget to send us your stories, pictures, and events for posting to GALLERY.AMERIDERS @ GMAIL.COM  and we will post them for you. The more people that know about your event the better and we are offering free advertising. We would also love to hear about your rides and love to see those bikes so send those stories and pictures.

Like what you just read? Share it on social media ( Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, and Instagram) with others and let them get the information and benefit from it as well.

May Is Motorcycle Safety Awareness Awareness so Stay Safe All Around Guys & Gals

Besides the reminder that everyone needs to stay safe from the pandemic, May is Motorcycle Safety Awareness month as well. So here is AMERiders annual reminder to keep the rubber side down guys and gals.

It’s May, which means that even the frozen north is thawing. I saw more motorcycles on the road today than I’ve seen all year. It’s that time once again: Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month.

We’ve all seen the stats before. Per mile traveled, motorcycle riders are 27 times to die in a crash than car drivers. We’re more vulnerable, out there in the open than drivers encased in a metal cage with seat belts and 20 airbags. We choose to ride anyway. We accept the risks and try not to dwell on them, so let’s not any more than we already have.

The Department of Transportation is taking a four-pronged approach toward safety awareness in 2020. The first one is actually intended for drivers, educating them on how to be more aware of motorcycles on the road around them. It covers topics such as how easily a motorcycle can hide in a car’s blind spot, the fact that motorcycles often don’t use their brakes to slow down, and that the smaller size of a motorcycle makes it more difficult to judge its distance from you.

Rider safety is another focus, with an emphasis on wearing a helmet whether your state law tells you to or not. This video from the Virginia DMV emphasizes that point. Consider your general riding gear as well, including a jacket, gloves, pants, and boots. (You inspected your gear over the winter, right?) Getting some training is also a great way to stay safe, whether it’s on the street, on the track, or in the dirt.

Crashes with another vehicle account for half of all motorcycle fatalities in the US, so sharing the road is incredibly important. Yes, they need to watch out for us, but we need to watch out for them, too, and not ride so fast or aggressively that they can’t keep us safe. We all need to play nice together.

Then there’s the matter of alcohol. I like a tasty adult beverage as much as the next guy, but it’s vital to wait until the end of the ride to imbibe. We’ve been over this again and again, but people are still drinking and riding. Not only is this incredibly dangerous, but it also makes you look dumb.

Finally, here’s my own two cents worth of advice. Riding is a privilege, not an entitlement. We don’t own the road neither do the cagers it is why we have that share the road look twice sign. It belongs to all of us so make sure you are careful when you ride.

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Share the road with everyone

Also, take it easy on your first few rides of the year. Unless you’re lucky enough to ride year-round, our skills are rusty from being off the bike for months. It’s not like you’re going to confuse the throttle and the brake, but the instincts and muscle memory are no longer natural, and it’ll take time for them to come back. It won’t take long for you to get your “bike legs” again. Just take it easy until you do. 

~And as always…

~Live Free Ride Hard~

~AMERiders

and

Mistakes

Let AMERiders remind you that May Is Motorcycle Safety Awareness and to Stay Safe Guys & Gals

And as always don’t forget to send us your stories, pictures, and events for posting to GALLERY.AMERIDERS @ GMAIL.COM  and we will post them for you. The more people that know about your event the better and we are offering free advertising. We would also love to hear about your rides and love to see those bikes so send those stories and pictures.

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COVID-19 Hits Manufacturers Hard, Harley & Indian Are No Exception.

Most industries have been hit hard by the global pandemic, and motorcycle sales are definitely no exception. Motorcycle Manufacturers all over the world have felt the sting of COVID-19 and Icons Harley-Davidson and Indian ar no exception, AMERiders has the story for you.

Indian Is up 2020 Q1 Sales From 2019 Despite Global Pandemic

Indian and Polaris have been reporting comparatively positive numbers for some time now. Are they somehow immune to the struggles the industry is facing?

On April 28, 2020, Polaris released its first-quarter 2020 financial report. Overall sales decreased by six percent year-on-year compared to 2019. However, several powersports segments nestle neatly under the Polaris umbrella and when you zoom in on motorcycle sales alone, 2020 Q1 sales for the company were actually up seven percent over the same period in 2019.

It’s worth bearing in mind that Polaris groups the Slingshot in with Indian Motorcycle manufacturers name when calculating its overall motorcycle sales numbers. Furthermore, the company doesn’t break down any significant outliers in terms of its motorcycle sales drivers. It only goes so far as to say that its growth in this segment was “driven by increased sales of both Indian Motorcycle and Slingshot.”

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How much of this continued growth has to do with the FTR 1200 S and/or the FTR 1200 Rally? Unfortunately, that isn’t clear from this report, but we can surmise from past reports that those two definitely aren’t hurting Indian’s numbers. Polaris may not be exactly where it wants to be, but it’s also not hemorrhaging, which is definitely good news. 

Since so much of the news has recently been pretty terrible regarding global motorcycle sales, even Indian Motorcycle’s parent company Polaris suffering a 6 percent decline suddenly doesn’t seem so bad by comparison. Both India and Italy saw double-digit decreases for the same period, which of course varied by company. How are global motorcycle sales faring so far in 2020 by country?  

Here’s what we know so far, in order from worst to best from its manufacturers. 

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Granted, sales in the U.S. haven’t been great for a long time, especially as compared with booming the motorcycle manufacturers’ markets across Europe and Asia. Still, these numbers are interesting since they directly compare a country’s 2020 Q1 performance to the same period in 2019.

Harley “Rewires” the “More Roads need to Harley” Road-map.

It’s no secret that the past few years have been rocky for Harley-Davidson. A dwindling customer base and downward-trending sales have caused the company to rethink its strategy. In 2018, former CEO Matt Levatich introduced the “More Roads to Harley-Davidson” plan that was undeniably bold for the brand, and that included new products in different branches and expansion of its presence outside of the U.S. 

As the company feels the full impact of the COVID-19 crisis on top of already evaporating sales numbers, the new leadership grabbed the bull by the horns and decided that the “More Roads” roadmap needed a “Rewire”. The new corporate plan will refocus Harley’s activities which should please the purists and worry those who were excited to see Harley explore uncharted waters.  

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Simply dubbed “The Rewire”, Harley-Davidson’s new plan for the future has yet to fully form but the founding guidelines were set shortly after catastrophic first quarter 2020 profits were announced. Here are the five pillars of the new strategy as presented by interim CEO and president, Jochen Zeitz: 

  • Enhance core strengths and better balance expansion into new spaces 
  • Prioritize the markets that matter 
  • Reset product launches and product line up for simplicity and maximum impact 
  • Build the Parts & Accessories and General Merchandise businesses to full potential 
  • Adjust and align the organizational structure, cost structure and operating model to reduce complexity and drive efficiency to set Harley-Davidson up for stability and success 

Summarized, this pretty much means that Harley will refocus its energy on what it does best (cruisers et al) for the audience it knows best (U.S.), move new product launches around, and pull the plug on the projects with the least potential. This means that some of the projected models some of us were excited to see come to life might be in jeopardy.  

Don’t worry, though: the Pan America and the Bronx are safe and remain part of the strategy. Under the “Reset product launches” guideline, Harley confirmed that it will “remain committed to Adventure Touring, Streetfighter and advancing electric motorcycles.” It already developed an entirely new engine for the two models anyway, so it might as well run with it at this point. The same goes for the LiveWire which will remain the flagship model of a future electric lineup.   

As for the whole “growing the customer base” spiel, the company has seemingly yet to figure that part out if the vague “re-evaluate strategies to reach new riders and build ridership” point is any indication.  

While not everyone agrees with the more conservative strategy—myself included—it looks like that’s the decision the market was waiting for. Since the announcement, Harley’s stocks jumped by over 20 percent in a matter of days. Whether or not the strategy will be sustainable in the long run remains to be seen—the situation was already concerning prior to 2018, but band-aids are not a bad thing to use to patch things up and hold everything together until you find a durable cure. Hopefully, this “rewire” is a band-aid. 

~And as always…

~Live Free Ride Hard~

~AMERiders

and

Mistakes

Let AMERiders keep you up to date with information on COVID-19 Hits Manufacturers Hard, Harley & Indian Are No Exception.

And as always don’t forget to send us your stories, pictures, and events for posting to GALLERY.AMERIDERS @ GMAIL.COM  and we will post them for you. The more people that know about your event the better and we are offering free advertising. We would also love to hear about your rides and love to see those bikes so send those stories and pictures.

Like what you just read? Share it on social media ( Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, and Instagram) with others and let them get the information and benefit from it as well.