Harley paying dealers $5,000 for every Buell sold

Dailies -


Buell_XB12R.jpgHarley-Davidson is paying dealers a $5,000 per-bike incentive for each new Buell they sell, irrespective of model. Until now, this incentive was top secret, with dealers and Harley employees under strict orders not to reveal it to the public or media. Oops.
Last thursday, Harley announced it was killing Buell in an effort to
re-concentrate its rapidly disappearing resources on the mother brand.
We also wrote an obituary for Buell, brought you news of Erik’s fate
and uncovered news that Harley didn’t bother calculating how much money
it would save
, if any, by killing the brand.

While neither our original source nor third-party verification know
exactly why Harley is offering the incentive, it’s likely that The
Motor Company is eager to free itself of its franchise commitments and
clear remaining stock before the Buell plant officially closes for good
on December 18.

The $5,000 incentive helps explain the fire sale prices we’ve seen on
Buells in the last five days — as low as $4,999 for zero-mile Buell
and similar prices for the air-cooled range – but should help
you, the consumer negotiate an even better deal. You can now walk into
a showroom with the knowledge that the dealer is extremely motivated to
get you to leave with a motorcycle. No matter how little you pay,
they’ll get $5,000, so don’t feel guilty.

Of the entire Buell range, we’d most recommend the Firebolt XB12R
(pictured above) and the Lightning XB12S streetfighter. These bikes are
sure to become the definitive Buell motorcycles in the future and
combine 250GP-like handling with the recalcitrant 103bhp, 84lb/ft
air/oil-cooled 1203cc 45° v-twin. Expect supersport 600 pace with much
more involvement and character.

Let us know what kind of deals you’re able to get.

  • Isaac

    Well, well, well…Looks like I can go in a say I’ll give ya $3,000 for it!

    Then they’ll give me the “I need to go ask my boss” speil.

    Then I will say “Your secret is out Superman”. Then I’ll show him/her the Kryptonite(money).

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

      I’m so tempted to go wave $3,500 cash in front of a dealer’s nose for an XB12R that it hurts.

    • Tim crewse

      Stupid offers from stupid customers gets a little old, and no I wont have to ask my boss i am plenty happy to tell you to get steppin myself! This is a great product at a giveaway price with warranty as well as parts that will continue to be made through 2016 at least. So if you dont want it dont buy it. dont There are plenty of people that do.

      • geonerd

        Typical motorcycle salesman.

        You’ll take $3000 as a starting point, and you’ll like it, actually. The MSRP is 9995 for a 2009 XB12R. Subtract the 5k incentive and that brings it to 4995. Then remember that anyone who has even the slightest bargaining skills would never, ever pay MSRP for a Buell and you’re right around that 3k price point.

        Tough times, Timmy. Gotta tighten that belt!

  • Sean Jordan

    The 1125CR is $5000 because it’s hideous.

    But for $5k, I might buy one anyways and see about de-uglifying it.

  • nollid51

    It’s times like these I wish I wasn’t a poor college student. How low do you think you could go to get one of these? Is 2000 wishful thinking?

  • MotoGpDylwah

    If you offer them $4,999 less than the msrp, they would still make a dollar more on the bike than they would have 2 months ago.

  • VeloceDucati

    So sad… I wish it was the MV’s that were getting the 5k. I would be on that in a heartbeat. Debt be damned!

  • http://twitter.com/greatistheworld will

    If I had 3.5 grand, I’d have a XB9S CityX tomorrow. Thing is killer.

  • James

    Three Grand? Quick! Remind me why I don’t want a Buell

  • Epyx

    Ok, here is the problem I have run into. In my area the news has created DEMAND for Buells. My local dealer still has 08′s available (no one has wanted for 2 years) and now has bidding wars on the remaining inventory (although still cheap). Still looking for an XB12xt for around $7K, but have not had any dealer take me up on the offer (I have called many). The lowest quote I have received is $9,200 plus tax. title, and fees. My buddy bought a 1125r in Syracuse, NY for $7K out the door. Hell, that dealer is advertising the deals ONLINE> http://www.performancehd.com/

    I have not heard of anyone getting bikes in the $3-4K range. Ironically, there is too much demand and the dealers dont need to go THAT low. Yet.

    • geonerd

      It is definitely all about the area you live in. I am in Montana and anyone who isn’t riding a hog is a deemed (exact quote) “pompous homo.” This is evidenced all over the state at every Japanese dealer, who have brand new 07 models of good bikes (CBR600RR, GSXR750, Z1000) still sitting in the showroom. I’m heading down to the HD shop today to see how low they’ll go. I wouldn’t turn down a new Firebolt for $4000.

  • PeteP

    Now that the secret is out, the demand is going up. I know of folks who bought bikes for $5k out the door, but that was a few days ago.

  • http://bloodfalcons.blogspot.com BloodFalcon

    Wow. I may have to go and look at that CR one more time.

    • powermatic

      Look as many times as you want-it’ll still be gruesome.

  • Kerry

    Some reported good deals:

    anybody live in texas?:

    $5495 for 1125s

    Here in NY there is no inventory left just about anywhere. I called NYC HD and they had one 1125CR left and were refusing to go below $6K. Bellmore HD got out of being a buell dealer a month early.

    • http://twitter.com/marshallhaas Marshall

      I live in Dallas. Talking to the dealer now about trading in my one my bikes and dangling cash in front of them :-)

      Feel bad for my father, he purchased a 1125cr a few months ago for full price.

  • nataku83

    Wow, that’s really tempting. I may need to stop by the dealer and see what they’ve got.

  • Skip

    No mater what the price is you still got a sport bike with a 60 year old motor in it and no dealer service or support. Maybe if you dress up like a Harley biker the dealer will notice you. Just put on a leather vest and a do-rag and maybe some stick on tattoos and a wig with a pony tail.

    • Kerry

      Hey Skip, I dunno where you get your information but HD is going to honor full warranties for all bikes sold, plus it is designating certain dealers as buell service centers to make sure those owners can get service. I doubt any dealer is going to turn down service business since it is their bread and butter.

      And besides, at the heart of the buell is a sportster based v-twin, and we all know how hard it is to get parts or find somebdy to work on something like that (<==== sarcasm just in case you couldn’t tell).

      And as far as the motor being 60 years old, the K motor from 60 years ago was a flathead, last I checked the evo sporty motor is not a flathead, nor is it even close to the XL motor of the late 1950s. The current sportster and buell v-twins have as much in common with previous designs as ducati’s DS engine has with a bevel drive 750. BTW Ducati’s air-cooled belt drive motor design is over 30 years old and you don’t see anybody giving ducati shit about old engine designs. Most of the garbage comes from mis-information and blind ignorance drawn along brand loyalty lines.

      You going to throw Harley under the bus about engine design you might as well complain that the new corvette ZR1 uses a 60 year old design as well – after all it is a small block pushrod chevrolet v-8, same as GM developed in 1955 (even though no parts interchange and 1955 GM designers could only have wet dreams about the zr1′s hp levels, fuel economy, and reliability).

    • Epyx

      The Rotax engine is not a 60 year old design.

  • Syke

    If Harley Davidson says the dealer is going to support it through the warranty period, they’re going to – or they’re dealing with HD. And The Motor Company can be a real prick to deal with if a dealer doesn’t keep up with the company line.

    • Curt

      The factory pays them for warranty work, no threats needed.

  • lloydy

    Q. Why don’t people buy Buell’s?

    A. Because they look shit.

    • delmarbuelligan

      Why because Buell motorcycles aren’t weighed down with a few hundred pounds of chrome?

      Q:Why are you a douche?

  • powermatic

    Far be it from me to question how the HD execs are running the company, since they seem to be doing such a good job of it, but would it not have been wiser to monitor Buell sales after the closure announcement to see how much (if any) demand was naturally created by consumers wanting to buy one before they disappeared? You know, before they started giving away money-they-don’t-have to get rid of them? And 5k per bike? That’s not an incentive-that’s a millionaire athlete walking into the local strip club while his posse tosses wads of cash into the air. This is Crazy Town.

  • s0crates82

    Dang. I bought a very lightly used 03 FZ1 this weekend for 4600. Coulda got a brand new Buell for that. Vaguely upsetting.

    • JTH

      $46oo for the FZ1?………..you got the better deal.

  • Kidchampion

    I stopped by Ray Price Harley in Raleigh, NC and almost all of the Buell’s have SOLD and HOLD tags on them. The XL 1200 Harley looks better than any of the Buells; they are not good looking bikes.

  • Paul

    They can keep their Buells and the HD’s too!!! Both are crap bikes!!!

  • Steve

    Traded my 1980 low rider + $1400 for an ’08 XB12R with 1200 miles on it. I’m a happy camper.

  • http://www.photomorse.com Gentleman Jon

    I couldn’t possibly agree more on your suggestion that the Buell XB12S is one of the best Buells to buy.

    Matter of fact, I own one m’self.

    Unfortunately for your devoted readers, the model has not been made for several years, although it is just possible that one or two leftovers are still around.

    Another, very similar model, the XB12Ss or Long as it is know is similar, but lacks the short wheelbase and steep steering head angle of the original Buells. Great bike though.

  • Aprilia Rider

    Just paid $6k OTD from Orange County Harley/Buell in Irvine.

    Fun bike! Can’t go wrong for that price.

  • Telekom

    Like your granny said, It’s only a bargain if you want it.

    A new 1125CR at West Coast Harley here in Glasgow will cost you £5,995.00 = $9,959.94. That’s with nearly £3000 OFF the list price.

    It looks like if bargains are to be had on Buells, it’s in the US only. Would you buy an 1125CR for $10,000? Would you buy one for $5,000?

    I hate to bring Marx into it (actually, I quite enjoyed it) but it’s worth considering use value as well as exchange value when making decisions like this.

  • CafeRacer1200

    OK, I’m picking up my new 2009 1125R tomorrow. I’m trading a high mile 2003 Triumph Sprint ST on it. The out the door difference is $1500. Final selling price of he bike itself before trade is $4500. I’m a happy camper! My wife took zero begging (I only had to clean up today’s cat barf in the basement) How does that deal stack up?

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

      That’s a great deal. The 1125R is nearly as comfortable as the Sprint and much better handling. Better engine too.

      • CafeRacer1200

        Thanks Wes! If not for you guys, I would never have known.

    • michael kilawee

      Catbarf! Man, I am so with you bro. We have two cats and now a dog. I think we are running a treatment center for allergy awareness.

      I got an ’09 1125R last week. It is my fourth Buell! I still have my ’06 Citycross to go with it.

      I did the 600 miles for the break-in already, and it is a great bike. It’s so fast, it should come with speeding tickets!

  • Hank

    Guy near me went in and bought 6 of them. He makes a good point the bike just won a national chapionship and is perhaps one of the most innovatie ever made. Buell did capture the “Best Handling Motorcycle ever Made” shootout a couple years ago. If HD is behind the parts and warranty, as has been stated . . . you’re good to go.

  • Mark

    The 5K is on Helicon bikes only, sorry to burst your bubble. Lesser dealer rebates are available on the other models. Let’s face it. These dealers just want the bikes gone. Good riddence to non-profitable bikes. With the rebate the dealers clear their interest and in a month all the Buells will be gone. My dealer has sold 4 last weekend. They said that was more than the last four months!!!

  • http://pwadas.jewish.org.pl/EB DT

    incredible :) I wonder, how many, among the buyers, are the followers of the idea, and how many are just loosers, who couldn’t event dream about a motorcycle like Buell’s – now, they i’ll be able to buy one or two, just for the price like a cup of latte, for part speculation or just for an wanna-be-stunter amusement. Let’s see how low the price can be. H-D with its financial problems is still enough rich and wealthy to just give the money away.. interesting, isn’t it?

  • pez

    Damn! that’s one great deal!
    Here in France they are still at ~10500€ for the XB series
    Only the 1125 are priced down to 9990€

    Doesn’t matter anyway i’ll keep my good ol xb12s ’06 forever :)

  • Hobo Mike

    How’d you like to be someone that bought one at full price only a few months ago? That’s one way to build brand loyalty!

    • zanon

      Hobo Mike: Didn’t you get the message? The Brand is being closed.

  • Ryan

    Funny, arent top fuel engines that put out 5000 + horsepower pushrod hemi engines? last I checked, that basic layout isn’t exactly new. The 1125R with the full fairing looks fantastic. It’s sad to see Buell go. A lot of people like to rip on them in favor of jap bikes that are all basically the same.

    • generic1776

      But what if you want to drive further than 1/4 mile?

  • http://www.dre.vanderbilt.edu/~aky Akshay

    Any dealers in TN offering such blowouts?

  • http://pwadas.jewish.org.pl/EB DT
  • http://loveandpolish.com John Garcia

    Well, did a search on just about every HD dealer near Denver, CO. and no one (yet) has their Buells for anything less then MSRP. Damn… I want one.

  • sburns2421

    I went to my local dealer last Tuesday (10/20) and once they quoted me $8000 for a demo ’08 R, and argued I didn’t know what I was talking about with repsect to the $5000 rebate to the dealer. “Only $1000″ is what they claimed. I offered them $4800, that would be $9800 to them with the rebate, which was MORE than the $9000 they claimed in their offer (8000+1000). I suggested we call other dealers or Harley to confirm the rebate. They then confirmed the $5k and lowered the price to $6900. I laughed and told them if they wanted to sell, here is my price. Probably for the best I didn’t buy as I would then have to deal with the liars for warranty work…

    • nataku83

      Sorry to hear about that. My Dad was looking at an R demo model for $5900 at CycleStop, in Rochester NY. They wanted $6300 for a new CR. One of the local dealers has them on their website, 7k for the r, 6.5k for the CR, but they might be negotiable. I went down to look at them, but got intimidated when I saw how tiny they are… There’s just something wrong about a bike that’s smaller than my Honda Twinstar having almost 150 HP.

  • MIke M

    Even if you only pay a dollar for a turd, it’s still a turd.

  • Alejo

    HI Wes, the Buells are going for over 15.000 united state dollars here in Argentina . they are all crazy and at the Harley dealer is even worst!!!! anybody ineterested in doing business ? here is a good chance.

    • carlos

      amigo, diga me, en que te puedo ayudar?

  • Rich

    I just picked up a black 1125 CR for $6K OTD. $4875 + everything else ended up being $6K. I might have been able to negotiate it down a bit, but I’m very happy either way. I do feel sorry for folks who paid full price (or close to it) a few months ago. NADA had the resale price on a 2009 1125 CR at 9400. I wonder what that will drop down to next month.

  • johan

    Hey guys,

    I bought a buell 1125R and a buell 1125CR for GBP 4295,00 each, (about 4900 euro’s) excluding taxes. Awesome looking bikes in black (the only good color for Europe). Unbelievable good deal. Erik Buell didn’t build bikes but peaces of art. Not like the crap for the mass like we see from Japan.

    Think I will keep them new in the garage for a few years, maybe for my children to ride them in the future. I will be riding my Moto Guzzi 1200 sport.

  • msnthrp12

    xb models = MSRP – $3000 ?????? … i just put down a deposit for an 09 xb12r that’ll end up being $7800 OTD … free delivery, no freight or other dealer costs (which read $1200+ on their invoice forms) , some store credit, etc … i’m comfortable w/ that deal if it’s sticker ($9999)- $3000 … should i be?