Harley’s Indian Gamble — 2014 Harley-Davidson Street 750 And 500

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harley-davidson street 750

2014 Harley-Davidson Street 500
2014 Harley-Davidson Street 750 and 500
2014 Harley-Davidson Street 750 and 500
2014 Harley-Davidson Street 750 and 500
2014 Harley-Davidson Street 750 and 500
2014 Harley-Davidson Street 750 and 500
2014 Harley-Davidson Street 750 and 500
2014 Harley-Davidson Street 750 and 500
2014 Harley-Davidson Street 750 and 500
2014 Harley-Davidson Street 750 and 500
2014 Harley-Davidson Street 750 and 500
2014 Harley-Davidson Street 750 and 500
2014 Harley-Davidson Street 750 and 500
2014 Harley-Davidson Street 750 and 500
2014 Harley-Davidson Street 750 and 500
2014 Harley-Davidson Street 750 and 500

More 2013 EICMA News >>

Related Links:
More Piglet: Harley Talks Entry-Level Model Details
The Spy Photos: Harley-Davidson Street 500 Spy Photos
Project Rushmore: 2014 Harley-Davidson Touring Range Review

  • Ducky

    This might stand a good chance outside of H-D’s core demographic of aging, overweight tattooed pirates. However, three things: 1) Custom wheel design: No. 2) wtf is going on with the radiator shroud? Lose it, or do something similar to the Honda Fury’s integrated design. 3) Lose the nondescript piece of plastic underneath the seat.

    • Kurt Darden

      I keep looking at that plastic thing and why the rear fender looks so wide and wondering WTF??.. My next thought is, how would I be able to shave about 80lbs off this thing

    • Sasha K-S

      That radiator cowl is a crime against humanity.

      • Theodore P Smart

        As cheesy as the hipster host’s hat in that video….

        • Davidabl2

          I disagree, the cowl and side cover are about 2x as cheesy as that hat. At least the hat is is probably functional- if it’s concealing a receding hairline :-)

  • Kurt Darden

    To make this work in the US, they’ll need to end production of the 883 engine & bump this motor up to over 800cc. It is going to have to compete within it’s segment, which I see as the Bonneville, Guzzi V7, Honda CTX700, Bolt & so forth.

    • Eric Shay

      I would like to see if the sportster will get a bit larger now, I’m 6′ and I am cramped on one.

      • Davidabl2

        I’d think that this is a problem that’s user fixable..but then I’m 5’6″ :-)

    • Justin McClintock

      At 750cc, LC, and 4V/cylinder, it doesn’t need to be over 800 cc. It just needs to be tuned properly. They could easily get 80 hp out of an engine like that if they really wanted to.

      I see the 883 getting the ax and the 1200 getting a more Buell-ish engine tune to keep it relevant (and above these). That would also return the Sportster to its more sporty roots. Win-win.

      • Davidabl2

        Dear God, Let it be so.

  • Jay

    For $7,500 why wouldn’t I get a Bonneville instead?

    Also, totally strange for a company that wants to minimize the idea of liquid cooling to create the ugliest possible radiator. Like Ducky says, Fury’s looks fine. There are other new retro-standards where the radiator is completely un-noticable (BMW NineT, Honda CB1100, I’m sure there’s more).

    • Roberto Rizzo

      Bonneville 4 life

    • Flying Couch

      Both the R Nine T and CB1100 are just equipped with oil-coolers, not proper radiators. Hiding a full-size radiator can be done, but is a little more difficult.

      It’s an unsightly radiator shroud, and something like the Fury’s setup would definitely be preferable, but I gotta give ‘em credit: it’s MUCH better than the appalling shroud that adorns the V-rod.

      • Jay

        ah, makes sense.

      • Davidabl2

        Seems to me that a smaller radiator paired with an oil cooler should do the job?

        • Flying Couch

          If it’s like the V-rod motor (and it appears to be very much like the V-rod motor) then I believe there already is an oil cooler, underneath the radiator, inside the shroud assembly.

          Really, if Harley is so opposed to visible radiators, they should maybe revisit and refine the under-seat radiator idea they developed for their V4 Nova concept bike way back in the day. For all that bike’s issues, the under-seat radiator was a cool idea and with some more work I could see it working.

    • Rameses the 2nd

      As the article indicated more than once, why wouldn’t you get CB500F for $5,500 and save over both HD street and Bonneville. For all practical purposes Honda is probably better than both HD and Triumph. HD knows its brand and that’s what it is cashing here.

      Between, I love Bonneville.

      • Jay

        If I were buying with my brain, I would take the Honda every time. I’m not always buying with my brain.

        • Rameses the 2nd

          I totally agree with you, but I think you just answered your own question.

        • LES_since_1996

          one look at this bike answers the question. F— Hondas

          • fromwork789

            why? Because they win again?

      • Justin McClintock

        Because they’re completely difference styles of motorcycles. I mean, you could buy a CB500F for less money than a WR450F too.

        • Ken Lindsay

          I agree completely. You buy the bike that fits YOUR needs and desires. Right now, I only have room for one bike, and it happens to be a plated WR450. The CB500F is a superior daily ride but I wouldn’t trade mine for one. I’ll deal with the short range, sore rear, and crappy (for the street) brakes so I can have fun off road.

      • Devin Byrnes

        The CB500F does not compete against the HD Street and Bonneville because there is no naked option. By naked, I don’t just mean the lack of a full fairing, naked to me means no ugly plastic fairing whatsoever, even if it’s just a cowling.

        Otherwise I would have bought a V Strom years ago. I think this piglet is quite the looker.

      • Piglet2010

        I bought a Bonnie because I liked it, not because I needed it – have other bikes that are better for commuting, touring, and twisty bits.

    • Bruce Steever

      No radiator on nineT or CB1100 (small oil coolers tho)

  • kevin

    Problem I see with these bikes is the 883 sporty only makes ~45 horsepower at the wheel. Which is Honda 500 territory. Obviously these new bikes can’t out perform the 883 sportster, so they’ll have to make in the ~30-35 whp range, which is like, ninja 300 power out of a 500-750cc engine. Harley needs to dump the 883 from the lineup so these new bikes can make competitive power outputs without stomping on other bikes in the Harley range.

    • Kurt Darden

      With a 1200 Sportster weighing in around 560lbs and around 55hp from the factory, they can’t do too much to this engine even if they would drop the 883.

      • kevin

        good point. I guess the sportster lineup as a whole needs a revamp.

        • Bruce Steever

          Revamp, or discontinuation. Whatever works.

        • Reid

          Why not just make THIS the new Sportster?

    • Flying Couch

      My dream is that they’ll kill the 883 Sportster and revise the current 1200 into a bike that’s actually fairly, you know, SPORTY – maybe use some of the Buell revisions in the motor, then give it a real suspension. It’d be a heavy beast no matter what, but they could also find some weight to trim off it too.

      Not that that’ll ever happen, mind.

    • Justin Cole

      I bet both of these motors make more power than the 883. Unless they have been severely detuned.

    • Davidabl2

      If & when they come to our shores(other than as training bikes) I expect that the 883 will die a natural death.

  • Eric Shay

    I should have counted how many times I cringed. Every time they used a buzzword made my desire to buy a scooter increase.

    • Jack McLovin

      What gets me is that they speak about the “features” and “tech” as if no other motorcycle exists. Yeah it’s pr bs but come on man, for that money Japan will sell me something with magnesium valve covers, a slipper clutch, aluminum frame, and actual power and real suspension.

      • LES_since_1996

        but it wont look like this you twit. go buy your rice burner and stfu.

        • Mr.Paynter

          Do you want it to look like this?
          Just asking?

        • Pablo Perez

          You’re not the greatest ambassador H-D has ever had.

          • Lee Scuppers

            Close, though.

          • Guest

            yeah and this scooter riding douche taking the time to come here and dis this video is, right.

        • http://www.RideApart.com/ Jen Degtjarewsky

          Hey Les – Take it down a notch. Thanks – Jen

    • Bruce Steever

      I’m willing to bet a Burgman 650 or a C 650 GT will eat one of these things for lunch.

      • Davidabl2

        Apples&oranges. They don’t look remotely “cool” and these things sorta-kinda do.
        Except for that WTF radiator…

        • Piglet2010

          The maxi-scoots look much better.

    • LES_since_1996

      go buy a scooter wuss

  • msay

    Mr Astronautalis dude is exactly the kind of corporate cool-dude that makes me really not want to watch that video. That said, it might work in India and that’d be good. I’d like it to work in the US too, if only so more manufacturers bring more bikes here, even if they’re cruisers.

    • Davidabl2

      I thought the name was AstroLube? Or is that Mr. AstroLube?

      • Piglet2010

        I am ashamed to be of the same species.

  • Mykola

    I see two comparisons with Honda’s CB500F in this article, and Honda’s Shadow 750…. uh, nope; not once. Huh, weird.

    • http://RideApart.com/ Wes Siler

      Why? The CB500F is a perfect example of an affordable, practical, compelling motorcycle.

      • Ken

        Trying to imagine Honda actually boasting that they haven’t produced an all new platform in 13 years.

      • Justin Cole

        Excellent point. HD buyers are pretty much their own demographic. I can’t imagine someone weighing the decision of buying an 883 or Street 750/500 vs. a CB500. How many HD buyers are buying motorcycles and how many are buying an image…

        Every other manufacturer in the marketplace can (and for the most part does) build a “better” motorcycle than HD.

      • Mykola

        I’m sure the CB500F is all that, but it’s entirely unrelated to the bike presented here. I can’t imagine anyone cross-shopping the two, and I’m certain neither Honda nor Harley see either bike as in any way competing with each other. The Shadow 750 does, probably the CTX700 to a degree too. Yamaha’s got competition as well and it isn’t the FZ6R; I’ll leave it to the reader to figure that out.

        In fact, all the Japanese manufacturers that are perennially getting stomped in the big cruiser market by Harley now have to worry about what this bike is going to do to the light/middle-weight cruisers that they’ve only had to compete between themselves to sell, as well as the brand loyalty these smaller bikes could instill in the customer when they decide to up-size their ride.

        • Kevin Riedl

          You nailed it with this comment.

        • Hooligan

          “In fact, all the Japanese manufacturers that are perennially getting stomped in the big cruiser market by Harley”
          Only in America. The rest of the world is a different story.

          • Mykola

            I considered inserting somewhere that cruisers are a narrow majority (+/-) of the U.S. market, a piddly fraction of the global market, and that the scope of this ‘stomping’ could be kept in perspective.
            -Money is money though and all these companies think it’s good enough to make and sell these bikes.
            -H-D is looking to make further inroads into other countries’ motorcycle markets.
            -Here in the comments on Rideapart any time a Harley article goes up commenters from around the globe unite in a circlejerk of disdain and snark, so the company ought to be significant in at least the minds of riders in the rest of the world.

            • Piglet2010

              The US market is hardly that important anymore – look at all the bikes not sold here, and the companies who really do not try (e.g. KTM, Piaggio).

        • Ben W

          Spot on. It’s like another thread of conversation higher up in here: if the purchasing decision is purely based on practicality and logic, the Honda is the right answer. When buying a motorcycle, especially in the US where it’s a hobby/luxury, how often does practicality and logic win out?

          • Davidabl2

            Harleys in India manufactured and assembled in India,and Harleys in brazil manufactured and assembled in Brazil etc. can be expected to have a home court advantage–unless the MoCo is so greedy that they price ‘em uncompetitively. Which could easily happen.

        • Davidabl2

          Not to worry, they won’t be status symbols. At least in the USA

          Indian manufactured and assembled Harleys in India, Brazilian manufactured and assembled in Brazil may well be a different story. This thing could play well for the MoCo.

      • Justin McClintock

        If you’re going to compare this to a CB500F, you might as well compare it to a WR450F while you’re at it. Or better still, a good old YZ250. Has about as much in common with this thing as the CB500F does.

      • Mike

        Because the Street 750 and the Shadow 750 are both middleweight cruisers with similar specs, while the CB500F is a sport/standard.

      • BandK Davis

        Compelling?

    • Guest

      Excellent point. HD buyers are pretty much their own demographic. I can’t imagine someone weighing the decision of buying an 883 or Street 750/500 vs. a CB500. How many HD buyers are buying motorcycles and how many are buying an image…

      Every other manufacturer in the marketplace can (and for the most part does) build a “better” motorcycle than HD.

      • Davidabl2

        These bikes are targeted at the market outside the USA for now–and are intended i think as an entry point for the brand,just as small displacement “Hummers” etc. once were for the USA market.

        Let me remind you that the Japanese have been building better bikes than Harley since the late 1960′s..and the Milwaukee company has prospered anyway…(even if it DID take a couple of Govt. interventions)

    • Mike

      Not weird at all. This is Ride Apart for Leather, where controversy and page views trump rational journalism.

  • Piglet2010

    “…the Iron 883 weighs in at a staggering 562 lbs (wet).”

    They should have called it the “Cast Iron 883″ – and I thought my similar displacement Bonnie was a tank at 495 pounds wet.

    • Davidabl2

      You’ll just confuse the issue..the “Ironhead” sportsters date from the pre-AMF era..and were 900cc and later 1,000cc bikes if I remember my ancient history..

      • Piglet2010

        All Sportsters from the original 1957 through the 1985 model years were “Ironheads”, with 1986-present using the Evolution™ engine.

  • Rameses the 2nd

    I want to support HD, but they just keep producing ugly overpriced motorcycles.

    • Sasha K-S

      Why do you want to support them?

      • Rameses the 2nd

        Because, at least here in the US, HD bring more people to motorcycles than pretty much any other brand.

        • disqus_lXi0AEXPto

          Not even close.

          • Rameses the 2nd

            Did you read the article?

            “Currently Harley dominates the U.S. market, making around 185,000 of the 452,000 motorcycles that were sold in the U.S. in 2012″

            • fromwork789

              Yeah this statistic surprised me. I would have never guessed that they held that kind of market share. I probably actually don’t notice it for that reason, they are so common that they don’t pull my attention on the road like other bikes do.

            • disqus_lXi0AEXPto

              Duly noted.

            • Davidabl2

              If you happen to live on the West Coast those numbers are hard to believe..there seem to be more H-D. baggers on the road than anything/everything else…

        • Ben W

          This is truth. I know many riders who only shop at a Harley dealership. There’s no such thing as competition because, to them, there is no comparison. It’s either a Harley or it’s garbage. A gal at my wife’s office recently got the riding bug. Despite the ample encouragement to check out other bikes, this lady is dead-set. It’s a Harley, complete with all of the accessories and branded riding gear, or nothing. There is real power in the brand.

      • Davidabl2

        (Because) I’d like to see us produce something other than software, entertainment and high-end weapons systems…and cars that I don’t want to buy.

        • Sasha K-S

          Hey, there’s always Motus – at least they DESERVE it. American non-innovation hardly helps America, sadly.

          • Ben W

            If they’d get their production ramped up enough to drop their prices into the realm of mortals, I’d throw my money at Motus.

            • Sasha K-S

              Me too :(

              It’s just, to me, Harley represents the worst aspects of American industry…basking in the glory of their past successes, refusing to adapt or innovate, selling on patriotism and brand loyalty instead of intrinsic factors…

              Even, say, Polaris/Indian represents better to me.

              • Slowtire

                You apparently are not a business major or a good invester.

                • Sasha K-S

                  Hey, there are numerous examples of companies making fortunes selling inferior products for high prices based on strong marketing and brand recognition. The business case is sound. The case for a motorcycle shopping consumer, on the other hand, not so much.

                • Slowtire

                  Enjoy those huge returns with Motus.

                • Sasha K-S

                  Are you functionally retarded? Every comment you have made has been about investing. But that’s not what the conversation is about.

                • Slowtire

                  I must be. I took “supporting” as buying one of their bikes, or investing in the company. But I guess “rooting” for them will help too.

          • Slowtire

            Deserve it? Why wouldn’t HD desrve someones support? Seems like they have several million supporters. They’re called customers.

            • Sasha K-S

              “There’s a sucker born every minute.”

              • Slowtire

                And of course, you’re smarter than all of them.

                • Sasha K-S

                  I’m not investing in Motus, I’m rooting for them. They deserve to succeed.

                • Slowtire

                  Am I functionally retarded? I must be. I always thought supporting a company like Motus would be buying one of their bikes or investing in the company. But I guess “rooting” for them helps too.

          • Davidabl2

            Motus hadn’t even appeared on my bike-radar yet.. Wow.
            But, I haveta say I think I’d want something more basic,
            so that i could continue to own more than one bike

    • LES_since_1996

      this bike is sick. and not ugly. but i guess the geniuses that designed this shouldve called your loser a**.

      • Davidabl2

        I just wish they were as common as Polaris..

  • Bruce Steever

    India. Yep, proof positive. That’s all i’ll say.

  • Viron Greene

    Does anyone else not see that they created and American VT500FT. Change the seat a little, slap on some Honda wings and it’s 1983 all over.

    • Brett Lewis

      Deja Vu, I knew I had seen this before.

      • Mad Mike

        Honda-Davidson for sure. may be a good starter bike for a girl

  • luxlamf

    Why are there no pictures of the Belt side? Do they Not want to throw too much at the HD crowd showing them it is indeed a Small version of the Revo motor that is found in the Vrod and this will be obvious when you see there is no crankcase?

    • psychobueller

      If you check the HD website they show the left side.

  • pdad13

    This video might have broken the world’s record for most douche chills per minute.

    It’s relentless.

    They had me at “Astronautilus.” But then it just got more intense.

    • TheBoatDude

      I had to shut it off at 0:48. I was overwhelmed by vinegar.

    • martin

      Haha these blokes are funny. I think they take Harley ‘tea’ each morning to keep them in the cheeto zone

  • Dennis Hightower

    That radiator is the manufacturing equivalent of target fixation… No water cooled engines until…..bam! This monstrosity…

  • Chris Cope

    The radiator reminds me of those aliens from Sesame Street. Yip yip yip yip. That said, I’m optimistic about this bike and I get the sense that HD is trying to step slowly away from the Cult of Harley (ever notice how any time HD is mentioned at least one commenter will appear to religiously troll those who dare who speak ill of HD) and more toward people who won’t buy solely on brand name.

    There is a middle ground between those who are psychotically brand-loyal and those who buy totally on specs. A lot of people will buy something because it’s cool. No one laments that the Bonneville is made in Thailand. It’s a cool bike and despite its factory origin it has a cool heritage. I think Harley can very much do the same thing with this.

    To that end, I also think the CB500F comparison is fair. I think there is a wide enough demographic that like the look and aura of a bike like this but would find themselves leaning to Honda because it is so superior in technology and price. This machine will make that decision tougher. Though, I don’t understand why it doesn’t come with ABS. Antilock brakes will be required on all bikes sold in the EU two years from now and clearly that’s a target market with this bike. Why not just bite the bullet now and claim that you’re being revolutionary?

    • Davidabl2

      Everybody I’ve ever spoken to seems to be very surprised that Triumphs are made in Thailand..
      except Triumph owners who don’t seem to say much about it.

  • William Connor

    These will sell and they will sell well. Not everyone wants a sport bike, or standard. Think of these like a Star Bolt competitor and you get the target market and appeal. From a customization and ride ability stand point these look perfect for the intended buyer.

  • Benjamin Reynolds

    “The suspension is really nice too” haha.

  • LS650

    Hmmm. It’s not that I think the styling looks bad, but they sure look a lot more like a mid -80s Honda Shadow 500 than a typical Harley.

    I could see buying one… But $6700 strikes me as pretty high for a 500cc.

    • Ben W

      It’ll work great for them. Relative to the competition, it’s priced high. Relative to the Harley dealership, where many potential riders won’t wander away from, it’s a bargain entry to “the family.”

  • LS650

    Christ, what an asshole.

  • Lee Scuppers

    “The technological growth of this brand cannot even be charted. They are treading water in a sea of retarded sexuality…”

    • Davidabl2

      That there “treading water” metaphor is one great metaphor..
      even if I’m not quite sure just what you’re actually sayin’

  • Justin Turner

    I’d be content to watch this dude and this motorcycle fart off into the sunset together, and make sure he doesn’t forget his hat.

  • Slowtire

    “Of course, Harley’s don’t sell on objective measures of performance, they sell on image and there, surprisingly, the Streets excel. They don’t look cheap, they don’t look small, they don’t look plastic. The tank and fenders are made from metal, the engines look impressively masculine despite their middling capacity and, judging by the video, they even sound suitably robust.”
    In no way did Wes Siler write this!

    • orthorim

      It’s called damning with praise.

      • LS650

        “Damining with faint praise…”

  • Justin McClintock

    I’ve read elsewhere that it’s 494cc for the little guy, not 594 as posted in the article….which would make more sense since they are calling it a 500.

    Also, at 480 lbs. wet, the 750 might actually be the LIGHTEST bike in its class. Who’d have ever thought Harley would lead the way in that category?!!

  • JT

    I think it’s a good looking Harley. I think Harley Davidson knows what it’s doing and they will sell a ton of these things. I think that thousands upon thousands of people who could never afford to ride a Harley or would be physically unable to ride a big Harley will scoop these things up. I think people will customize the snot out of them. If you don’t want one, don’t get one. I’m sure there are plenty of other motorcycles out there to tickle your fancy.

    • orthorim

      Yup. Especially in India where they actually cost WAY less than any other model Harley you could buy.

  • Generic42

    Here’s the thing, the Ride Apart demographic is not the HD demo. We look at the the options from multiple places, read the reviews and then are probably more analytical than emotional in our purchase. This is not how HD sells bikes, they sell on the emtional connection and the “club” you are buying into. These bikes will sell, they will sell well. Think of all the retro junky types who want a vintage bobber or cruiser but have neither the time or skills to build one, now they can buy an HD without laying out $10K

    My question is, will the new influx of buyers distinctly different from the older generation create some division in the “club”

  • orthorim

    India.

    Price wise, that’s the big deal here. India has imported Harleys at exorbitant prices, and locally assembled ones with still a pretty big tax penalty (CKD). But these will be made in India with mostly Indian parts, so they’ll be close to the U.S. price or even below. For the Indian market, they’ll be the most competitive Harleys by a large margin.

  • Dan Sciannameo

    Not my cup of tea but they will sell

  • eyewitness

    To decide if these models will succeed you have to look at the target market. In markets outside the USA – especially emerging markets such as India and Asia – buyers consider the following criteria in purchasing a motorcycle, in the following order

    1.Price 2.Reliability 3.Performance .

    Why? Because these buyers buy a motorcycle as their ONE and ONLY form of transportation – not being able to afford a car.

    Harley’s success to date has hinged upon a few key factors : ‘heritage’ and ‘sound’ (potato-potato) ..
    - ‘classic’ air cooled , 45 degree engines.

    This has allowed them to remain a premium brand with premium prices despite (because of? ) the lack of technological updates.

    These new bikes have neither..
    - liquid cooled, 60 degree engines..

    The third factor in Harley’s marketing success is the ‘image’ they sell. The problem they face is that even the 883 is regarded by Harley fans (worldwide) as a ‘girlie’ bike because of the engine size, yet as the most affordable way to join the ‘club’ and ‘image’ the 883 has continued to sell.

    But what of these -even- smaller models? A ‘childish’ bike?

    To test this theory : how many Harley Davidson fans on this site would SERIOUSLY consider buying one of these bikes instead of a larger Harley model?

    Not being able to rely on ‘heritage’,'sound’ and ‘image’ – how will they be competitive:

    1.Price? .. Still premium?
    2.Reliability? .. ???
    3.Performance? ???

    Japanese manufacturers have forever been accused of ‘trying’ to build american cruisers and just not being ‘the real thing’…

    .. well.. it seems like Harley is now ‘trying’ to build Japanese bikes.. and they might fall victim to their own marketing.

    • Chris Cope

      Not sure how true this is. HD will be a premium brand in India. In the same way as Royal-Enfield. Most Indians I know have some less than positive things to say about RE, but that company sells LOADS of bikes in India because of the image. If Harley can tap into that, it will find success there. They’re not trying to compete against the everyday 125s, they’re appealing to India’s growing middle class and its desire to display wealth.

      I think the Street will be equally successful in the US because there are many people who kind of like the Harley image but don’t want to trundle around on a giant and impossible-to-control machine. If the 750 had antilock brakes I might consider one (though it is not going to be sold in the UK, where I live).

  • MotoBell

    This is a future b-school case study in the making – HD gets emerging markets better than japs or euro (am talking big bikes that are more recreational vehicles)

    I grew up in India in for 20 years and live in the US for 20 years now – during the few years to India, I can see how well HD has built its brand at the expense of no real competition from anyone else on big/recreational bike market (I am excluding the millions of small transportation bikes which is bigger volume market). My brother bought a HD last year in India at almost twice the price of bike’s cost in the US. They are selling so well that HOG rides are so common and have a big following at even the current stupid import taxes rate… a bike built in india, priced lower still with the brand promise of exclusivity will take them so far.

    As much as I don’t like riding crusiers (yes really cant stand) – i really enjoyed riding his bike in india on a long tour – with very bad roads and chaotic traffic, sportbikes, adventure bikes, or big nakeds dont make sense. the only thing you can easily do it putt putt around making the HD the perfect poser bike. Everywhere I went i was moving attraction. I felt more special riding my brother HD 883 Iron in India than the MultiStradaGT the following week in Europe.

    HD is well positioned to emploit the Indian psyche – flashy material one-upmanship blingy market. It is really not about riding – and they can hawk ton of accessories too. I am pissed at how much the other manufacturers are pissing away this market opportunity. I hate HD’s products but love how well the company is run in terms of branding, understanding their target customers and executing bold strategies.

  • NOCHnoch

    People don’t buy Harleys with their brains. They buy them with their rectums.

  • BigRooster69

    I could be tempted if it came from the factory like this. The black one with a garbage suspension…not so much.

    • Mark D

      The boat tail has got to go, but that’s surprisingly stylish.

  • http://twwhlspls.com/ Anders

    I guess its says a lot about HD’s consumers when water cooling is perceived as a threat to their core values.

  • Reid

    That guy in the video makes me embarrassed to be a white dude.

  • Reid

    I wish I could have been one of the “1,600 young adults” they “interviewed” before coming up with this dreck.

  • Kevin

    All I can focus on is that headlight cowl and think of Jax Teller’s bike on SoA.

    • http://RideApart.com/ Wes Siler

      Methinks that’s the idea.

  • Rowtag

    maybe a good idea, but what´s up with the merchandise? too many keywords, ya’lls, and stereotypes…

  • http://garrett-nelson.tumblr.com/ Garrett Nelson

    I think this is a great step forward for Harley. Glad they’ve decided to try something ‘bold’ for them and make something different then the air cooled pieces of history they’ve been producing. It’s not the nicest bike out there, and doesn’t have the best specs, but they will probably sell a bunch of them. Especially in SE Asia. The Harley name is worth something so adds a bit to the price of this bike. They’ll probably be able to drop their lowest price Sportster too and make more money off fancier versions of that bike.

    Air cooled bike are going to be completely dead in a few years so Harley had to do something to get ready for the future and this is a good first step.

  • Daniel

    CB500F vs one of these? Easy choice is the Honda…

  • johnsonjay

    These presenters had about as much genuine excitement as a beer fart in the wind. I know guys that live outside the USA that aspire to ride a Harley someday. The one thing this article failed to touch, is the import tax in India on a brand new Harley is nearly twice the price of the list price. That is how India and other countries have not sold themselves out of Jobs like America has done to Canada, Mexico and many others with our low import taxes. Smart for H.D. to appoint these price levels and hmmmm. Seems like they no sooner put a nail in the Buell Blast 500cc, than they come up with something other than a one cylinder cycle as a replacement. Did anyone hear a cheer from the crowd in Milan? Me either. They could give a rip about these cycles there. It is all about price points and where they are assembled. I hope H.D. gets good global exposure as I cant see foreign built Harley’s getting massive appeal in the USA. I could be wrong.

  • Joe Bielski

    I think it’s pretty cool, and a great idea for harley to come out with a 500/750cc bike. I think it’s great they are expanding their line. And I’ve ridden cruisers, sports bikes and standards and kind of like them all for what they each do. Heck, give me anything with two wheels and I’ll probably enjoy it. BUT, yikes, those prices kind of suck :( I’d totally stick with a metric cruiser :(

    • http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_SgRlM0sDWJI/R4Zrki-3osI/AAAAAAAAAW8/WOaLxbOOLws/s400/zoolander.jpg Sean MacDonald

      We agree completely! To be honest, we were excited when we saw the headline and it wasn’t until the price that we became skeptical of it’s success. We love anyone giving this market attention, we just wish everyone would do it in a way we could agree has value to the customers they’re trying to reach.

  • Ben W

    So, late question. Why is the radiator (shroud) so big? Is it because they’re using it to hide all of the plumbing and make sure the view of the engine is clear?

  • Sentinel

    For the first time “ever”, a Harley Davidson has actually got my attention!

    Welcome to the 21st century Harley Davidson; it’s about time!

    Although plenty of “cheese” is served up in the promo Vid, it’s still very informative none the less.

  • akaaccount

    Somebody at Harley needs to get a dictionary and look up the word ‘custom.’
    And Astronautilis? TF is that?

  • Jimmy Conners

    Harley guy’s will not buy these bikes. Not only that, but they will make fun of anyone that does. It’s a lose, lose for them. They will lose not only credability with their core buyers but also market share. The ONLY thing that may happen is Harley guys buying these for their Wives. I am a fan of a mid size cruiser but there are to many better options out there.