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Archive for March 20th, 2009

lonestarhd_dinerIf you’re Harley-Davidson what do you do when motorcycle sales are slumping and the marketing department ideas have become Tom Cruise ‘cold’?

You take a ‘money is no object’ challenge, pimp out your top styling guy and craft a customize big rig!  WTF?

Navistar, Inc. (NYSE:NAV) let Willie G. “pump-up” the Night Rod muscle and rolled out the International LoneStar Harley-Davidson Special Edition.  With a made-in-the-USA 600-horsepower Cummins diesel, deep black paint and contrasting silver and orange striping, along with attention-grabbing chrome-bloated doo-dads welded to the big rig truck – it’s one-of-a-kind. Well not exactly — there will be 250 built this year so get your order in early!  Base price starts at $110K.  The design and instantly recognizable engine grill is based on the ‘ol International D-Series which set the pace for a rapidly changing America after WWII.

lonestar_intHarley continues to pimp-their-brand and is set to inspire big rig “stack-n-crack” products.  For all those truckers who were depressed and unsatisfied with the status quo big rig, they’ll now be able to embrace life on the open road and hold their head high with a H-D logo.

Yet, in a world of custom big rigs where drivers take off their shoes when entering the cab to show respect to the hard work that went into crafting it…I’m not sure drivers of the LoneStar will be to concerned about protecting the billet aluminum and leather upholstery.  In Japan they call it ‘dekotora‘ – or art trucks.  In the U.S., truckers often gather at regular shows called Super Rigs, named for a calendar that Shell Oil has put out for over 20 years.  Even at hot rod events like Hot August Nights in Reno, NV many of these custom rigs are allowed to idle down Virginia Street.

Will any of these elaborate H-D custom big rigs indeed haul loads?   It’s not clear because so many are pampered and polished in a way that emphasizes their unique customized qualities.

Stay classy Harley.

Photo courtesy of International.

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