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Posts Tagged ‘Taylor Swift’

2018 CVO Lineup

It’s arrogant at best and obscene at worst.

I’m talking about the CVO pricing that Harley-Davidson management approved for the 2018 models.  Now that we’ve had a couple days to digest the euphoric feeling of the new 2018 models, we’re left with a gnawing and burning sensation in our stomach that even a spoonful of sodium bicarbonate won’t put an end too.

I can’t help but wonder if the new head of design, Brad Richards, who replaced Willie G. after more than 40 years is singing that new Taylor Swift single, “Look What You Made Me Do,” after going full-tilt Goth and dripping black on so many of the new designs.

2018 CVO Street Glide

Unless you’ve won the lotto, you’ll be crunching numbers very late into the night to learn how to squeeze a new Harley CVO into the garage without breaking the discretionary entertainment budget!  They are expensive!  In a small way, we have Polaris to thank for exiting the market with Victory motorcycles and reducing Harley-Davidson pricing pressures.

I’m reminded of the Mylan EpiPen scalping gone wrong in the pharmaceutical industry.  Will we see the motor company deploy industry “experts” to justify the value of overtly expensive models and purport to quantify the net social benefits of belonging to the riding “lifestyle?”  If they do, it’s likely to be based on a complicated economic model and include scholarly speeches, articles, blogs and conferences to lend prestige on the whole “we’re doing everything in manufacturing to keep our prices down” lobbying blitz.

2018 CVO Road Glide

The fact is, Harley-Davidson is a luxury brand cleverly disguised as a blue collar, workin’ man’s brand.

Millions of marketing dollars are spent every year on campaigns to drive home the point that it’s name is synonymous with regular, working class folk.

But, have you seen their luxury price increases on the 2018 CVO models?  Harley-Davidson has exceeded the price range of BMW and Ducati, two brands with a public perception of being expensive toys for the upper-class.

Most of us will never get to experience the CVO results of Harley-Davidson’s labors for ourselves, thanks to prices ranging from $40,000 to $43,000.  Specifically the MSRP pricing is:

2018 CVO Road Glide — $41,399 (not available in 2017)
2018 CVO Street Glide — $39,949 (+$2150 above 2017 price)
2018 CVO Limited — $42,949 (+$1950 above 2017 price)

2018 CVO Limited

I’ve written about Harley-Davidson’s sales and marketing woes.  Much of it outside their control, but we can’t absolve the motor company of any responsibility for these arrogant price hikes.  Harley-Davidson owns this one.  The pricing backlash has already begun across the motorcycle forums and the whole thing leaves a bad taste in consumers’ mouth — of all age groups!

For example, the CVO Limited jumped $1950 from 2017 to 2018.  Beyond paint, there are NO significant upgrades on the 2018 model.  Looking at web pages indicates the only “NEW” item was the addition of a Bluetooth wireless connection module to the stereo.  This may have been as simple as a firmware update to the BOOM stereo system.  Let’s assume it was a hardware addition.  A Cardo bike-to-bike intercom with dual handsfree to connect up multiple bluetooth-enabled mobile phones retail for less than $300.  That would mean the price increased $1650.

Let’s look at the 2018 CVO Street Glide — Harley-Davidson removed the radiator and abandoned water cooled heads as the lowers now have speakers along with another power amp to drive the sound “bubble.”  They’ve provided similarly configured models in the past.  The company added Bluetooth wireless connection to the stereo and created a “NEW” Gun Metal grey paint, however, they jacked the price up over $2100 above the 2017 model.

The CVO Road Glide is a bit trickier to do a price comparison as the last time they offered a similarly stripped down version of the CVO Road Glide was back in 2013 (remember the Cat Whisper paint stripe scheme which was priced at $33,999?) and it was based on the old 110cu.in. engine, old radio and outdated fairing, frame etc.  Harley-Davidson skipped a year and then for 2015 they offered up that behemoth CVO Road Glide Ultra at $36,649 which included all the accouterments which was based on ‘Project Rushmore’ enhancements that other touring bikes received.  It’s not a pure apple-to-apple comparison, but this basically equates to a $7,400 price increase over a 5 model year period.  Which is incredible given the low rate of inflation and manufacturing cost reductions.

Are the financial analysts really scratching their heads wondering why riders don’t line up to lay down these $$ on a motorcycle?

In fairness, Harley-Davidson does make some decent, affordable bikes in their Street lineup.  But they still have a bit of that stigma — which is backed up by most of their current lineup — of putting heritage before innovation and that’s turning some of the riding youth away from the brand.  Harley isn’t as strong a competitor in terms of bang-for-the-dollar with the likes of Triumph, Ducati and the Japanese manufactures.

Even the blue collar, workin’ man who can afford a nice bike will certainly take a look at the local Indian dealer and realize that the competition is making all-American cruisers that indeed have an appeal and nearly every model is priced less than a new Harley-Davidson.

It boggles the mind how according to Harley-Davidson management, the new 2018 motorcycles are less expensive for Harley to manufacture, with simpler frames and more commonality of parts yet they’ve rolled out what looks like an orgy of price scalping.

Photo courtesy of Harley-Davidson

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i-quitI guess you could say it all started when Taylor Swift wrote that song.

Was “Mean” really about me?  I’m just an aging blogger, why did the biggest pop star in America have to pick on ME?  That hurts. You don’t know what it was like growing up.  Everybody knows I’m thin-skinned. I’ve got health issues and doesn’t she know that if I don’t consistently see my psychiatrist I’ll need MKULTRA re-programming.

Yes, I know, bragging that I see a psychiatrist, is a sign of a SIESPD mental disorder: Self-Inflation at the Expense of Sacred Psychiatry Disorder.

But what’s worse are the blog readers. It doesn’t matter what I write.  They only want to read and comment about the reality TV drama The Devils Ride.  Sure I’m “unqualified” to write a motorcycle blog, but I think it was precisely that total lack of journalism training that gave me an edge.  But, it’s doesn’t matter what wisdom flows through my fingers as I throw down editorial so magical—so right—that my fellow bloggers are moved by my artistry.  In a country where everybody’s seems to be on the take, where screenwriters whose job is to feed the character dialogue on “reality” TV, where politicians are indicted on a regular basis, it doesn’t pay to be honest.

So, I’m stopping. Giving up. I quit.  Going over to the dark side.

No, I’m not going to work for Harley-Davidson, I’m not even going to work for Honda, there’s just not enough money involved.  You can’t make it in motorcycles, you’ve got to go where the money is, Technology.

Technology is run by young people challenging all the rules.

Oh, it’s been done before.  You wake up and chuck aside journalistic aspirations and went where the real power was, Technology.

And why not. Everybody thinks I’m wealthy anyway. I make a comment about the Portland occupiers and my inbox blows up with people castigating me for being a one percenter. You’d have thought I was giving away Nike stock. I’m sick of being poor, now I truly am going to be rich.  No, I turned down the Pritikin offer to co-write The Devils Ride scripts.  We might look similar in a black vest, but do you think I still want to be in the public eye after what I’ve been through on this blog?

No, I’m not going to tell you the name of the company.  You wouldn’t know Summly anyway.  They made me an offer I couldn’t refuse.  And I’ve brought in my black book. I’m tapping every relationship I have for cash. Everybody.  If you’re wealthy, expect to hear from me.  As for the rest of you…it’s payback time.

I’ve sold my email subscription list to so many marketers I can afford a year off in Honolulu. You’re gonna be spammed to high heaven. I’m always accused of selling my list anyway, so why not do it?

I’m all about the cash now baby. I gave you that motorcycle information for free and all you did was bust my chops.  You were so busy drinking at the trough of motorcycle Reality TV that you can’t see that you’ve been sold a bill of goods.

So, I’m leaving you behind.  Going to work for Nick.

At fifteen without a driver’s license, he had a computer, an iPad and an iPhone.  Of course there were good parents that insisted he do well in school and he had a worldly view to know there are winners and losers.  He didn’t want the short end of the stick and didn’t waste time learning the guitar or riding a dirt bike?  No, he developed an app and now at 17 years old he has millions.  A teenager who sits at home and changes the world.

Motorcycling is done anyway.

The Discovery channel ruined it. They “prostituted the patch” in the name of advertising and shilling faux t-shirts.  There’s no money left.  If you’re smart, you’ll follow me.  I’m done with you, I’m going behind the tech celeb gate and throwing away the key, only flying private from now on.

Look, I get it. You can’t have people like me writing whatever they want. If I run too loose I’ll ruin all of powersports…who knows what’s next.  Blogs like NWHOG need to be shut up.  I mean who does this MacRant think he is?  There’s nobody he hasn’t written negative stuff about. He’s just a crybaby loser who is desperate to be close to fame. He’s been doing it for too many years already.

Good riddance.

I hear you. I’m done.

Photo courtesy of Superior Law Office.  Gullible motorcycle blog-lovers gather round, April Fool’s Day is upon us!

All Rights Reserved © Northwest Harley Blog

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DonkeyKanye West is a ‘jackass’.  And not because of his 2007 video for “Stronger” which used a genuine Japanese motorcycle gang in the video.

Here’s the 411 — President Obama ‘off-the-record’ called Kanye West a ‘jackass’ for his outburst at VMAs when Taylor Swift won.  You can listen to the audio HERE

Yes, Kanye did hand the microphone back to her, but like the 19 year old she is, she was overwhelmed and couldn’t speak.  Thus cementing her status as a singing teenage naif.   The ABC reporter, Terry Moran, who overheard the casual between-us-folks chatter — which is often a part of the technical set-up before an interview officially begins — tweeted yesterday that President Obama was “off the record” in an interview with CNBC which a few hundred thousand people @RT the Kanye ‘ass’ outing.

I have a new level of respect for Obama.  Calling out Kanye was the right thing to do.  Yet, the jackass quote was soon retracted!   ABC issued an apology to both CNBC and the White House (and removed the Tweet, but not before folks screen-grab images of it).  It’s difficult to know, but what if a Caucasian had stormed the stage and used such language to an African-American entertainer?  Yeah, I’m on thin ice with an inference to the “R” word, but it does create a moment of pause.  For those who think the entire event was scripted or “staged” then you’ll appreciate this site.

The losers in all of this is the American public.  Real stories can’t get traction.  Health care is too complex and we’ve got ADHD.  We’ve become a nation of public spectacles, gossip, and misinformation.  Sure frivolity has a place, but what we revere in popular culture has almost nothing of value.  Furthermore, who didn’t know the “K-man” had been acting like a jackass previously?  It’s like his jackassed-ness was his career.  Finally now he truly is a superstar!   Stay classy Kanye! 

You might think I’m over doing it here, but… People spend money dressing and living like rappers, going to the Palms in Vegas to splash in the pool while consuming overpriced liquor and flash hand signs.  In a “me” society, who can expect anybody to behave properly, with humility.  Twenty four hour news from one celebrity mishap to another not twenty four hours on explaining bills in Congress, or Supreme Court decisions.  We indeed need a readjustment.  But they need the ratings!

Kanye is, ratings.  For anybody who’s got a trinket to sell.  And we’re buying it! 

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