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pjfz1

The Status of motorcycling in the U.S.?

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pjfz1

Read here:

The Industry is hurting, for many reasons.. and looking for ways to improve.

and Corey Beth posed a very good question relative to some of the problems:

"Serious Question:

If you could have a production street bike that is not currently available, what would you want to be able to buy?

**Let me edit this a little.

If you could tell the industry to build any bike, that you would actually buy, what would it be?"

What would you say, in regards to what the industry could do, and to answer the "what bike" question?

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mjh937

I think the FZ-07 pretty much the bike I want.  The problem is I have had it for over three years and have no desire to "upgrade".  The industry must hate me.  

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rider

Why don't they ask the people that ride instead of "professionals"?

I would imagine that something  in the UJM line would sell with a few adjustments.

Nice looking, decent suspension, decent fuel economy, EFI  (no carbs to mess with), easily adjustable to set up for the rider (preferably properly set up by a mech at the dealership), low maintenance (very low) and fairly cheap.

Then market the crap out of it as a super economical and cool to and from work commuter and weekend toy.

Most people today just want to get on and go (I'm not in this group, I like to jack with stuff and get my hands dirty).  Include services up to 1000 miles or whenever the 1st major service is.  If they like riding, they may not mind taking over after that or paying for future servicing (I never got why people had minor stuff like oil changes done for them).  If they don't like riding, they probably won't hit 1000 miles anyway and sell it or just keep it in the garage.

People today wand cheap and easy.  There are already bikes out there for those of us that are enthusiasts. 

If they can get someone who has never ridden hooked on motorcycling, then these riders will probably want to upgrade to a better, bigger, faster, morr expensive bike so they don't look like everyone else.

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r1limited

I read the article this morning, I think what I read in it is simple, there is an aging sector of riders and a new generation of riders that needs to be attracted.  I think what the OEMS need is that "You meet the nicest people on a Honda" add.  How is this done, Ducati has a real grasp on a merging market the scrambler is it next best hope,  OBTAINABLE motorcycles like the FZ, SV, Scrambler, CBR mid sizers are introducing bikes to a younger generation.  Euro and Asian markets are flurishing while the states is floundering in its machismo sport bike scene.
 

Motorcycling has been under attack here in the states, I blame bleeding heart enviro-nazis more then I blame ourselves.  When we have packs of pozers blocking freeways to do da stunz and act like a pack of monkeys on a raid, well this really turns off the public.  When we have the loud pipes saves lives bullshit getting us banned from areas and townships, tracks and so on, well we get what we paid for.  We as a whole care not what happens elsewhere until it knocks on our door.  It is then we all get huffy and puffy and blow the house down crap. 

If the OEMs do anything, its MARKETING, make motorcycling as we know it known to the public, WE NEED TO BE AMBASSADORS not just to the public, but to the up and comers the Noobs and share the love and life of motorcycling.  Last to the OEMs STOP FREAKIN WITH THE DAMN TRANSFORMER LOOK

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timjh

Around here, a motorcycle is a H-D.  Nobody even considers anything else.  And, yet, the FZ-07 is nearly perfect (well, my larger friends prefer the FZ-09..)

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robbo10

Most people I know are anti-bike. Their reaction to me riding is along the lines of: "...oh, I wouldn't do that if I were you". And then they tell me all about their latest experience of seeing "bad riding". The trouble I think is partly that motorcycling gets mugged by almost everyone - from politicians to Mums and Dads. We have also become widely risk averse in the UK - that mad and troublesome health and safety genie that cannot be pushed back into the lamp. Add to that the high cost of the process to become a fully qualified rider here (on the grounds that a rider will be safer as a result) - why does anyone bother? Then no need to wonder why the majority of riders are 'mature'. Look who is sitting on the bikes at EICMA. Generalisations here, I know, but the future of motorcycling here looks problematic.

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SlowGroove
3 hours ago, robbo10 said:

Most people I know are anti-bike. Their reaction to me riding is along the lines of: "...oh, I wouldn't do that if I were you". And then they tell me all about their latest experience of seeing "bad riding". The trouble I think is partly that motorcycling gets mugged by almost everyone - from politicians to Mums and Dads. We have also become widely risk averse in the UK - that mad and troublesome health and safety genie that cannot be pushed back into the lamp. Add to that the high cost of the process to become a fully qualified rider here (on the grounds that a rider will be safer as a result) - why does anyone bother? Then no need to wonder why the majority of riders are 'mature'. Look who is sitting on the bikes at EICMA. Generalisations here, I know, but the future of motorcycling here looks problematic.

It’s always those that are fine putting on make-up, feeding their faces, and/or texting a friend that they’re available to meet at eight while behind the wheel - and the least knowledgeable about motorcycle safety - that are the first to chime in on how dangerous motorcycling is.  

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Cruizin

The kinds of bikes available are not whats causing the slump in motorcycle sales.

Its the motorcycle deaths and danger keeping people away from riding.  My town just had a record year for motorcycle deaths, as did our entire state. Looking at our motorcycle death stats, 60% of deaths were due to cars pulling out in front of motorcyclists. Didnt matter how much gear they were or weren't wearing, either.  

 

The rest of the deaths were mostly middle aged men on cruiser bikes with no helmets. Rider error, usually due to lack of skills or training. They come to a corner, the road turns left, they get scared and hit the brakes and go right into the trees. Alot of these wrecks. 

 

Also, a ton of ex riders are now putting their money into side by side razors and the like. Tons of my ex riding buddies now own razors or can am's and they dump alot of money into them. There are no cars to dodge off road. No cops off road. They go as fast as they want to, and they are starting to pose serious hazards to those of us who ride dirtbikes in these OHV areas. I have almost been hit by a bunch of them.

 

Also. people are starting to figure out that Harley Davidsons build horrible machines. More expensive, much slower and they handle like shet. Seriously, why pay an extra $10,000 or more for a bike that is slower, heavier, and handles worse than a $8,000 bike? 

 

Lastly, the price of everything else is skyrocketing and alot of people just cant afford toys anymore. Rent here in our area and the price of homes are skyrocketing.  dont know how young people can affrord rent, car payment AND a motorcycle payment anymore. 

 

So, to recap..   The death rates and percieved danger of riding, the fact that now people are buying side by sides and other new kinds of toys that were not available in years past, the fact that Harley Davidson is failing and the rising coss of everything else all are the contributing factors to the decline of our passion.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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norcal616

also since the recession ppl are saving up money and putting that towards a new(er) car since the one(s) they had gone to shyt.. at least thats what I see 'round here... the ppl who do buy a new bike or "toy" tend to already have a new(er) car/truck either buy a "toy" for fun or use a bike as a daily driver when its riding season and only use the car/truck when its not riding season or its just plain nasty weather... 

 

i dont think the passion is failing but it seems the OEM are at a crossroads between "generations" since the old norms of motorcycles are dying and they are trying to "try/test" the market needs... for example

 

the new Tracer900 GT is everything the vast majority of FJ-09 owners have "wished" Yamaha made the FJ-09 in the first place by farkling it... So it seems Yamaha built the new Tracer900 GT from the forums, the shoulda called it the "FRD-900" for Forum Research& Development 😅... psst its still cheaper to get a leftover FJ-09 and turn it into a Tracer900 GT built to you for less than a new Tracer900 GT before you even start farkling that 🙊🙉🙈...you will only miss out on a fancy smancy color display and 2 more lvls of Traction Control, whoppty doo!!

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r1limited
1 hour ago, Cruizin said:

The rest of the deaths were mostly middle aged men on cruiser bikes with no helmets. Rider error, usually due to lack of skills or training. They come to a corner, the road turns left, they get scared and hit the brakes and go right into the trees. Alot of these wrecks. 

This, I am convinced MSF and the AMA including MIC have done a piss poor job establishing standards in training, and requirements including tiered licensing.  I walked away as a rider coach because they have no value system on flunking anyone.  They just keep letting the take the course until they pass.   Bad, Bad shet happen and people get killed who DO NOT BELONG ON MOTORCYCLES.  No amount of training or seat time can cure the incapable congnizant skill set to multitask while riding

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bornagainbiker
7 hours ago, Cruizin said:

Also, a ton of ex riders are now putting their money into side by side razors and the like. Tons of my ex riding buddies now own razors or can am's and they dump alot of money into them. There are no cars to dodge off road. No cops off road. They go as fast as they want to, and they are starting to pose serious hazards to those of us who ride dirtbikes in these OHV areas. I have almost been hit by a bunch of them.

I know what you mean about the side by side vehicles.  Most "Motorcycle Dealers" in my area are primarily focused on selling ATVs and Side by Sides, with Motorcycles almost as an afterthought. :'(

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YZEtc

My thoughts on what the modern motorcycle scene is like, and how it got there:

 

1) My 2015 FZ07FR retailed for the "incredibly low price" of $6,990.

When I started riding, talking to other riders, and reading motorcycle magazines, the thought of a motorcycle costing that much would have been beyond ridiculous.

Today, that's considered cheap, and the inflation will only continue.

 

2) The USA was once one of the main markets for the Japanese.

In 1983, Honda Motor Company sprang (going by memory, here) 13 new models on the USA for the 1983 model year.

Things seemed good back then.

Today, we get what they want to build for other parts of the world, and compared to the sales numbers in those other parts of the world, the USA is small.

 

3) The riding habits of many riders I've known personally (myself, included), is, at times, less than ideal in order to make riding a motorcycle seem respectable to non-riders.

The basic format is: The younger, the dumber.

This is greatly encouraged by modern life and entertainment (how many movies, stand-up comedians, rock-and-roll recordings, and "the cool kids at school" have made it seem like being a jerk is "cool"?).

 

4) You might be surprised at just how many "industry professionals" ride little or not at all.

Yes, it's just a job, and if they ride/rode it is in their past, practically speaking.

There are exceptions.

 

Edited by YZEtc
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faffi

Back to the original question of what we would buy, I think you must look at the statistics. But if we take a glimpse at the car world, you will see that there are primarily two groups; cheap transport and excitement. If you can combine the two, you have a winner (MT07/Ford Focus). But those looking for more than mere transportation often also want excitement and the ability to personalize their vehicle. Here, the car industry are head and shoulders above the bike industry. You should be able to have "your" bike built, ready from the factory. BMW does this to an extent, but still a lot is dealer installed instead of factory installed. For many, getting a particular seat or tank shape or colour, special wheels, high performance brakes etc. is important. Not fitted as aftermarket or replaced by the dealer, but just as you want it straight out of the assembly line.

 

Other than that, the motorcycle scene in Europe is thriving and new sales records are set in several countries year after year. In Germany, 25% of all new bikes sold are of the adventure genre.

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Beemer

I couldn't say anything with certainty other than I see the transportation industry fixated on saving lives, fuel, the earth and trying to build a system of transportation where eventually all vehicles we "sit in" will be completely automated. They will do it without our permission, they will slowly slip it in so slow we won't notice. It's full fruition may be far off but a small part of the industry is already leaning in that direction. All one has to do is read Popular Science magazine too realize that or just watch enough TV. I also think those satellites in outer space are going to play a big part in cars navigating themselves after a way point, by you, the driver, is set. (just a hunch) Motorcycles may go by the wayside as a result or become something exotic and expensive only for the rich.

 

The only way I see to stop it's progression is to get off the "save the earth" band wagon and totally reject any ideas of automating cars or any technology that requires too little input from it's driver to navigate, no matter how good or cool as it may seem. That pretty much means the consumer needs to be pro active and take action against it, be a big voice (don't block streets 😉) or the progression will continue.

 

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robbo10
38 minutes ago, Beemer said:

......They will do it without our permission, they will slowly slip it in so slow we won't notice. It's full fruition may be far off......

 

Our Chancellor of the Exchequer making his annual major budget speech in Parliament yesterday made clear reference to the coming driverless cars... and to electric ones. Just a matter time. 

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r1limited
7 minutes ago, robbo10 said:

Our Chancellor of the Exchequer making his annual major budget speech in Parliament yesterday made clear reference to the coming driverless cars... and to electric ones. Just a matter time. 

In Amurka, it is coming to fruitin as well, due to a willing populous of wanker dolts that will bitch it aint free

Edited by r1limited

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shinyribs

You see this topic on a lot of forums, but we have no way of knowing what's really going on inside other people's minds when they decide to buy a bike or not. 

 

In general, America's population is spread out pretty far compared to many places in Europe. I don't think motorcycling catches on as well here simply because the general commute is different. 

 

However, riding isn't dead in The US IMO. You just don't see a lot of new bike sales. Used bikes can be had for cheap and last forever. I'm afraid the manufacturers are going to take the same approach to remedy that as what we saw happen with appliances, shoes,etc years ago....they're gonna start making them less durable. 

 

You can go to Craigslist and buy a 30 year old Japanese bike for $1,000, spend a few hundred dollars to whip it back in to shape and ride it trouble-free for another 10+ years easily. Their own durability makes it unnecessary to replace them. Let's hope they don't start making them more disposable in order to push new bike sales. 

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shinyribs
30 minutes ago, r1limited said:

In Amurka, it is coming to fruitin as well, due to a willing populous of wanker dolts that will bitch it aint free

R1, I am quoting your post, but I'm not attacking you personally. Just wanted to be clear on that. 

 

 

But... the whole current fad of snarkily saying Murica, Amurka, etc. on the internet really annoys me. I don't know why people feel compelled to do this, or why they think it's cool or clever. I wish people would stop doing this as it makes anyone who loves this Country sound as if they are some kind of backwards, inbred idiot. 

 

We are the United States of America. My friends and family members didn't die to preserve this Country just so people could make fun of it's name on the internet.in order to sound kewl. Have some respect, and a little pride. Please. 

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r1limited
24 minutes ago, shinyribs said:

R1, I am quoting your post, but I'm not attacking you personally. Just wanted to be clear on that. 

 

 

But... the whole current fad of snarkily saying Murica, Amurka, etc. on the internet really annoys me. I don't know why people feel compelled to do this, or why they think it's cool or clever. I wish people would stop doing this as it makes anyone who loves this Country sound as if they are some kind of backwards, inbred idiot. 

 

We are the United States of America. My friends and family members didn't die to preserve this Country just so people could make fun of it's name on the internet.in order to sound kewl. Have some respect, and a little pride. Please. 

So what you are saying is simply, in your AMURKA only you have have the right to squelch free speech?  Think about that and then think on the total contradition in your statement?  Maybe light will dawn on marble head, maybe.  ya know if you did not have this perpetual hardon for whatever reason for me, you would maybe uderstand the context of Amurjka as ot pertains to the elitist oligarchs in GOOBERMINT.  Enviro-Nazi's Liberl wanker sissies, Neo-Cons Right left Rep or Dem are a scourge of this nation at this time.  The Feds are impposing restriction on us that are unconstitution ald you sit in judgemtn of me saying AMURKA?  Your funny dude

 

In the mean time Happy Thanksgiving

Edited by r1limited

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shinyribs

You obviously did not read the first sentence of my post. 

 

I was not " sitting in judgemtn" of you, but you made some nice projections there. Good one, chief. 

 

Trust me, I don't try to follow you around this forum. I find the majority of your posts difficult to decipher and typically just skip over them. Sorry if that ruins your idea that I'm out to get you. 

Edited by shinyribs

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r1limited
9 minutes ago, shinyribs said:

You obviously did not read the first sentence of my post. 

 

I was not " sitting in judgemtn" of you, but you made some nice projections there. Good one, chief. 

 

Trust me, I don't try to follow you around this forum. I find the majority of your posts difficult to decipher and topically just skip them. Sorry if that ruins your idea that I'm out to get you. 

I read it, it may have made sense in your mind, but!  No you where judging as well as projecting, at best I find you amuzing, annoying no, see because I live in America your free to be a dick as much as I am free to be a dick, unlike those that live in AMURKA they get offended because ...... ? "Rhetorical Questions"

 

Now back on topic if you wish we can discuss this off line and measure who is the biggest dick

 

The Status of Motorcycling in America

 

IMO because of the Oligarchs the are persuaded by or payed by the Enviro-Nazis, Special Interests and other variants of Pro Amurka / Anti-America have been extremely effective in shutting down dirt areas, street areas tracks and using our paid tax dollers to bring suit to municipalities, Forrest services etc.  We as a whole and I mentioned this as well if not being effected by what happens in Montana, Calif etc as we sit in the comfort of our seats and bench race thinking everything is just going to be OK, well those folks are useful idiots as Lenin the marxist said.

 

 

Edited by r1limited

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shinyribs

The only thing contradictory is your words. I specifically prefaced my post with the explanation that I was NOT attacking you personally. I simply stated that I do not like it when my Country's name is made fum of. Then you attempt to shame me into feeling like "a dick" for expressing my opinion. So reconsider who you think is trying to "squelch free speech". See, that's a contradiction: you telling me I shouldn't be saying something because YOU disagree with it. You've got some temper when people don't fully agree with everything you say. 

 

I simply wished for people to be more respectful. Whether the Country has flaws or not is irrelevant. BTW, we are not in The USA , this is an internet forum. 

 

You said: "Now back on topic if you wish we can discuss this off line and measure who is the biggest dick". So that's how your mind works? You bellyache about someone "squelching" your free speech, but then you lay out commands and specific rules to specify how the rest of the thread should continue? Seriously, think about your words before you bang away at the keys, especially if you are trying to make a statement about free speech. "We're gonna do this MY way!" 

 

I have no idea why you think I would ever want to discuss with you which of us "is the biggest dick". I don't even have words for that, actually. 

 

 

 

 

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pjfz1

 I appreciate all the feedback - keep it coming!

 

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Nekkid07

i wish the 750 supersports came back.  i love the low end of the fz07, but would be nice to spin it up and keep the throttle roll on going.

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