MotorcycleDaily.com – Motorcycle News, Editorials, Product Reviews and Bike Reviews

Motorcycle News, Editorials, Product Reviews and Bike Reviews

EU 25% Tariff on Harley-Davidson Motorcycles Arrives Sooner Than Expected


The European Union was expected to impose a tariff on large-displacement motorcycles manufactured in the U.S., primarily impacting Harley-Davidson, next month. That 25% tariff, however, has been moved up, and will be effective tomorrow.

We have previously commented on the challenges faced by Harley with the aging of its primary demographic, and the difficulty of bringing younger riders into the brand. These new tariffs imposed by the EU arrive on the heels of U.S. import tariffs that increase the cost of some of Harley’s raw materials, including steel and aluminum. The cumulative effect of all this will undoubtedly be very significant to the company’s finances.

In the political tug-of-war that is currently taking place, it is probably no coincidence that the state of Wisconsin, home of House Speaker Paul Ryan and Harley-Davidson, is being particularly hard hit by EU tariffs.


See more of MD’s great photography:

Instagram


226 Comments

  1. Fastship says:

    America’s trade deficits are baked into the system. In order to be the global reserve currency foreign countries who wish to buy oil or aircraft or any of the crucial big ticket commodities or items they must have require US dollars to purchase them. There is only one way they can obtain US dollars, that is by selling their own goods to America in exchange for US dollars. To do this consistently over a long period against indigenous US companies forces them make better products at lower costs and be more productive than US companies. Sometimes they cheat too but over the long term, that is unsustainable.

    The U.S. empire on the other hand is funded neither by tribute, nor by trade. It runs on debt. Much of the trade surplus’s (their trade surpluses have totalled nearly $20 trillion with the US) has been channelled into U.S. Treasury bonds; foreigners have financed some $8 trillion worth of U.S. deficit spending over the last 20 years.

    The “big government” you have in the US with their “warfare to welfare” agenda which runs on debt REQUIRES you to have a trade deficit in order to make it function. This has been to case since WW2 when the US displaced Great Britain as the world’s reserve currency as part of the deal to finance that war. It was accelerated when Nixon broke the link with the USD and gold and allowed the Fed to print unlimted (FIAT) currency thus devaluing the USD which required even more goods to be sold into the US by foreigners to survive. You have witnessed this trend manifest itself in a decline of US industry and a corresponding rise in US financial businesses (i.e. Wall St.) to “deal” in this phony money.

    Simply put, to be the worlds reserve currency requires you to export your industries overseas. You have witnessed this phenomenon over the last fifty years.

    • guu says:

      Balance of payments would be the term that should be teached alongside balance of trade. For the simpletons think the 100 dollar bill as the main export of the USA. It a great export, costs nothing to make, and is only as valuable as the USA is. Unhealthy USA -> trade partners suffer. Healthy USA -> trade partnes too florish.

      • Fastship says:

        Don’t forget, “Paper money eventually returns to its intrinsic value – zero.” (Voltaire, 1694-1778)

    • Provologna says:

      You left out some urgent and critical items. China is an enemy of the US sworn to overtake the US as the world’s most dominant nation. China’s record on freedom for its people is infinitely more abysmal than in the USA.

      Of the profits China has gained in its horrific trade imbalance with the USA (and outright intellectual theft and financial black mail: China forces non-Chinese companies to give them technology in exchange for access to Chinese markets, then later uses that technology against the original company), China has spent a good ratio of those profits enlarging its military and increasing its military technology.

      As personal enemy of the Bush Krime Syndikat Ross Perot succinctly claimed, in the USA, the primary beneficiary of the expansion of world trade has been the money changers to whom you referred, not the general public and especially not the middle class.

      • Fastship says:

        The second part of your analyses is spot on. The “financialisation” of the US economy to the detriment of the middle class is an insidious part of this process but you fall into their trap in claiming China is your enemy as this give the “deep state” further justification for its continuation.

        China is simply acting in its own rational best interests; they didn’t invent the game. Britain invented the jet engine but were forced to hand it over to the Americans. Germany invented the rocket engine but were forced to hand it over to the Amercans etc, etc…

        Before WW1 the majority of American assets were British owned. By the 1950’s Britain was a debtor nation to the US and its currency then became the world’s reserve currency. One empire passed to the next as previous empires did as will the American Empire.

        The question not yet (fully) acknowledged in America is, if Government (the institution of) is the cause of this “financialsation” of its economy and all of the unpleasant consequences then doesn’t it logically follow that government is obsolete and should be replaced? In rejecting the Clinton Crime Family and electing Trump I think Americans are on this path and the imminent financial slump (caused by all this debt and phony money) will put it over the edge. If so then the only remaining question is with what do you replace it and by what means?

        In the words of an ancient soldier/poet from a previous empire: “Fiat justitia, et pereat mundus.”

  2. arrowrod says:

    Is everyone missing the point? Tariffs have been unfair to the U.S.
    The President has decided to end unfair treatment of U.S. exports.
    When China extended Tariffs on $50 billion of U.S. imports, We responded with $200 billion in tariffs on Chinese imports. The Chinese are backing down.

    Some of you might have noticed that there are a lot of jobs available.

    I’m with Scott Adams. We are entering an Golden Age.

  3. chev says:

    R.I.P. H.D

  4. EZMark says:

    Like it or nor, the US is the economic engine that drives the world. All the other countries want unrestricted free trade to sell their products here, while imposing tariffs on our goods sold in their countries. The only FREE in this “free trade” is for the other countries trading free here while we are penalized in theirs.
    This explains why we have a negative trade balance with practically every country in the world. These new trade restrictions will cause recessions in the countries imposing them.
    Trump has made it clear that if our trade partners drop their tariffs, we will drop ours.
    He wants FAIR trade, not just “free” trade for the rest of the world.
    Rest assured, the countries imposing these new tariffs will suffer far more than the US. In other words, you need us more than we need you. We’ll see who blinks first.

    • Regan says:

      Well said.

    • motorhead says:

      Ummmm. No. Other countries can buy all the stuff from America they want. They just don’t want all that much expensive stuff from America (our labor costs are too high, our executives and investors suck out all the earnings for their own salaries, our quality can suck, we don’t design products tailored for other countries, etc).

      If foreigners (they are just like Americans in this way) can find a perfectly acceptable alternative from their own country or somewhere else they will buy elsewhere. How many American companies and workers actually try to make something that satisfies foreign customers? Ok, Apple and Hollywood crank out products that sell well overseas. What else?….Crickets…

      Some Europeans seem to like the Harley brand, and since America has a monopoly on Harley Davidson we benefit. Except now it costs them a lot more because of this stupid and self-destructive trade war that patriotic Americans have started.

    • Provologna says:

      I believe you are correct.

      The USA currently sends overseas several times as much wealth as it receives. The math is like this: if all trade came to a screeching halt, the net overall financial misery for the USA is “X,” and for all other nations combined, several times X. e.g. Germany loses 20% of ultra high end German car manufacturing and sales.

      Pray tell: if Germany can find other non-USA buyers for these cars, ‘splain to the audience exactly why they have not already done so. The only ‘splanation is that MB and BMW intentionally desire to depress sales, profits, and employment. Best o’luck convincing readers of that. Sorry, non-USA buyers for $50-$150k vehicles don’t grow on trees.

      If your math is different, please show it.

      • Dave says:

        ” Sorry, non-USA buyers for $50-$150k vehicles don’t grow on trees.”

        They’re growing in Bejing China and other cities there (China’s wealthy class is over 20m people..). Just because they can find buyers in other markets doesn’t mean they want to replace the US market with another one, they want both/all.

  5. Karl says:

    I’m a motorcyclist from outside the U.S. and have owned and ridden bikes from abroad and the U.S. I am not involved in any way in U.S. politics, but I have observed a lot about America from a distance. It seems to me that your last President (Obama) was an intelligent and forthright person that seemed unable to accomplish much due to continual opposition within your government to his proposals. Your current President doesn’t seem to care what any of the other members of government think, he will just do it his way. He doesn’t seem very well spoken or intelligent and comes across as a big spoiled baby that has no respect for women, the poor or anyone that isn’t in the money. Are all people in the Republican party only interested in personal wealth and not the good of their fellow countryman? I am glad that I do not live there as I am not a rich person, and I don’t want to be a rich person, just a happy person with happy people around me.

    • todd says:

      Republicans are just average people. Many are hard working, lower income people that are frustrated by people that don’t want to work yet continue to get free handouts from the government. Just like anyone else, they might think Trump is an idiot (but it’s hard to find a politician that isn’t, one way or another). They are tired of having a large government that takes a very large portion of your hard earned income and distributes it to drug addicts and welfare people with no incentives for them to improve their predicament. They see waste and frivolity and a bunch of politicians that pay themselves large sums of money to try to justify their own positions. Some are struggling to get by, some have done very well for themselves and, regardless of who they are or what they do, they want to own a good performing, nice looking motorcycle just like any Democrat or Independent does.

      • Karl says:

        Thank you todd for the kind answer.

      • ApriliaRST says:

        > They are tired of having a large government that takes a very large portion of your hard earned income and distributes it to drug addicts and welfare people with no incentives for them to improve their predicament.

        How convenient these ordinary Americans forget the largest item of government spending is a military that is equal to much of the rest of the world COMBINED, perhaps excepting the interest on government borrowing to support deficits that are only bad when Democrats are in power. What about spending for the roads we ride on, airports for when we fly, water plants, sewage plants, agriculture research, agriculture subsidies, and other forms of CORPORATE welfare? Where Republicans suddenly turn fiscally responsible is when tax spending goes to education, health care, food and shelter. But what do Republicans care when workers are on the cusp of being replaced by robots anyway? I really care, do u?

        • Mike says:

          I believe Bill Clinton was the last president to balance the budget.

        • Provologna says:

          “How convenient these ordinary Americans forget the largest item of government spending is a military”

          Utter hogwash. Over 70% of US spending is for safety net programs. Sorry, but even if 30% was all for military, your math is still fatally flawed.

          That said, I’d personally slash the military budget by at least 50%, probably more like 90%. I’d close virtually all the over 800 foreign military bases. I’d get out of NATO overnight (do you really think nuclear winter is the appropriate response if Putin invades Lithuania?) Europe is just about totally lost to Arab hordes anyway, it’s toast. I’d probably close most of the standing army. And I’d enforce the Constitution, having virtually no military action without Congressional vote.

          And I’d damn make sure women had to register for Selective Service. What a freeking outrage only men have to register!

      • Yo J.. says:

        Why would anyone who is not filthy rich vote for a Rebublican? For example, the great tax cut of 2018 was supposed to make great American companies such as Harley Davidson, Carrier, etc. prosper and keep factories state side right? I think the “average Republican “will eventually wake up to see that they are being used by a few good old boys who only care about their bottom line.

        • Dave says:

          ” I think the “average Republican “will eventually wake up”

          It is easier to fool people than to convince them that they’ve been fooled. The truth has been freely available all along. They just don’t want to believe it if it means they must change their position.

        • Provologna says:

          So you liked it better with millions more collecting food stamps under Obama? And millions fewer employed blacks and Hispanics? Do you agree with Bill Mahr, who prays for economic collapse to diminish Trump’s support? If yes, how and why is Pence better than Trump?

    • Gary says:

      Congrats, Karl, you pretty much nailed it.

    • TimC says:

      Karl, I wanted to address one thing you mention – you are correct that Trump doesn’t care what others think – but this is justified when the others’ opinions are fundamentally invalid. Many wish to see this country ruled by the Left – without paying attention to what happened to other countries when that happened (most prominently, the USSR). They are stopping at nothing – including complete and complicit propaganda by the media – to achieve this. And the Republican party is hardly innocent – many of THEM hate Trump because he is not continuing their me-too complicity in the matter. So disregarding the opinion of those who are fundamentally un-American, against individualism, against capitalism – anyone who does this, I must say “Bravo.”

      As far as how he comes across – I suggest finding actual speeches instead of news/sound bites. He really is well-reasoned and supports his points (surprisingly) well – the media is generally not going to show this.

      • ApriliaRST says:

        > Many wish to see this country ruled by the Left – without paying attention to what happened to other countries when that happened (most prominently, the USSR).

        So in your mind, libruls are dirty Commies, eh?

        • Butch says:

          Big difference between a Leftist and Liberal.
          Most folks think they are synonymous, but they are not.
          Liberals support capitalism, leftist do not.
          Liberals are for free speech whereas the left is not.
          Most liberals support a strong border and it’s nations sovereignty, a lefty wants open borders.
          And the list goes on.

    • Ronnie Moore says:

      Hey Karl,whatever you are using for u.s.a. information, you need to find a new source. Our economy is moving, there is less unemployment than we have had in a long time. Things are looking good. The mainstream media here is just a group of eliteist lyars- most people here don’t pay any attention to them now. Obama was the worst president we ever had. He was only elected because he is black.

      • JayJonas says:

        But trump wasn’t elected only because he’s white? I supposed there are no double standards in your mind.

        One other thing, it may help if you were to look up a ‘super tanker’ analogy about how our economy works.

      • Jay Jonas says:

        Please say you’re joking?

    • Provologna says:

      From Jan 2008 to Jan 2010 Geezis Soetoro Obama had a larger Democratic Party majority in Congress than Trump has now. During that period the DNC “all stars” could have passed virtually any legislation they wanted.

      Obama played a lot of golf, passed Obamacare, and legislated homosexual nuptials.

  6. Mark says:

    Yup, one of Trumps campaign promises was to help “American” companies like Harley Davidson…I guess his plan worked because Harleys have never sold for so much money. Mmmmm..Cool Aid.

    • Anonymous says:

      yep, the idiot helped them out alright…helped them out of the country. Hope he isn’t planning on helping any more companies out.

      Funny how Harley Davidson warned Trumpette against using tarrifs… they didn’t want this, but did he listen???

      “CTV News…U.S. President Donald Trump has used Harley-Davidson as an example of a U.S. business that is being harmed by trade barriers. Yet Harley has warned consistently against tariffs, saying they would negatively impact sales.”

  7. Neil says:

    Nothing really changes if we tariff this and they tariff that. It just hurts the corporations in question. Who do we have good trade relationships with and why? Use those as the model.
    Countries need to work out equal playing fields which is not easy as some have more to offer than others.
    “Based on the Tariffs and Trade Barriers long placed on the U.S. and [its] great companies and workers by the European Union, if these Tariffs and Barriers are not soon broken down and removed, we will be placing a 20% Tariff on all of their cars coming into the U.S.,”
    “The U.S. goods trade deficit with the EU was $153.3 billion in 2015, a 7.9% increase ($11.3 billion) over 2014 The U.S. goods trade deficit with the EU accounted for 20.8% of the overall U.S. goods trade deficit in 2015.”

    • Mark says:

      This is a very poorly planned trade war. Many products US citizens buy and use on a daily basis are foreign made. And no American companies will move their operations back to American soil because Trump could change his mind at any minute. US companies will still enjoy low paid slave labor overseas while American citizens will just have to pay more for their goods. I REALLY DONT CARE, DO U?

      • Max says:

        Bingo. No I don’t really care as I tend to buy American made cars. If we start taxing foreign bikes though, I’ll blow a gasket!

        • foster says:

          Well, you should care Max because that American made car will likely have some Canadian made steel and aluminum that is now costing US companies more to buy from Canada because of Trump’s tariffs. Wake up and look at the bigger picture.

  8. Tank says:

    Last article about motorcycles got 17 comments. This article already has over 100. Next article should be “Are All Motorcyclists Atheists or Just Harley Riders?” or “Why Aren’t There Any Motorcycle Parking Spaces At Catholic Churches?”

    • todd says:

      I’m not Catholic but there’s a bunch of motorcycle parking spots at my church. They converted all the end triangle shaped spots and a couple normal spots to bike spaces since we were parking there anyway.

    • Mick says:

      Actually that article was about photos of motorcycles. The last article about motorcycles has 48 comments.

      I’m an atheist and I have zero interest in Harley Davidson motorcycles. I don’t have loyalty to any particular brand. I just avoid cruisers and any company that stopped making two stroke dirt bikes.

      Comparing Trump to Hitler is silly. Hitler wanted to rule the world. Trump is willing to destroy the world for a profit.

  9. VFR Marc says:

    Jeez, am I sorry I opened this blog today.

  10. Oilhead says:

    All right, then. I think I’ll go for a nice ride now…

  11. bmbktmracer says:

    Gee, this is sad. So much animosity with little regard for the truth. Trump being compared to Mussolini and Hitler? Seriously? Based on what? Trump’s an idiot? Based on the fact that he’s a billionaire and won his first and only political contest, it’s hard to make such a case based on facts. His personality might grate on people, but starting with Bill Clinton the American people decided to separate personal conduct from the job. Here’s a list of facts regarding Trump’s term thus far:

    1. US Manufacturing at a 33 year high
    2. Neil Gorsuch on the Supreme Court
    3. Signed 66 Exec Orders that reduced regulations and mandated that every new regulation be accompanied by the removal of 2 regulations.
    4. Stock market at record high
    5. Consumer confidence at historic high
    6. Defeated ISIS in less than a year
    7. Illegal immigration down 67%
    8. Defused the North Korean situation
    9. Turning the tables on unfair trade agreements with South Korea, China, and others.
    10. Unemployment levels at record lows.

    Please remember that kneeling football players, Black Lives Matter, and the violent Antifa groups all started during Obama’s reign.

    Now, can we get back to motorcycling, one of life’s greatest celebrations of liberty?

    • cinderbob says:

      I couldn’t agree more. Spot-on, except that it is each new regulation accompanied by the removal of ’22’ regulations. And let’s not forget the red-hot economy that resulted from the decrease in regulations, and from the tax cuts.

    • HalfBaked says:

      So how often are you drinking the kool-aide.

    • Mike says:

      Hahaha…One of the 30%ers. As far as the kneeling during the ‘National Anthem sales pitch for joining the military’ goes….The players are kneeling in protest of cops shooting unarmed black men in the backs and getting away with it. It has nothing to do with disrespecting the military. It has to do with people getting away with murder.

    • Max says:

      1. I like that Trump lowered corporate tax. I wish he could have eliminated it. People foolishly believe that that hurts someone at the top. It doesn’t. Everyday people pay the cost in the form of lower wages and higher costs.
      If you want to tax da rich, you should tax them directly. Taxing business is just dumb.
      The rest I have issues with.
      2. Pubs stole a Supreme Court pick from Obama
      3. No proof that eliminating gov’t regulations did anything except put less oversight on our safety. You’ll have to wait and see next time some company dumps their sludge in West Virginia’s drinking water just how well overlooking it works out for them.
      4. See #1
      5. See #1
      6. And helped Russia keep their dictator in Syria.
      7. Illegal immigration from Mexico has been stagnant or on negative for years.
      8. Trump created the tension. Nothing has changed beyond a photo-op with a rouge dictator.
      10. See #1
      11. Everyone around him has been sucking up to authoritarian dictators around the globe for graft and lessons in autocracy.
      You also don’t know his net wealth and overlook that his businesses have declared bankruptcy numerous times. And that he’s just a petty con man who’s main talent is bilking gullible people into confiding in him. Like his Trump U grads and all the other “poorly educated” that he so loves.

      • Dave says:

        Max, corporate tax and wages are completely unrelated. Employee pay will be whatever the labor market requires and never any more. Corporations always look to reduce payroll and benefits, no matter what other costs or profits exist. We already know that the tax cuts have only resulted in stock buybacks.

        A tax system must tax wealth, not just people. Our current climate has people shielding all of the wealth in corporate structures, and with the aforementioned squeeze on personnel, tax revenue continues to drop, while costs continue to rise. Our politicians continue the blame game whenever the cameras are running, while writing tax giveaways when they’re not. We have witnessed the greatest un-earned wealth distribution in modem history and nobody seems to care.

    • ApriliaRST says:

      > 4. Stock market at record high

      I’ll choose just one of your points to call b.s.

      The stock market rose as soon as Trump was elected because large investors new there’d soon be a scam to exploit, even though the scam hadn’t been announced publicly at that time. It turned out the scam was the tax plan. Massive cuts to corporations were claimed to be to invest in new facilities and stimulate employment. (Never mind we are out of workers and shut the door to immigrants that could perform jobs.) What the windfall tax cuts were used for is stock buy-back by the corporations themselves, thereby decreasing the number of stock shares and increasing the value of what was available to investors. The law of supply and demand resulting in higher stock prices. Not a single tangible asset was created, only an artificial push to prices. That’s great if you already own stock and you liquidate them at this time, but bad if you are young and want to invest part of your wages for the future, particularly so when BASIC economics ALWAYS predicts bubbles will eventually burst and leave you holding stocks worth less than you paid for them. Only the biggest investors will be positioned to benefit from the bust that will inevitably occur after the boom and most likely be brought about BY THEM during a Democratic administration.

      • Provologna says:

        If/when good things happen under the GOP, the cause is bad.

        If/when good things happen under the DNC, the cause is good.

        Wow, so very logical. Why didn’t we think of that?

        /sarc off

  12. JimB says:

    The story really began back when President Ronald Reagan opened up trade with China and sold the idea of cheap goods for consumers. He was right, but at the cost of U.S. jobs resulting from both lost sales at home and American companies sending production to China. Sending work offshore was not motivated by efficiency but by greed.

    Now Trump wants to fight back, or at least make it look that way. Problem is, he is an idiot who does not know what he is doing, the proverbial bull in a china shop. He should have focused on China but has instead gone broadsiding the globe and now has everyone pissed at him. The ripple effect on the U.S. economy is going to penetrate every nook and cranny down the line, this will hurt and could likely send the world economy into recession and possibly war. The world dislikes and even hates Trump (Mussolini) and respect for the U.S. as a nation has descended as well.

  13. Cowlitz Boy says:

    It is difficult to believe that a year and a half after the elections we still have folks so butt-hurt that they smear one of my favorite websites.

    This is one of the few sites I have gone, until now, that loser/hater types did not frequent.

    Get over it and let me enjoy reading about motorcycles and motorcyclist’s opinions.

    Thank you!

    • tuskerdu says:

      +1

    • johnny ro says:

      I agree with leaving US politics out of this nice motorcycle site.

      • Anonymous says:

        I think that was what the article above was actually about, politics affecting Harley Davidson. I think this country still entitles its citizens to free speech, or is Trumpette going to take that away from us as well?

        • Provologna says:

          Geezis Soetoro Obama imprisoned multiples more Americans for leaking and journalists than Trump has. Obama had a lot to hide as reports released this summer shall confirm.

          Also, Geezis incinerated an American citizen 16 year old named Anwar Al Awlaki with a drone strike, without judicial charges. Anwar was an unlucky soul who’s name Geezis added to his Secret Kill List.

          Did Trump incinerate any American citizens like Obama did?

  14. ABQ says:

    What exactly is the market like for HD in Europe? How many do they sell, and what demographic buys?

    • Dave says:

      There are very general figures below, but it’s about 20% of their global business.

    • paul246 says:

      I took this from the Wall Street Journal of 01 March 2017.

      “It is hardly impossible, though, as the company’s recent push into international markets reveals. Harley-Davidson this year announced the goal of expanding its foreign business to 50% of annual volume, up from 38% currently. A decade ago, overseas sales accounted for 22% of Harley’s business.”

      So, business outside the U.S. accounts for at least 38% of the total sales volume, not exactly chump change.

    • paquo says:

      in 2017 they sold 40,000 in europe and 150 in the us.

  15. Tom says:

    People are just gonna stuff a Harley in their underwear and smuggle them in to Europe.

  16. Bob says:

    A classic American icon will soon go the way of classic American values.

  17. Ward says:

    Harley’s only hope is the the new Terminator movie is a hit.

  18. Tank says:

    Trump is just doing things that most other presidents didn’t have the balls to do, just ask the North Koreans or anybody that lives along the Mexican border like I do. I’d rather have a president that tries and fails than a president that does nothing out of fear of being wrong.

    • Kjartan says:

      President that tries and fails? Hitler and Mussulini tried and thankfully they failed. But I think the world would rather they had not been given the opportunity to try. Hope USA will not repeat stupid mistakes of other nations by following leaders that are not meant for leading.

      • superlight says:

        I see, so it was Hillary who was meant to lead us, not Trump.

        • paquo says:

          americans are beyond stupid. At this point if you believe anything a politician of either stripe says you are just pathetic and feeble of mind

          • carl says:

            Agreed! Politicians run nothing! Presidents are choosen, not elected. Politicians are put there to give you the illusion you have a choice, you don’t!

      • TF says:

        Godwin’s law……that didn’t take long.

        • Anonymous says:

          In December 2015, Godwin commented on the Nazi and fascist comparisons being made by several articles on Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, saying: “If you’re thoughtful about it and show some real awareness of history, go ahead and refer to Hitler when you talk about Trump. Or any other politician.”[13]

          • TF says:

            The US, especially now, is heading towards the other end of the political spectrum from then Marxist/fascist Italy or even national socialist Germany. IMO, it demonstrates political bias or ignorance of history to suggest otherwise.

    • fast ship says:

      I wish we had Trump negotiating for us on Brexit instead if the spineless POS traitor we have as PM!

      • KenHoward says:

        Trump negotiates to benefit himself, before anyone else. If you’ve watched his actions, you’d know he’s a compulsively lying, thin-skinned bully who, if not previously self-employed, would never have lasted as any company’s CEO for long.

        • GeoffH says:

          The answer to this has already been proven. Just slip Ashton K. half a Billion for his failing property, 666 something, and Spanky McBonespur will forgive you.

        • bmidd says:

          and no other President was a compulsive liar right???

          • Dave says:

            Never like this one.

            And negotiator? The guy can’t get a loan in the country he’s the president of and had to pay $130k for a fling with a woman who did it 1,000’s of times over a career for a fraction of that. I cannot imagine a worse negotiator.

  19. Ron Vennell says:

    That’s a nice US market you’ve got there BMW, Triumph, MV Augusta, Ducati and KTM; I sure would hate to see something happen to it….

  20. CrazyJoe says:

    Back in that 70’s when they Japanese dumped cheap bikes here they left Harley at a disadvantage. The bikes were not only different but better. People thought they should be sold here but why didn’t the Japanese allow Harleys sold there with the ease their bikes were sold here. Im not an expert in trade but they Germans, English and Italians got the same deal.

    Why was they press more interest in supporting foreigners than Americans. I not saying it’s your patriotic duty to buy American but if they could be sold here they should be sold there.

    • Vrooom says:

      While Japan may not be a natural market for Harley (small footprint, crowded, aging population), Europe is certainly another story. This will hurt.

    • johnny ro says:

      In Japan, 1970s, they would not buy a low quality bike. Low quality meaning, not the overall design, but the low quality parts and assembly/workmanship. Desperately low in this case.

      HD fixed part of the quality issue after that. Was it Kawasaki they hired to review manufacturing processes? They hired one of the big Japanese companies to do so. Maybe Toyota.

  21. todd says:

    Can’t they just ship the bikes with tiny cylinders on them? 99 percent of Harley’s are opened up and kitted pretty much the second they are sold. This wouldn’t be any different.

    • TF says:

      I was thinking HD could open a facility in Brussels to do the final assembly and avoid the tariff that way…..just uncrate them and bolt on the handlebar assy and front wheel.

      • Larry Kahn says:

        If they still owned MV Agusta…and a long-time HD dealer told me a few years ago that HD most likely owned MV so to have a basis of operation in the EU for such issues as this and other tax-type things.

    • MrD says:

      Now your talkin’, 30 cubic inches of V-Twin mayhem!

  22. Tank says:

    No pain, no gain.

  23. EZ Mark says:

    I would challenge all the Harley haters to ride a Harley with the new engine. I was never a fan of Harley, but after riding the new 114 at Bike Week, I would recommend it if you want a cruiser and are willing to spend that kind of money. It was so strong I almost threw my wife off the back when I nailed it and she was holding on. It runs just a slight tick off from a Victory Octane.

    • Tom R says:

      And many other bikes will do the same with half the engine displacement.

    • VLJ says:

      “It runs just a slight tick off from a Victory Octane.”

      lol

    • Motowarrior says:

      Key phrase, “if you want a cruiser and are willing to spend that kind of money.” Double disqualifier for me.

    • Jon says:

      thing is not everyone wants a huge stretched out bike, that has never appealed to me. now the FTR 1200… i am gonna be all over that!!!!!!

    • Provologna says:

      The riding position is the polar opposite of that required to ride a motorcycle around a corner. The only method a HD rider can use to shift his/her weight is to pull on the handlebars (I presume even someone with the world’s strongest legs could not lift their weight by pushing on the floor boards only of the bike pictured).

      A few other items make up HD’s failed philosophy. I presume the following degrades ride quality: again, all the rider’s weight is on his/her spine, combined with the ultra short rear suspension travel (for style’s sake).

      The bike’s ancient engine architecture, combined with ultra high weight, degrade all aspects of performance.

      The red bike looks pretty nice in the image, likely better looking than any of the Indian models, but beyond that, especially price/performance, it’s all down hill.

      I would be attracted to an XR model with moderate riding position and even moderately good straight line performance, but HD have less than zero interest in such model. Sad.

  24. Mick says:

    I wonder how this will play out for Brough Superior. They should get ready to ramp up production and perhaps get a more affordable model in the lineup. Europeans wanting to get their retro on can simply buy a home grown rig. Something that doesn’t have so many John Deere genes.

    I think that this might be a golden opportunity for them.

    Oh! That’s right. Brough Superior doesn’t exist here yet. Maybe after they get a DieselGP team and some kid in brightly colored leathers that people can fawn over.

  25. KenLee says:

    Durring crise times luxury and expensive products sales always rise. Road Kings, Roadmasters, or Ultra Limiteds are addressed to reach customers and no matter how expensive they are, they will all be all sold. It’s just a matter of right marketing strategy and positionig as luxurious goods. For cheaper part of assortment situation could be much worse. Buyers of Streets, Sportsters, or Scouts usually count their money twice before spend on new toy and they can start to look around for alternatives.

  26. Fastship says:

    An Ultra Limited is now a $40k bike here! I did consider one before I bought my MultiStrada (great bike) but I go back two years when Barry Obama stood “shoulder to shoulder” with a smirking David Cameron and told us if we dared vote for BREXIT we could “go to the back of the queue” in a trade deal with the USA. I voted for BREXIT and until I hear differently, USA & Harley went to the back of my queue.

    On a related matter, this morning Airbus are saying if we do leave the EU then they will close their UK plants and move production to that other bastion of the European Union and free trade – China!

    What you yanks have to keep in mind is that the European Union is in reality, a protective customs union, the antithesis of free trade, a construct of the oligarchs, for the oligarchs and any country (i.e. the USA) that can hasten its destruction will go to the front of my queue next time. Go Trump.

    • JayJonas says:

      And Europeans are all destitute and living under bridges. Poor blokes.

      • Fastship says:

        Quite true; the country which made my Multistrada has 30%-40% secular unemployment, a bankrupt banking sector and is being kept afloat by backdoor deals from Germany. Greece is worse with university professors scavenging for food from bins. The EU’s solution? Pretend all is fine & dandy (which it is for them), allow unrestricted immigration from Africa and the Mid-East to increase their tax base and compliant voters and slander anyone who objects as a fascist.

        • TimC says:

          “allow unrestricted immigration…to increase their tax base and compliant voters and slander anyone who objects as a fascist”

          Never heard of that, not happening here, Obama is a shining golden god and Hillary a pillar of benevolent feminine perfection, yup yup yup

        • Dave says:

          Huh.. I’ve been to Italy a few times in recent years and just about everything about it is nicer and better than everywhere I go in the US. That must be some deal they have with Germany.

          • Fastship says:

            I love Italy too but if you are young, without the “connections” you will struggle to find work or start a business. The entire banking sector is bankrupt and kept alive by the ECB. Its currency is kept afloat by the tier 2 system (Germany) and when they get tired of this Italy will crash out of the Euro and that will be the end of the EU. Bring it on.

  27. Michael White says:

    This is tragic. I proudly ride a beautiful, stately Road King, and I love it. I assumed that such beasts will die a slow death. Now it seems it will probably come sooner than later.

  28. John says:

    Oh no! Harleys will suddenly be overpriced and underperforming!

  29. Well…..this could get ugly in a hurry,I hear their going after Jack Daniels (and, all American Whiskey) too.I get the impression this administration is composed of the worlds worst chess players.

    • foster says:

      Chess players? I don’t think they even have the level of intelligence needed to play chess!

  30. bmbktmracer says:

    Let’s put politics aside and deal with reality. The USA has the EPA, OSHA, additional state and local regulations, minimum wage, overtime rules, lawsuits, etc. All of these drive up the cost of manufacturing in the USA.

    So, the government imposes all sorts of rules on American manufacturers, but has no power over manufacturing in other parts of the world. In order to balance the equation, the only thing the government can do is impose tariffs on foreign products.

    The real solution is to reduce regulations that serve only bureaucracies and special interests. We need to reduce American manufacturing costs, and to encourage foreign countries to adopt similar environment and worker protections that the USA observes. It’s very complicated. Playing politics only serves the political masters, who’d rather see us fight amongst ourselves than fight against them.

    • Fred says:

      Actually, the way you suggest is a trip down to the bottom feeders.
      What is better is foreign aid to raise the the 4 and 5th World Countries up to the first World, so we are all in the same boat up on the top.
      There is not much worth in the USA becoming another poverty case Country like some we could name.
      Even China is losing manufacturing to Vietnam based on lower cost.
      North Korea could be the next inline to benefit once POTUS Trump is ready to Make NK Great Again producing ultra cheap goods for export to South Korea to fit into the export cars/product to the US Home Market.

      • bmbktmracer says:

        Please volunteer to pay extra taxes to lift dictatorial, human-rights abusing, third-world countries to first-world status. Or, better yet, hook up with Sean Penn, move to Venezuela, and give it your best shot.

        • JayJonas says:

          Why not just eliminate all regulation? I’m sure that’ll fix things.

        • ApriliaRST says:

          > Please volunteer to pay extra taxes to lift dictatorial, human-rights abusing, third-world countries to first-world status.

          Like Trump’s America? Because that’s a perfect description of it. Trump’s bozos have asked for this and now it’s here. Congratulations. Will the last person out of America please turn off the lights?

          • John says:

            As bad as Trump is in many ways, he is still dramatically better than Obama and you are just bitter. My guy didn’t win either, but Jesus, at least things are happening, after 8 years of unbelievable ineptitude and patronizing smug.

          • Dave says:

            “We need to reduce American manufacturing costs”

            Why? We’ve only lost 13% of our manufacturing to overseas labor and in reality, we don’t want those jobs back.

            The other 87% has been lost to improvements in efficiency. Robots are faster, cheaper, and more effective then people, and don’t require crushingly expensive health care plans (why isn’t corporate America demanding Universal healthcare?).

            All of the stuff that bmbktmracer cites protect people, not bureaucracies. Things that are worth having come at a cost. China is dominating global manufacturing. Does anybody here want to live there?

      • John says:

        Yeah…….how has THAT gone so far?

    • John says:

      Stop with your sanity nonsense.

  31. Rush says:

    Soon there will be only bones.

  32. JimS says:

    Man, I thought I had a loose grip on world events and economics. After reading the comments and how they degenerated to finger pointing based on party affiliation. It shows me I’m in the overwhelming majority. That being said, here’s my proposal; Let’s have the US and the rest of the world play by the exact same rules. NO tariffs on anything.

    • Big Dave says:

      Well there is two here who get it.

    • Chris says:

      Trump offered this, and the ‘trading partners’ who benefit from the current ‘arrangement’ wisely (for themselves) said uh-uh.

    • TimC says:

      Well, the problem is that’s not the current reality. It’s just like open borders – great in theory, equal rights for all – in both directions. But that drops the context of who wants in and why. Everyone is throwing a fit over new tariffs from the US when the US is finally saying “this is so colossally unfair it’s total BS.” And of course the Rest of the World (which everyone knows is of course superior, especially with Obama’s repeating of this “fact” at every possible opportunity for 8 long terrible years) then says “oh YEAH well watch THIS.”

      Trump may not be right in every decision but he’s a lot smarter than he’s generally given credit for, and at least he’s on our country’s side for a change – a LONG overdue one.

  33. Fred M. says:

    It’s as if running around like a bull in a china shop is counter-productive when setting U.S. trade policy.

    • Dino says:

      Running the country is not quite the same as running a business… tariffs to help the American Steel and Aluminum sector, but will hurt many other sectors… how do you balance?

      Can’t just declare Bankruptcy when it comes to the Unites States of America. I still can’t tell if his “loose cannon” style is done strategically, or if he really is just winging it. nervous times.

  34. johnny ro says:

    I reject that free trade ever existed. US industry was based on stealing English mill designs under pain of death in England. Count forward to now, through the American revolution which wanted to remove English trade restrictions and replace with others.

    I like Harley the company and don’t want them hurt as a byproduct.

    I have no recommendation except change in regime, stateside.

  35. Ed says:

    What hasn’t been discussed is that the Europeans that have invested in Harley Franchises, who employee alot of people, who generate alot of tax revenue for their local European communities will suffer the most when their sales dry up. This won’t last long, a trade war will hurt the Europeans and Asians far more than the US market given the insane imports and trade deficits of the US. When the US under Regan bailed Harley out in the 80’s it wasn’t the Asian makers that suffered, it was the Americans who owned Asian franchises who employed Americans. If you research you’ll find that Trump doesn’t like tariffs at all and this is all part of a broader negotiating strategy.

    • KenLee says:

      Franchise agreements aren’t lifetime deals. If Harley’s sale will drop, most of the dealers simply re-brand their shops and start to sell other bikes. It might be even Guzzis, or Triumphs with no custom tax and 0% VAT tax invoiced by selling inside EU before it’s sold to final customer…

  36. joe b says:

    Pretty easy to see this becoming a political argument, since the article itself proclaims “In the political tug-of-war that is currently taking place”. What do you expect? Its a trade war, that no one can win. God help the USA.

  37. Fred says:

    Hardy Doggyson will need to remove the ‘Made in USA’ tag from it’s big bikes,box them in a plain cardboard box and ship to their SE Asia plant that makes the 500/750cc bikes.
    There they can put another box saying ‘Proudly Assembled in Thailand’ Problem fixed.
    HD’s are USA on 2 wheels in the global eye 100% down to their own Ad machine.
    No country is thinking of new tariffs on Coca Cola or Pepsi I’ll bet.

    • Pacer says:

      Soft drinks are produced locally, not imported/exported.

      • HalfBaked says:

        Actually Coke, Pepsi and other American soda companies produce concentrate which is made exclusively here in the US and sell it to licensed bottlers around the world. The bottlers add water and sweeteners.

  38. Anonymous says:

    Let’s not forget the billions of dollars already lost in the tourist industry since Trump took office. Lots of jobs have evaporated in that sector already. I feel bad for the hardworking people that rely on that industry.

    • JimS says:

      Let’s see some hard numbers on lost jobs in tourism. This is very vague.

      • Fred M. says:

        During Trump’s first year in office, tourism revenue was down by $4.6B, costing 40,000 U.S. jobs. That was reported by NBC News, citing data from the Commerce Department.

      • Paul says:

        Here is a real number, albeit not a big one. We are going on a trip outside our country (Canada) in August. For the first time ever it was unanimous amongst our family members that we would stay home rather than go into the U.S., the main reason being the bully treatment we received last year from U.S. border guards. We won’t even book a flight that has to stop-over in a U.S. airport.

        So, we a spending our $20,000.00 annual vacation budget once again in Britain and continental Europe. I also know of many other people who are doing similar. European tourists are now avoiding the U.S. in droves, that is big money gone elsewhere.

        • kent harle says:

          I am sure you will come if you or your family ever has a serious medical issue

          • Paul says:

            Actually, not likely. If it were required there are many other countries to chose from, especially within the commonwealth.

          • jon says:

            I’m just intrigued as to what you mean by that? Are you under the impression that US healthcare is better than Canada’s? Or indeed envied by any other first world nation?

            I’m a Brit living in Canada and although my vacation budget is a lot smaller than Paul’s, there’s no way I’m putting up with the attitude from US border guards unless I’m forced to travel there. Or the chance of having my devices searched and copied for no good reason at the whim of a border guard either.

            A great shame because all the Americans I’ve met have been great people.

  39. Sam says:

    Bring it on EU (:

    Other countries have always had extremely high import taxes designed to protect their domestic markets and a 25% tax on American Cars, trucks and motorcycles isn’t uncommon at all.

    If a $20,000 HD cost another $5,000 in Canada, England, Australia or Germany then I believe the United States should levy the same tax rate against the aforementioned.

    Their over taxing us is nothing new but our doing the same is new and I applaud the Trump administrations efforts to set things right.

    I’m not into globalization at the expense of American jobs and products.

    • Dave says:

      WE already do, this is why most of the Japanese makes each have multiple factories here in the us (did you know that the most “American” car in the US is the Toyota Camry?).

      That aside, by now the German auto industry is a huge job market in the US, not to mention, BMW (for instance) manufactures many of their vehicles here for the US market. Hurting them will hurt us more directly than a 25% tariff on a niche luxury product like HD in Europe.

      • guu says:

        Yeah, buy an BMW or Mercedes SUV in Europe or in China, and you are buying Made in the USA (for now). Huge investment by the Germans in US industry and US industrial exports. Those two companies are now targeted for punishment by the US administration.

    • foster says:

      Hey Sam, if you aren’t into globalization at the expense of American jobs AND products, I guess you NEVER shop at Walmart then, the single biggest destroyer of American products and the jobs that made them, sent off to China. Americans are either blind to their ways, or just hypocrites.

  40. gt08 says:

    No more Harley = good sleep night !!!
    No more 2 am woke up with straight pipe
    Hope that Polaris guys are more mature.

    Message for Harley CEO, time to build the LiveWire if you want to survive.

  41. wjf says:

    Hmmmm, this may mean we only will be able to buy Harleys here in the US soon….good heavens…..

  42. Jim says:

    I wonder if Europe is prepared for the same on Triumph, KTM, Ducati, BMW, Aprilia?

  43. Gary says:

    Making America great again. Yapshore.

  44. Anonymous says:

    For 2017, total sales for HD (round-a-bout)

    150,000 units America

    47,000 units EU

    30,000 units ASIA market

  45. dan says:

    How much of H-D’s total sales is overseas ? & how much to Europe ? You don’t see many of them there, that’s for sure.

    • Denny says:

      During my last visit there I have seen quite a few. True, many of them were local builds.

    • Ken says:

      Harley is #1 in road bike sales in Australia. They are everywhere. My subjective assessment would suggest that 30%+ of bikes I see on the road would be HD.

  46. Tom R says:

    Live by the tariff, die by the tariff.

    I fear that the closing of the Kansas City plant is only the beginning.

  47. Anonymous says:

    This doesn’t seem fair at all. A 25% tariff on steel might mean the the price of building a HD motorcycle goes up $100 – $200? But a tariff of 25% on the price of a finished product like a $20,000 HD motorcyle is $5,000 – not exactly tit-for-tat. It seems like the EU is escalating things quite a bit.

    • ApriliaRST says:

      > This doesn’t seem fair at all.

      Tell Trump. Making America Grate Again

    • RyYYZ says:

      It’s exactly the same from the point of view of the customers for these products in their respective countries. German or Canadian steel now costs 25% more for a US customer, thus cutting into US demand for steel from those countries. The EU (Canada, too) has simply decided to target their tariffs to hit specific products to maximize the political pain felt by Trump’s supporters.

      Speaking of unfair, despite Trump’s bogus “national security” argument (There is no risk of the US being able to access Canadian resources, and in fact NAFTA actually guarantees US access to some Canadian resources), the US actually has a trade SURPLUS in steel with Canada, and only a small deficit in aluminum. Also, threatening to “punish” all Canadians because in his thin-skinned mind he was “dissed” by our Prime Minister, is also a little unfair and offensive.

  48. Dave says:

    I feel like I see HD’s in Europe when I go there, but how many bikes do they really sell a year in the EU?

    I also wonder what this will do to the “beef tariff” (they won’t take our beef, so we’ve threatened to tariff small displacement motos from the EU- primarily hurts Piaggio group).

    • Gary says:

      The EU is responding to our lead. What did you expect them to do? What do you think China and Canada will do?

      • Denny says:

        HD and other cruisers are quite popular in Canada. They form majority of two-wheelers on road here.

  49. PD says:

    And no one is going to let this president win a thing.

    • Reginald Van Blunt says:

      Any thing of value must be earned, never won. Sorta like honor, integrity, courage, and vision, from experience.

    • bartman50 says:

      This is not a place to get political, especially with such an idiot as president.

    • MikeG says:

      Is that why he’s not “winning?” It’s the other mean kids not letting him “win?”
      Sounds like someone needs a 14th Place trophy in the Novice class.

      I agree with whoever pointed out the irony of Harley being saved by tariffs in the 1980s, and possibly being mortally harmed by them now. It’s funny how so many Harley riders (and I own one but don’t necessarily fit the normal demographic) have supported a political party that demanded unregulated free-market capitalism for decades, yelled that that was “Murican,” and now that party controls everything and is allowing protectionism potentially destroy the brand.

  50. DRB says:

    This could be very ironic. Tariffs saved H-D in the 1980’s only to be killed by them in 2018.

    • Rhinestone Kawboy says:

      Tariffs so far is not killing HD, their mostly refusal to go anywhere other than the same old V-Twin, underperforming, mostly air-cooled, retro bikes is what’s killing them. Their core demographic is just plain getting too old to ride and buy their bikes much more. Yes, they think the Live Wire might save them, sorry, not yet, and while they are getting a little better at more modern water-cooled engines, it’s just taking them to darn long to get them out.

      • Adb says:

        Well said.

      • Denny says:

        True. On the other hand you take out the air cooled long stroke V-twin and that monster primary drive and replace it with short parallel twin and cut the wheel base and charm of HD is gone. No way around it – the end is coming one way or the other.