On the heels of recent articles we posted which related the struggling sales Harley Davidson is experiencing in its home market, the winding up of the latest Buell venture, and Victory ceasing manufacture, comes news that the USA is planning to levy a 100% tariff on motorcycles from 51cc to 500cc imported from Europe.

The tariff is a tit for tat move. The EU has, for some time now, banned the importation of beef from the US because it objects to the growth hormones found in its cattle.  I know it sounds strange. Is there an intrinsic connection between motorcycles and agricultural products?

The American Motorcycle Association (AMA) doesn't think so. Along with thousands of other people, who we assume will be riders or those connected with the motorcycle trade. All of whom have bombarded Congress with emails and objections. Five thousand people have contacted Trump directly.

Among the makes and manufacturers affected will be, Aprilia, BMW, Ducati, Husqvarna, KTM, Gas Gas, Montesa, and Piaggio. A lot of the imported bikes are used for racing, and there are no US alternatives in the land of the Harley.

The President and CEO of the AMA, Rob Dingman will be testifying against the tariff at a hearing this week - February 15th - in Washington DC. One of his arguments will be the curious, and perhaps stupid, linking of agricultural products with motorcycles.

“We don't believe non-agricultural products should be included in products linked to agricultural trade disputes", he says. "In addition to substantially raising prices for American riders, this tariff would jeopardise the many small and medium-sized businesses that rely on the sale of European motorcycles, parts and accessories”.

European bikes comprise around half the units available to motocross, trials and other off-road riders and competition in the US. Smaller capacity on-road bikes are all imported, and certainly, not everyone wants to or can ride a Harley.

This could have the Japanese manufacturers seeing an opportunity to increase their share of the market. But the situation generally in the US in terms of policy on trade and tariffs is precarious as far as any rules the new administration might be thinking about. They're likely to keep everyone guessing.    


15/02/17 - Stupidness

15/02/17 - That's stupid. They don't make small bikes and it won't do anything to boost Harley or Indian

          15/02/17 - Absof*ckinglutely correct , their sales are down because the bikes are cr*p and missing the real market

15/02/17 - Typical yanks, cut their noses off to spite their faces

15/02/17 - Good old fashioned trade wars eh? Coming soon to an economy near you...

15/02/17 - The Yanks have always been isolationist and protectionist. Some administrations are better than others at hiding it, that's all. Google "chicken tax" if you think this is a new issue.

15/02/17 - Finally motorcyclists are showing their disdain for Hardly Davidsons in preference to Triumphs, Aprilias, Ducatis, etc.

15/02/17 - Apart from a few scooters the companies listed don't make many small capacity bikes will effect or stop the purchase of a very few models like the 400ktm in the pic and the guys that ride low capacity European off readers will switch back to the big jap 4 or go open class

15/02/17 - Is this because nobody is buying Massey-Fergusons?

15/02/17 - H-D got saved in the 80's by an import tariff from that well known free marketeer Ronnie Reagan. That's why there are lots of US market 700cc Jap bikes. Oh and for younger viewers, we all all thought Raygun was a right wing idiot who would start a nuclear war.Good job those days are gone then.

15/02/17 - Meat? You can't ride a leg of lamb?

16/02/17 - Because of course all these smaller capacity bikes are ruining the sales figures of American made smaller capacity bikes.....oh hang on, you can't buy a sub 880cc American bike. So in response to Europe not wanting to poison themselves with growth hormone filled meat, the good ol us of a goes and pulls the shotgun out the rack and aims it squarely at their still bleeding and heavily bandaged foot again.

17/02/17 - Pesky EU just because they think we don't want to eat beef that's been pumped full of growth hormones and fed on a diet of antibiotics.

17/02/17 - HD wanted British bikes banning in the late 60s just as the Japs were getting into gear

17/02/17 - After the War the US made Japan and Germany rich but Britain its ally poor

          17/02/17 - Do you think we got the best deal here as a victor? We got a Sachs motor bike (became the BSA Bantam) while the Royal Engineers built the Volkswagen factory?

Posted by John Newman
for Wemoto News on 14 February 2017 in General News

Edited By: Daisy Cordell



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