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Discussion Starter #1
I buy a brand new Vrod, after test rides and multiple visits to my local dealer. The dealer-man gives me all sorts of stuff – loyalty cards, parts CD, key rings, etc, but no spare key. And there was I thinking maybe he’ll invite me for the next ride-out to meet the guys and gals, you know, so I can compare this and that and generally chew the fat. Er, no (I think you have to have a ‘proper’ Harley).
Today I go down to my local Ducati dealer (for the 2nd time), buy some bits for an oil change and general maintenance for my 748 (bought in England), discuss the differences between legal and illegal number plates and how great the Vrod is (yup, and they agree). Then it’s ‘we’re up the Pyrenees 6th June for a mountain ride-out. 300 km and agreeable lunch. Great to have some English with us, etc, etc.’
So where is the legendary HD hospitality?
 

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Interesting to see that the same kind of treatment of V-Rod buyers is pepetuated on your side of the pond. I guess since our bikes are water cooled and metric we are automatically grouped with the reliable and stylish Japanese and European bikes that traditional HD riders have had to defend their rides against for so many years as technology passed them by. Note the thread/pole on how many of us V-Rod owners are first time Harley Buyers.

Fred
 

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cubota,
I just got rid of my 748R's"one street legal/Full Race" :sad: .I got along much better with my Ducati and Sport Bike Guys then the Traditional Harley Guys!Not sure why that is but I'm open for sugestions! ;) :kaz:
 

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Cubota, I've had similar experiences. Let me first say that as a relative newbie to the tribe of Harley and the motorcycle club at large (I've only owned a bike for 3 years now), I find that in most cases I connect instantly with other riders, inside and outside the dealership. But there are always contrary trends and I have some takes on this.

Right now dealers are watching a huge expansion of the HD target market. Outside of increased sales, the boom might not be embraced by those US dealers who are less business-savvy, and see it more as an invasion. In their stores, new customers will of course be treated well throughout the sale, because everyone wants your money and favorable customer survey, but you may have little credibility, or get scarce hospitality, after the sale. The mentality seems to be: you are invading pre-existing territory, we'll smile while you're spending money on the bike or at the service desk, but you're really more of an obligation than an opportunity.

That being said, there are many dealers out there who really do get the big picture, and make an effort to hire employees who also get it. These are the guys who understand business performance is about increasing the market, and will embrace the software developer who wants a new V-Rod, for example. I believe they will also outperform the other dealers on paper. But outperforming is relative in the HD marketplace because every dealer is doing well right now.

Another variable is, like you pointed out, V-Rodders are in a class of their own. The bike truly is a departure. That's a well known fact, and you don't have to analyze any further to be able to guess at many of the human effects of this, esp. within the dealership. I meet lots of people, and once again, some really get it, others don't. But as in the case of the forum here envisioned by Max and supported by many, we just end up forming our own HOG. :cool:

Anyway, once out in the ridership, away from the invasion mentality, you won't really observe any of this so much.

Congrats on your new bike, you clearly picked the best one.
 

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Tired of the crap
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There are HOG chapters at the dealerships in Toulouse, Biarritz, and Bordeaux. Usually when you buy a bike you automatically get a one-year membership in the worldwide Harley Owners Group, but you need to join the local Chapter, usually sponsored by the dealer. Next time you are at your dealer, you should ask him about how active the local HOG chapter is, and when their next meeting takes place.

By the way, below is an announcement for a group ride the Toulouse Chapter is planning for early May. Take a look at tha menu - it sure makes the hotdogs and cheeseburgers we get on the Poker Runs we have here look pretty shabby.



Just to satisfy my curiosity, what IS an illegal number plate?
 

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The HD experience is a big scam. It's for the unfortunate friendless souls to feel better about themselves by perpetuating the "US is better then you..." for no other reason then "we are many... you are few." Not because we have a technologically better product.

I love my Vrod, but all that HD Bullshit, is there to diffuse the issues that plague this company. Things like bad service, and questionable business practices.
 

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VROOOOOMMM!!!
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I guess I'm lucky. my dealer didn't even sell me my bike, but they all have big hearts and welcomed my wife and I with open arms. I have made friends with 3 of the techs, and one of the parts guys, and they all say "come ride with us!" ---- seems like a big family. :plause:

www.centralharleydavidson.com
 

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Discussion Starter #8
vroddrew said:
By the way, below is an announcement for a group ride the Toulouse Chapter is planning for early May. Take a look at tha menu - it sure makes the hotdogs and cheeseburgers we get on the Poker Runs we have here look pretty shabby.
Just to satisfy my curiosity, what IS an illegal number plate?
Gizzards (chitterlings, perhaps, for you Southern folk?) onion jam, and stuffed guinea fowl. Sounds goodish, but sometimes the words are tastier than the food.
An illegal number plate is one which is 20 cm wide and 5 cm high. It's extraordinary, here in sunny France, where you can find some bikes with plates that you can't actually read with a magnifying glass. These are, not surprisingly, illegal.
 

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c'mon Greenham, the 'HD experience' is just marketing, something every company does to increase profits, not to diffuse issues or scam "unfortunate friendless souls." Money is the name of the game and the MoCo is only capitalizing on the camaraderie of motorcycling. You may hold that against them, but I smell no conspiracies.
 

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Chad 02 V-ROD
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greenham said:
The HD experience is a big scam. It's for the unfortunate friendless souls to feel better about themselves by perpetuating the "US is better then you..." for no other reason then "we are many... you are few." Not because we have a technologically better product.

I love my Vrod, but all that HD Bullshit, is there to diffuse the issues that plague this company. Things like bad service, and questionable business practices.
Angry man :spank: :spank: :angeldev:
 

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Making the UK Fatter
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Not quite sure what it all the HOG stuff means in the UK yet. Got a years membership with the bike, that gets you a 10% discount etc on HD stuff. I like riding at my own pace so the group riding thing does not have an appeal.
I will make the effort when / If summer arrives, I might like it, you never know till you try.
 

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diomedes said:
c'mon Greenham, the 'HD experience' is just marketing, something every company does to increase profits, not to diffuse issues or scam "unfortunate friendless souls." Money is the name of the game and the MoCo is only capitalizing on the camaraderie of motorcycling. You may hold that against them, but I smell no conspiracies.
good point diomedes. "Like a Rock" (chevy) "built Ford Tough" (duh)

etc etc... if we had bought Harleys just because of some ad-mans hype, we would all be on fatboys. Nice thing about the motorcycle world, there is room for all types. Anyone remember this "Constant non-conformity is cofformity to non-conformity." All the Goth kids trying to be different by being like their friends. Whatever. Be yourself, ride what you want. :soapbox: I'd better stop, because this thread will never die like this ;)
 

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Hooligan
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HOG? Arg, no comment.
Anyways, we are definitely a class of our own. A few times I have seen a V-Rod riding with sportbikes (myself included). And to get a bit off topic ( :alien: ), I get more non-Harley waves. And why do people think motorcycles aren't allowed in the car pool lane! :banghead: Ok, I feel better. :cheers:
:vrod:
 

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Live Free or Die
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People are political animals!

HOG chapters are only as good as the people involved. We have a very cliquish chapter, but people come none-the-less. All this, even though those in control are skilled at putting people off. I suppose that we have enough of us outsiders hanging around to counter the elitist vibe that emanates from the top.

The dealership tries to steer the chapter in the right direction, but politics is politics. As long as the chapter isn't causing them hardship, they'll let it do what it does.

One good thing -- the anti V-rod vibe has definitely dissipated in New England. When we do things with neighboring chapters, I often ask about how many V-Rodders are active. All the chapters seem to have 2 or three.

It seems that around here, too many HD and Jap bike riders seem to know somebody in their circle of influence who has a V-Rod, AND the reputation of our bike is nothing but stellar. I ran into a guy in the city last night who pushed his Dyna back at a red light to say nice things about my V-Rod. Said that one of his friends just got one... At the next red light he commented about 115 HP...

Now if I could only figure out how to reach out to all those V-Rod riders that I hear about, we might have a formidable V-Rod Forums region here in NE (yes, still only 7 of us in the New England Registry, with a handful more lurking)...
 

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My dealer is very active, having all kinds of events at thier place year around, They have bent over backwards inviting me to thier events, Went out of thier way on some Motorclothes problems I have had, calls me up when an big event is nearing. I feel very Welcome in the Harley Clan, and the Local H.O.G. Chapter, Not had one Harley owner say anthing but "Awsome Bike"

Allot of the Harley Guys are My Close Friends and I did own a 1200 Custom
before this Harley, and Maybe that has something to do with it :hmm:

Now for the Service Department I have Something for you :alien:
 
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