Why does the US get certain bikes last or not at all? - Kawasaki Versys Forum
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 51 (permalink) Old 12-15-2011, 11:30 AM Thread Starter
Member
 
smoore's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Socorro, New Mexico, USA
Posts: 24
Why does the US get certain bikes last or not at all?

Reading the threads regarding the Versys 1000, and threads on other fora about the 2012 Ninja 650s, I'm coming across a common complaint: Why does the US get certain models of bikes well after they've been released in the rest of the world?

The new Versys 1000 is apparently not hitting the US until 2013, but it will be available in Canada early in 2012 if not already?

I know Kawasaki built a special website to hype the newly-redesigned Ninja 650 for 2012, and it's certainly worked well on me because I'm really wanting a 2012 Ninja 650, but apparently they are damned hard to find in the US. Most dealerships tell me they won't get the new Ninjas until March at the earliest. Is this related to the tsunami and the damage it caused?

Another thing that sort of annoys me is that the rest of the world gets all these cool bikes, but they never make it to the US. I'd love a Ninja 400, but no, we aren't getting them in the US.

Checking the UK websites, here are some bikes that aren't going to be sent to the US:

-- Honda's Crossrunner -- which would be a direct competitor to the Versys, IMHO.
-- Honda's Varadero and Transalp
-- Kawasaki's W800 - sort of reminiscent of the cafe racers
-- Yamaha's YZF-R125 - would be an awesome track bike for a short adult like me!
-- Yamaha's MT-03 - another competitor for the Versys?
-- Suzuki's GSR 750 and Bandit 650

I know: First World problem. But still, it sucks that there are all these cool bikes being made, and I'll never get the chance to have one.

========
steph moore
New Mexico, USA
2008 Versys (a/k/a Hellboy)
smoore is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 51 (permalink) Old 12-15-2011, 11:56 AM
MTS
Member
 
MTS's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: NW USA
Posts: 3,518
They are trying to put the hurt on us! What did I ever do to them?
Or we are a small market to them very small!
Great question I have no idea??





To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
( RIDE FREE BE SAFE )
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

Last edited by MTS; 12-15-2011 at 02:53 PM.
MTS is offline  
post #3 of 51 (permalink) Old 12-15-2011, 12:04 PM
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 28
Crossrunner: I haven't tried one yet. Will probably do next spring. But it's a pretty heavy bike for its class. Not sure you're missing anything there

Varadero: a thirsty, lardy, heavy pig. You wouldn't want it

Transalp: great little bike. And probably one of the best competitors for the V.

Kawa W800: haven't even seen one yet in real life so can't really comment

Yamaha YZF-R125: the sportiest 4-stroke 125 you can buy. But not really much better than the Honda CBR125R. Definitely not powerful enough for a track day. You'd be better of with a CB500 with upgraded brakes and springs.

Yamaha MT-03: absolutely great fun! Not really a competitor to the V though. It feels a lot less powerful. But it is so much fun to ride on tight twisty roads. You are sitting very close to the handle bars, feels almost like you're directly above the front wheel. So it steers soooo light and razor sharp. But not enough power for 2-up, not as comfy as the V on longer trips either and small fuel tank.

Suzuki GSR 750: a decent bike, and cheap. But it shows in the finishing. a lot of the wiring in the front is really exposed and the paint quality is not exactly top notch.

Bandit 650: very decent and capable bike. For smaller people probably a good alternative to the V.

But I think the coolest bike you guys aren't getting is the XT660Z Tenere. I did 30000km on mine before it got stolen and it is just an awesome bike. Eats miles and miles of twisty tarmac roads, hardly consumes any fuel of the 23l tank. You can go 450-500km before you'll run out. Put some knobbys on and it is perfectly capable of handling single track muddy lanes or desert trails. The plastic drop protection works perfectly and is very cheap to replace. That bike would imho be an instant hit among the ADV crowd in the states.
But Yamaha apparently doesn't believe in it.
Same for the TDM900 actually, which they have been ignoring for years now. Hasn't had a real upgrade since it was introduced back in 2001. Has even never been sold in the US. Nevertheless it was a top seller in some European countries. And after 75000km on one I can honestly say it is an awesome bike and a direct competitor to the V. Can't even remember how many times I embarrassed the one-piece-leather CBR20000RRRRRRR-Ultrapower-Iridium-visor crowd on twisty mountain roads with it.

I think it is because the US market is still just too preoccupied with Harleys and super sports bikes.
duibhcek is offline  
 
post #4 of 51 (permalink) Old 12-15-2011, 12:21 PM
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Frederick, MD
Posts: 448
Quote:
Originally Posted by duibhcek View Post

I think it is because the US market is still just too preoccupied with Harleys and super sports bikes.
I've heard this same sentiment from numerous riders/magazines and dealers.

It's a bit sad.
MikeV is offline  
post #5 of 51 (permalink) Old 12-15-2011, 12:29 PM
Member
 
Bones's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: western Massachusetts
Posts: 1,788
Manufacturers offer what they believe will sell in sufficient numbers to justify their investment.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


[SIZE="1"]Ride. Good.


2003 ST1300ABS
2008 Versys
IBA 59868
Bones is offline  
post #6 of 51 (permalink) Old 12-15-2011, 01:12 PM
Member
 
Ivan V's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Balkan
Posts: 859
Santa keeps a list, you know.
You must've been, collectively, naughty.
Ivan V is offline  
post #7 of 51 (permalink) Old 12-15-2011, 01:32 PM
Member
 
KnoxvegasMike's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Knoxville, TN
Posts: 228
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ivan V View Post
Santa keeps a list, you know.
You must've been, collectively, naughty.
any chance we get...

2003 BMW R1100S Boxer Cup Prep (sold)
2004 Suzuki SV650 (sold, wish I hadn't)
2009 Kawasaki Versys (commuter/dragon slayer)
Future bike: Ducati Sport 1000S (just because
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
)
KnoxvegasMike is offline  
post #8 of 51 (permalink) Old 12-15-2011, 01:36 PM
Member
 
Mursili's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Los Alamos, NM
Posts: 641
Garage
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ivan V View Post
Santa keeps a list, you know.
You must've been, collectively, naughty.
Are you likening Harleys to lumps of coal?
Mursili is offline  
post #9 of 51 (permalink) Old 12-15-2011, 02:13 PM
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mursili View Post
Are you likening Harleys to lumps of coal?
are you dissing coal?
duibhcek is offline  
post #10 of 51 (permalink) Old 12-15-2011, 02:40 PM
Member
 
twowheels's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Ottawa, ON
Posts: 3,330
Garage
Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki and Kawasaki have a lot of cruiser models for sale in North America that are not available elsewhere. The cruiser market is unique to the US and almost as big in Canada. In Europe they are a small niche market and are not even available elsewhere in the world. Outside North America HD is a niche brand like Moto Guzzi is here. We get cruiser models, they get more models of other styles of bikes.

Ultimately Kawasaki Canada, Kawasaki US, Kawasaki UK, etc. are the ones who decide what bikes to import into their home countries based on what they think the market wants. I suspect Kawasaki US wants to see how well the Versys 1000 sells elsewhere before they invest.

Before anyone bitches too much , I live in Canada and bought my 08 Versys slightly used from Maryland and then paid $800 extra to import it. Why? Because you guys in the US have way better (33% less) used bike prices and new US prices are much less too. Even though the CAN and US dollars are valued almost the same, the MSRPs are slightly lower in the US. Dealers here sell at MSRP unless there is a manufacturer discount for a previous years model. In the US dealers will sell for sometimes thousands off the MSRP.

Last edited by twowheels; 12-15-2011 at 03:03 PM.
twowheels is offline  
post #11 of 51 (permalink) Old 12-15-2011, 02:47 PM
Member
 
Ivan V's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Balkan
Posts: 859
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mursili View Post
Are you likening Harleys to lumps of coal?

Quote:
Originally Posted by duibhcek View Post
are you dissing coal?

Everybody's a comedian.




To stay on topic:
While I can understand why some models aren't brought to certain markets, I don't have a clue why they do the same with certain colors.

The other day I first learned about this.
Screw you Subaru for not importing it to Europe.

Last edited by Ivan V; 12-15-2011 at 02:51 PM.
Ivan V is offline  
post #12 of 51 (permalink) Old 12-15-2011, 03:30 PM
Member
 
Bones's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: western Massachusetts
Posts: 1,788
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ivan V View Post
The other day I first learned about this.
Screw you Subaru for not importing it to Europe.
Ivan, a family member had one of those, a Subaru Baja. You aren't missing much...it's not as good a car as the Outback it's based on and it's not much of a pickup. (This from someone whose family members have owned probably a dozen Subies over the years.)


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


[SIZE="1"]Ride. Good.


2003 ST1300ABS
2008 Versys
IBA 59868
Bones is offline  
post #13 of 51 (permalink) Old 12-15-2011, 03:42 PM
Member
 
80-watt Hamster's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Fargo, ND
Posts: 419
Quote:
Originally Posted by smoore View Post
Reading the threads regarding the Versys 1000, and threads on other fora about the 2012 Ninja 650s, I'm coming across a common complaint: Why does the US get certain models of bikes well after they've been released in the rest of the world?

The new Versys 1000 is apparently not hitting the US until 2013, but it will be available in Canada early in 2012 if not already?

I know Kawasaki built a special website to hype the newly-redesigned Ninja 650 for 2012, and it's certainly worked well on me because I'm really wanting a 2012 Ninja 650, but apparently they are damned hard to find in the US. Most dealerships tell me they won't get the new Ninjas until March at the earliest. Is this related to the tsunami and the damage it caused?

Another thing that sort of annoys me is that the rest of the world gets all these cool bikes, but they never make it to the US. I'd love a Ninja 400, but no, we aren't getting them in the US.

Checking the UK websites, here are some bikes that aren't going to be sent to the US:

-- Honda's Crossrunner -- which would be a direct competitor to the Versys, IMHO.
-- Honda's Varadero and Transalp
-- Kawasaki's W800 - sort of reminiscent of the cafe racers
-- Yamaha's YZF-R125 - would be an awesome track bike for a short adult like me!
-- Yamaha's MT-03 - another competitor for the Versys?
-- Suzuki's GSR 750 and Bandit 650

I know: First World problem. But still, it sucks that there are all these cool bikes being made, and I'll never get the chance to have one.
It's all market forces, as has been mentioned. Bikes are largely toys in this country, and sell more on image than capability. It takes a rare confluence of factors to make a bike outside the cruiser or sportbike mold a success in the States. Regulations make a difference, too. 125 road bikes work in other countries because of graduated licensing, displacement-based insurance tiers, and/or import restrictions, none of which we have to deal with. The Ninja 400 you mention is the same weight as the 650 while not being much less money, and costs Kawasaki the same to produce. No reason to homologate and market it in a country where no viable market exists, and therefore are no sales to be had. Models that do get here take a bit longer because of federalization (unless they're designed primarily for this market). Might as well roll something out where it'll sell best as soon as it's ready, and get to your secondary markets later.

I get your frustration, though; it's frustrating to see other kids playing with all the cool toys. At least we can console ourselves with the fact that the bikes we can get cost us proportionally less, and that much of the cool factor in stuff we can't have lies in the fact that we can't have it. Oh, and you can get a Bandit 650. They just call it the GSX650F here. Ditto the W800, though it'll be a W650 and it'll be used.

Jon
'09 Versys in Blue
80-watt Hamster is offline  
post #14 of 51 (permalink) Old 12-15-2011, 03:43 PM Thread Starter
Member
 
smoore's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Socorro, New Mexico, USA
Posts: 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by twowheels View Post
Before anyone bitches too much , I live in Canada and bought my 08 Versys slightly used from Maryland and then paid $800 extra to import it. Why? Because you guys in the US have way better (33% less) used bike prices and new US prices are much less too. Even though the CAN and US dollars are valued almost the same, the MSRPs are slightly lower in the US. Dealers here sell at MSRP unless there is a manufacturer discount for a previous years model. In the US dealers will sell for sometimes thousands off the MSRP.
Does it work the other way around? Can someone buy a bike in Canada (one that's not available in the US) and bring it into the US? I recall that the feds didn't like it when some folks here in the SW were buying and importing Mexico-manufactured VW Bugs in the 1980s and 1990s. They were all impounded on the premise that they were unsafe for the US market.

========
steph moore
New Mexico, USA
2008 Versys (a/k/a Hellboy)
smoore is offline  
post #15 of 51 (permalink) Old 12-15-2011, 05:41 PM
Member
 
twowheeladdict's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 4,198
Garage
Marketing guys say what can and can't sell here based on whatever they call research.

The thing that gets me is that they bring a red Versys in for 2011 and don't sell the red handguards to go with it. Had to order mine from the UK. But they did offer the red Givi bag covers. Go Figure.


I would buy a W800 if it came to the states. The W650s are selling for way more than I would be willing to pay for a small carb bike.

If Kawasaki would put a bright color on the Concours I would buy one. Might pick up a 2011 used one if I can get it for low enough to justify a repaint.
twowheeladdict is offline  
post #16 of 51 (permalink) Old 12-15-2011, 07:15 PM
Member
 
Boricua's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Parker, CO
Posts: 1,236
Dealers

Marketing and Sales guys get the feedback from the dealers and decide to bring over what the dealers think would sell. With the exception of BMW motorad dealer network, motorcycle dealers do not know how to sell bikes like the Versys. It is easier to sell chrome, noise, attitude, or prestige than to sell performance, ergonomics, and value.

Going back to the motorcycles as toys. Dealers in the US are not selling motorcycles they sell lifestyle choices. The basic rationale, and any martketing guy can confirm this, is when you sell lifestyle the value proposition goes out of the door therefore, and I do not always agree with this, improves profit margins.

HD is the king of motorcycle marketing and every other manufacturer tag along the investment HD makes in the HD lifestyle by putting products for the same market segment. Even Honda was sued by HD at one time for copying the sound of the HD engine. HD lost the lawsuit since a sound cannot be trademarked or patented. That is why cruisers rule in the US. If BMW spend as much marketing dollars (their market segment in the US is much smaller) in the adventure touring bike segment as HD spends on cruisers there would be a larger awareness and market for bikes like the versys therefore more options.

The supersport bike phenomenom has to do, again, with image and attitude. How many more Hayabusas were sold after the moview Biker Boyz came out? How many more black Ducati 996 were sold after the Trinity rode in one in the movie the Matrix?

My experience when I bought my Versys supports how ignorant are many dealers about the products they sell. The guy who sold me my 08 Versys had not clue what he was selling. He just told me that the guy who rode for only 1,000 before he traded it for a Victory had a back problem and the riding position did not suit him well. I got a fully loaded bike with a very steep discount. If the guy knew he was selling the 2008 motorcycle of the year and one of the best values in motorcycles anywhere he could have make more money out of it.

Anyway enough with the rambling about this.

Kawasaki if you are listening, there is a very good market for the Versys 1000. But only if you educate the dealers and spent some marketing money. I love my 650. However, I am in need of what the Versys 1000 offers in extra comfort and power for two up riding. If you decide to bring it over you might have one already sold. If you wait too long I might need to go shopping somewhere else.
Boricua is offline  
post #17 of 51 (permalink) Old 12-15-2011, 08:05 PM
Member
 
cmoreride's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 875
Harley's Cruisers and sport bikes.

How many Versys you seen on American roads?

When the economy, credit, and disposable income are tight.
The market can't support so many, not so popular, models.

"Respect the Ride if you don't you Won't"
"A man's got to know his limitations"

Last edited by cmoreride; 12-15-2011 at 08:13 PM.
cmoreride is offline  
post #18 of 51 (permalink) Old 12-15-2011, 09:37 PM
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Elk Grove,Ca
Posts: 351
Just look at the insurance for motorcycles they are considered leisure vehicles and fall in the same class as atvs,motor homes,jet skis and golf carts. Not to mention the push to make these vehicle more environmentally friendly especially in California. The 2008 versys could not even be sold new here because the emission standards. Then fact that 95% of motorcycle riders only ride when the weather is good and the sun is out. (damn Harley rubs)

You see it every winter the used bikes hit craigslist and dealer floors. Then dealers have bunch of used bikes and they don't sell as many used bikes so they do not order new ones form the factory and that hurts new bike sales then when spring rolls around there is not enough new available because for the past four or five months they have not been ordering from the factory. The factory has allocated less to make and ey send those to markets where they.
Can make the most money and it's not in the U.S.
southbark is offline  
post #19 of 51 (permalink) Old 12-15-2011, 10:40 PM
Member
 
Sprocket's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 770
Sometimes I think Kawasaki is trying to undermine their own success. They introduce a nice yellow Versys in Europe in 2010 but don't bring it to the US. They then make the 2012 Versys a gross mismatch of black and yellow?
Sprocket is offline  
post #20 of 51 (permalink) Old 12-16-2011, 12:10 AM
Member
 
G19Tony's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Las Vegas, NV
Posts: 266
Quote:
Originally Posted by duibhcek View Post
I think it is because the US market is still just too preoccupied with Harleys and super sports bikes.
You answered the question right there. End of thread.

Nothing's too cruel if it's funny enough.
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
G19Tony is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the Kawasaki Versys Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome