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Victory Motorcycles is dead; Polaris to concentrate on Indian Motorcycle

10 January 2017
Victory Motorcycles is dead; Polaris to concentrate on Indian Motorcycle

Victory assembles its motorcycles at its plant in Spirit Lake, Iowa.

The company says it will wind down Victory production as it lacked adequate market share and profitability. "The experience, knowledge, infrastructure and capability we've built in those 18 years gave us the confidence to acquire and develop the Indian Motorcycle brand, so I would like to express my gratitude to everyone associated with Victory Motorcycles and celebrate your many contributions".

"This was an incredibly hard decision for me, my team and the Polaris Board of Directors", Polaris Chairman and CEO Scott Wine said in a statement.

The Victory brand had sold 60 motorcycle models in 18 years of life.

Certainly not the best announcement to start the year with, US-based Polaris Industries has announced that it will be officially pulling the plug of its "Victory Motorcycles" brand with immediate effect. Since then, Polaris has designed and produced almost 60 Victory models that won 25 industry awards.

Polaris said that it remains committed to maintaining its presence in the Spirit Lake, Iowa, where the Victory motorcycles were manufactured along with Indian Motorcycle production and in Huntsville, Alabama with its Slingshot production. It will also assist dealerships in their efforts to liquidate inventory. These costs will not be a part of the company's annual sales figure provided they fall under the non-GAAP (Generally Accepted Accounting Principles) policy.

While much attention in recent years has been directed at buying and relaunching the Indian Motorcycle brand, the launch of the Victory bike came first and represented Polaris's bold attempt at product diversification. Victory Motorcycles, through its innovation and engineering prowess, also set new standards in Heavy Cruiser motorcycle design and performance.

Polaris says Indian distribution is anticipated to increase 1.5 times over the next three-five years; there are now 350 Indian dealers globally, and 150 of those now share space with Victory Motorcycles.

A company release says sales of the Victory line peaked in 2012, and have steadily decreased in the years since. "Victory had declined each year after that, with the business being unprofitable for PII for 3 of last 5 years", she said.

A spokesperson for Polaris said the company was not providing specific employment numbers for Victory workers here in Minnesota, but did say some job reductions were expected, mostly through cutting the number of temporary workers and through attrition.