Polaris doesn't beat around the bush when it comes to justifying its decision; after 18 years in existence Victory simply didn't manage to get a piece of the market pie big enough to sustain profitability.
Polaris Industries has announced that it will begin to immediately ease down production of it's Victory motorcycles, which have been manufactured at the company's Spirit Lake production facility.
Thanks to the new Octane model, the company outperformed the North American market in retail growth by 11 percentage points in 2016 and was the number one brand in Net Promoter Score.
Wine says the company will focus on the production of its Indian motorcycles, and Slingshot three-wheeler productions. Victory Motorcycles, through its innovation and engineering prowess, also set new standards in Heavy Cruiser motorcycle design and performance.
"Over the past 18 years, we have invested not only resources, but our hearts and souls, into forging the Victory Motorcycles brand, and we are exceptionally proud of what our team has accomplished", said Wine. Since then, Polaris has designed and produced almost 60 Victory models that won 25 industry awards. "Given that Victory has been unprofitable in three of the last five reported years, we expect this to be neutral to positive" Polaris's earnings outlook.
The competitive pressures of what many consider to be a relatively flat and challenging market have increased the headwinds for the Victory brand.
Kathman said all of the company's Victory dealers have been notified. "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". But it is unclear that how many jobs will be lost due to the end of Victory production. That said, Polaris has confirmed that its decision does not affect the company's other brands including the popular 'Indian Motorcycles'.
Rice also sells Suzuki and Honda motorcycles, along with side-by-side utility vehicles and the Polaris Slingshot, a three-wheeled roadster, but the loss of Victory will take a bite out of his summer cruising and touring bike offerings, especially during the Sturgis motorcycle rally.
The move is seen as a way for Polaris to focus on its Indian brand of motorcycles in an attempt to compete with industry leader Harley-Davidson.