Polaris Lowers Price of ’14 Indian Motorcycle Model

Polaris Lowers Price of ’14 Indian Motorcycle Model

Polaris attributed the decreased price to better manufacturing resources and supply-chain capabilities compared with Indian’s former owner.

Polaris Industries plans to offer its 2014 Indian Chief motorcycle at a significantly lower price than past models.

While the current Indian Chief line’s prices range from $26,000 to $37,000, the latest model will start at $18,999, according to a Pioneer Press report.

Polaris will unveil the new model at the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally in Sturgis, South Dakota, in August.

The Medina-based off-road vehicles manufacturer acquired the Indian brand in 2011 from British private-equity firm Stellican. Steve Menneto, Polaris’ vice president of motorcycles, told the St. Paul newspaper that the motorcycle’s decreased price resulted from Polaris’ more robust manufacturing resources and capabilities compared with Indian’s former owner.

“We have the supply-chain scale and negotiated better component pricing and labor rates than our predecessors,” Menneto told the newspaper.

The new Indian Chief motorcycle’s engine is made in Osceola, Wisconsin, while other parts are sourced internationally, according to the Pioneer Press’ report. The bike will be assembled at Polaris’ Spirit Lake, Iowa, facility.

The 2014 Indian Chief model is an addition to Polaris’ existing Indian motorcycle line. Polaris also produces Victory-branded motorcycles. Menneto told the Pioneer Press that Polaris will continue to offer both brands to attract different types of customers. Customers who appreciate a classic motorcycle style would gravitate toward Indian, while customers that want a more modern bike would choose Victory.

The latest Indian model launch follows steadily increasing sales for Polaris. In 2012, Polaris sold $240 million worth of on-road vehicles, compared with $146 million in 2011. The manufacturer reported $3.2 billion in 2012 revenue, up 21 percent from $2.7 billion in 2011.

And increasing sales appear to be an industry trend: According to a Motorcycle Industry Council report released in February, motorcycle sales among 19 leading motorcycle manufacturers increased 2.6 percent in 2012 as compared with 2011 sales. Scooters represented the most significant sales growth, up 7.7 percent, while on-highway motorcycle sales were up 1.8 percent. Dual-purpose motorcycle sales increased 7.4 percent and off-highway motorcycle sales were up 2.1 percent.

Twin Cities Business recently outlined Polaris’ expansion from a snowmobile maker to one of the premier powersports vehicle manufacturers in the nation. Since the economic downturn in 2009, Polaris’ revenue, net income, and stock prices have steadily risen as it continues to introduce new technologies and designs with its products. Click here to read the May feature story about Polaris’ growth under CEO Scott Wine’s leadership.