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Harley-Davidson achieves significant U.S. market share boost

Although it reported a decrease in its U.S. retail sales, Harley-Davidson noted it made dramatic market share gains in its first quarter.

Harley officials said the company’s market share in its relevant market (the 651cc and up motorcycle segment) rose to 57.8 percent in the first quarter, an increase of more than 8 percentage points over the year-ago quarter.

Harley CEO Jim Ziemer attributed the market share gain to the company’s strong brand image and the fact that metric manufacturers did not have a substantial number of lower-priced, non-current model year bikes in the market this year like in the first quarter of 2008.

Overall, Harley reported its U.S. first-quarter retail sales fell 9.7 percent compared to the prior-year period. The U.S. industry in the Harley-relevant market fell 22.3 percent during the same time period, company officials said.

Harley’s worldwide motorcycle sales fell 12 percent in its first quarter due to lower demand internationally.

For more on Harley’s first quarter, see an upcoming edition of Powersports Business.

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