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Harley-Davidson considers Street 750 model

Harley-Davidson Street 750 on the soggy streets of Tokyo rain
Harley launch in Tokyo

Harley-Davidson Australia is still considering importing the Street 750 model in the wake of the enormous popularity of the learner-approved Street 500.

The 2016 LAMS model is on track to be one of the top three selling bikes in Australia this year. New pricing will be released on September 25 and you’ll see it here first.

At the launch of the 2016 Dark Custom Sportster and Street models in Tokyo last week Harley-Davidson Australia boss Nigel Keough said he is still considering adding the 750 to the line-up, but is not yet convinced of the business case.

“I’m a bit concerned it would have the potential to confuse the customer,” he says. “We already have 30 models now and 32 in New Zealand to choose from. Adding another model might confuse the buyer and add more cost in the floor plan for the dealer.

“I want to add models that will increase our volume, but I’m not convinced it would. It might just cannibalise Sportster sales. I would want to hear people screaming for it before I’d bring it in.

“There is still a lot of potential in the 500. We are not missing anything without the 750.”

The 2016 Street models get improved and bigger brakes, tidier wiring and new colours.

Harley-Davidson Street 750 in the new blue colour
Harley-Davidson Street 750 in the new blue colour

On our short city ride in flooding rain from a typhoon off the coast of Japan, we were very happy that the brakes have been improved.

While ABS would be welcome in such conditions, the new brakes are not only more powerful, with more initial bite, but they also have much more feel and progression, particularly in the rear brake pedal.

The more powerful brake system consists of 300mm rotors and new pistons that have taken away the spongey and vague feeling of the current 292mm/260mm discs.

You can modulate the brakes easily and avoid lock-ups even if you are a little hamfisted.

The 750 doesn’t seem to have a lot more power than the 500, but we couldn’t really give it the berries in the windy and wet conditions.

Harley-Davidson Street 750 on the soggy streets of Tokyo
Harley-Davidson Street 750 on the soggy streets of Tokyo

For 2016 the Street also comes with two new colours – Superior Blue and Fire Red – which join Vivid Black and Black Denim.

The tidier wiring on the right hand side is also much appreciated, but the fuel tank still seems a little off-centre, with rough welded front edges.

Meanwhile, sales of the Street 500 have been pegged back a little while a fuel pump issue has been resolved.

Nigel says it is only a one-hour job to fix and any faulty bikes are now being processed through dealers with more fuel pump kits on the way.

“We’re already back and selling the Street again,” he says.

Harley is analysing data on Street 500 customers, but Nigel says that from dealer Facebook posts and anecdotal evidence, the bike is bringing in a younger customer and more females.

Happy new Street 500 customer Debra D'Onofrio street 750
Happy new Street 500 customer Debra D’Onofrio

Nigel also says there has been no kickback from buyers about the bikes being manufactured in India.

“It’s a state-of-the-art factory built on a green-field site about five years ago for assembly and now manufacturer,” says Nigel who is visiting the plant in Barwal.

Under Indian import duties, complete imports incur a massive 105% duty. Locally assembled bikes attract a greatly reduced duty depending on a complex formula involving engine capacity and local content.

Locally built motorcycles attract no import duty, only normal taxes.

“At the end of the day, it’s a Harley-Davidson factory and it doesn’t matter where it is because it is up to our stringent standards,” Nigel says.

Harley Street 500
MBW on the Harley Street 500
  1. “At the end of the day, it’s a Harley-Davidson factory and it doesn’t matter where it is because it is up to our stringent standards,” Nigel says.
    Well he would say that, but the evidence says otherwise – starting with that mess of wiring they are only now starting to sort out. Every detail of this bike screams ‘cheap, cheap, cheap’ (to the tune of that Woolies jingle)

  2. It also looks too small – about 10% too small. In the photo (of Mark?) the top of the petrol tank doesn’t rise above the rider’s knees and the whole bike looks more like a 125 than a 750. If the tank is small then the range must be as well?

    1. They need a small range to keep people from going further from home than they can push it.
      BMW Honda Yamaha Kawasaki and just about every other manufacturer all have multiple engine types and fit the most appropriate engine to the style/type of bike they are building and spend millions on developing each bike to be the best in its class and most of these makers build a cruiser style bike that is far superior to anything HD has ever built. Only MotoGuzzie stick to one style of engine for all their bikes and even they do it better than HD. If it wasn’t for the machismo lifestyle thing that HD has got going they would have either gone bust or put some effort into building a decent bike.

      1. Got 125,000 Miles (that’s 201.168 km) on 1st year VROD…. Snapped the drive belt at 82,000 miles, that was as close to “Pushing It” I have come. Don’t own a stitch of HD “gear” or Lifestyle as you say. But Cheers to you for coming in and throwing your fit and doing your Best to show the same kind of ignorance about it all as you are claiming they do. Sell a Lot of bikes worldwide, weird that everyone isn’t as Up on the “Con” like you are… (BTW before you go off again on an ignorant rant my 2 year old Triumph that sits next to my HD only has 25,000 miles on it in 2 years time and little bits of it keep falling off, but I like it all the same, made in Thailand I believe Trumpets are now).

        as far as this Entry Level bike the 500 and 750 are, that’s what they are, entry level and inexpensive. If you fancy something nicer you need to spend more $$$. That Ducati Scrambler is a nice one, rode it last week.

        1. When you get five hundred thousand miles on your HD with only consumables changes and maybe a timing chain and twenty years without bits falling off then you can crow about your VRod. Yamaha and BMW regularly get that sort of longevity. I also know several VROD owners who’ve had numerous breakdowns and bits fall off especially the anniversary model. I didn’t mention Triumph as they are far worse the HD for quality and longevity but still better at innovation.
          Question what do religious fanatics and HD owners have in common?
          Answer they know they’re wrong but have deluded themselves into thinking they’re right!
          Bye the way both in this post and the last I was being humorous and not intending to cause offence.

          1. 500,000 miles?

            Whatever you smoke, I hope it doesn’t impair your riding.

            The bloke just gave you believable stats about his V-rod. Most motorcycle riders would be happy with that sort of experience. But you can’t? He doesn’t bag out other brands, so why do you?

            I’ve just started riding a HD after 20 years on jap bikes. I absolvlove it … For how it makes me feel when riding it. And I love looking at it. Don’t care what others think. I ride my own ride.

            Quit the hating, dude.

  3. I looked at a 500 here in Brisbane. Some of the mountings and fasteners and fittings looked quite cheap, and some of the the electrical wiring was badly routed and secured. All things that should have been sorted at the factory. Oh, and that exhaust is such a poor style exercise.

  4. Why build it if your not going to sell it?

    Does it matter if it takes away from Sportster sales? No doubt they thought of that when they designed and then put it on the market, but they still built it and the 500.

    Strange way to treat the market and potentional customers.

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