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Discussion Starter #1
hey all. i just started that microeconomics paper that i posted a question about a month ago - today (so what if it was due at 1 o'clock?). Anyway, im definitely doing it on harley, they just stick out from an economics standpoint - inelasticity of demand and whatnot.

From what i've read in bike magazines and stuff, it seems as if the sport, pastime, hobby, lifestyle, whatever you wanna call it - has gotten much more popular recently. if anyone can come up with some legit. reasons for why this is so, i'd really appreciate it. thanks again -- matt
(yeah, last paper of the year...one more week, then i'll ride till i run out of gas $!)
 

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Well I think part is the economy. In recent years more people have had expendable income. Whereas, in years past they might have seriously debated against buying a motorcycle(which for many is considered another "toy"), in the recent years they received money from investments and whatnot and felt comfortable spending the money. Also, due to the baby boomers there are more younger people alive than ever before. This provides a greater number in the age ranges from 18 or 19 on up into the 50's(includes baby boomers and their children). And another factor would be that younger people in many cases are making more money than their predecessors and thus, have more to spend on motorcycles and such. Or maybe it's because websites like this have sprung up, and more people see them and think it's damn cool. I dunno :D
 

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Ummmmmmm....

I'm not so sure motorcycling has become any more popular than it was say.... 10 years ago, or even 20 years ago....

Now, before ya break out the flame throwers!!! let me qualify that statement!

My definition of a motorcyclist is someone who RIDES! not poses. There is no doubt what so ever that motorcycle ownership has increased tremendously in the past 20 years. Owning a motorcycle has become a status thing and an indication of that is how many doctors, lawyers, dentists, ad nauseum, that grow a beard and trailer their bikes down to Daytona every winter.

But I seriously doubt that the number of what I consider riders has increased that much.

Now break out the flame throwers..... The guys with sport bikes.. (I'm putting on my asbestos vest!) who only take their bikes out on weekends, or just really nice days, don't fit my definition of a rider. Ya, ya, yer highly skilled at going fast straight line and in the twisties, there is no doubt about that. But how many of ya's still ride when there is snow and ice on the roads? Or keep on keepin' on through a deluge not seen since
Biblical times? How many of ya's would take the bike regardless of how far ya gotta go and no matter what kind of weather you will encounter? Especially if ya have a nice cage with windshield wipers and a heater just sitting there?

Ok, I'm being an elitist purist. So flame my old ass!
 

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i know a side benefit of my riding in the summer is the fuel savings.gas is getting friggin expensive,and when your cars need premium(65 plymouth big block and 84 buick grand national)the bike saves a hell of a lot of cash in the daily commute.

and sorry bikenut,but i'm not getting frostbite or soaked to the bone just to say i ride my bike to work year round!


"...life goes by so fast...you only want to do what you think is right...close your eyes and it's past...story of my life...

:)just thought i'd finish the thought for ya matt.i'm a huge social d fan.:)
 

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Flamed!!!

I also spend time on the track, promote motorcycling, etc., and have been frost bitten, drenched, got to hide from a tornado, and a lifetime of other stuff. And no, never got into the so called "biker" lifestyle either. I very crankily pointed out the trend of modern motorcycling. I gave MY definition of a motorcyclist. Everyone is certainly free to agree/disagree.

Soooooooooooooooo......

Keep it coming!!!!! Flame on duuuudes!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Re: Flamed!!!

i know what you guys are saying about who you believe is, and ISNT a true motorcyclist, however; for the paper, im not really all that concerned with how often one rides, just that they're pumping money into the industry (namely, harley). thanks for the imput though.
 

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In the last 10-15 years the older group has grown the fastest. Well their kids are now getting to the age of riding street bikes. The large increase in women riders has made an impact too.

Another key in the last 5 years has been TV coverage and marketing to the family riders. Look at Yami and Honda in the Mags. They have been running adds for two years now showing parents and their kids on matching dirtbikes. It is making a difference.

I also think that the Jap cruisers are making a difference. The intelligent enthusiasts are buying a more reasonable bike while the Dentists and Doctors are stuck with their image and ego to deal with. Harleys are an investment though. It is a damn shame, with its totally antique engineering, but it is the truth.
 

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Every recreation/sport has been getting more popular lately. Some claim a good economy is the cause, others say it is Americans and their toys, and so on and so on. Whatever the reason...motorcycling is no exception.
 

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Mongrel Racing said:
Then I guess I am just a poser in an ugly yellow suit. I most likely put in the least amount of miles per year here. Oh maybe 5 race weekends and another 6 to 8 track days. All good for an average of 150 miles or just under 2000 miles per year, but oh I bet my average speed is much higher than most.

I am every bit a motorcyclist and have been so for the past 25 years. I have committed much of my time to the education and promotion of positive motorcycling, and one of the last things I like to see is a categorization of motorcyclist i.e.. sportbike riders, cruisers, tour bike riders, commuters, or oh should I say it posers, and god for bid us racers. All own motorcycles and all ride there by they are motorcyclists pure and simple.
Well said, Mongrel! I agree 100%.

Give me a track for the bike, and the convenience of a van/truck/tent/cooler anyday. I'll gladly take the 2,000 miles on the track over the 20,000 miles on the street.
 

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I recently bought a bike, let me run through my thought process....

I have a jeep, gets 15 mpg with the 4 banger. Fun for college, and still fun, but I need a commuter to drive back and forth to work 100 miles per week. 15 mpg doesn't cut it. So first I went for new cars.... Audi S4, IS300, I wanted a car that got decent gas mileage but I also need some speed and some sport. Those cars cost $30K+ I could buy one but I would have to carefully watch finances, I decided these cars are a waste.

My friend wanted a bike and took me with him to every dealer in town. I fell in love. Bikes get good gas mileage, I could ride it to work on sunny days and save a ton in gas. Bikes are also fun, I like vehicles that are complex and take lots of skill to drive/ride. And bikes are fast, fullfilling my need for speed and performance. Above all they are CHEAP and insurance is nothing.

I see 90% harley's aruond here. and I do see a lot of them, I think it's a pure enjoyment thing for them, rather than practical reasons. I tell you this sportbikes are cheap, I never knew what they cost until I went to the dealerships and I was very surprised that most bikes costs under $10k. I never really gave it much thought but I always before had guessed decent bikes cost $12k or so. Compared to top performance cars bikes are much much cheaper and I think that might have something to so with it.

Oh and there was a fad here where some rap groups used sportbikes. So now if you go in the "hood" well this is louisiana...its all one big "hood' you see lots of those riders. You can tell them because they dont use helmets and ride with t-shirts and shorts, occasionally one might have socks on.
 

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allot of the replies here make sense, and i think the best way to sum up the popularity of bikes can be broken down into two main catagories
1.speed, speed, speed
2. cost, cost, cost.
firstly, motorbikes can cater to everyones need for speed!, we are all speed freaks and that is why we ride. it's the pleasure we get when we twist that throttle and the bike leaps forward so fast the you swear youve just entered another planet! (or is that because my front wheel is facing the sky and i can see all the pretty stars, LOL :). ) plus the fact we can do so much more on the bike than in the car, ie. carve up twisty roads, pull wheelies, stoppies, and generally have a great time on our bikes. heres a thought for you all. The ferrari 355 spyder is capable of achieving 0-100km/h in approx 3.9 sec! approx cost $Aus $250000-290000. any superbike 0-100 in 3.4 sec!!! approx cost $Aus 10-21000. hmmmm now let me see it's not a very hard decision is it :)
secondly, cost! this has sort of been covered already but to sum it up, fuel prices (gas as its known in the USA) purchase price, maintenance ie. service and tune etc. insurance blah blah blah!.
to me this seems the obvious reason as to the increase in popularity!
and O! the most important factor "ITS BLOODY GREAT FUN :) :) ).
 

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I would like to ride year round, Hell I'd like to ride even just to work. But like me most people can probably say that they truthfully cannot. My job will not permit it, the weather will not permit it, and most of all alot choose not to because it is a pass time or a recreation. In fact I believe even a sunday rider is a biker because it is obvious that he/she makes a huge effort to make sure to get out when they can thus scheduling a whole life around it as much as they can.
Also we should be blamming the speed freaks and bad weather riders for the horrific price everyone pays for insurance.
 

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Uhhhhhhh...

Now why would it be necessary to - blame - anyone for bad press or high insurance rates or the attitudes of non riders? My way of thinking (note: this means I'm not making a comment on anyone's posts) is the mentality that needs to seek a scapegoat for any of the ills of society is part of the problem, not part of the solution. Ya see, as long as there is someone to point a finger at and say that "they" are the problem no one addresses the real problem.

So what is the real problem? We are the problem. We sit back and bitch and not do anything hoping someone else (my apologies to those extremely few who are involved) will step up and make the problems go away.

So ..... may I suggest that we quit bitching, join the AMA, get others to join too, support the AMA's legislative efforts, and get a rider voting base of a million or so to enable motorcycle friendly laws to be passed.
:cool:
 

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I don't ride in bad weather, I don't have rain gear so I'd get wet. But I would hardly say that those who do ride in bad weather drive up ins. rates. According to the hurt study "Weather is not a factor in 98% of motorcycle accidents. " As far as the speed freak thing, here is another finding of the hurt study "The median pre-crash speed was 29.8 mph, and the median crash speed was 21.5 mph, and the one-in-a-thousand crash speed is approximately 86 mph. "

So according to the hurt study speed freaks nor bad weather riders are the problem. It's cages pulling out in front of bikes and hitting them or it's riders not paying enough attention.
 

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I think the Harley brand has several things that keep it economically viable in an age when it is clearly inferior from an engineering standpoint. Brand loyalty is high and there is that image thing and the phoney 'brotherhood" deal. Savvy marketing and production figures insure demand outstrips supply,which from an economics standpoint accounts for the high resale value at least in part. For the white collar crowd status is a big deal too. Alot of these guys grew up with 'easy rider' thing and can now afford the toy. The kids are in college and the finances are there. 20 or 30k for a bike is status for them just like performance is status for the rest of us. I think the demographic for your average new Harley buyer has to be around 40's to early 50's with an income above 100k per year. At least around here. You see these poser on a hog for their 1st bike and along with squids I blame them for the high cost of insurance cause they are wrecks just waiting to happen. Only difference is the old Harley dude is going20mph when he wrecks all that chrome and it costs the insurance company 25k to fix that crap. LOL!
 

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My appoligies
The only bike accidents I have ever seen were in the cities or towns where guys are actually racing in town and when asked by the cops how fast they were going? Would you tell the truth ?
One guy was scraped off the side of a pickup truck. (Cocain)
I like to ride on the highway at pretty fast speeds but when I say speed freaks I mean the ones withy no regard for any rules. I can even admit to cutting off a motorcyclist before (in my truck) but not because I wasn't paying attention. One second there is no one there and so you go to change lanes and there is a squid.
sooooo Anybody else that I offended please feel free to reply and give me your points of view. As far as not laying blame? Learn to live with it because it will always be in our lives. That is how society is regulated and laws are made and children raised and safety concerns dealt with. There will always be a bad guy.
 
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