A letter to Erik Buell

(Erik Buell is a motorcycle designer and manufacturer. He is associated with Harley Davidson, but his motorcycles are very innovative and are very different from Harleys.)
Dear Erik,
Your designs have always caught my attention. The styling of Buell motorcycles have always appealed to me and your methods for putting the weight of the bike low are genius. Your placement of the exhaust system rocks.
You really got my attention with your introduction of the Ulysses. A couple of my riding friends have them and I was able to ride one on two different occasions. Great riding bike.
Too bad your bikes are sold at Harley dealerships. Most of the dealers in my area treat Buells like a red headed step-child that needs to be tucked away in the corner of the dealership - not an innovative bike worthy of center stage.
Harley dealers are less than excited about taking a BMW in trade. One salesman who was moderately excited about selling a 2006 Uly that was lanquishing on the sales floor last week, scoffed and actually walked away from me and got on the telephone when I said I had a BMW Rockster to trade in on the Uly that I was VERY interested in. I would not buy a bike from that guy or that dealership if they were giving it away.
I sent an identical e-mail to 4 Harley dealers within a 100 mile radius of my house. I explained my interest in the Uly and having a BMW to trade. The dealership that is closest to me did not even respond! Not to take anything away from Harleys, but your bikes are the antithesis of Harleys in my opinion. Harleys are sold and marketed around a tradition of unchanging sound and ride (with the possible exception of the V Rod) while Buells are bikes on the cutting edge of change. The two belong in different houses if you ask me.
Get your own network of dealers. Put your bikes in with European bikes or Japanese ones - at dealerships with salespeople who value innovation and change.
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