Thursday, January 21, 2010

Is there a future for Erik Buell Racing?



I'm a Buell enthusiast. Anyone who follows this blog knows that. But I'm no drooling fan-boy, so I have to ask the question:
Is there a future for Erik Buell Racing?

What is Erik Buell Racing selling?
The remaining assets of what used to be the Buell Motorcycle Company will be auctioned off starting January 28th.

Erik Buell Racing has finally (though not completely) updated their website, listing some items for sale. But is there much difference between the two?

Right now, they're selling parts left over from inventory of the old Buell. I can't guess how much stock they have on hand, but I do wonder what the plan is beyond that. My own reading of the various Buell boards leads me to believe they're selling some $6 stickers, and very little beyond that.

Until EBR can get some sort of manufacturing started, all they're doing is liquidating assets, and prospects dim once stock on hand runs out.

Who are their customers?
With a total production run of 1125Rs of 5,836, an additional 3,099 CRs and 17,899 Firebolts (both XB9Rs and XB12Rs) that gives you a grand total of 26,834 potential racing customers. Throw in every Lightning ever made and the total climbs to 68,352 potential customers.

If each of those potential customers (assuming not a single one has been totaled) gave Erik Buell Racing a dollar, could that cover the cost of rent, power, shipping, phones, taxes, business licenses, insurance and pay for even the small staff they presently have? What if they each bought two dollars worth of parts?

Buell has a small, enthusiastic group of followers, but what I have yet to see is a compelling reason for those potential customers to pry open their wallets.

I know it's early in the process. I really do hope for good things. I'm keeping my fingers crossed, and I hope Erik Buell Racing can be more than just a boutique maker of a few bespoke bikes a year.


Have you bought anything from Erik Buell Racing? I'd like to hear about it! Let me know by leaving a comment.

7 comments:

  1. I just bought 2 complete 1190RR-B from EBR plus à bunch of spares and extra parts. And that will not be the last purchase, there is à huge inventory of parts in East Troy!
    Regards, Thomas Wanner aka buelltreiber, principal of Pegasusraceteam.com

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  2. I believe you've hit the nail on the head. EBR is going to have to cater to other brands. The Buell market simply isn't large enough and, obviously, won't grow any.

    But that would be a good thing for EBR, the remaining Buells and motorcycling in general. If Erik starts producing parts for other brands as well as Buells, all of the above can benefit. :-) If EBR doesn't, however, I'd guess their days are numbered...

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  3. Thomas: I sure hope there are many more out there like Pegasus Race Team. Thank you for being the standard-bearers!

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  4. I bought the Race ECM tuned for pump fuel (in conjunction with an HMF exaust and a K&N air filter). Holy CR*P, what a difference! This is the way the bike SHOULD run! I will always be a loyal supporter of the product line--no matter what happens.

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  5. Erik Buell is keeping the Buell name alive and active through EBR until his non-compete clause expires with the Motor Company. Then watch him start building street bikes again (as well as race bikes} with the backing of Bombardier or another interested party and don't forget about the Barracuda. In the meantime he is competing with major factories in AMA racing and is suprisingly successful at doing so.

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