Zero and Polaris Join Forces for New Off-Road Electric Bikes
That’s right sports fans. This may be the most significant relationship thus far in the race to make electric propulsion a viable alternative to the current internal-combustion engines, specifically within the off-road and non-road sectors. Polaris Inc. and Zero Motorcycles launch a decade-long partnership as a major pillar of the “rEV’d up” campaign, and the first efforts are to produce battery-powered off-road vehicles and snowmobiles.
Polaris Slingshot announced its 2018 line-up of three wheeled roadsters with enhanced performance and styling.
Introduced to the world in 2014, Polaris manufactured Slingshot was the three-wheeled motorcycle that had a tilt-adjustable steering wheel, side-by-side bucket seats, gear stick, pedals and three point seat belts. Made for having loads of fun on an open racetrack, these machines will also behave on our streets if you are in the right state.
For 2018, the brand has shown more interest in this concept by launching newer versions of the existing models. They have also added another higher end variant of their SLR flagship model and calling it the SLR. Along with this announcement, the brand is making good use of theirIndian Motorcycle stint to bring in the industry leading Ride Command infotainment system onto their roadster series.
Polaris Recalls the Recall On Its 2015-17 Slingshots
If you had your Slingshot repaired under NHTSA recall No. 16V-255, you may be in for another trip to the dealer. Polaris Industries, Inc. is recalling 2015-2017 Slingshot vehicles that had their rear swingarm replaced in the prior recall. How embarrassing, guys. I mean, c’mon. Some of the swingarms previously replaced may not have sealing grommets installed. Without the sealing grommets, road debris could contaminate the rear wheel speed sensor, which could disable the ABS and Traction/Stability Control systems.
Continue reading for more on the Polaris recall.
Polaris Brings Slingshot And Indian To 2017 AIMExpo
Polaris Industries Incorporated is sending the 2018 lineup from its motorcycle and Slingshot divisions to the Nationwide Insurance Company-hosted American International Motorcycle Expo for the first time ever this year. Attendees at the Columbus, Ohio AIMExpo to be held at the Greater Columbus Convention Center on September 23rd and 24th will be able to ogle, caress and test drive units from these lineups, and I gotta expect that to be the kind of exposure that is going to have an immediate impact on sales.
Continue reading for more on Polaris’ appearance at the expo.
Polaris Industries Inc. is issuing a recall on select MY17 Slingshot models, to include the SL and SLR variants as well as the base model. The factory has discovered that the torque applied to certain fasteners within the steering system may not have been as high as one might have hoped. Consequently, the steering may not perform as expected, and that could lead to an unsafe driving condition or even a crash.
Continue reading for more on the Slingshot recall.
Polaris Industries announced on February 28th its intentions to begin developing electric bikes under its Indian Motorcycle brand, which begs the question: are we looking at an EV with Indian’s trademark War Bonnet fender ornament?
Continue reading for more on the Indian electric bike announcement.
Victory Motorcycles gets the ax from Daddy Deep-Pockets as Polaris Industries cuts back on the number of projects under its umbrella (ella ella eh eh...) in an effort to focus its energies and resources on the popular Indian Motorcycle brand and the Delta-trike Polaris Slingshot line.
Continue reading for more information on Polaris’ decision.
As one of the last holdout states that have kept the Polaris Slingshot out of its borders, the state of Texas finally relented on the issue of allowing three-wheeled autocycles like the Slingshot to be registered in the state, thus officially making them legal.
The predicament surrounding the Slingshot and other vehicles classified as “autocycles” has had its fair share of debates in the past, including in Texas where the state’s Department of Motor Vehicles previously refused registering the Slingshot because it couldn’t classify it as a car or a motorcycle, leaving it stuck in some kind of automotive purgatory.
But state legislators sprang into action by introducing two separate bills, HB439 and SB449, intended to address the issue and, if necessary, put a specific classification under the term “autocycle” that would make it distinct from cars or motorcycles. SB449, in particular, contained a clear definition of the term, describing autocycles as “vehicles with seats, a steering wheel, and propelled by not more than three wheels.”
The bill eventually received unanimous support from the House, which voted 142-0 in favor of the bill, and more importantly, and more importantly, from state governor Greg Abbott, who signed the bill on May 22, 2015. With no dissenting votes on the bill, Abbott’s signature legalized the Slingshot in the Lone Star State with immediate effect.
A few sections on the bill contained clauses that effectively allow prospective owners of the Slingshot to register the autocycle as a motorcycle, making the wearing of helmets mandatory for riders under the age of 21 and those who have no additional insurance coverage and those who have yet to complete an approved safety course.
With the Slingshot now effectively legal in Texas, Polaris has already made all three trim models (the base model, the SL, and the SL LE) of the autocycle available at dealerships throughout the state.
Polaris Slingshots are now available at dealerships in Texas in all three trims, the base model, Slingshot SL and Slingshot SL LE. The company didn’t announce pricing details of any of three models in the state so expect them to go for the same MSRP price that’s posted on the company’s website.
That would mean that the base Slingshot will cost $19,999 while the SL and the SL LE will cost $23,999 and $24,999, respectively.
Continue reading to read more about the Polaris Slingshot finally breaking into the Texas market.
Polaris has been supplying the U.S. Armed Forces with innovative ATV and LT-ATV transportation since the 1980s, and formed the Polaris Defense military division in 2005. The guys down at the factory designed the Sportsman MV 850 “TerrainArmor” Edition as a single-seat addition to their already extensive product line, which includes the Dagor ultra-light combat vehicle. Like the Dagor, the 850 is only available for purchase by the U.S. military and her allies.
Polaris Industries is one of a handful of motorcycle companies that have released earnings reports from the first quarter of 2015, and just like BMW Motorrad, Polaris is throwing out words like “growth” and “record sales” in describing its 1Q 2015 sales performance.
According to the company, the three brands under its ownerships - Victory Motorcycles, Indian Motorcycles, and Slingshot - all combined to help Polaris increase its motorcycles sales revenue in the US to $137.4 million, in the first three months of 2015, a 74-percent improvement from the $78.9 million sales revenue the company earned in the same time period a year ago.
All three brands contributed significantly to the massive bump in sales, although according to Polaris, Victory and Indian Motorcycles each reported increasing their sales numbers by 40 percent compared to last year’s total. Slingshot, the ubiquitous builder of the three-wheeler bearing the same name, also did its part with retail sales “ahead of expectations.”
The sales numbers for all three brands were largely aided by certain additions to their respective product portfolios. Indian Motorcycles, in particular, leaned heavily on the arrival of the Chief Dark Horse while Victory motorcycles did the same with the market introduction of the Magnum X-1 bagger. Even Slingshot got in on the fun, adding a limited edition package for its three-wheeler to help boost the brand’s sales numbers.
Overall, Polaries Industries’ sales performance in the US is an encouraging sign that more and more American buyers are warming up to these Harley alternatives. The way they’re trending, it wouldn’t surprise me if more record sales numbers are in the horizon for Polaries and its three motorcycle brands.
Continue reading to read more about Polaris Industries’ sharp growth in US sales revenue.
Polaris Industries Inc. has announced its intention to sponsor the Single-Seat Class in the Grand National Cross Country Series (GNCC). This new class will use the existing UTV courses, and will allow single-seat models with up to 570 cc engines, as well as modified engines and suspension. The new class is a result of the Ace Editor’s Race held by the GNCC and Polaris at the Ironman, in Crawfordsville, Indiana last fall, and of the positive feedback generated by it. In keeping with its sponsorship role and to help bait the table, Polaris is offering discounts to qualified racers, as well as a $1,000 reimbursement check at the end of the season for the first 50 qualified racers. For complete rules visit: www.polarisfactoryracing.com.
Keep reading for more information
Polaris Defense designed the Dagor ultra-light combat vehicle to plug an emerging mobility gap for SOF and light infantry forces, namely the gap between the Hummer and one- and two-person ATVs. Built around the needs of these forces, the Dagor provides a high degree of mobility for soldiers and equipment in extreme off-road conditions. Polaris touts it as a “world class” off-road vehicle – even at full payload – that quickly and safely traverses rugged terrain. This is no glorified beach buggy either, folks, it can mount up to a 48-inch weapon ring and has multiple pintle mounts, giving her some teeth for situations where maneuverability isn’t enough to mitigate a threat. The Dagor is now under contract and being produced for the U.S. SOCOM, and some of our international allies.
Continue reading my review on the Polaris Dagor Ultralight Vehicle.
Polaris Industries is making a lot of waves these days for seemingly scooping up one motorcycle brand after another. As far as getting its name across media outlets are concerned, Polaris is doing one heck of a job.
But the company is still a motorcycle manufacturer at heart and its lineup of brands - Indian Motorcycles and Victory Motorcycles being the most prominent - showcases just how much cache Polaris enjoys these days. It already has an impressive collection of brands under its belt, but you can argue that Indian Motorcycles remains one of its most prominent brands.
That’s probably the reason why the latter, in collaboration with the De Moines Register, decided to give all of us a behind-the-scenes look at what happens inside an Indian Motorcycles factory. This is the side of the business we rarely get to see because, quite frankly, watching a bike being built by machines from scratch isn’t what most people will describe as must-see viewing.
I’m part of that small group, though, because I find the whole process fascinating on so many levels. Recently, Indian Motorcycles and the De Moines Register, released a video showing us exactly what happens inside its factory in Spirit Lake, Iowa. The company’s director of operations, Cory Knudtson, gave us the lowdown on the intricacies in building an Indian bike, beginning with the putting together of components all the way to quality checks just to make sure that the bikes are running in absolute peak condition.
It’s a fascinating video and I suggest you guys give it your attention.
If this were the equivalent of a Black Friday sale, Polaris Industries is reminding everyone just how strongly it can flex its credit card. The motorcycle manufacturer, among other things has announced its latest acquisition, confirming that it has acquired HH Investment Limited, a Shanghai-based company that sells gas-powered go-karts and light utility vehicles. If you’re not familiar with the company, then you might recognize it by the name it uses in the US: Hammerhead Off-Road.
So basically, Polaris Industries is the new parent company of Hammerhead, making it the former’s second major acquisition in as many months. Last month, the firm also brought Brammo’s EV development division, further strengthening its position in the electric motorcycle market. Oh, the company also owns Indian Motorcycles and Victory Motorcycles.
What’s next? Is it buying Gas Gas, too?
That much is less certain, but what’s becoming evidently clear is that Polaris is using it financial might to expand its business and cover as much of the motorcycle industry as possible. With the purchase of HH Investment Limited, the company can now turn its sights into building and expanding its off-road lineup while also gaining significant entry in the Chinese market.
You can’t blame Polaris for taking advantage of the game because it’s got the means to do so. Hopefully, these new purchases translate to a successful business move by the company, now and in the future. That will only grow the bike and off-road industries, and that’s going to be good for all of us.
Click "continue reading" to read more about Polaris’ acquisition of Hammerhead Off-road.
Polaris Defense internationally debuts its DAGOR ultra-light vehicle at IDEX in Abu Dhabi, UAE from February 22 through 26. Already seen domestically, this will be the first look for Polaris Defense customers in the Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) area.
Built to carry up to nine persons, the DAGOR represents the largest of the new offerings from the recently expanded Polaris Defense division of Polaris Industries Incorporated. Polaris Defense is working in conjunction with U.S. light forces to fill the transportation needs of light infantry and special forces troops in extreme off-road conditions.
Continue reading my review on the Polaris Dagor Ultralight Vehicle.
Polaris Industries’ recent acquisition of Brammo’s EV technology business could have some dividends sooner than we expected, at least if these recent trademark applications with the United States Patent and Trademark Office is any indication. According to the filing submitted to the USPTO, Polaris has registered the name “Victory Charger” that it is apparently planning to use with “electric motorcycles and structural parts therefor.”
Could it be that Polaris is in the process of developing an electric cruiser for its Victory brand? It’s not out of the question when you take into account recent developments surrounding Polaris’ acquisition of Brammo’s EV technology.
Put one and one together and what do you get?
Polaris didn’t explicitly say that it’s “Victory Charger” trademark application was made for the specific purpose of building a new electric motorcycle. But it does come with splashes of coincidence, doesn’t it?
The fact is that electric cruisers have a place in today’s world. Harley-Davidson is proving as much when it received a lot of attention for Project Livewire, it’s electric motorcycle program. It wouldn’t be surprising if Polaris is preparing to jump on board that bandwagon, too.
The acquisition of Brammo’s EV tech was the first towards that goal. This trademark filing could be the second step.
Personally, I wouldn’t be surprised if we do see an electric cruiser from Victory in the near future.
Click past the jump to read more about Polaris’ trademark of "Victory Charger"
Polaris Industries has joined the handful of motorcycle brands that have posted strong sales reports in 2014. By my count, Polaris is the fifth company to release its report and just like everybody else, the motorcycle brand is all smiles over its successful year that was.
In 2014, Polaris reported an increase of 59 percent in its motorcycle sales revenue, a mark achieved by strong sales numbers of sub-brand Victory Motorcycles, as well as the successful relaunch of Indian motorcycle and the introduction of the Slingshot three-wheeler. For the year, Polaris reported earning $348.7 million in sales revenue from its motorcycle segment, a dramatic bump from its 2013 numbers when it earned “only” $219.8 million. The introduction of the Indian Roadster and Scout motorcycles also helped bump up the company’s sales numbers in the fourth quarter of 2014 when it earned $103.5 million, much better than the $68.8 million it earned in the same quarter of the previous year.
Polaris’ successful 2014 came in spite of a few problems, which can be expected for any motorcycle brand. In the company’s case, delays in production slowed down what could have been a stronger sales figure. The resulting backlog of bike products didn’t help Polaris, either, while the stop sale and ride order issued for the Slingshot could still have some long term ramifications for the company in the event a full recall is issued.
That said, Polaris remains optimistic that it can continue growing in 2015. The company already expects to grow its motorcycle division by 50 to 65 percent, a pretty high number that could be achieved if the high volume of sales attributed to Victory and Indian continues and the purchase of Brammo’s EV technology pays off in the electric bike segment.￼
Click past the jump to read more about Polaris’ successful sales year in 2014.
Polaris Industries’ acquisition of “certain electric motorcycle assets” from Brammo made news the previous week, signalling a new opportunity for the former to expand its own lineup of existing models and venture into the the world of EV bikes. The same announcement also included pieces of information on what Brammo’s plans are moving forward. Today, though, we can say with all certainty that Brammo’s future will be dedicated solely on developing world-class electric vehicle drivetrain systems.
That was the announcement made by Brammo founder and CEO Craig Bramscher. According to Bramscher, the Polaris acquisition wasn’t made so that Brammo itself would fall in line with the former’s other bike brands, namely Victory and Indian. Instead, the acquisition fell more in line with the two company’s plans to work side-by-side to develop class-leading electric motorcycles.
Part of that exclusive agreement with Polaris calls for brim to supply its electric powertrains to Polaris, which will then use it for its motorcycles and other on-road and off-road vehicles. The technologies in play here include lithium-ion batteries, electric motors, and associated control electronics, so basically, the set-up would be for Polaris to build the bikes and for Brammo to supply the power trains.
Sounds pretty simple, right?
Click pas the jump to read more about Brammo’s strategy moving forward.
The Polaris Slingshot is apparently not impervious to problems as a recent “stop-sale, stop-ride” order from Polaris has put the Slingshot under scrutiny. Ok, it’s not exactly a recall, but it’s pretty close to one. The possibility of a recall is still likely if Polaris finds some problems with the Slingshot. So if you’re a Slingshot owner, you better be reading pretty carefully by now.
According to Polaris, an investigation is being launched on the possibility that there are some Slingshot models that have defective ball bearings in the steering rack. This problem could lead to a loss of steering, which, as many of you know, is a pretty dangerous situation to be in.
In addition, other Slingshot models are suspected to have roll hoops that fall below Polaris’ own performance specifications. This one is admittedly a little more vague than the defective ball bearings, but it was still a serious enough issue that Polaris has decided to put a stop to all sales of the three-wheeler for the time being, or at least until the issues are all ironed out.
Polaris has said that dealers should expect a full service bulletin this week and that repair parts will be made available in the dealer order system shortly after. The company has yet to comment on how long the stop-sale, stop-ride order will be in place, but if there are real and serious issues with the Slingshot, it might be a good idea to hold of on taking your Slingshots for a ride until Polaris comes out with the results of its investigation on its three-wheeler.
Click past the jump to read more about Polaris’ stop-sale, stop-ride order for the Slingshot.