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August 13, 2007 – Aftermarket Digest

August 13, 2007
Filed under Features

S&S Cycle Announces 50th Anniversary Plans
To celebrate its upcoming 50th anniversary, S&S Cycle Inc. has put together a fitting celebration.
The event will include 50 builders using 50 S&S engines to build 50 custom bikes and compete for a $50,000 grand prize.
The engines will incorporate six engine families: the SH-Series, V-Series, SB-Series, T-Series, all-new X-Wedge and a special engine to be announced on Oct. 1 on www.sscycle.com. These 50 engines will wear serial numbers starting at 1958 and running up to 2008 — the 51st will go into an S&S special project bike —commemorating their place in this special event.
The plan is for a three-day mini-festival to take place in La Crosse, Wis., with dates tentatively set for June 28-30. Mayor Bialeki of neighboring Onalaska and Mayor Johnsrud of La Crosse have promised the full support of both cities for the event.
“It is a very humbling thought that we are preparing to celebrate our 50th anniversary in 2008,” said S&S President Brett Smith. “My grandparents founded an industry leader, the second generation grew the business to new heights and my generation has been charged with responsibility of guiding and stewarding this business into a new era of competition in the V-twin industry.”
Joe Rocket Announces New Apparel with Kawasaki
Randy Robison, president of Joe Rocket, announced a licensing agreement with Kawasaki Motors Corp. U.S.A. that will allow Joe Rocket to produce a full line of sport and cruiser street apparel featuring style, design and traits that are representative of Kawasaki’s heritage.
“Kawasaki and Joe Rocket are both championship brands,” Robison said in a press release, “and our new licensing agreement is a natural progression of our relationship.”
Joe Rocket has enjoyed a history of successful co-branding with Kawasaki. Personal endorsement programs are currently in place with Rocket Racers: Roger Lee Hayden, reigning AMA Champion Jamie Hacking, Steve Rapp, drag racer Rickey Gadson and factory supported stunter Kane Friesen.
“With peak performance and our customers in mind, we have joined forces with Joe Rocket to offer Kawasaki enthusiasts a line of riding gear that is rivaled only by their bikes,” said James Kimura, Kawasaki’s licensing manager. “Their support of our riders makes this agreement a powerful extension to our program.”
The launch of the 2008 apparel took place July 21 during an AMA/MotoGP event.
Web Site Aims To Connect Online Consumers, Dealers
SmartCycleShopper.com recently relaunched its new Web site, SmartCycleShopper.com, a resource the company says will improve and simplify the motorcycle research and buying experience by providing comprehensive vehicle research and shopping tools.
Following the lead from the automotive industry, SmartCycleShopper has entered into the lead generation business, which gives motorcycle manufactures and dealers new ways to reach qualified buyers and makes the buying process more effortless for consumers. Motorcycle shoppers will do their research, decide on a new bike and then have the ability to “get a price quote” for the exact motorcycle they want from their local dealers.
Visitors will find all-new motorcycle research and comparison tools, along with the ability to shop by manufacturer, motorcycle type or price range. SmartCycleShopper also offers expert reviews, video reviews, buying tips and current incentive information.
Carlisle’s Web Site Matches Consumer To Correct Tire
Carlisle Tire and Wheel Company Inc. launched a new consumer Web site that is designed to match ATV owners to the tires that will work best for where they ride.
The new Carlisle Web site is called “The Road Trip” and is at www.carlisletire.com/roadtrip. The site invites visitors to drive an on-screen ATV over a number of varying terrains to discover which Carlisle ATV tires work best on their machine, for that terrain.
Visitors first choose their brand, model and year of ATV and then are set loose on a landscape that changes from farm fields to mud bogs to hard surfaces. Based on the specs of their machine, the Web site showcases the brand, tread and sizes of Carlisle tires that work best for each terrain and kind of ATV riding.
“We know it can be complicated for consumers to select a set of OEM replacement tires for their ATVs,” noted Rhett Turpin, Carlile sales manager “So we created a simple and fun way for ATV owners to quickly identify the best tire choices for their machine.”
“Tire shoppers will not only be impressed with Carlisle’s updated ATV product line, but also with the state-of-the-art motion graphics and interactivity we built into the site,” added Jeff Waechter, Carlisle’s aftermarket manager.
Future plans for the site include an ATV riding game where visitors can compete on an obstacle course.
HiPer Technology Issues Limited Edition Team Wheel
HiPer Technology Inc., a Kansas company specializing in carbon fiber products, will issue a limited number of advanced ATV racing wheels to a select pool of their top riders.
HiPer, which utilizes a proprietary injection molding process, is supplying the team issue wheels to its top riders to assist with their championship chase.
The Team Issue wheel exceeds the strength of HiPer’s Tech 3 wheel while reducing weight further. The billet single bolt pattern centers are anodized blue or red.
RMD Billet Offers Aftermarket Parts for Big Dog Motorcycles
RMD Billet announced a number of aftermarket parts for Big Dog Motorcycles.
RMD Billet revealed a sleek Big Dog three-inch open belt drive, which is a billet machined, right-side inner primary drive. It is fully radiused and machined with a unique geometry. The three-inch open belt drive also features a Bandit clutch, hidden jackshaft and ring gear system. Now available for the 2005 and newer Big Dog models, this belt drive also fits the pre-2005 Big Dog models. The ready-to-install system includes billet pulley covers, center plate and an inner primary spacer as well as a full pulley/clutch.
RMD Billet has other aftermarket parts available for Big Dog motorcycles as well. It’s three-piece wheels fit Big Dog motorcycles. Hubs are machined from 6061 billet aluminum and the wheels come assembled with sealed bearings and bearing spacers installed. RMD Billet is a family-owned shop located in southwest Minnesota. You can contact them at www.rmdbillet.com or 507/348-8877.
H-D To Sell System That Seeks To Cut Down Service Time
Mitchell International, a provider of information, workflow and performance management solutions to the collision claims and repair industries, announced a marketing and sales partnership with Harley-Davidson Inc.
Through this partnership, Harley-Davidson will market and sell Mitchell’s UltraMate Motorcycle to its dealers.
UltraMate Motorcycle, according to Mitchell, eliminates the time spent manually entering repair estimate data and makes importing estimates into shop management systems easier. Having access to accurate parts and labor information allows users to create work orders faster and easier than ever before.
UltraMate Motorcycle for Harley-Davidson users reported a reduction in per estimate time from an average 2-3 hours to less than 30 minutes, with a typical user reporting an average estimate time of 15 minutes, according to a Mitchell press release. This equates to an average of 15-25 hours saved per month.
“In the bike business, there are significant seasonal and repeat customer factors at work, so shorter repair cycle times translate into happier customers and a more profitable shop,” Robert Carey, parts and service manager at Harley-Davidson of Danbury, an early adopter of the new Harley-Davidson/UltraMate Motorcycle system, said in a press release. “UltraMate Motorcycle has enabled our shop to reduce cycle times by quickly creating fair and accurate motorcycle repair estimates that our insurance partners can understand and readily accept.”
Parker Synergies To Produce New Line of Honda Apparel
Parker Synergies has entered into a licensing agreement with American Honda Motor Co. Inc., Parker Synergies said in a press release July 16. The comprehensive agreement calls for Parker Synergies to design, manufacture and market Honda-branded motorcycle apparel with Tucker Rocky as the exclusive distributor.
“We intend to bring innovative style and function to the Honda rider with creative campaigns like the Project H apparel collection and marketing initiative,” said Bruce Parker, Parker Synergies president, in the release.
Parker held a limited rollout for its 2008 Honda apparel and unveiled the Project H CBR1000 motorcycle at the Honda Official Licensed Product Display at Laguna Seca Raceway July 20 during the U.S. MotoGP event.
Thor MX Launches Newly Designed Web Site
Thor MX, a provider of motocross gear and apparel for 40 years, launched a newly designed Web site, www.thormx.com.
This new site showcases the 2008 product line of race wear and accessories, including the core colors burgundy, spearmint and concrete, among others.
With bolder graphics, a creative display program and an intuitive navigation system, consumers can browse through this flash-based site with ease. All product images pop up with the matching set of the jersey, pants and gloves, making it easy for consumers to put together their MX wish list so they’re ready to visit their local dealer. There’s also a “How to Buy” section where consumers can click on a list of online dealers and order it right away.
Honda Designates Approved Vendor Status to 50 Below
50 Below, provider of OEM dealer Web sites, has been named an approved vendor by American Honda Motor Co., which allows 50 Below to make available to Honda dealers a new Web site and e-commerce program. These exclusive dealer packages will include Honda branded Web sites and online stores.
“We are happy to be working with 50 Below as an approved Web site vendor,”?George Harmon, AHM motorcycle advertising, said in a press release.
Honda dealers seeking more information are encouraged to contact a 50 Below representative at 866/414-5293. psb

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