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Old 01-27-2019, 02:23 PM   #1
Neon Samurai
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Anyone know the story on why they closed? Anyone know whos going to take Aprilia dealership in Houston?
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Old 01-27-2019, 07:32 PM   #2
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Low sales from what I hear.
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Old 01-30-2019, 07:43 AM   #3
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The motorcycle industry is in trouble. All new bike sales are down here in the US. , the whole motorcycle industry in general here is different from what it once was even a few years ago.

Iím not overly surprised IS closed. Italian bikes are more popular and much better than they were 10-20 years ago, but it is still a nitch market and A hard sell.

Looking how dead some of the other dealers are too, I would bet 2 to 3 more closing before the year is over.
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Old 01-30-2019, 08:17 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rttoys View Post
The motorcycle industry is in trouble. All new bike sales are down here in the US. , the whole motorcycle industry in general here is different from what it once was even a few years ago.

Iím not overly surprised IS closed. Italian bikes are more popular and much better than they were 10-20 years ago, but it is still a nitch market and A hard sell.

Looking how dead some of the other dealers are too, I would bet 2 to 3 more closing before the year is over.
Expensive bike sales are way down. Sport bikes keep getting more and more expensive with all the added tech. Dirt bikes are twice as expensive as they were 10 years ago. Millennials and new riders these days like less expensive bikes.
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Old 01-30-2019, 08:36 AM   #5
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Expensive bike sales are way down. Sport bikes keep getting more and more expensive with all the added tech. Dirt bikes are twice as expensive as they were 10 years ago. Millennials and new riders these days like less expensive bikes.
Not to mention even prices on used bikes are through the roof. I remember when you could pick up 50s and other trail bikes all day long for between 500-1000 bucks. Not anymore
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Old 01-30-2019, 10:33 AM   #6
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Your not the only one out of luck. There are others searching for a reasonable option. As far as I can tell the nearest authorized service is in Austin, AF1. I am not excited to be taking my Tuono there for a valve check (its a bit overdue right now) and even less so for the coming valve adjustment. I guess I'm going to have to get a hotel in Austin and wait.
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Old 01-30-2019, 11:38 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Giraffapus View Post
Your not the only one out of luck. There are others searching for a reasonable option. As far as I can tell the nearest authorized service is in Austin, AF1. I am not excited to be taking my Tuono there for a valve check (its a bit overdue right now) and even less so for the coming valve adjustment. I guess I'm going to have to get a hotel in Austin and wait.
Im taking mine there on feb. 15th for the same thing. I dont think its done in 1 day but im not sure. Im going to drop mine off the day before.
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Old 01-30-2019, 04:51 PM   #8
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Not surprising its closing down. And I agree with the fact more will be closing down. Bike prices these days are insane. Most people cant afford to spend 15 20k on a toy. I had the option of buying a new bike last year and opted to buy several used bikes instead and finance a new truck. And italian bikes themselves are a super niche market. At least I think so.
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Old 01-30-2019, 09:21 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rttoys View Post
The motorcycle industry is in trouble. All new bike sales are down here in the US. , the whole motorcycle industry in general here is different from what it once was even a few years ago.

Iím not overly surprised IS closed. Italian bikes are more popular and much better than they were 10-20 years ago, but it is still a nitch market and A hard sell.

Looking how dead some of the other dealers are too, I would bet 2 to 3 more closing before the year is over.
This should be Pasadena kawasaki last week in business as well
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Old 01-31-2019, 10:46 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HaywoodJablomi View Post
Not surprising its closing down. And I agree with the fact more will be closing down. Bike prices these days are insane. Most people cant afford to spend 15 20k on a toy. I had the option of buying a new bike last year and opted to buy several used bikes instead and finance a new truck. And italian bikes themselves are a super niche market. At least I think so.
I totally agree with that statement but just for the record, Houstonians have one for the largest percentages of disposable income in the nation. I'm not sure its true today but only a few years back we had more "millionaires" than any other city in the U.S. (by that I mean the most people who had at least 1 million in assets." Age is often a corollary with wealth of course so that doesn't really effect the lack of young customers entering the sport or buying new bikes. Of the time I spent at Italian Superbikes, all the customers saw were over thirty and the great majority were over 45.

Last edited by Kenneth; 01-31-2019 at 10:49 AM.
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Old 01-31-2019, 02:41 PM   #11
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Quote:
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I totally agree with that statement but just for the record, Houstonians have one for the largest percentages of disposable income in the nation. I'm not sure its true today but only a few years back we had more "millionaires" than any other city in the U.S. (by that I mean the most people who had at least 1 million in assets." Age is often a corollary with wealth of course so that doesn't really effect the lack of young customers entering the sport or buying new bikes. Of the time I spent at Italian Superbikes, all the customers saw were over thirty and the great majority were over 45.
Definitely an older crowd there. Bobby, the original owner, made a good move to get out when he could.
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Old 01-31-2019, 04:53 PM   #12
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Using Austin for service seems like a reach. Not sure what I'll do for my RSV4, but I'm hoping that there is a chance that AF-1 runs a truck to Houston every once in a while. Or something else, but I can't see me hauling the bike to Austin.
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Old 01-31-2019, 05:11 PM   #13
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Using Austin for service seems like a reach. Not sure what I'll do for my RSV4, but I'm hoping that there is a chance that AF-1 runs a truck to Houston every once in a while. Or something else, but I can't see me hauling the bike to Austin.
I hear you but when itís timd for a valve adjustment, canít exactly ignore them. A pickup service would be awesome and I know Brian (Italian Superbikes owner) reaches out to them about it but I havenít heard any good news on that front yet. Keeping my fingers crossed.
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Old 02-01-2019, 08:04 AM   #14
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AF1 are the real deal. I think you lot will be happy
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Old 02-01-2019, 10:04 AM   #15
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A mini and Grom only dealer would make a killing.
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Old 02-01-2019, 11:36 AM   #16
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A mini and Grom only dealer would make a killing.
With decent prices used groms. Not 100 dollars less than msrp
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Old 02-01-2019, 12:13 PM   #17
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AF1 are the real deal. I think you lot will be happy
AF1 is probably one of the best Aprilia shops in the US. Lot of people in other states ship their bikes to them for work. I bought a new Aprilia from them back in 2009 and it was a great experience. You don't have to wait for most parts to be delivered because they also have a large retail operation. When I bought my bike there they laid about six different exhausts out on a table for me to choose from. Also added some carbon fiber parts and they had both OEM and a couple aftermarkets options. Installed everything for free in about an hour and off I went.
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Old 02-03-2019, 07:24 AM   #18
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Italian Superbikes closed due to the lack of profitability in the market. Bike sales are down 12-15% nationally on Superbikes (750cc and above) but the bigger problem for us was the fact that Piaggio, the parent company for Aprilia and Moto Guzzi, has a glut of both Marques in the US. There is a years worth of Aprilias and Moto Guzzis in the market place plus more in there warehouses. Somehow, dealers in remote places are able to sell new Aprilias at vastly under MSRP, eg. 2017 RSV4RF $16,999 vs $23,999. Small dealers cant compete. Moto Guzzis aren't selling. Piaggio also ties Aprilia with Moto Guzzi. RPM Cycles in Dallas asked to cancel the Moto Guzzi franchise and were told that Aprilia would go with it. They got rid of both. Now RPM is gone leaving AF1 as the only Aprilia dealer in Texas. Piaggio are going to find it difficult to sign new dealers due to there business practices.
AF1 have there own problems. They are taking on more niche marques in order to diversify. They do have their parts business which is their backbone. I have asked the owner to put on a truck to pick up bikes in Houston at least twice per month. They are considering it. They also have a 4 week backlog of service due to the loss of their main technician for Aprilia and Ducati. They have not been able to find a replacement. There are no technicians out there that have the experience to work on the Italian Marques. Those that have the skills are jealously guarded by their employers. That is the real threat to our industry. Also, purchasing from online retailers both in the US and Europe has hurt your dealer with his most profitable lines. There are several European dealers that can sell under US costs for Astars, Dainese, SIDI etc. Revzilla and the like are no real threat as Dealers can sell at whatever price they want. They just cant advertise it. I undercut Revzilla and the like daily. So, support your local dealer before you don't have one to sell you parts and service your bike.
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Old 02-04-2019, 01:50 PM   #19
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Italian Superbikes closed due to the lack of profitability in the market. Bike sales are down 12-15% nationally on Superbikes (750cc and above) but the bigger problem for us was the fact that Piaggio, the parent company for Aprilia and Moto Guzzi, has a glut of both Marques in the US. There is a years worth of Aprilias and Moto Guzzis in the market place plus more in there warehouses. Somehow, dealers in remote places are able to sell new Aprilias at vastly under MSRP, eg. 2017 RSV4RF $16,999 vs $23,999. Small dealers cant compete. Moto Guzzis aren't selling. Piaggio also ties Aprilia with Moto Guzzi. RPM Cycles in Dallas asked to cancel the Moto Guzzi franchise and were told that Aprilia would go with it. They got rid of both. Now RPM is gone leaving AF1 as the only Aprilia dealer in Texas. Piaggio are going to find it difficult to sign new dealers due to there business practices.
AF1 have there own problems. They are taking on more niche marques in order to diversify. They do have their parts business which is their backbone. I have asked the owner to put on a truck to pick up bikes in Houston at least twice per month. They are considering it. They also have a 4 week backlog of service due to the loss of their main technician for Aprilia and Ducati. They have not been able to find a replacement. There are no technicians out there that have the experience to work on the Italian Marques. Those that have the skills are jealously guarded by their employers. That is the real threat to our industry. Also, purchasing from online retailers both in the US and Europe has hurt your dealer with his most profitable lines. There are several European dealers that can sell under US costs for Astars, Dainese, SIDI etc. Revzilla and the like are no real threat as Dealers can sell at whatever price they want. They just cant advertise it. I undercut Revzilla and the like daily. So, support your local dealer before you don't have one to sell you parts and service your bike.
That happened back in 2009. New Tuonos were $12k. You could get them OTD for $8k to $9k. There were shitloads of them just collecting dust in warehouses.
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Old 02-05-2019, 11:15 AM   #20
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We have serviced Aprilia for a very long time, and can help you with your service needs.
Interesting bit of history; we actually looked at becoming a dealer back in 2004 right before Piaggio bought them. Matter of fact the rep was coming in to go over the papers when a friend called me to alert the pending acquisition by Piaggio.
We stalled the deal to see how that would go down. Obviously we weren't interested afterwards.
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