The five million people in Japan who hold motorcycle licenses have made that country Harley-Davidson's second-largest market after North America. But there are 80 million people in Japan with a driver's license, and the company's Tri Glide trike has made the Harley experience available to that "rich trove of untapped demand" this month for a base price of four million yen ($39,000 US).

Japan categorizes three-wheeled motorcycles as cars and riders don't need to wear helmets, nor do they face any highway restrictions. That makes it a nearly painless way to try out a motorcycle and for those with Easy Rider dreams, "It's a relatively easy way into Harley-Davidson" according to the man in charge of the Japanese outpost.

Two-wheeler sales numbers there have dropped in Japan every year for the past 26 years, whereas Harley posted a one-percent increase in 2013. The Tri Glide should also help Harley continue to fight the decline - as will its India-built Street motorcycle arriving later - and reduce the balance-sheet reliance on North American sales.


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  • 29 Comments
      Trust Honesty
      • 3 Months Ago
      http://www.userhit.com/index.php?r=uniqueheart
      join this website
      Trust Honesty
      • 3 Months Ago
      http://www.probux.com/?r=uniqueheart
      WhoMeWhere
      • 9 Months Ago
      Harley-Davidson has no chance there
        aatbloke1967
        • 9 Months Ago
        @WhoMeWhere
        The very first line of the article states, and I quote: "The five million people in Japan who hold motorcycle licenses have made that country Harley-Davidson's second-largest market after North America." Proof that you're only capable of reading headlines and perusing pretty pictures.
          Steve K
          • 9 Months Ago
          @aatbloke1967
          Reading comprehension obviously isn't WhoMeWhere's forte! LOL
        WhoMeWhere
        • 9 Months Ago
        @WhoMeWhere
        Compare the price of a Japanese bike to this, no chance. Compare the fact that a Japanese bike is more reliable and will not puke oil on your shoes, no chance. The larger engine sizes will be a huge problem for tax and emissions, no chance. Again, Harley-Davidson has no chance
          Mr.Roadrage
          • 9 Months Ago
          @WhoMeWhere
          There are Harley Davidsons all over the place in Japan.
      Jim R
      • 9 Months Ago
      40 grand for a slow, ugly gas guzzler that'll leak oil everywhere and break down constantly? Where do I sign? Yeah, no.
      jodie88
      • 9 Months Ago
      Its funny but Harley bikes and Harley riders share the same description; ugly, heavy, loud, obnoxious, over priced, old looking, badly designed, and badly made. And trikes just make it worse! The only instance where an adult should ride a trike is if they are in some way physically incapable of riding an actual motorcycle... then you can't really fault them. Although there are reverse trike options that are superior in every single metric.
      calan2469
      • 9 Months Ago
      Why would Japan want this American made piece of crap? They already make a superior bike that has a three-wheeler option. The Honda Gold Wing.
        bK
        • 9 Months Ago
        @calan2469
        The grass is greener on the other side. You'd be surprised at how many HD enthusiast are in Japan, all because of the "American" image.
          Dmitriy Markelov
          • 9 Months Ago
          @bK
          Correction, they do a lot of stuff that doesn't make sense to foreigners (particularly the ignorant). It most certainly makes sense in Japan.
        Mr.Roadrage
        • 9 Months Ago
        @calan2469
        I don't think the Goldwing is available as a three-wheeler.
      Edsel
      • 9 Months Ago
      Those I see on trikes are old enough to need mobility walkers when off the trike.
      enriqueg
      • 9 Months Ago
      39000.00 dollars, way over price. they are not worth the headaches, and all the repairs the come with it !
        Hajime1990 #follow
        • 9 Months Ago
        @enriqueg
        everything is expensive here in japan. ex. the stock 911 carrera 2 costs 120000 (thats without any options) so 39000 for a harley is not that overpriced...
      Steve K
      • 9 Months Ago
      The only problem? Trikes are simply lame. Down here in Florida the only people who ride them are so old they probably shouldn't be riding anything.
      E85 450HP Forester
      • 9 Months Ago
      Self-driving cars, cars that talk to each other, trikes...I don't want to live in this world.
      dadslife83
      • 9 Months Ago
      Sigh... another fantastic product - not available here. I don't know if I'd pay 39 large for one but if I had the means it would be in my garage. It should be time we start rescinding some of the stupid portions of well meaning laws and have some real fun again!
        Hi There Paul
        • 9 Months Ago
        @dadslife83
        If it's not available here why is it listed on the Harley web site for $32,549?
      straferhoo
      • 9 Months Ago
      I just don't see the point of trikes and Can-Am Spyders. Combine the disadvantages of motorcyles and cars into one vehicle and charge more than either. If you can't ride two wheels but still want the wind in your face, just get a Miata.
        Dave
        • 9 Months Ago
        @straferhoo
        "If you can't ride two wheels but still want the wind in your face, just get a Miata." My Miata has a windshield.
        manure
        • 9 Months Ago
        @straferhoo
        It's like a not-very fast, totally unsafe car without weather protection. Might as well buy a convertible. Corvette spyder maybe.
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