Despite some years of dwindling sales, Harley-Davidson Inc. is the largest motorcycle company in America and there ‘s little trouble for a dealership to find lenders with finance programs geared toward the vehicles.
Foreign-brand vehicles known as Metric bikes, however, are more difficult for the independent dealer to find programs for, Blake Luecke, general manager of American Motorcycle, told Powersports Finance.
“From a book of business standpoint, the biggest challenge that we have is trying to get good, solid financing for metric motorcycles,” Luecke said. “I think that is the biggest challenge facing independent dealers from a financing standpoint. It’s been that way for years.”
Located in Bedford, Texas, American Motorcycle is an independent dealership that sells every make and model, but the majority of the inventory consists of Harley-Davidsons. The dealership also carries metric brands such as Yamaha, BMW, Kawasaki, Honda, and Suzuki.
A franchised dealership has the benefit of a captive to turn to for financing support. For example, a Yamaha dealership can get loans from Yamaha Motor Finance Corp. USA, which creates programs exclusively for those metric. An independent dealer has to turn to other options, but there aren’t many lenders with strong metric programs.
“There’s just nobody that will do it,” Luecke said. “There are no banks that are doing it aggressively for the independent dealer. Harley and Indian, the financing structures are everywhere, but with metric, it’s a challenge.”