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ハーレーが商店街をクレープ屋に向けて暴走、その後への影響 Reckless riding news and impacts of brand in Japan


As the title suggests, the news of several Harley-Davidson trikes and tourers driving through a narrow shopping street along with videos on the news has caused a lot of negative comments about this and about Harley-Davidson in general.


Some say the video is partial and the editing is arbitrary, and I don't know what the facts are as to whether this group was riding on a passable road, but the only thing a normal person would feel about this clipped video is disgust. In recent years, the number of people expressing this kind of disgust has been increasing, not only because the number of loud Harley-Davidsons in the world has increased dramatically, but also because the accumulation of public disgust toward them has reached its maximum.



In Evo era up until 1999 was not completely free of the same problems as today. However, the increase in the number of registered Harley-Davidson bikes since the twin-cam system was introduced, the increase in noise due to the increase in displacement, and the decrease in manners due to the increase in the variety of Harley-Davidson riders have all combined to escalate the situation.

I think Harley-Davidson Japan was also concerned about this trend. For this reason, they had a policy that authorized dealers would not take care of vehicles with modified mufflers and other sound deadening devices, and they showed a stance of not allowing unauthorized modifications.



It seems that various information has already been leaked that the group that caused the problem had been working at Balcom Okayama, which is an authorized dealer with multiple locations in Japan. Balcom Okayama is an authorized dealership with multiple locations in Japan. After the issue came to light, Balcom deleted the related article, which could be called a cover-up.

It's hard to say if they were customizing their bikes in violation of their policy as an authorized dealer or if there was some other reason, but either way, as an authorized dealer, they bear a great deal of responsibility for the damage to the Harley brand caused by this incident.




This is not the first time that a video of a group of noisy Harley riders has been released and the public has looked at them in a negative light. Recently, a video of a BBQ group organized by a store in Sendai was uploaded on Youtube and received harsh comments.

I think there are a number of problems here, but the first major problem is that the people who are making people around them uncomfortable with their explosions may not be aware of it.

Another problem is the structure of the industry, which puts profits first and does not take responsibility for its actions. The custom stores and the magazines that receive the ads are not just dumbing it down, they are lifting it up even more. In this case, even the official store, Balcom, which should not have been involved in this, may have been involved in it. In other words, the industry and the Harley riders who do whatever they want within it are all working together to create a world where insanity is common sense and the world is separated from the world.




There is more at stake than what the law can solve.

In this case, it would not be such a big crime to violate the law by blowing up a shopping mall, and the problem with the muffler would be minor even if they were charged with poor maintenance of the silencer and other parts.

However, many people who like American motorcycles, especially those who ride Harleys, have probably seen this picture of the Hollister riots in California in 1947.

スクリーンショット 2021-03-06 23.36.47.png


この事件は後に「ホリスター暴動」として暴走族が「町を占拠した」ホリスターの「大混乱」などと報道されて全米でセンセーショナルに報道されました。そして この事件の象徴として、このナックルヘッドに座っている酔っ払いの男とその場を捨てられたビール瓶の写真が『ライフ』誌に掲載され、バイクに対する否定的なアウトロー・バイカーのイメージを生み出す要因にもなり、それを払拭するにはかなり長い年月を必要とした過去があります。




Hollister Riot was an incident that occurred during the American Motorcyclist Association (AMA) sanctioned Gypsy Tour Motorcycle Rally held in Hollister, California from July 3 to 6, 1947, when a group of motorcyclists gathered in a small town to watch the annual rally or to drink and have a good time.

This incident was later sensationalized as the "Hollister Riots" in the U.S., with reports of bikers "taking over the town" and "chaos" in Hollister. As a symbol of this incident, a picture of a drunk man sitting on his knucklehead and a discarded beer bottle was published in Life magazine, which helped to create a negative image of bikers as outlaw bikers, an image that took many years to dispel. It took a long time to get rid of it.

It took a long time to get rid of it in the past. Maybe this is the more serious issue because brand impression is not a small issue.

The negative impression of Harley-Davidson is slowly accumulating, especially among young people in Japan, because it is intertwined with the impression of old men, tacky, noisy, and many other things. If this trend continues, Harley-Davidson will become even less popular than it is now, and all those who make a living in this industry will eventually be affected. But who knows what will be the end result of the old men blasting away, selling books and holding events with a commercial focus, and doing whatever they want, and whether this is sustainable.

Annual sales of Harleys in Japan peaked at just over 20,000 units and have already dropped by less than half to nearly 8,000 units in 2020. As long as news like this continues, the industry will continue to slowly shrink. I used to have a slightly better impression of the industry and Harley-Davidson Brands, but I don't think that's the case anymore. That's not a small problem.

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