nuther not-so-good Harley Dealer experience

Discussion in 'Buell' started by Baggh, Sep 4, 2009.

  1. Baggh

    Baggh Active Member

    Well.. I took my XB12S to get its TX safety inspection this morning. Since I bought my XB and have it serviced at my local Harley Dealer I naturally went there. btw... this is the first motorcycle inspection I made it too... I usually trade my bikes in before owning them for a year. The XB almost didn't make it... almost traded it in on my 1125CR... but I ended up keeping both :)

    on with the horror...

    So I pull my bike into the inspection bay. Immediately the service rep stated I needed a front AND rear tire. I knew the front needed replaced but the rear! I just had it put on at that dealer 4K miles ago. I still was going to go ahead and have it replaced. $496 would have been the final tally.

    I asked the rep to place the inspection sticker on the swing arm to alleviate the rear eyesore. She said she couldn't do that... that the sticker HAD to be 10" from the plate. I blink at her... and tell her that 3 qtrs of the Harleys I see have the sticker mounted pretty much wherever on their bikes. So she recommends placing it at "X" location. I'm like... but umm.. thats about 15" from the plate... it would be jus tas far if you move it vertically down to place it on the swingarm. She just wouldn't do it.

    Soooooo... I declined getting the work done there. I was ready to pull the trigger on the tires too. I understand being by-the-book... I myself am a conservative "by-the-book" sort of guy but geeze... give me some consistency. Dont tell me the sticker HAS to be within 10" but recommend a position much further than this and claim you are being by-the-book. In TX it is required that you have a "Helmet Exempt" sticker on your plate in order to go helmetless... yet 9.9 out of 10 Harley riders ignore this law. I have the Helmet Exempt sticker by the way. So... I was kind fo put off by the "adhering to the law when it is convenient" stance the dealer was taking. I have had problems with this rep in the past not knowing her stuff.

    I left the dealer and went to Leslie Porterfields dealership. If you don't know... Leslie is the "fastest woman on 2 wheels". She did 234 mph on the salt flats. If you google her plenty of info will come up. I feel pretty fortunate to have so many cool bike shops around. Strokers, High 5 cycles (Leslie's shop).

    Leslie's shop hooked me up. My rear tire passed inspection (the wear markers on the tire were fine the rep quickly told me). The front tire was much cheaper here but great quality (Michelen Pilots). The service dept was very cool and loved my bike. I chimed in other posts stating that Harley Dealers treat Buells like unwanted step childs. The rest of the bike community really appreciates these things.

    So just going down the road saved me big bucks. Harley wanted $85 labor to change the front wheel (1 hour rate.. for a job that takes about 15 minutes). High 5 Cycles charged me about $40. AND they put my inspection sticker on my swing arm where I wanted it. The service guy said that he just went thru an insepction brush up course and that the sticker only need be in plain view. Which makes sense cause I see stickers all over the place on these bikes around here.

    What was going to cost me $500... ended up costing me $192. If I would have gotten the rear as well at High 5 it would have been around $350.

    Harley Dealers... you really need to up your love for the Buells... and your know-how about these bikes.

    When I bought my 1125CR I actually told the salesman about how us Buell owners are treated... and that word on the street within forums and such is to stay away from Buell given the Dealer's lack of support and know-how about these bikes. He stated that he can understand how I, and others, feel this way and that it is true.. most Harley Dealers are not fond of the Buells. I asked him why... he said cause he is not comfortable talking about them cause he doesn't know enough about them.

    I just blinked and thought... umm... well learn about them... you might be impressed by their engineering and power... if that isn't enough... learn because its your job.

    oh well... I will no longer go to Harley for tires or any other misc. work (other than services cause i already bought the service agreement with my bikes).

    I luv the Harleys and Buells (the VRod is HOT) but many of the people working at the dealers are ... well... less than professional.
  2. glider

    glider Veteran Member

    It's too bad that personnel working on the bikes at the dealers aren't all of the same level instead of the people like you came in contact with that obviously doesn't know her job.
  3. vtbikers

    vtbikers Active Member

    I would think they should know about all of the of product lines that they are selling.
    I think the dealers need to think back to the 70's when HD's were not selling so good.
    I also think that the popularity of Harley's in the 90's put them back on their high horse. They should remember that we are the ones that keep HD and the dealers alive.
  4. R. Lewis

    R. Lewis Senior Member Retired Moderators


    Nothing personal --- but -- why are you doing this every year ????? how many bikes have you had in the last 10 yrs or so???? to each there own , but man !!!!??????

    BTW - sorry about the bad experience!

    NEWHD74FAN Experienced Member Retired Moderators

    Baggh, don't feel bad, good service is hard to come by and yes even my Sporty sometimes feels like the "Red Headed Step Child" and it seems the Buell is treated like a "Foster Child"...even though the bloodlines are through and through Harley. Wonder what is going to happen if the air cooled engine gets EPA'd or government regulated out of existance...or the Big Twins migrate to water cooled, it could happen and yes, it is a scary thought.
  6. Baggh

    Baggh Active Member

    The woman I am referring to... the Harley rep that doesn't know her stuff... well... when I was thinking about putting a Jardine on my XB I happened to be getting a Harley service. So I asked her if I needed to get my bike remapped or what not due to the new pipe. She said most definitely I will... that it will cost about $350 for the remapping\ chip\ etc. While she was answering me a tech walked into the service bay for something. So I asked him... he said that nothing else needs done... that the bike will run fine and gain X amount of horses.. and sound awesome. The woman just shrugged her shoulders and commenced staring at her computer monitor as if she was eyeballing the controls to the space shuttle or something... face all contorted\ confused.

    This tech (and Hobbit) were spot on correct. I have had a Jardine pipe put on both my XB and 1125CR... with no other work needed.

    I have no idea how this woman still works there... I guess because she brings in a TON of dough to the dealership... she almost took me for $500 today... and had me convinced my sticker had to be someplace other than where I wanted it. You are supposed to trust these people have your best interests in mind... and be fellow bike lovers. Not the case with some.

    R Lewis... hah.. well... you know as well as I do that there is a very real sickness in wanting more power (most harley dealers have the "trade-up" purchase plan for this very reason)... and of course you have to find the right bike for you. When I started riding the street again about 3 years ago I started out on a suzuki 650 savage... thinking that was too big at the time for my needs. About 2 weeks later I wanted more power and cooler. So I traded that in on a Sportster (which I loved)... 5 months later traded that in on my XB... about 6 months later I tried to trade that in on a 1125R... I was soooo upside down on my financing due to all these trades that it made the most sense just purchase the 1125CR outright and keep the XB... which I am glad that I did cause I love that thing.

    In about 2~4yrs I see trading the XB in on a Nightster or Vrod... That would be the perfect stable :) 1125CR\ Vrod... yep.. nice. Well see.

    So in nutshell... when you're writing that check out every month there better be a smile on your mug... if not... then you have the wrong bike. I know cause I'm paying for those mistakes now... also... prob a good idea to get a bike that you may feel is too large for you when you originally buy it... you'll def grow into it. another lesson I learned... don't mod a bike unless you know the bike is a keeper. I plopped about 2 K worth of Harley taxes into my Sportster... none of which helped me during trade in :(
  7. glider

    glider Veteran Member

    Pretty much tells the story here and $350 is about $200 more than it costs elsewhere.
  8. they dont call em STEALERSHIPS FOR NOTTIN.........................