Harley-Davidson smashes Wall Street forecasts

Picture: Getty
Picture: Getty
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Profits at motorcycle maker Harley-Davidson accelerated by almost a fifth in the first three months of the year as the brand continued to make inroads into Asia.

The US company was also helped by a raft of efficiency efforts that helped it post net income of $265.9 million (£158m), up from $224.1m a year ago and well ahead of Wall Street estimates.

Chief executive Keith Wandell said US motorcycle sales grew 3 per cent to 35,730 despite a long, cold winter.

In the Asia-Pacific region sales roared ahead by more than 20 per cent, as 7,178 of the iconic bikes hit the road during the quarter. In Europe, the Middle East and Africa sales were up 8 per cent to 9,940, while they 
rose 9 per cent in Latin 
America to 2,558. The company started shipping the Harley-Davidson Street 750 and 500 models to a number of new markets.

Wandell said: “These motorcycles, together with continuous improvement in our operations at every level, underscore the momentum we’ve established as a customer-led company.”