May 24, 2006 at 12:20 am #12048RadarModerator
Triumph in the USA
By RICHARD TRUETT, Engineering Reporter, Automotive News
WHENEVER I get within earshot of a high-ranking BMW executive, I always ask about Triumph and always get the same answer.
BMW officials say they know that the Triumph marque has a large and devoted following and that the name has great value. It’s worth too much to let anyone else use it, they say.
I have been given these these reasons why Triumph won’t be relaunched:
(1) The brand has been out of production so long that it would be too expensive to re-establish
(2) From Rover, BMW learned it can not be all things to all people and can’t be in every market segment
(3) That BMW will never badge-engineer cars, so there won’t be any Triumphs made from lower contented BMWs or from the Mini platform. Badge engineering would cheapen the BMW brand.
(4) That the dealership network is not able to accept another brand.
(5) That the core BMW brand suffers when its executives are spread too thin.
I believe BMW is being honest and forthcoming in its answers to the Triumph question. I don’t think BMW are being coy. As much I would love to see a new Triumph, I don’t think it will happen and I can offer no encouragement to any Triumph fans based on what I have been told.
But here’s an interesting twist: Earlier this year, Triumph surged past BMW and regained its position as the top-selling brand of European motorcycles in the USA, a position BMW has held since the late Seventies. My spies within the Triumph motorcycle community tell me BMW has made overtures to buy the privately held British motorcycle company, now based in Hinckley. It is not for sale.
As is well known, Triumph was founded by a German, Siegfried Bettman, who moved to Great Britain in the 1880s and who first used the Triumph name on a bicycle in the 1890s Maybe that’s why BMW feels it would be a good corporate parent for the reborn Triumph motorcycle co.
Triumph has been out of production so long
that it would be too expensive
But why would BMW want Triumph motorcycles? Could there be some long-term plan to unite the car and bike in a single showroom in some new retail transportation venture? Who knows? What is for sure is that the USA is key to any plans to relaunch Triumph. No export market was bigger for Triumph than the USA. Still, I am convinced that BMW has no plans at the moment for Triumph.
My feeling on the matter is this: Triumph is a marque in waiting that could be used again if the competitive landscape changes and BMW finds that it must have another brand in which to compete. Triumph can be anything from upscale compact sports saloons to affordable sports cars.
Should BMW decide to relaunch Triumph, they know how to do it based on their experiences with the new Mini Cooper. Perhaps the motorcycle unit is the key that could make a stand-alone Triumph brand from bicycles to cars a reality? We’ll see.
Taken from:May 25, 2006 at 12:22 pm #48979HippoDronesParticipant
Can’t even contemplate that!
BMW screwed MG-R and robbed all the best bits before leaving them high and dry. I realise their demise was also down to other factors but if BMW were to own Triumph then I bet they would do exactly the same. If they can’t compete with their own vehicals in a niche then they buy it, rob it and then bin it.May 25, 2006 at 11:10 pm #48980RadarModerator
Originally posted by Pete247
Can’t even contemplate that!
BMW screwed MG-R and robbed all the best bits before leaving them high and dry. I realise their demise was also down to other factors but if BMW were to own Triumph then I bet they would do exactly the same. If they can’t compete with their own vehicals in a niche then they buy it, rob it and then bin it.
That is what struck me too Pete, hope they clear off and stick to making bikes for Golfers!
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