Motorcycles: Harley-Davidson Has 22% Upside as Sales Start to Heat Up, Says Analyst

Harley-Davidson Has Missed the Mark in Electric Transportation

  Harley-Davidson Has Missed the Mark in Electric Transportation The company can't get over its past success.Despite all of these challenges, Harley-Davidson stock is up 82% over the past year, and investors seem optimistic about a turnaround. But there's good reason to think that won't happen for this leisure stock.

Sales of Harley-Davidson (NYSE: HOG) motorcycles are roaring back to life, according to one Wall Street analyst who believes that's worth lifting his price target on the stock from $55 per share to $60, or 20% above where the bike maker's stock closed on Thursday.

a man riding a motorcycle down a dirt road: Harley-Davidson Has 22% Upside as Sales Start to Heat Up, Says Analyst © Provided by The Motley Fool Harley-Davidson Has 22% Upside as Sales Start to Heat Up, Says Analyst

Wedbush analyst James Hardiman tells investors in a research note that his channel checks show Harley-Davidson is gaining traction among motorcycle buyers again. April sales were running 5% to 7% above the levels they hit in 2019 while May sales were sprinting higher by low double-digit rates.

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If those figures pan out, it could mean the motorcycle manufacturer truly has found the bottom of its yearslong sales slide.

a man riding a motorcycle down a dirt road: A Harley-Davidson Pan America 1250. © Harley-Davidson A Harley-Davidson Pan America 1250.

Investors have been burned before by overly optimistic assessments of Harley-Davidson's ability to pull out of its sales decline, but there could be something this time to Hardiman's bullishness.

First-quarter U.S. sales surged 30% from the year-ago period, not especially surprising considering 2020 was marred by the global pandemic, yet they were also 10% above 2019 levels. Profits were even stronger, quadrupling year over year.

COVID-19 aside, Harley-Davidson is in a much better place than it was last year or even the year before. CEO Jochen Zeitz has narrowed the bike maker's global ambitions, retained its focus on the U.S. market, and is committed to introducing a smaller lineup of new models while also taking Harley further into the world of electric vehicles.

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  Harley-Davidson Jumps as Bank of America Sees Pent-Up Demand Bank of America initiated coverage of Harley-Davidson at buy with a $55 price target based on pent-up demand for motorcycles.Shares of Harley-Davidson were higher on Wednesday after analysts at Bank of America initiated coverage of the motorcycle icon with a buy rating and $55 price target.

And by all accounts, the recently introduced Pan America 1250 adventure touring bike is turning heads and causing people to open their wallets, too. It's a new vertical for Harley and a new style, and one that was achieved while not abandoning its heritage.

A few weeks remain in the current quarter, but this could be where Harley-Davidson opens up the throttle again.

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Harley-Davidson Finally Has a Winning Electric Motorcycle .
The motorcycle giant is making its electric bike a competitive powerhouse.By making LiveWire a separate operating business distinct from the Harley brand, this small but significant change could help its electric motorcycle become a viable business in its own right that returns the motorcycle maker to growth.

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