I just got back into snowmobiling.. Some times I have no exposure to this Info.Shutting down the productions lines for 2019 in Japan?
Apex, Phazer, Vector and Venture are gone?
4% of the market?
Only (3) new in season full size sleds to be available?
"The entire Yamaha snowmobile lineup is much leaner for 2019, with a total of just 12 models – down from 34 just one year ago.
Eight Sidewinder models, along with the Viper L-TX, Viking 540, Snoscoot ES and SRX120."
My thoughts are similar to yours.. Textron started selling UTV's with Texgtron labeling and they did not sell well .. Some Dealers had to take Textron Logos off and put Arctic Cat Logos on them.. to sell them. Now the new ones will all be Branded Arctic Cat..I completely agree that we should ALL hope that Yamaha and Arctic Cat continue in the snowmobile business, it is good for the industry and great for us the consumer.
Many things about the Textron purchase of Arctic Cat are not that well known or publisized for instance Textron has already been in the snowmobile business and for 13yrs they owned Polaris Industries 1968 to 1981. That Textron own's Weber Engine Manufacturing in Germany (they made the Polaris 750 Turbo), that Textron has closed down the German motor production and has moved it to St. Cloud MN. Textron has also closed the Augusta, GA UTV Stampede production line and moved it to Thief River Falls, MN. Textron has closed the Arctic Cat head office in Minneapolis and moved it to Providence RI (their HO). There are many other synergies that Textron has done and is actively working on; I know 1st hand that they are consolidating third party suppliers of many, many components as well as raw goods and this is of great value for all recreational aspects of the company and will greatly help the bottom line.
Where does this leave Yamaha? I'm really not sure but I do know that Arctic Cat and now Textron are very happy with the partnership with Yamaha todate. Textron is a major international company in good financial standings, they are valued by both their consumers and their stock share holders, as is Yamaha. The main reason Textron purchased Arctic Cat is it was CHEAP to do so, in fact the very first postive move Textron did when they purchased AC is to buy the company stock at a 41% increase over its previous AC stock price. This was done to minimize the impact of the purchase to their current Textron stock and its holders and to strengthen the value of its acquisition with creditor's. Was this a good idea, well Textron's stock hit a high on Dec 23, 16 at a hair under $50usd/stock, 3 months later their stock was only down by a hair less than 5%, but 1 year to the date of buying AC Textron was trading at just a hair under $61usd per share. This is approx 20% increase in stock value, this rarely happens and show's me the strength of the purchase. Now not 100% of this 20% increase is a direct result of the purchase, but it does show that even investors see the valve behind it.
With the synergies Yamaha and Textron now share, this could be a match made in heaven or a divorce on the horizon. I'm hopeful for a match made in heaven and I think we should all hope for the same. Losing 1 or even 2 manufactures in snowmobiles would hurt us all.
I read that Polaris started by Three Men two of them were Brothers. One Brother didn't agree .. he left and Started Arctic Cat. Sleds were so simple in the 1960's and 1970's that anyone could build them.Textron is in the business of business $$$, if AC doesn't turn their sled ship around quickly it will sink, that is business. Textron would have no problem shutting the sled division down it would free up space for their anticipated grow markets. Textron bought AC for its DIRT division its the ONLY reason for the purchase, Yamaha wanted to buy AC SNOW division only in 2012 but AC would not separate the company so an ALL or nothing buy out which Textron has done. BRP tried to purchase Polaris back in the 80's but was not allowed as US Antitrust Resistance would not permit it, maybe Yamaha ran into the same situation? Textron is a USA, Canadian and Austrian military (maybe more) supplier of various equipment and arms (which for Textron provides 25% of its total revenue), so too is Polaris Industries with SOCOM and the US military providing 7 different ATV/UTV's and an $11 million dollar agreement; Textron will be very focusing in on this side of the dirt business and should see immediate results. With the ATV/UTV's global growth around 10% per year and projected growth around 8% per year 2018-2022 it is lucrative to say the least. 2015/16 saw snowmobile sales at a -15% decline and a projected decline of -5% 2018-2022, sounds bad doesn't it.
Okay so on an upside, Textron / Yamaha will be pulling out all of the stop's on their sled line ups in the next few years, we should see some major changes and new innovative products and technology if this doesn't happen by 2020 its bad news. The new Alpha one could be a game changer but only time will tell, if it is AC will gain more market share in the biggest market in snowmobiling which would help SAVE AC sleds. Textron has done a shit job in marketing the Alpha One, they had demo rides April 4, 5, 6th in Revelstoke, BC and not one thing on Youtube nothing on their website, basically nothing on feedback from the lucky guys that got to ride them, that is brutal by AC/Textron and then they wonder why they aren't selling sleds.
AC will not drop Yamaha anytime soon, if they walk away from Yamaha they'll be running away from Snowmobiles and it will be over for Arctic Cat. Yamaha could easily switch to a Polaris chassis and offer Yamaha power, it wouldn't be to hard and I'm sure Polaris would love to help them out.
And in another dozen years, chances are only one will be left.I read that Polaris started by Three Men two of them were Brothers. One Brother didn't agree .. he left and Started Arctic Cat. Sleds were so simple in the 1960's and 1970's that anyone could build them.
There were over 100 Snowmobile Manufacturers now there are basically 3.5 left..