American Motorcycle Dealer AMD 217 August 2017 - Page 24

R3 Classic Twin stop metal-on-metal friction, ultra-low friction seal design, length adjustment fitted as standard, sealed adjusters and a third piston shim stack for very low speed rebound control. The shocks are fully rebuildable and revalveable, have easy adjustment and an infinite range of compression/rebound ratios. Though so far largely only sold in Japan, Nitron has a comprehensive range of aftermarket twin shocks, “possibly the most comprehensive range in the world,” Evans says. “The reason we have been so successful in Japan is the ease with which our shocks can be customized. The Japanese consumer expects a wide range of choice, and due to the modular nature of the parts, which can be assembled in many different ways, we can offer that choice. Apart from the technical specifications, the spring platform might be available in titanium, silver and black, the spring in black, titanium or turquoise and the body in a choice of colors. We can also do limited edition shocks, which we think will be something that will appeal to the Harley aftermarket and to V-twin custom bike builders, and can also supply specials, for example shocks for drag bikes or ones that are shorter than standard. “Our Harley shocks are top-of-the line in both price and specification terms, but they have done so well in Japan that we are becoming increasingly convinced that there is a market for them in the United States too, and among customizers, and we are definitely also interested in leveraging our Off- R1 Classic Twin R1 Stealth Twin “everything is built to order” Road and Adventure Touring shock absorber experience in the Quad market there too.” Nitron currently employs 25 people and expansion is underway at its UK headquarters to give it 10,000 square feet of R&D manufacturing and distribution space. “We can offer distributors and dealers pretty good discounts, and although everything is built to order, we supply everything that is ordered, even a single shock - unlike some other well-known manufacturers, who won’t build and ship until they get sufficient order levels.” With the addition of their ‘TVT’ fork cartridge range earlier this year, Nitron has continued to see incredibly strong growth within the motorcycle suspension market - with overall sales having doubled in the last two years - thanks in large part to success in export markets such as Japan, Australia and New Zealand as well as at home. The company is conscious that growth must be carefully managed, to ensure that the Nitron brand’s hard earned and enviable reputation for quality and service is not compromised. Rather than just trying to find as many partners and distributors in as many markets as possible, as quickly as possible, Nitron’s approach has been similar to its manufacturing philosophy – modular, gradually adding new market R3 Stealth Twin set-ups one at a time and focussing on making them work well before looking for the next opportunity. So far, the company has really only flirted with the US market, but this is why they will be exhibiting at this year’s AIMExpo at Columbus, Ohio, in September. Their presence at the show isn’t so much to launch the brand into the US, “but more for us to be able to talk directly to US consumers and dealers and really start to gain a clearer picture of the US suspension market and exactly where Nitron will fit in,” says Evans. “With further strong growth predicted in our other markets in the next 24 months, a more considered, steady approach is required in the US, so we can start building relationships that will stand the test of time. “With the Nitron range already very strong in sports, touring and adventure bike applications, the growing number of American V-twin models we have covered is almost by default making the brand more appealing to the US market. With sales of our ‘Classic’ and ‘Stealth’ twin shock designs having seen massive growth in sales with virtually no marketing effort, it must prove that our blend of “their shocks are fully rebuildable and revalveable” Street 750 24 AMERICAN MOTORCYCLE DEALER - AUGUST 2017