No more Harleys for ANZA
Palmerston North’s Harley-Davidson owners may soon have to head out on the highway if they’re looking to get their bikes serviced.
ANZA Motorcycles has been a Harley-Davidson dealership for almost 30 years, but the popular motorcycle manufacturer has decided not to renew the contract when it ends in April.
Harley-Davidson Owners Group central districts chapter director Graeme Mills said the decision would leave Manawatu Harley-Davidson owners with a long ride to get parts or servicing from authorised Harley-Davidson technicians.
The nearest remaining Harley-Davidson dealership is in Wellington, and the next closest is in Hamilton.
ANZA owners Kerry Jones and wife Grace Johnstone didn’t wish to comment on the end of their dealership arrangement with Harley-Davidson, but posted a message on the company’s Facebook page thanking customers for their support and kind comments since the news come out.
The post said ANZA would remain ‘‘fully operational’’ as an authorised Harley-Davidson dealership until April 28.
‘‘We do not know what will happen after April regarding an authorised dealership [in Palmerston North]. This is in the hands of Harley-Davidson.’’
Mills said Harleys were probably the most popular motorcycle in Manawatu-Whanganui - there are 309 members in the owners group and many riders in the seven motorcycle clubs in the region had a Harley-Davidson.
Riders with newer bikes still under warranty would be the most affected. Getting their bike serviced by an un-authorised technician would void the warranty.
The news also meant the club needed to find another dealership to sponsor it in order to remain an official Harley-Davidson club.
Mills said the club had a ‘‘tight’’ relationship with ANZA and hoped that could continue, even on a more informal basis.
‘‘They’ve been an amazing sponsor and done a lot for the chapter. They will be sorely missed.’’
The club’s committee will meet this week to discuss where to go from here, he said.
Club co-founder Brett Neill said Jones and Johnstone had been there for the club since the very start.
Neill and Johnstone organised the club’s launch in 1989, and it was accepted as an official Harley-Davidson club in 1991 thanks to ANZA’s sponsorship.
‘‘They’ve put so much into [the club and the dealership] over almost 30 years. This must be gutwrenching.’’
Over the years, the club had become an extended family and the news ANZA was losing the dealership hit members hard, Neill said.
The dealership was the group’s gathering place, where committee meetings were held and was the starting point for every official ride.
‘‘A lot of the guys are really emotional about it...This is like taking the family home away from us all.’’
Harley Owners Group central districts chapter director Graeme Mills outside ANZA motorcycles.