Last month, Morgan Stanley idea man Adam Jonas hypothesized about General Motors changing its name. This month, he's brainstorming about Harley-Davidson getting into the full-size pickup and SUV business.
The motorcycle manufacturer plans to launch an electric bike this year, prompting Jonas to write in a note to investors: "Are we the only ones who really struggle with the concept of all-electric … silent Harley-Davidson motorcycles?"
The outspoken analyst says a better idea might be to enter the flaming-hot "alternative lifestyle/vehicle segments" — meaning trucks and utility vehicles.
Jonas doesn't expect Harley to build its own four-wheel vehicles. He's suggesting slapping that iconic brand name on a vehicle produced by an existing automaker.
A Harley-Davidson trim package has been offered on Ford's F-150 and Super Duty pickup line. So why not a fully branded Harley four-wheeler?
"Too potentially radical? We don't think so," Jonas writes, "especially when comparing it to expanding the Harley-Davidson brand to smaller, cheaper, and even silent bikes. Even a Harley-Davidson move to electric 4-wheel vehicles ... could conceivably be an easier leap for the brand than the move to e-bikes."
Mind you, this is only water cooler conjecture, as was that bit about renaming GM. Harley-Davidson has not commented and Jonas says, "We have no such knowledge of any potential expansion into such markets."