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Suzuki Intruder 1500 LC Homepage

3 years on the web - No Thanks to Suzuki!

To whom it may concern,

The Suzuki Intruder 1500 LC Homepage has been on the web now for over 3 years. During which time I have tried all I can, to get the attention of Suzuki Manufacturing Company which supplies the Suzuki Intruder 1500 LC motorcycle to the world and therefore one would assume it to be an "international" company. I'd say it is, because Suzuki Motorcycles are sold all over the world.

I have sent eMail messages, written letters, both to Suzuki in USA and Japan, sent copies of a number of posts in the forum, that prove people have baught their LCs after seeing how pleased others were with their purchase on the 1500 LC homepage (http://come.to/1500lc) and Forum (http://www.delphi.com/intruder).

All contact and proposals have been handled in the same way. With a message stating: "We didn't sell you your motorcycle, talk to your local dealer."

Well, my local dealer (Iceland) does not have the resources to provide support for the page, but then again, he doesn't claim to be the firm responsible for supplying the Suzuki Intruder 1500 LC to the world, either, nor is he responsible for the public relations of the firm doing so.

When I was webmaster of the Honda Shadow Homepage (http://members.nbci.com/HondaShadow) I also saught similar recognition and support from the manufacturer for 5 years! The only reply I ever got was from some underling within Honda stating that "no reply" was a better a reply which would be a legal document that would take away as much as it gave, while saying nothing.

It is time for Suzuki Manufacturing Company (and other motorcycle manufacturers) to change their 'attitude' towards those providing support and a venue for their products on the internet, and return such support with recognition for the effort (depending on the size of the project), financial support (for time spent writing the web pages), and provide these pages with up-to-date news of products that are related to their products. It is the least they can do to return something back for the efforts of the individuals spending their time directly promoting their products, and not punishing them. 'Service without reward is punishment', this is a fact, even if they did not comission the individuals to undertake the task. It's not as if this page has just been set up! We've been here for over 3 years now! How long does it take?

Far too many companies underestimate the potential of the internet - EXCEPT when threatened by pages revealing the shortcomings and flaws of their product. When THAT is the case, you will see them waste their valuable time and resources issuing legal threats and paying out legal fees to threaten those who are stating their experience. You'd think, then, that when someone puts together pages that FAVOUR the product that they'd be equally ready to invest in that effort! Apparently not, for some strange reason.

One more time: They'll waste valuable resources threatening those with negative views of their products with legal action, but not spend any resources cultivating and supporting those with positive views. - What's wrong with this picture!

Well, if negativity is all that is needed to get their attention, then, sadly, that is the only direction one has an option of going in, until one gets the attention that might lead to the support needed. However full one is, of the 'milk of human kindness', this seems to be only one way to get their attention! This message is only on the web because of this fact. Perhaps by exposing how shameful no support and no recognition is, from the firm manufacturing the product that we are supporting on the web, can we finally start discussions of what can be done for our cause.

I'd have thought organising an 'International Owner's Club' (RLC) would have sparked an interest of support, as owners of a product normally enjoy owning it (or they'd sell it) and constantly showing others how much fun it is to own is generating positive publicity for the product. I'd have thought such a club would get the full support of the manufacturer of the motorcycle it is centered on. Apparently not.

I'd have thought web pages dedictaed to serving owners of the product on an international level, as the bikes are offered on an international level, would generate enthusiasm, at the source, where the motorcycles originate. Apparently not.

I'd have thought, at least, the time and effort spent scraping together news and facts about their product, without support from them, might at least provide an excuse for them to RECOGNISE the page. Apparently not.

Who are running this firm? Aliens? - They don't seem to show to any human reactions to something done in their name. What message are they sending out with this attitude?

There is no-one who truly benefits from the Suzuki Intruder 1500 LC Homepage like the producer of the motorcycle the page is dedicated to! (Suzuki) Yet, there has been no positive feedback from them. No message in 3 years! There has been no reply to numerous communications! No 'thank you' for the RLC patch I sent them through the local dealer, who attended their dealer show in Japan. No answer to the letter that he handed them. No recognition of the Owner's Club (RLC) nor any of the efforts of uniting "Riders of the Legendary Classic" (as the International Owner's Club is also called), although we know it's Suzuki who will ultimately benefit from it's existance!
Meanwhile projects planned for the club remain on hold indefinately. I was hoping some of these projects would be a pleasant surprise for the members of the club, but I might as well state them here so they know what to expect in the future (if we get some sort of budget going, at present it doesn't look as if we'll be able to depend on Suzuki Manufacturing Company for anything except to look on and reap the benefit, like a scavenger):

(Immeasurable thanks and praise go to Piper's Patches, without whom our RLC club patch would not have been made. Piper had faith when others didn't and took it upon himself to finance and distribute the RLC patchs at very reasonable prices (ie. $5 which includes postage within USA. They came through for us when others had no faith. We will remember this fact.)

Suzuki's current stand seems to be:

"I'll claim the benefits, but not support it in any way."

Quite frankly, this stinks of pure opportunism and equates to 'pissing on one's own boot' in my book.
I'd feel justified in wanting to change bikes for this reason alone... but at the moment I do love my bike, however little Suzuki is doing for it... What is Suzuki doing for us? They promote and support races for buyers of their racing bikes, pop concerts for the moped crowd... What do the Cruiser buyers get? Ok, besides squeaky breaks - When we look like we're trying to put togther something. Do they support it? Not so far.

Yes, like everyone else on the net, I've read about the dissatisfaction with poor dealers and personally witnessed the faults concerning the bike that others have mentioned, even been on the receiving end of my breaks being fitted with something to keep noise down (supplied under warantee). Didn't solve the problem entirely, though. I blame poor quality control. I guess anyone can become a Suzuki dealer... Wouldn't surprise me. Suzuki doesn't answer letters or reward hard work in their name. So, people may start to wonder: 'Why bother?' - Suzuki do support pop concerts, even though it doesn't seem to want to support clubs that promote their products. With the price of pop concerts, no wonder they had to find a cheaper source for the 1500 LC breaks. We live in a very imperfect and illogical world... otherwise pop stars wouldn't be drug addicts.

Coming back to the 1500LC page, I do accept that they never asked for the page, however much it was wanted or needed. The fact is: It's up. and it's been up for 3 years now and continues to grow as more people buy the 1500 LC.
I do understand that we're setting a precedent here. If they support THIS page, what stops people from popping up all over the place with low quality pages hoping to cash in on the concept? - Well, nothing, except we claim to be offering the geniune article. I guess because there are others, Suzuki may use that as an excuse not to support anyone. The only thing that proves is, that they'd use any excuse not to support anyone. Poor argument.
I also accept that, I cannot prove, except with testimony from the Forum and News Page that the Suzuki Intruder 1500 LC Homepage has sold any motorcycles. I do not sell Suzuki motorcycles directly, hence I do not get a comission or have access to any of the profits from such sales, that might enable me to finance the various planned projects. I therefore have to rely on someone supplying a budget for the proposed projects.

Isn't there SOMEONE at Suzuki (who might be reading this right now) who cares? Suzuki would be the most obvious beneficiary of these projects, hence it stands to reason they should be the first place one seeks support. This is why I have been trying to get in touch with them, with no success so far.

From what I gather, if I set up a dealership, and promoted the 1500LC on a local level, then the page would gain the recognition it deserves - but since it's on an "international level", everyone points at each other, and no-one claims responsibility! ...and as a result no-one provides support? That just plain sucks... and has no place in today's 'globally connected' world. It just shows/proves the small mindedness of the people involved with Suzuki. (see quoted letters further down, for more information on the source of this viewpoint). I will, however check to see what the new local dealer is prepared to offer (the motorcycle dealership has just changed hands). Perhaps he has a plan... perhaps not.

I wonder, though, is Suzuki an International Company or not? - Have you noticed: All mention of "International" has been removed and the emphasis on everything going through a "local dealer" stressed on all Suzuki web pages? Even Canada isn't allowed to communicate with the Suzuki USA. Funny, the Japanese web page says the same thing. "This Homepage is exclusively for use in Japan." - Hey, I quoted off the page - Maybe now they'll contact me? Yeah, right.

Talking of 'support'... as stated elewhere on these pages (see the sponsors page) however grossly unethical it is, Harley Davidson can be considered to have indirectly supported the Suzuki Intruder 1500 LC Homepage. While we have no thanks for Suzuki, our thanks go to Harley Davidson!

Finally, I must state that the pages stand to show that we, the Riders of the Legendary Classic, with or without recognition or support from Suzuki, stand together! Our web page stands as a testimony to the people who have supported the page for over 3 years! They have sent in pictures, messages with kind and constructive feedback, suggestions, contributions and links to other pages of more of the same. I hope we have many more years of the same to look forward to.

Yours,
Thor Ingason
Faxaskjol 24
Reykjavik 107
Iceland

Phones: vox354-551-0804 fax354-552-8775
eMail:
thor@hn.is - icelandknight@unforgettable.com

 

Ps. During these 3 years, in reply to my numerous messages, I did receive two small messages from Japanese sales persons working in connection with Suzuki Manufacturing Company in Japan. Obviously I will honour their wishes to remain anonymous, especially as these remarks migth cost them their jobs, but both of the messages said nearly the same thing:

The first message (this was a very nice person judging by the character that came through the message - paraphrased):

Large corporations in Japan are very scared of individuals, like yourself who are writing about their products. Good or bad. They fear loss of sales from any slight remark you make on your web page.

The second message (direct quote):

"The one which offers you support must be a branch office of Suzuki. It is a pure Japanese company.
And its mind is Japanese too... the narrow, too conservative mind. I'm afraid they decided to neglect your Suzuki Intruder's page because they don't want to be involved into a trouble.
No, I don't mean your page creates any troubles. It is just they are TOO coward. All they want are what THEY produce, what THEY publish, what THEY do, etc.
So if you want to be supported by Suzuki, or make a contact with its staff, you must be employed officialy.

This is the foundemental failure of Japanese business. This is why my company can't make much money.

Something may change... when Japanese companies notice their fault. In this currency of globalization, sooner or later, companies of "developing countries" will take place of Japan, and Japan will fall down from the top level of the world. The change is beginning already... Japan is no longer the big power."

This message is the reason why I suggested in one of my letters to Suzuki, that they just outrigth employ me! I am well aware that this might be considered something that migth compromise my integrity towards the product, but since I love my 1500LC, I have nothing but good things to say about it, anyway! So? - I even offered them various scenarios that involved Suzuki directly, or through the local Suzuki motorcycle dealer, but neither he nor I have heard anything from Suzuki on this subject. I can but try.

Recent development:
Not that it is especially helpful to us, or the ongoing process, the Icelandic Suzuki Motorcycle dealer decided to quit... Strangely he did not sell to the local Suzuki Car dealership, but to an individual. Unfortunately the new dealer has had no time to discuss anything concerning the page with me. More later. I am ever optimistic... and - am I ever optimistic!