It’s that time of year again: The Indianapolis Motorcycle Dealer Expo is about to open to the two-wheeled world. Each year, countless distributors, dealers, companies, manufacturers, industry-types, media members and riders descend upon the Dealer Expo (affectionately referred to as “Indy”) to see the latest and greatest products and services in the sport, as well as to eat (and drink) themselves silly each night after the show. Although the Expo’s main purpose is to allow companies to connect to their dealer network, Indy is still the premier venue for companies to make new product releases, major announcements or to simply just show off their goods. While this yearly event is closed to the public, Dirt Rider will be in full force for 20011 to bring you, our loyal digital reader, all things cool from the Dealer Expo’s floor.
What new wonders will be unveiled at Indy this year is anyone’s guess, but judging by what we’ve seen in the past there will be more than a few surprises. Here’s my personal list of predictions of what we may see at the 2011 Dealer Expo:
Word on the streets is that Klim USA has a huuuuuge product announcement to make at Indy. They haven’t let the cat out of the bag as to what it could be, but judging by the super-technical direction the company is going in I’m expecting a field-expedient emergency fold-out hot tub for hard core back-country trail riders. Keep those fingers crossed!
The Western Power Sports crew always has one of the biggest setups at the show, but after hearing a description of the WPS/ Fly Racing booth it sounds like they’re planning to erect a superstructure of Swiss Family Robinson-like proportions. I won’t even ask what kind of building permits/ union red tape that will require!
Chad Reed and Carey Hart will both be at the Bel-Ray booth signing autographs on Friday morning at 10am. Don’t be surprised if Hart talks Reed into getting a tattoo, or if Reed talks Hart into talking with an Australian accent, or if they both end up doing backflips in an upcoming Pink music video. Any of those three things happening would actually be pretty cool.
Pay attention to what Fox is doing. That’s all I’m gonna say.
For those of us that don’t get totally sloshed every evening in Indy, Racer X always hosts an awesome indoor hockey game that features pretty much anyone in the industry who plays hockey in an epic USA vs. Canada grudge match. PR icon Pat Schutte is apparently the Team USA coach, and will be screaming at the likes of Dirt Rider publisher Damian Ercole and a bunch of other surprisingly good skaters. This event is always a good time, except for the time two years ago when I watched Honda’s Bill Savino get checked so hard he left lip marks on the glass, and then two minutes later someone sat on the goalie’s head. Like I said, good times.
Moto Tassinari shocked the industry earlier this year with the introduction of the AIR4ORCE, the latest in four-stroke hop-up technology. Will we be seeing any knock-offs of the AIR4ORCE this year at Indy? Most likely, but I can also tell you that the Moto Tassinari guys are probably already cooking up something else, which makes them pretty darn untouchable as far as imitation goes.
Indianapolis, Indiana is in the Midwest, which may as well be the Arctic Circle for 90% of the industry folks who fly out from California. I expect to see more than a few flat-billed beanies, black wool socks and metal-studded parkas.
Troy Lee Designs is rumored to have some extremely high-performing hot weather riding gear in the works. I predict that it will also have a really, really good looking paint job.
Stay tuned to Dirt Rider throughout the weekend for updates from the show!