Make no mistake, Norton Motorcycles has cleared a major hurdle with the announcement that their attempt to revive an iconic and beloved brand is now clear to invade American shores.
And Norton Motorcycles Ltd CEO, Stuart Garner, had to be relieved to announce the news to the public that his machines can now reach the most important motorcycle market in the world.
The opportunity that the approvals now offer Norton is great. The Commando 961 is a great platform and fits right in with today’s move to the values of real-world biking. It is no accident we developed a Cafe Racer. The Norton team truly believes in these classic model revivals. Naked bikes are on the up both in sales and popularity, and we are incredibly well placed to fulfill an emerging segment in the motorcycle market. Our Norton American CEO is industry veteran Dan Van Epps, Dan has been building a small but dedicated and experienced dealer network. This can be seen on our website and the dealers will be happy to talk to you about the new Norton Commando. It will take several weeks to conclude the formalities of paperwork prior to first shipments but rest assured we are working hard to get Norton back into the US as soon as possible.
With that short statement, Norton Motorcycles (UK) Ltd today announces an important milestone with their ability to supply bikes to the North American and Canadian market upon the successful completion of the durability and emission testing for its Commando 961 series of motorcycles.
The emission and durability testing was carried out by a certified testing laboratory and at specific intervals during its 15,000Km accumulation the bikes are tested to ensure compliance with EPA and CARB exhaust, noise and evaporative emissions. The lab’s testing also completes a significant durability and safety trial and the new 961 Norton Commando passed and exceeded all standards by a wide margin.
“I would like to thank the dedicated Norton team for accomplishing such a monumental feat. For the bike to come through the rigorous 15,000Km testing shows both its great durability and build quality<” Garner said. “It’s a credit to both our design and production teams, along with our key suppliers who have also worked alongside us on to ensure we have the very best quality components.”
After suffering some poor press recently, it had to come as welcome news to Garner to know that his pet project is now clear for takeoff in the most important motorcycle market in the world.
“The process of opening the key USA market began two years ago with the recruitment of Dan, an industry veteran and ex CEO of Ducati North America,” Garner said. “Dan has helped steer us through the process which has taken continual resource and investment to achieve the approvals, which of course alongside Europe give us another of the most significant markets in the world. I would also like to thank Peter Howes, Norton Canada who has worked tirelessly to make this possible. Both Norton America and Norton Canada have been busy building our dealer network and we now have a solid foundation to invest in and build upon. It has taken the Norton team a little under four years to successfully rebuild this iconic British motorcycle brand. However, whilst there is much left to do, our immediate focus will be to continue to work hard to get our early UK orders delivered ahead of growing production volume for the export market.”