Police bike purchase plans cause a stir

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Victoria will be the third Canadian police department to buy Victory motorcycles.
Victoria will be the third Canadian police department to buy Victory motorcycles.

It seems it isn’t just average Canadians who are cross-border shopping for motorcycles. The cops are considering the idea as well.

According to the Times Colonist newspaper, the Victoria Police Department has local retailers up in arms over a plan to buy their new fleet motorcycles in the U.S.; their current rides are Honda ST1300s.

Like many other cop shops, though, the Victoria department seems to be moving away from sport tourers to cruisers, and it seems that they’re considering purchasing bikes from Arizona. They had five bids for their motorcycle contract, four from local dealers and one from Victory Police Motorcycles in Tucson. The bid evaluation team unanimously chose the U.S. bid.

That doesn’t sit well with Victoria-area dealers, who are saying regardless of which one landed the contract, the money should have stayed local, instead of buying the bikes down south.

This deal will make Victoria the third Canadian police department to buy Victory motorcycles, after Lethbridge, Alberta and Windsor, Ontario. There are 22 police departments in the U.S. riding Victory motorcycles. The bikes will come with a five-year unlimited mileage warranty on everything.

Some local dealers groused that their machines should have been picked due to safety features like ABS and traction control, but the article quotes Victory’s sales manager as saying the company’s bikes are designed with safety in mind – they’re supposed to protect a rider’s feet and legs in a tipover, allowing it to fall to a maximum angle of 34 degrees.

Because Victory doesn’t have a local service facility in Victoria to work on the police bikes, they’ll train a staff members at a local dealer to service the machines, as part of the deal.

15 COMMENTS

  1. Big+ They will save a bunch on maintenance! More departments should change, taxpayers would save. I sold my 2002 victory at 170,000km and basically just changed oil, tires and brakes. There is not much other maintenance to be done on Victory’s. Most Victory riders I know are big riders 35k+/yr and they don’t need anything done either.

  2. Here is a small video segment on Canada Day in Victoria, which I filmed showing the cops using their Victory bikes to “herd” the crowd at the end of the festivities. They appeared to be using the “rumble” of their bikes’ engines to great effect.
    http://youtu.be/JeYhNwIxmik

  3. I was talking with a Victoria City motorcycle cop a few days ago. He wasn’t too thrilled with the decision either, and implied that the cops who will actually ride the bikes didn’t get much input into the purchasing decision.

    • I would swap my Harley I ride at work for a Victory in an instant. Victory builds a much nicer, more reliable bike than Harley. It won’t overheat, stall and break down like all our Harleys do.

  4. The City of Victoria, like the Americans is hungry so lets not bash the poor. Like the Honda the Victory is a very reliable bike so the only thing to do to one is Service. I think they made a good choice on the bike. No bitter pill in my mouth and I am a Victoria Dealer.

  5. The Victoria Police’s procurement responsibility should be to get the best bang for the Victoria tax payers buck, not supporting local business, and besides AFAIK there are no motorcycle factories in Victoria or BC. Article says the bikes will be serviced locally, so all I am seeing is POd dealers who think they are entitled to receive a city contract simply because they are there.

  6. Regardless of what kind of bike to chase what kind of law breakers the money should be put back into the local economy. This is completely inexcusable. The people responsible for this decision should be raked over the coals in a big way for this.

  7. 900 lb,  1700cc  bikes to chase seniors on electric scooters?  Was ‘environmental sustainability ‘ a factor in the decision making process?  This is known as thinking with the wrong end.

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