W.C. Distributing is not only working on plans to bring new Chinese bikes to market in Canada, they’re also working on plans to help customers left high and dry by other companies.
W.C. Distributing has moved into electric motorcycles in the past few months, getting import deals with Brammo, Energica, and Lightning, but they first started their powersports business by selling Johnny Pag motorcycles.
Of course, that deal went bust, but WCD is doing their best to keep customers happy, as well as make new ones. As we told you back in September, WCD has cut out the middleman and is dealing directly with the factory that made the cruisers rebadged by Johnny Pag a few years ago. WCD’s Sven Bernard says his company has tried hard to keep customers supplied with spare parts since then, even though their official supplier went defunct, declaring bankruptcy as Johnny Pag Motor Company and re-opening as Johnny Pag Motorcycles.
Parts supply should be significantly easier in the future, Bernard says, as his company’s new bikes (built by Regal Raptor and branded as the Pagsta in Canada) are now being built; with that underway, he says, “Parts support for pre 2011 Johnny Pag Motorcycles in Canada and the US will be secured and that should make the old JPM Customers very happy.”
That’s good news, if everything works out. Customers who bought the old bikes deserve a better deal than to have a shaky importer flake out on them. Bernard’s company seems like they want to take care of those customers, even if it’s not easy. Props to them if they’re actually able to keep those bikes on the road.
The Pagsta bikes are undergoing the second stage of EPA approval at the moment. As with any Chinese bike, approval is not a slam dunk, but hopefully the upgrades (including improved Delphi EFI) should help, and we’ll see the machines soon. Bernard is hoping for Transport Canada and EPA approval in March, but he says that’s uncertain.
Bernard also says the new bikes have upgraded counter balancers, making them more smooth than the previous versions, and will be available with custom paint.
We also asked Bernard if his company would import the Pitster Pro XTR200 supermoto (aka the Konker), with former competitor Visionary Motorsports now in receivership and their Pitster Pro customers looking for help. Bernard said they had looked into it, but EPA approval would be expensive. That’s not a no, but we’re guessing it isn’t likely.
He did add that his company has looked into sourcing parts for different machines sold under the Pitster Pro brand, to ensure customers could repair their vehicles, by contacting the companies that manufactured the vehicles originally. He hasn’t come up with any solutions yet.
“I am trying, but that only works if these companies want help,” he said.
“The Chinese import market is extremely hard now,” Bernard said. “There was so many bad importers that messed around with TC and EPA and cheated their way in and so on. On top they open up, sell a few containers and close and no parts or warranty … It just made it really messy for companies like us, trying to do everything by the book.
“Now most of these companies have shut down and there is barely anyone left, so hopefully we can get the reputation of the Chinese product repaired.”