Indian motorcycle sales up as Polaris scores earnings beat

Indian Springfield motorcycle close-up FBN

Polaris (NYSE:PII) said Thursday its sales of Indian motorcycles outpaced rivals in the second quarter, helping the maker of snowmobiles and ATVs record stronger earnings than expected.

Indian retail sales in North America rose 17%, and the brand continued to take market share from rival bike makers, Polaris said. The company’s motorcycle sales were down in the low-single digits overall due to weaker demand for Slingshot three-wheeled vehicles. In January, Polaris announced that it will discontinue sales of Victory motorcycles.

Harley-Davidson (NYSE:HOG) on Tuesday revealed a 6.7% decline in global retail sales, while its U.S. market share in the heavyweight segment fell to 48.5% from 51.3%.

Polaris off-road vehicles and snowmobiles booked a 5.8% increase in sales, including parts and accessories. Unit retail sales fell in the low-single digits.

“The powersports industry remained very competitive and headwinds persist, but we were encouraged by the return to growth in our Side-by-Side business and continued strength and aggressive share gains for Indian Motorcycles,” said Polaris CEO Scott Wine.

Polaris earned $62 million, or 97 cents a share, in the second quarter, down from $71.2 million, or $1.09 a share, in the same period last year. Adjusted earnings, which exclude one-time charges, came in at $1.16 a share to beat Wall Street’s estimate of $1.08.

Revenue jumped 21% to $1.36 billion. Analysts expected revenue of $1.26 billion.

The company raised its full-year forecast. Polaris said adjusted sales are on pace to grow between 12% and 14%, compared to prior guidance of 10% to 13%. Polaris lifted the low end of its earnings outlook, setting a range of $4.35 to $4.50 a share. It previously expected earnings per share of $4.25 to $4.50.

Polaris shares rallied 2.7% to $94.91 in recent trading. The stock climbed as high as $99.16, a new 52-week high.