End Of an Era: Harley-Davidson to Close Kansas City assembly plant, about 800 workers to lose jobs

It looks like we’re approaching the end of an era as iconic motorcycle maker Harley-Davidson has been quietly right-sizing its business. According to this Kansascity.com report, Harley will be closing their KC assembly plant leaving almost 800 workers without jobs. This is only the beginning.

About 800 workers will lose their jobs when Harley-Davidson Inc. closes its Kansas City motorcycle assembly plant in the fall of 2019

Tuesday’s announcement to investors was a complete surprise to employees, three fourths of whom are represented by one of two unions.

“They didn’t even give us a call ahead of time,” said Joe Capra, directing business agent for Local 778 of the International Association of Machinists & Aerospace Workers. “It is real devastation for these people who work here and work hard in the Kansas City area.”

The plant’s production is being shifted from the factory near Kansas City International Airport to one in York, Pa.

The company cited market conditions as the reason for the shutdown.

“This decision was made after very careful consideration of our manufacturing footprint and the appropriate capacity given the current business environment,” the company said in a written statement. “We are constantly evaluating capacity and our current U.S. capacity exceeds U.S. demand.”