Harley-Davidson has agreed to pay $15 million to settle a suit with the Enviornmental Protection Agency (EPA). $12 million in fines and an additional $3 million towards a “clean air” project to offset carbon emissions. The suit alleged that the Motor Company sold 12,000 bikes that were not certified as compliant with Federal Government standards. It also claimed Harley-Davidson sold over 300,000 performance tuners that, when installed on their bikes, caused them to emit excessive amounts of certain air pollutants making them non-compliant.
Harley released a statement saying that reaching the settlement was not an admission of guilt. Ed Moreland, Harley-Davidson’s government affairs director stated, “This settlement is not an admission of liability but instead represents a good faith compromise with the EPA on areas of law we interpret differently, particularly EPA’s assertion that it is illegal for anyone to modify a certified vehicle even if it will be used solely for off-road/closed-course competition.” For years, Harley has produced performance parts with the “For Race Use Only” disclaimer.
On the heels of this announcement, Harley has notified dealers, effective immediately, they will no longer offer the Screamin’ Eagle Race Tuner, their premium tuning module. Model year 2017 will be released next week and it’s sure to bring many changes. I expect to see a new, more tame, 50 state legal, Screamin’ Eagle product line as well as more strict warranty restrictions based on the results of this settlement.