The first shipment of Norton Motorcycles for the U.S. was loaded aboard ship, October 24, 2013. The arrival of the 2013 Norton Commando models brings to an end the nearly 4-decade-old drought for new Nortons built in Britain by British hands.
The first of the continuing small shipments includes Commando 961 Sport, Café Racer and SF models. The bikes built for the U.S. have the distinction of being some of the first out of the new production facility, Hasting House. Hastings House is a new, modern facility and provides more room for expansion of production. In addition to future growth, the layout of the Hastings House production area was designed from the beginning to enhance quality control, Norton's "no. 1 priority."
The building of each Norton is unique in this world of mass produced products. Each Norton Commando model is built by two technicians from start to finish. This time-consuming process is part of why shipments to each country are in such small batches, usually 10 to 20 at a time.
With the current number of riders who have placed deposits with a Norton dealer beyond expectations, Norton estimates that it will be well into the Spring of 2014 before the current orders are filled.
Many who have inquired about buying a new Norton have been surprised and frustrated to find that dealers have yet to be assigned in their regions. The time required to catch up with the current demand is Norton's primary reason for not adding more new dealers in the U.S. Norton is cautious to add dealers and frustrate more future owners with long wait times when it will be months before they fulfill current demand. However, they plan to expand with a conservative long term approach, and currently have a long list of dealers seeking to add Norton to their offerings.