Mad River Harley-Davidson

Dealer Website:
5316 Milan Road, Sandusky, OH
View on Google Maps:Google Maps
Type of Retail Business:
Franchised (selling new vehicles), Used Vehicle Dealer
Mike Davis
General Manager: 
Jolene Krizan
Days of Operation: 
Days of Operation: 
Days of Operation: 
Days of Operation: 
Days of Operation: 
Days of Operation: 
Days of Operation: 
Years in Business: 
Gear, Apparel and Helmets: 
Harley-Davidson, Wolverine, Affliction, Miss Me, MOD Jewelry
Harley-Davidson, Kuryakyn, RC Components, Rinehart and Drag Specialties
Parts and Tools: 
Harley-Davidson, Kuryakyn, RC Components, Rinehart and Drag Specialties
Custom Chrome
KK Motorcycle Supply
Parts Unlimited/Drag Specialties
Average Age: 
Total Facility: 
43,050 sq. ft.
9,600 sq. ft.
PG&A Departments: 
8,300 sq. ft.
Service Dept: 
9,756 sq. ft.
Total Acreage: 

Mission Statement

Our Mission is to positively impact people's lives through their experiences with our people, our products and our dealership initiatives to give back. 

Our Vision is to be the “Dealership of Choice” in our region. Recognized by the Harley-Davidson Motor Company for providing unsurpassed service and products through a highly motivated, passionate dealership team that brings “excitement” into the lives of our customers, employees, and community.

Showroom Design and Layout

Mad River Harley-Davidson, located in Sandusky, Ohio, was designed to radiate an industrial feeling, with warehouse-style beams and high ceilings, and a factory-like environment. We use a certain reminiscence to appeal to our customers. 

We offer an open floor plan to house our MotorClothes, Parts and Accessories, and Sales departments. Located at the front of the building, we are home to a 100-ft. water tower that can be seen from the nearby highways -- and is a tourist attraction on its own. Along with the water tower at the front of the dealership, we have non-working parking meters to add to the aesthetic features of the warehouse-style structure.

Within our open floor plan, we offer interactive features for the customer to get the ultimate Harley-Davidson experience. Located in the MotorClothes department, we have our heated gear display that allows the customer to try on and experience the product. Parts and Accessories offer the Fit Shop feature, to improve the comfort of the customers' riding experience. It allows riders to try on new parts and accessories before they make their purchases. Along with the Fit Shop, Parts & Accessories is home to new Demo Seat & Windshield programs through Harley-Davidson, which allows customers to test ride a new seat on their own bike to give them the best comfort for their riding style. Also, located in the dealership we offer a Jumpstart, which allows the customer to “Jump” on a road-ready bike and gives them the ultimate feeling of riding by shifting through gears before hitting the road.

While customers are waiting in our comfortable lounge area, we offer a mobile kiosk that gives them touchscreen access to the Internet to obtain local weather and maps, as well as linking them to our personal homepage. We also always have fresh coffee and popcorn made and offer reading material for our customers, including hardcover Harley-Davidson coffee table books.

We also have an enclosed "Delivery Room" that is specifically used for delivering motorcycles to their new owners once a customer has purchased a bike with us. Once in the room, our salespeople go over their new Harley-Davidson thoroughly, answer any questions they might have, and take a picture of them with their new bike. It also attributes to our customer service philosophies. 

Service Department

The service department is home to an open floor plan that allows our six Harley-Davidson-certified technicians to each work on two motorcycle lifts at a time with state-of-the-art tools and equipment. Within the service department there is a Bead Blaster, tire and wheel balancer, and a full service detail area. Along with these amenities, we offer a state of the art Dyno room. A master certified technician specializing in Dyno Tuning is on site everyday for the convenience of the customer. Also, located within the Dyno room there is a customer viewing area which allows the customer to watch while their motorcycle is being tuned. During the winter months, we are home to more than 200 motorcycles that are kept in a climate-controlled environment. The state-of-the-art service write-up area is not only home to our service writers, but also a delivery room and rentals department. We offer easy access for our service department customers with a bay door entrance and have a wheelchair-accessible counter for those in need.

Training and Employee Motivation Practices

Throughout the year at Mad River Harley-Davidson, we offer employee incentives such as Mad Money, Weekly Spiffs, dealership games and activities. These things not only boost employee morale, but also increase sales within our departments.
Mad Money is dealer-specific money that is given to our employees for their exceptional service and generosity throughout the store. Once Mad Money is earned and accumulated, it can be redeemed for great prizes such as clothing items, gift cards and paid days off.
Weekly Spiffs are another employee incentive we offer to increase sales and get our staff motivated. These can be anything from a game to a goal, but once completed the employee can earn lunch, gift cards or cash!
Every January, for one day, we close the dealerships and bring our four dealerships together and form an off-site training day. We take a bus together to the location, which is about an hour away. We play games while we drive. Once we arrive at the location we have mini-seminars and workshops. We discuss our yearly goals, how we are going to achieve them, and how to become “the dealership of choice." If we want to be the best, we have to train with the best and we will bring in motivational speakers. This past year, our speaker was Harley-Davidson CEO Keith Wandell. Past speakers have included former NFL standout Rocky Bleier and two-time Heisman Trophy winner Archie Griffin. We feel very lucky to be able to have such inspiring and motivating speakers. After our session, our dealer principal, Mike Davis, always provides dinner and then some form of entertainment. We've had a casino night, inflatable playgrounds and obstacle courses, and a game show night. We use this day as a way to kick off the New Year, and it brings everyone together for a common reason. This is one of the more enjoyable events our employees look forward to every year. 
In order to be a leader in our industry, we have to learn how to be leaders. During the winter months, we use this time to read and study the art of leadership. Leadership is known as the aid and support of others in the accomplishment of a common goal. If we didn’t have leaders, we wouldn’t be as successful as we are. We do not only have a management team that leads us, but we have leaders within our team members who encourage and motivate their individual departments. Without this training program that is offered each year, we would not have the leadership skills that we do today.
We also have a roundtable of employees in the dealership. We usually choose one or two from each department, outside of the management team. This group of nine individuals meets monthly to find ways to improve employee morale and bring the dealership together. We do lunches, contests and host Spirit Week. Spirit Week is a fun week that boosts employee spirits, and fun activities are created. Each day employees dress up in a themed costume and serve lunch to their fellow employees and play games. At the end of the week, employees are able earn tickets to redeem for prizes. The Roundtable also takes a month or two out of the winter months and plays "Secret Pal." Each member is responsible for leaving encouraging notes or giving little gifts as a thank you to a dealership employee anonymously. This also boosts employee morale and attitude. 
We also have an Employee of the Month Program. At the end of the month, the management team and roundtable members each nominate an employee for Employee of the Month. Typically, the employees that are nominated showed great work ethic, excelled at their position or went above and beyond their normal duties for that month. We then vote to choose one person as the Employee of the Month. That person receives recognition, a special parking spot, a lunch with a manager and a $50 gift card. This system helps acknowledge employee performance and greatly impacts how others perform and brings awareness to and employee's performance. 

Commitment to Customer Service

Our customer service philosophy is not just meeting our customers’ needs, but absolutely EXCEEDING them. We want to be better than the best and be “the dealership of choice." We want to be the Nordstrom of our industry with the Harley-Davidson attitude! When a person comes into our dealership, they are greeted with a warm and friendly hello from our receptionist or sales staff. We are to greet our customers within the first 10 seconds that they walk through the door, and help them in any way possible. We direct them to the appropriate departments and answer any questions the customer may have.

Within our departments, each team member is trained in a specific area. They must know every detail about the product and be able to answer any questions that may come about. Product knowledge is a must around here because if you do not know a product, you cannot sell a product. All team members are trained in the C.U.S.T.O.M. sales process to create a better customer service experience.

Just as Nordstrom provides legendary customer experiences, we want to give our customers the ultimate Harley-Davidson experience. Meeting and exceeding their expectations happens every time, and it is proven because we have gained customers’ from many states away who have not only purchased one bike from us, but their second, and third. These people travel from Maryland, New Hampshire, West Virginia, and New York. When someone makes a purchase from Mad River Harley-Davidson, we welcome them into our family by sending them on a Poker Run path, and this introduces them to our whole team. Also, we keep in touch with our customers. Within each department a manager and/or supervisor sends a follow-up and a thank-you letter. We have a department known as our Customer Care department and they are here to maintain relationships and build a rapport with each person individually. We get to know our customers on a personal level and truly make them feel at home and a part of our family.

Involvement in the Community

At Mad River Harley-Davidson, we strive to be involved in our community as much as we can because it is an integral part of creating a positive work place. We incorporate charitable agencies into our business practice by allowing our employees to take part in fundraisers. Throughout the year, we help agencies such as the Humane Society, March of Dimes, hospice and cancer services and the Ohio Veterans Home, to name a few. In addition, we hold food drives numerous times throughout the year, including a Turkey Run in November for a local food kitchen. Throughout the season, we take part in the Salvation Army Angel Tree Program as well as Toys for Tots. Doing these types of things not only gives us a warm heart, but lets us give back to the community to those in need. Also, every year we hold a summer-long fundraiser to raise $10,000 for the Make-A-Wish Foundation in order to grant a wish to a local child. Children within this organization are suffering from life-threatening medical conditions. These children are truly special people and we wanted to be a part of giving hope, strength, and joy to a child in need.

This past July, we also held a Hog & Dog wash that was a fundraising event for our local police department's K-9 Unit. We were able to raise money to help bring in a new police dog which helps secure the safety our community. Along with holding fundraising events we donate auction items and door prizes to other fundraisers and give countless monetary donations and sponsor many local organizations.