Polaris Industries reported a 26% increase in net income over the first quarter of 2013, but a 2.9% decline in on-road vehicle sales (comprised almost entirely of Victory and Indian Motorcycles).

The company’s first quarter filings report a net income of $75.5 million, up from the $60.1 million reported over the same period in 2012. Much of the increase can be attributed to a 217% increase in net sales from its snowmobile division, spurred in large part by increase in snowfall across many regions of North America.

Unfortunately, the prolonged snowmobile season also means a delayed start to spring which had a negative impact on motorcycle sales. Polaris’ on-road division reported net sales of $62.9 million over the opening quarter of 2013, down from $64,7 million reported in the first quarter of 2012. Unseasonably warm weather last spring also helped buoy sales in the first quarter of 2012, further affecting the percentage decrease.

Still, Polaris’ motorcycle business didn’t fare too badly. According to Polaris, the overall North American market for 1400cc and larger motorcycles shrank 10% over the first quarter, so Victory Motorcycles actually saw an increase in market share for the 14th consecutive quarter.

Looking ahead, Polaris forecasts a 50%-60% increase in on-road vehicle sales by the end of 2013 from the total sales of $240.2 million reported for all of 2012. Some of that increase will come from the impending relaunch of Indian Motorcycles

“We remain cautious of the economic risks in both North America and Europe, but believe our strong team and commercial plans, along with our near term product pipeline, headed by the new Indian motorcycle, will enhance growth in the second half of 2013,” says Scott Wine, Polaris Industries chair and chief executive officer. “With our solid start to the year, we feel confident in raising our 2013 full year sales and earnings guidance.”

[Source: Polaris]