Harley-Davidson

(HOG) - Get Report

beat third-quarter targets as worldwide retail motorcycle sales rose 8.9% from a year ago.

The Milwaukee-based company also said it would add 20 million shares to its stock buyback plan.

For the third quarter ended Sept. 24, Harley made $313 million, or $1.20 a share, up from the year-ago $265 million, or 96 cents a share. Revenue rose to $1.64 billion from $1.43 billion a year earlier.

Analysts surveyed by Thomson Financial were looking for a $1.10-a-share profit on sales of $1.58 billion.

Retail sales of Harley-Davidson motorcycles rose 6.7% in the quarter in the U.S. and 18.7% internationally, including 30% in Canada.

"As we look to the future, the company believes it will continue to deliver EPS growth in the range of 11%-17% annually through 2009. We expect earnings growth to be driven by solid revenue growth, margin improvement and the benefits of strong free cash flow," Harley-Davidson said.