UPDATE 1-Harley-Davidson shipments disappoint, shares drop

(Adds details on quarter)

Jan 30 (Reuters) - Harley-Davidson Inc fell short of its targets for motorcycle shipments in 2017 and forecast a drop in numbers for this year, sending the Milwaukee-based company's shares down 6 percent on Tuesday.

Harley, which commands about half of the U.S. big-bike market, said motorcycle shipments rose 11.3 percent to 47,198 units in the fourth-quarter ended Dec. 31.

The company shipped 241,498 motorcycles in 2017, just meeting the lower end of its expectation of 241,000 to 246,000 units.

Harley has been struggling to boost sales for three years as its core rider base is getting older and price-sensitive younger customers remain lukewarm to the brand.

The bike maker's retail sales in the United States, its biggest market, fell 11.1 percent to 23,195 units, compared with a year earlier.

Net income fell to $8.31 million, or 5 cents per share, in the fourth quarter ended Dec. 31, partly due to a charge related to the new tax law. It earned $47.18 million, or 27 cents per share, a year earlier.

Revenue from motorcycles and related products rose to $1.05 billion from $933 million.

Adjusted earnings per share was 47 cents. Analysts on average had expected adjusted earnings of 45 cents, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S. (Reporting by Rachit Vats in Bengaluru and Rajesh Kumar Singh in Chicago; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty)