Classic Harley Davidson motorcycles
Classic Harkey Davidson motorcycles are vintage and collectible motorcycles built by the renowned American manufacturer Harley Davidson.
Harley Davidson was founded in 1903, and is one of only two U.S motorcycle manufacturers that survived The Great Depression. The founders of the company were William S. Harley and Arthur Davidson, they were childhood friends. Not only did Harley Davidson survive The Great Depression, but they also survived a period of fierce Japanese competition.
Harley Davidson motorcycles are often abbreviated to 'Harley's', often seen as the more common name. Harley's are heavyweight motorcycles, all of them over 750cc. With motorcycles being their main source of income, the brand name and logo also generates up to 0.8% ($40 million) of their revenue each year.
The first motorcycle Harley and Davidson attempted to make was written off as a valuable learning experience, this is down to the fact that it was unable to cope with the steep Milwaukee hills without pedal assistance.
Upon entering the First World War, the United States demanded motorcycles for the war effort, during the war it's estimated that Harley Davidson supplied around 15,000 motorcycles to the military.
During The Great Depression their sales plummeted from 21,000 in 1929 to 3,700 in 1903. When the Second World War began they were again asked to provide motorcycles to aid the US military effort, they poured over 90,000 motorcycles , this was again the case for The Korean War (1950-1952).
It is said that during these wars, Harley-Davidson eclipsed the use of the Jeep, being the most important vehicle.
Guide For Collectors
If you're looking to buy a classic Harley Davidson motorcycle it may be helpful to use the internet. There are many internet auction sites available for example - www.gumtree.com and www.autotrader.co.uk.
Prices are varying and they can range from £850 (Harley-Davidson Sportster) to £4000 (Harley-Davidson Hardtail 1980). Pre-war Harley-Davidsons are also available to purchase from online stores, an example is 'www.prewarcar.com'. When considering collectible products it's always apparent that normally the older the model is and the better condition it is the more expensive it will be. An example can be seen with the 1917 Harley-Davidson 17F sold for 34,950 Euros on www.prewarcar.com.
It is also possible to buy Harley-Davidson parts separately, some collectors like to do this as Mechanics may be a hobby for them, buying the parts separately and assembling the motorcycles there self. A fairly significant downfall to this is the price. It is normally the case that if you choose this method you will be paying a lot more than buying the motorcycle ready-assembled.
Notable Auction Sales
- Harley Davidson Wlc Classic - £20000 - motoring.friday-ad.co.uk
- Harley Davidson Softtail - £12999 - motoring.friday-ad.co.uk
- Harley Davidson Screaming Eagle - £19699 - motoring.friday-ad.co.uk
- Harley Davidson Dyna Glide - £8495 - motoring.friday-ad.co.uk
- Harley Davidson Low Custom Rider (1938) - £19500 - www.classicarsforsale.co.uk
- Harley Davidson Sportster Motorcycle (1980) - £8000 - www.classiccarsforsale.co.uk
The most expensive Harley Davidson ever sold is currently unknown although it's feasible it would definitely be in excess of £30000 going by the sales mentioned above. If you're looking to buy a Harley Davidson online through an auction it is recommended to check online sites such as eBay and Liveauctioneers.com. One example of an auction on that website is a 1956 Harley Davidson Sportster sold for $16,000. An extremely notable sale is that of a 1908 Harley Davidson Single Cylinder Strap Tank that sold for $180,000.