6 Little Known Harley-Davidson Facts
Aug 25, 2021
Harley-Davidson is an American motorcycle brand that got its start in 1903. Best known for their influence on motorcycle culture and lifestyle, the brand has become popular with bikers around the world.
Curious about this rebellious brand? Read on for 6 Harley-Davidson Facts.
1. Used as war motorcycles
In WW1, the United States military fought against Mexican revolutionaries. They brought Harley-Davidson sidecar motorcycles with mounted machine guns to the fight. This was the first time sidecar motorcycles had been used in this way. Prior to that they were mostly being used just for transportation.
2. Pig mascot
After WW1, motorcycle racing was becoming a new, popular sport. Unsurprisingly, Harley-Davidson was eager to compete. They had a racing team in the 1920s called the Wrecking Crew, and a pig named Johnny was the mascot. Riding victory laps with the pig sitting on the winning bike’s gas tank became a tradition for the team.
3. Easy Rider
In the iconic 1969 film Easy Rider, Harley-Davidson motorcycles were used. The “Captain America” Harley-Davidson bike seen in the movie fetched $1.3 million dollars at an auction. This made it one of the most expensive choppers ever sold!
4. Evil Knievel’s big jump
The most famous stuntman in the world - Evil Knievel - broke the world record for the longest jump on a Harley. He jumped over 14 Greyhound buses on a Harley XR-750 - a distance of over 130 feet.
5. Popularizing the leather jacket
New York designer Irving Schott introduced the “Perfecto,” a leather jacket that ended up becoming the go-to motorcyclist uniform for decades to come. The jacket was originally distributed by Harley-Davidson and eventually became used by all motorcycle gangs, including the Hells Angels.
6. Community involvement
Harley-Davidson participates in philanthropic initiatives. They are dedicated to improving communities through the Harley-Davidson Foundation. They support projects that solve hunger issues, provide employment opportunities and give special assistance for major disasters that happen in their hometown of Milwaukee.
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