Qianjiang-Produced Harley-Davidson X 500 Coming to America for 2024?

Dennis Chung
by Dennis Chung

US-specific owners manual published by Harley

Harley-Davidson has released a U.S. owner’s manual for the X 500, indicating the roadster manufactured by China’s Qianjiang Motorcycle will be coming to America for the 2024 model year. The X 500 was announced for the Chinese market in April, and later for Australia and New Zealand, but the newly published owner’s manual also hints at a U.S. launch.

The manual for the 2024 X 500 was released on Harley-Davidson’s Service Info site, with some distinct changes compared to the 2023 owner’s manual, adding information specific to the American market such as a U.S. vehicle identification number (VIN). The manual’s VIN breakdown explicitly outlines the codes for models manufactured by Qianjiang in China for export to the United States.

UPDATE Oct. 12, 2023: Harley-Davidson reached out to us, saying the X 500 remains designed for the Asian market and will NOT be sold in America. The official owner's manual still suggests otherwise, but it's possible it was published in error. Stranger things have happened. We'll take Harley-Davidson's word that the X 500 will not be offered in the U.S., even over its official owner's manual, unless we have more evidence otherwise. We've left our article intact, as it remains true that the manual contains the information outlined here.

The 2023 manual included warranty information that was specific to the Chinese market, with a section titled “Other Limitations” that included six items. The 2024 manual adds a seventh item specifically for United States customers about modifications that are not approved by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency or the California Air Resources Board.

Elsewhere, there is language for “USA Owners 49 State Limited Emissions Warranty” as well as a section about emissions control warranty for California, as well as a definition of tampering with noise control or exhaust emissions control systems in contravention with EPA regulations. None of this was present in the 2023 manual, and they would only be necessary for models to be sold in America.

The X 500 is the second model to be produced under the partnership between Harley-Davidson and Qianjiang, following the X 350. In its Q1 2023 report, Harley-Davidson reiterated that they were intended mainly for the Chinese market, with a X350RA variant to be used by Harley-Davidson’s Riding Academy. At the moment, there is no indication about a consumer version of the X 350 for the U.S., though that was true of the X 500 up until today.

We expect there will be a strong reaction in some corners about Harley-Davidson selling a Chinese-produced motorcycle in the U.S. with the impending arrival of the X 500.

The 2024 owner’s manual showed no changes to the specifications for the X 500. That means we can expect the same liquid-cooled 500cc Parallel-Twin engine, claiming 47 hp at 8,500 rpm and 33 lb-ft. at 5,000 rpm. The claimed wet weight remains 456 pounds, and the fuel economy is unchanged, still claiming 49 mpg. Valve inspections are scheduled for every 15,500 miles.

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Dennis Chung
Dennis Chung

Dennis has been a part of the Motorcycle.com team since 2008, and through his tenure, has developed a firm grasp of industry trends, and a solid sense of what's to come. A bloodhound when it comes to tracking information on new motorcycles, if there's a new model on the horizon, you'll probably hear about it from him first.

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3 of 43 comments
  • SamBob SamBob on Oct 14, 2023

    No that’s not at all what I meant. I was just referring to Harley diehards. Not quite sure why y’all wanted to make it political and I have no idea what it has to do with this.

  • James James on Oct 14, 2023

    Why can the chinese have twin disc brakes up front and my brand new nightster is still getting by with one. Granted the single disc is AWESOME, but still. Come on.

    Something about this bike makes me want to ride it though. It looks fun. I think you could convert this into a nice scrambler.