Bold New Harley-Davidsons for 2020
Harley-Davidson is launching a new modular platform including a liquid-cooled DOHC engine that will be produced in four displacements ranging from 500cc to 1250cc. This platform will result in three product lines, an adventure touring family, a streetfighter/standard family and a more traditional H-D custom lineup.
“Leveraging its industry-leading design and strong manufacturing capabilities,” Harley-Davidson says in this morning’s press release, “it plans to offer its most comprehensive lineup of motorcycles, competing in many of the largest and fastest growing segments with a full portfolio of motorcycles across a broad spectrum of price points, power sources, displacements, riding styles and global markets.”
The company’s first Adventure Touring motorcycle, and not a minute too soon, is the Harley-Davidson Pan America 1250, a go-anywhere ADV bike that’s been ruggedly Photoshopped into a deep forest glen. This is the first of a new, modular line of 500 to 1250cc middleweights that will occupy three distinct product spaces and four displacements, beginning in 2020, H-D says. Modern ADV orthodoxy appears to be in play, including an all-new liquid-cooled DOHC twin that’s shared by all the new models in various displacements.
The Pan America will launch in 2020 with a second, 975cc version planned for 2021 (likely to follow the 1250’s naming convention and be called the Pan America 975).
Then there’s this new 975cc Streetfighter, which also appears to not only contain all the correct building blocks, but seems to have arranged them in the correct places, including the footpegs. Sporting, even, a brand new gas tank, modern-size sport wheels and tires front and rear and big modern brakes, this is definitely bold new thinking for Milwaukee. H-D says to expect this bike first when it begins rolling the new platform out in 2020.
Back in December, we first broke the story that Harley-Davidson applied for a trademark for the name “Bronx.” The name may be a good fit for this streetfighter but the USPTO flagged a potential issue with that application and Harley-Davidson may not end up using that name.
Whatever the name, the 975cc streetfighter will be followed by eight more streetfighter/standard models displacing from 500cc to 1250cc. To be spread out from 2020 to 2022, these models are designed to compete against the likes of the Aprilia Tuono, Ducati Monster and BMW S1000R that are popular with European consumers.
And of course, something for the traditionalists, a 1250cc Custom iteration of the new platform. Harley-Davidson will produce five new custom models from this platform, ranging from 500cc to 1250cc. Set to launch in 2021 and 2022, these new models may be replacing the air-cooled Sportsters.
“Additional models to broaden coverage in these product spaces will follow through 2022,” says H-D., as it develops more accessible, small-displacement (250cc to 500cc) motorcycles for Asian emerging markets through a planned strategic alliance with an as-yet-unnamed manufacturer in Asia.
“This new product and broader distribution is intended to fuel Harley-Davidson’s customer access and growth in India, one of the largest, fastest growing markets in the world, and other Asia markets.”
More to come later as H-D comes out swinging, kind of, at last. Stay tuned…