2. Panhead

1948 Harley-Davidson Panhead

Famed rally emcee and personality Jay Allen, formerly of the Broken Spoke Saloon and Kiwi Indian Motorcycles, offered one of his typically uproarious exclamations in response to our query of the Best Harley of All Time.

“There isn’t ONE!!!” Allen wrote, his enthusiasm bellowing through the computer. “But 1948 was the last year of springers and the first year of Panheads. So a ‘48 Panhead is a serious contender!” And if you’ve ever attended one of Jay’s bike shows or bikini contests, then you know there was no need for us to add emphasis to his commentary; those exclamation points and capital letters are all his.

Riki Rachtman facebook

Deejay and motorsports enthusiast Riki Rachtman, host of MTV’s Headbanger’s Ball back the ’90s and current host of the syndicated NASCAR radio program Racing Rocks!, agreed with Allen, mainly for sentimental reasons. “My first Harley was my favorite – a ‘67 Pan-Shovel.” (For the uninitiated, 1966-69 Shovelhead engines used the same bottom end as ‘58-‘65 Pans.) “It ran like a dream until it was stolen,” Rachtman told us.