A Short History of Motorcycles – Harley Davidson and Beyond

fat bike elettrica when the subject is brought up the picture that comes to mind is guys in black leather jackets, motorcycle boots, helmets and gloves straddling a big motorized bike. We think of the guys in West Side Story, the Hell’s Angels, and today’s baby boomers riding their new Harleys.

There are about 200 million motorcycles on the road today. They do not use as much gas as the most efficient car and in some societies are the most popular form of transportation. The biggest motorcycle societies are India, China, Indonesia and Vietnam. They have even made taxis built like a three wheeled motorcycle.

Some people ride motorcycles strictly for pleasure. They take them for trips to the mountains and other rural areas. Urban riders prefer motorcycles because they can ride down the sidewalks if necessary during a traffic jam. There are street legal and non street legal motorcycles.

One of the most well known motorcycle names is Harley Davidson. Two guys (Harley and Davidson, of course) developed the first engine for a motorcycle in 1901 and made it available to the public two years later. The first store opened in Chicago in 1904. Production models were sold there. Four years later the first Harley Davidson for police use was sold in Detroit to their police department. By 1920, Hogs (as these motorcycles are called) is the largest motorcycle dealer in the world with dealers in over 60 countries.

In 1941, the production of the private owner Harley Davidson was stopped because of WWII. It won four production awards during the war. In 1957, Harley celebrated its golden anniversary (50 years).

The Electro-glide debuted in 1965 and is available with an electric start. They merged with AMF in 1969. The stock was repurchased by the company in 1981. The Fat Boy and the Road King both debuted in the 1990’s. in1998, it was the 95th anniversary and the king of motorcycles bought its first plant outside the U.S. (Brazil).

The new millennium was ushered in by the introduction of the Soft Tail (2000) deuce. In 2006 the first dealer opened on mainland China.

109 years after a dream, Harley Davidson is still the preferred brand of most motorcycle riders.

Even small cities have a big motorcycle superstore. Depending on the area, they may specialize in off road racing, snow cross, or pleasure riding. It might seem unusual but even brands that are no longer made are highly prized and costly to purchase. In motorcycles, the most important thing is the expertise of the builder. Smaller and less weighty motor cycles like Suzuki and Yamaha are often called “bikes” because they are smaller, lighter, and easier to use.

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