The 13 most desirable Harley-Davidsons
Known as the daddy of all motorcycles, Harley-Davidson motorcycles remain constant throughout the ages even with the varying styles and trends. Founded in 1903, Harley-Davidson is recognized the world over as an icon of the American lifestyle and the American Dream. Here’s a list that takes you on a cruise on the most popular and glorious of the HDs.
1. Dyna Wide Glide (2010)
Speed: 100 mph
The 2010 Wide Glide is a Dyna Big Twin cycle with old-school chopper style. It isn’t that wide and it pulses more than it glides, but that doesn’t keep this Harley from being a hoot to scoot — even if its low-slung bodywork makes turning a slow, gradual phenomenon.
2. CVO Street Glide (2010)
Speed: 110 mph
Among Harley-Davidson’s 2010 limited-production models, the CVO Street Glide is a popular hot-rod model powered by a 110ci (1803 cc) V-Twin engine (the largest-displacement V-Twin engine offered by Harley-Davidson). This touring bike is loaded with sparkling chrome, electrifying paint and fresh custom-styling, and is limited to just 3,500 units.
3. XR 1200 (2009)
Speed: 100 mph
The 2009 Harley-Davidson XR1200 Sportster is an amazing attention-getter designed to boost adrenalin levels on roads and highways around the world. Influenced by the design of the successful Harley-Davidson XR-750 motorcycles, the XR 1200 features top street performance and handling. It has the 1200 cc Evolution V Twin Engine.
4. VRSC V-Rod (2002)
The 2002 Harley-Davidson VRSCA V-Rod motor produces an impressive 115 horsepower at 8,250 rpm — more than any other street motorcycle the company has ever produced. The 2002 V-Rod is the most award-winning motorcycle in Harley history. Limited to 11,000 units, this all-American cycle was inspired by Harley-Davidson’s drag racing heritage.
5. JH “Two-Cam” (1928)
Estimated Price: $150,000
The first Harley-Davidson Two-Cam engine is made available to the public on the JD series motorcycles in 1928. Previously used only in racing applications by Harley-Davidson, the bike is capable of top speeds between 85 – 100 mph.
6. Model 5-D Twin (1909)
Estimated price: $400,000
Debuted in 1909, Harley-Davidsons’ Model 5-D Twin motorcycle was the company’s first cycle to feature a twin-cylinder engine model. The 5-D was a 50 cubic-inch F-head design with magneto ignition and a Schebler carburetor. Like other Harley motorcycles of the time, it powered the rear wheel via a leather belt. Limited to just 27 Units, this 5-D at the Harley-Davidson Museum in Milwaukee is the sole surviving example.
7. DAH Hillclimber (1932)
Estimated price: $200,000
Back in the sport’s heyday in the 1920s and ’30s, victories on the hills meant sales on the showroom floor, so it should come as no surprise that when Harley decided to build its first true factory hillclimber, the result was this DAH Hillclimber. This 1932 Harley DAH Hillclimber combines a rare 45 cubic-inch, overhead valve arrangement, never used on street models.
8. Elvis Presley’s Model KH (1956)
This bike was the third Harley owned by Elvis, and was bought in the same year that “Heartbreak Hotel” launched him into superstardom. Elvis and his friend Fleming Horne were known to ride in the middle of the night for privacy. The bike was sold to Harley-Davidson by Horne in 1995 for an undisclosed amount, complete with documentation.
9. FX Super Glide (1971)
Estimated Value: $25,000
Estimated Units: 4,700
FX Super Glide with its reputation for being the Harley’s first “factory custom” bike, this 1,200cc monster came to the scene in the early 1970s. The “Sparkling America” cycle features red, white and blue paint and a unique “boattail” rear fender — all trademarks that say the “’70s”. It was sketched around the frame from the company’s Electra Glide with the chopper-style front end from the Sportster. They added a Euro-inspired fiberglass seat/tail section for a unique look, with wide, bold graphics – all trademarks that say the “’70s”.
10. FLH Electra Glide (1965)
Estimated price: $30,000
Estimated Units: 6,900
Speed: 60–70 mph
This bike was a perfect example of Harley’s policy of evolution, rather than revolution, in developing its bikes. This machine had a motor rooted in the past, it also looked to the future with a feature that earned it the Electra Glide name: an electric starter. The Electra Glide lives into the present day and is now the gold standard for motorcycle touring in America.
11. EL “Knucklehead” (1936)
Estimated Value: $100,000
Estimated Units: 1,600
This bike is the father of the modern American Harley. Not only did the engine influence all of the air-cooled twins that Harley-Davidson built after, but the styling cues have remained strong, such as the shape of the “teardrop” gas tank. More surprisingly, the first production year saw low numbers, partly because of trepidation on the part of company founders. Their concern was misplaced, and the original “Knucklehead” is now considered a jewel.
12. 8-Valve Racer (1916–1923)
Estimated Value: $1,000,000
Estimated Units: 20
It’s believed that only about 20 “8-valves” racing cycles were built from roughly 1916 to 1923. There are thought to be only two authentic bikes left in existence, one of which is at the Harley-Davidson Museum in Milwaukee.
13. Unrestored Singles (Pre-1910)
Estimated Value: $300,000 to $1,000,000+
Estimated Units: 5,000
Speed: 40 mph
In the first decade of Harley-Davidson’s existence, production never topped more than a few hundred motorcycles in a year. Even by 1908, annual Harley production was still under 500 bikes a year. Finding one available today is very rare, and finding an unrestored model is even more difficult.