But what’s really interesting is that now that I am on the inside, hearing conversations about Harley-Davidson motorcycles from non-Harley riders/owners I have to give a chuckle. Jim Morrison was right. People are strange. In fact, some people say some downright stupid things about Harley-Davidson. I know there are fanboys and haters for everything these days, but I try to limit my interaction to people who at least deal in facts.
Here are seven myths about Harley-Davidson motorcycles I’d like to debunk.
1. Harleys are the most expensive motorcycles in the world.
Fact: There are more expensive motorcycles and actually, there are many Harley-Davidson models that sell for less than $10k.
2. Harleys are for old men.
Fact: According to POLK data - Harley-Davidson is the largest selling street motorcycle brand (all engine sizes) in the USA with buyers 18-34. Oh, and they have been the largest selling street motorcycle brand in the 18-34 age group for five straight years.
3. Harleys are for old WHITE (MEN).
Fact: According to POLK data - Harley-Davidson is the largest selling street motorcycle brand (all engine sizes) in the USA with women, African-Americans and Hispanics. Again for five straight years.
4. Harleys are made in China.
Fact: Almost NO vehicle is 100% American made, but generally, depending on the model, about 85% of the parts on Harley Davidson motorcycles made for the US audience, are made in the USA. If the bikes are destined for American showrooms, they are assembled in the USA. Like many other manufacturers, Harley-Davidson makes bikes in foreign countries that are shipped to those countries.
5. Only criminals ride Harleys.
Fact: Harley-Davison motorcycles are popular with heads of state around the world, the pope, rock stars, judges, lawyers, doctors, police officers, firefighters and people from all walks of life. There are criminals riding every brand of motorcycle and there are good guys riding every brand of motorcycle.
6. Harley riders never waive at other motorcyclists.
Fact: While I have only my own empirical evidence, I can verify that I ride a Harley and I waive at all motorcyclists. As do most of the Harley-Davidson owners I ride with every week.
7. All Harleys leak oil.
Fact: Again all I can offer is my own empirical evidence, but I own two Harley-Davidson motorcycles and they don’t leak oil. Never. Ever. I do own a Honda lawn mower that leaks oil.
Harleys aren’t perfect. No motorcycle or motorcycle rider is. If you want to hate on Harley-Davidson, I am sure that the company has done something to deserve your criticism at some point in time, so go for it. But be fair and stick to the facts. Resorting to FUD usually means you are on the wrong side of the argument.