Harley built a “sport-ish” type bike for a few years called the XR1200.
While that in itself has nothing to do with adventure touring, I stumbled on this video today…
That looks like a really cool bike! I’m not much of a fan of Harley, but if they built one of those I might have to consider buying one! One thing I can say for Harley is that the dealers are everywhere, they are all very nice, the staff seems like they actually care about bikes, and you would never have to hear the stupid “when are you going to buy a real bike” crap.
Here is a link to a thread over on the XR1200 forum about a guy that built a similar bike. You have to be a member to view the pics. But he does have a video of it idling on youtube…
So what, you say. Well, the bike is only a couple pounds heavier then the BMW1200GS. 564 for the GS and 566 for the backflip XR. Could a Harley give the BMW a run for it’s money? On a spec sheet, I doubt it. But heres the thing…Harley can kick the shit out of every other manufacturer when it comes to marketing. Imagine another Long Way series, but without the whining. Let’s get Vin Diesel and Dwane Johnson on “The all new Harley-Davidson XR1200 Scrambler” in the “Most epic motorcycle ride of all time!!!” There would be more MMA wannabes, fake hard asses, internet toughguys, and just general pirates at the Harley dealers then they could handle.
The ADV market is growing, but it’s still pretty small. With a bit of help from the monster that is Harley, I think it could surpass the cruiser market. Adventure bikes are just plain more useful.
Think about it like your average Harley owner. You get off your day job as an accountant, then drive home, change into your best pirate costume, hop on your extremely uncomfortable bike, ride the three miles to the nearest bar, and pretend to be a badass the whole time.
Or, you get off your day job as a ironworker, jump on your much more comfortable XR Scrambler, hit the dirt roads on your way to Starbucks, and pretend to be an adventure rider. You don’t even need to buy the pirate garb! At least the bike would be comfortable I guess.
Imagine if Harley started making adventure gear, where would they put the fringe?!?!?!
Anyway…I can’t find much more on these. That’s too bad, I would love to see one in person and would even consider building one myself with the proper motivation! If you have any info on a Harley XR1200 thats been converted to not suck like these have, let me know!