There Is No Stereotypical Harley-Davidson Biker

It’s what Harley tries to demonstrate in this new commercial. Some real truth about how different from each other can be Harley riders. “E Pluribus Unum”. In Latin, it means “one, out of many…”

Zipper's

27 Responses to “There Is No Stereotypical Harley-Davidson Biker”


  1. 1 BobS Mar 3rd, 2012 at 12:42 pm

    Nice try, but not buying it.

  2. 2 Matt Mar 3rd, 2012 at 2:05 pm

    Another lifestyle commercial brought to you by Central Casting.

  3. 3 zyon Mar 3rd, 2012 at 2:14 pm

    Those that think the only people who ride Harleys are outlaw bikers or that this is the only demographic Harley should go after are absolutely not business minded people… when I’m out riding (not a Harley) I see many different types of people riding Harleys. This commercial represents Harleys demographic much better than Sons of Anarchy does.

    I love how people constantly bash Harley but in the end, they are still on the top of the pile and I highly doubt anyone in this country is going to supplant them any time soon. I see nothing wrong with Harley trying to dispel the myth that you have to be a hardcore biker with 30 years riding experience before you can go into a Harley dealership

    I for one do not own a Harley. I grew up with them and have opted for a hardtail for the time being. However, when I feel ready to act my age, there is a Fatbob waiting in some dealership with my name on it.

  4. 4 BobS Mar 3rd, 2012 at 4:13 pm

    So Zyon, you have a hardtail and there’s a fat bob in your future. Tell me, when you ride do you wear a flouresenct green armoured mesh jacket and full face helmet? Or black leather, t-shirts and bandannas? Does your bike have loud or quiet pipes? See here’s the real deal, if I asked 100 people what kind of bike a guy that dresses in black leather, jeans, logo’d t-shirt and matching bandana rides we all know an overwhelming majority are going to respond “Harley”. That in fact makes a stereo type. Harley can pretend the stereo type doesn’t exist because their riders come from different backgrounds and have different jobs, but that doesn’t mean they don’t still fit the stereo type. For that matter a lot of non Harley riders ( mostly other cruisers, including me ) fit the stereo type too. That’s not Harley bashing, it’s just pointing out the silliness of that video.

  5. 5 RoadKingFla Mar 3rd, 2012 at 6:00 pm

    Well said zyon, well said.

  6. 6 BobS Mar 3rd, 2012 at 7:25 pm

    Maybe it’s splitting hairs but I’m bashing the video, not Harley in general. Let me explain from this perspective. If I asked 100 people to guess what kind of motorcycle the following rider rides. He wears black leather, jeans, t-shirts with corporate logos and a matching bandanna. His bike has loud pipes and there’s a pretty good chance he’s tatoo’d. How many people do you think are going to guess Harley? 70, 80, more??? That my friends is a stereo type. Of course Harley riders come from different backgrounds and have different jobs, everybody does, that does not dispel a stereo type. To pretend the stereo type doesn’t exist is simply denial. And btw, you don’t have to ride a Harley to fit the stereo type either. I have a black leather jacket and loud pipes…

  7. 7 .357 Magnum Mar 4th, 2012 at 2:00 am

    Hey, I wonder if that “Dog Williams” character will now show up to explain to us, in the crudest of terms, how lawyers, doctors, and the others of “our ilk”–you know, those of us who CAN afford newer, reliable Harleys, and DO actually take them coast to coast, through mountain passes and twisty canyons, those of us who DO buy rain suits and heated gear and ride year-round–aren’t “real bikers” because we spend less time than him in shitty bars, getting drunk, and getting our boots shredded in our open primaries in our inattentive stupor.

    What a great ambassador he is for our pasttime! Obviously, Harley, the #1 selling manufacturer in the country, is doing it all wrong, and we should all aspire to emulate him and his tight-knit group of bar-brawling “brothers.” That’s the only, narrow way to be a “real” motorcyclist, dontcha know?

    Hey, “Dog Williams,” I finally found a place to buy a bottle of Schlitz, but they put it in a plastic bag for me. Where do you get your paper bags to drink out of? All of us cross-country riders wanna be JUST LIKE YOU!

  8. 8 Alan sharp Mar 4th, 2012 at 4:50 am

    My friend Collin just got a new H/D he got to the shop at 930 he did not ride it till 1200, i asked, y he says its not for riding it for looking at, say WTF get a life and ride it, he says its to dangerous, he just likes the H/D clothing…………..looking at the bike telling everyone i got a H/D………….

  9. 9 captmike Mar 4th, 2012 at 8:51 am

    Now, boys, you just stop that bickering. Don’t make me stop this cage and come back there and straighten you out. This is the true Golden Age of motorcycling — on a constant-dollar basis we have more variety, reliability, higher performance, faster, quicker, etc., etc. Ride what you like. If you want a tattoo or like to play dress-up in the process, be my guest, although don’t go all pear-shaped if I don’t wave back as you pass. I’ve been riding for 50 years and my waving days are behind me.

    All I ask is that you keep the noise down (that means no straight pipes, please), so that when you fall off and hurt yourself and turn your attention to boats or sports cars instead, you won’t leave such a mess for the rest of us to clean up. Now, get out there and go for a ride!

  10. 10 DAKOTA Biker Mar 4th, 2012 at 9:02 am

    I think it is a great commercial.

  11. 11 Jameson55 Mar 4th, 2012 at 11:32 am

    “If I asked 100 people to guess what kind of motorcycle the following rider rides. He wears black leather, jeans, t-shirts with corporate logos and a matching bandanna. His bike has loud pipes and there’s a pretty good chance he’s tatoo’d. How many people do you think are going to guess Harley? 70, 80, more??? That my friends is a stereo type. ”

    NO, that my friends is a sign of a well known brand name. You ask 100 non bikers to name bike brands and after they say Harley and possibly Honda, I’m pretty sure they would be hard pressed to come up with any more.

    It’s not the gun that shoots people, it is the idiot behind the gun. I am a 56 year old computer geek that lives in the midwest and ride my 2004 Fat Boy an average of 7000 miles per year. I didn’t start riding my own until I was 48, although I’ve ridden countless miles on the pillion of others- mostly HD. I choose to wear leather because the bugs bounce off, the only HD clothing I own are gifts, I have a tattoo in honor of my dad and I wave at everyone – including vespas. I’ve ridden around 4 of the 5 Great Lakes and donate thousands of hours to support local charities and causes. My bike is my joy and mental escape and a way of seeing the country like no other.

    Unfortunately, like any other group, we can be judged by the misdeeds (or stupidity) of others. Whenever I am on my bike, I try to be sure that I am not reinforcing any negative opinions. Please join me in trying to change minds in a positive manner – no matter what you ride. JMHO

  12. 12 Mark Mar 4th, 2012 at 12:28 pm

    Harley is going after the younger crowd and doing a pretty good job with this spot.

  13. 13 Gary Bang Mar 4th, 2012 at 12:33 pm

    Way to go Harley I really like it. I really like the fact that their is no one in your Mirrors and I mean No One. “Opps maybe another Harley-Davidson”

    Thanks Gary Bang

  14. 14 Bilbo Mar 4th, 2012 at 2:41 pm

    You all are correct in your own points of view but what we and Bob S. forget is that this is a commercial, not a docudrama or expose’. It was made to appeal to those who don’t ride yet or are on the edge about to take the plunge. Harley Davidson does, despite so many comments to the contrary, know what they are doing. Right or wrong, agree or disagree, they do have it down. No one seemed to mention and what jumped out at me is that the whole advertisement is aimed at the entry level rider. Why else would H-D use over 10 XL’s in the ad and only three big twins. But then again maybe it’s me, hell what do I know, I’ve only been riding for 58 years, some metric but mostly H-D and I can relate to NOW being able to ride coast to coast on my dresser without spare parts, a tool box and extra oil strapped to my sleeping bag.

  15. 15 bryanr Mar 4th, 2012 at 4:58 pm

    Nice commercial ! it is full of makebelive, with a touch of reality,they are all pretty people,and they all have clean bikes,lets look at real bikers ,not actors,as we know anyone can buy HD clothing and play the part of being a righteous HD owner,and the world is full of lots of “sidewalk commandos” or wantabe’s, and as a guy who has owned and ridden Harley’s for many years it kinda makes a guy happy to see so many other, trying to play the part ,HD has given everyone a chance to be #1
    even if its just for the price of a T shirt or a HD sew on badge. Good business ! !

  16. 16 MDSPHOTO Mar 4th, 2012 at 6:00 pm

    I’d hit that soccer mom!

  17. 17 Chris Mar 5th, 2012 at 12:05 am

    My friend and I went out riding our 85 and 01 Ducatis today. My friends bike developed a problem and he had to push it down the street to the gas station. Some a**hole screams out the window of his monster 4×4 as he drives by, “Ha Haaa, you should bought a f*king Harley!!!”

    In the first few months of owning my Ducati I’ve had two other Harley riders come riding past me so close that it threatened to knock me off my bike. They were obviously acts of aggression.

    There are two kinds of people that ride motorcycles. Bikers and Motorcyclists. Motorcyclist love bikes no matter what they are. Bikers are a plague. Harley likes and plays to the bikers.

    -Bilbo, you strap oil to your sleeping bag?

  18. 18 Dyno Mar 5th, 2012 at 6:58 am

    Excellent commercial.

  19. 19 fuji Mar 5th, 2012 at 8:58 am

    As memory serves me wasn’t there an ad similar to this years ago.

    Could this be a copy cat ad.

    You meet the nicest people on a H_ _ _ _ _ type of ad. Just change a few letters.

    It worked L O L

    Hey Gary . Your looking the wrong way. The other bikes are already there.

    Just had to Gary . Bultaco’s for ever LOL

  20. 20 Kroeter Mar 5th, 2012 at 10:46 am

    I didn’t see any gray hairs! They shoulda had one 50-something R.U.B.labeled: MID-LIFE CRISIS. A 20-something 3rd grade teacher ain’t buying a new Harley. He’s scrambling to keep gas in his Ford Focus.

  21. 21 Johnny Wolf Mar 5th, 2012 at 12:13 pm

    This argument has been beat to death via the interwebs, and Starbucks… WHO CARES!

    I will say one thing. I would really like to see (just once) people actually say what they write via a keyboard, to someone’s face.

    …it NEVER happens.

  22. 22 Lugnut Mar 5th, 2012 at 3:50 pm

    Great commercial. As for those bashing the “stereotype”, please keep in mind that you have created one all for yourself. That would of course be the “you can only ride a Harley if you don’t own a trailer or a black t-shirt and ride at least 25,000 miles a year” crowd. I almost forgot, you have to smelt your own ore reclaimed from your Club’s own environmentally conscious strip mine (with union labor) and then build your own bike from this pilke of rocks.

    You do know you can be identified in a crowd don’t you. You just have this perpetually pissed off look about you.

    Have a nice day.

  23. 23 Andygears Mar 5th, 2012 at 8:09 pm

    I liked it better when there was not as much diversity. Back then the old guys sold off their old dressers to the young bucks who had to rebuild ’em just to get ridin. They left off lots of stuff just to get riding, ‘lectric starts, bags, fenders. When the bikes weren’t so reliable everybody waited while the XLCH’s kicked and ran cause being stuck alone sucked and we had all been there. Old fashioned brotherhood gone forever.

    With new reliable bikes and cellphones who NEEDS brotherhood?

    But more riding and less wrenching is good and more people enjoying riding is good, it’s just different from what it was.

    andygears

  24. 24 Brian Mar 8th, 2012 at 12:46 am

    Bryan r… So you think all those people in the commercial were actors? Wrong. I was actually part of that commercial. They found me at a swap meet in Dallas tx. I did some 5 min audition and ended up getting a call back to go down to Austin and film with them. All the people that I met when doing the commercial were all real people. It was a great experience for me(lonewolf) and my daughter. If you looked at my bike you would find that it’s far from stock and not decorated with hd shit all over it.

  25. 25 Otter Mar 8th, 2012 at 5:31 am

    There’s a funny scene in the show ‘Numbers’ where two FBI agents rounds up a biker gang. The one agent was surprised that they were on Japanese bikes (and not Harleys), and the other replied with, ‘Are you kidding? Only investment bankers ride Harleys any more.’

    That being said, this ad annoys me, and it clashes directly with that fragrance ad of theirs which promotes ‘smelling like a bad-ass’. So who rides Harleys? Honor students or badasses?

  26. 26 nicker Mar 9th, 2012 at 11:54 pm

    RE:
    “…When the bikes weren’t so reliable everybody waited while the XLCH’s kicked and ran…”

    Make that….. “kicked & kicked & kicked & kicked some more.”
    (and worse if ya tried to be cool and run some “custom carb”)

    Oh ya, that brings back memories.
    Triumphs were easier all the way around……. 🙂

    -nicker-

  27. 27 HDgirl11 Mar 13th, 2012 at 10:14 pm

    LOVE that they included flat track racer Nichole Cheza in this commercial. She has been racing Harleys for years, and it is awesome they are showing her and flat track racing some love. Wish they would use her more, she is a great role model and a bad ass racer.

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