Spy Picture Of The 500 CC Harley-Davidson

HarleyDavidson-500ccWith minimum camouflage, the upcoming Harley-Davidson 500 cc to be built in India and to be 1st marketed in this same country, is accumulating road test miles. There is a consensus among all big motorcycle manufacturers that they need to offer smaller capacity models at more affordable prices to be able to penetrate emerging markets and compete with local manufacturers. In addition, after an explosive growth during the last decade, there is an economic slow down in almost all these emerging countries where motorcycle sales have been sharply down during the last 4 quarters. From these spy picture, we already know that the 500 cc Harley will feature a V-Twin engine.

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30 Responses to “Spy Picture Of The 500 CC Harley-Davidson”


  1. 1 Kirk Perry Sep 7th, 2013 at 10:41 am

    Looks like a huge honking radiator zip-tied in front of the fork legs. Say it isn’t so.

    The funnel-cake muffler isn’t going to cut it. Two exhaust into one muffler. Stop-it already.

    The test rider is wearing some cold shoes.

  2. 2 SIGFREED Sep 7th, 2013 at 11:05 am

    It would have been cheaper and more effective to buy Royal Enfield…

  3. 3 A 1 MIKE Sep 7th, 2013 at 11:55 am

    it reminds me of the old vt500 ascot from Honda…great motor

  4. 4 roscoe Sep 7th, 2013 at 12:04 pm

    Hard to tell from this pic, but looks like a UJM. I like it, a utilitarian motorcycle for the masses. How long until sold here in the states?
    Imagine that….an HD built in India of all places!

  5. 5 Skeeter Sep 7th, 2013 at 12:59 pm

    Engine from Italy frame built in India assmbled in India with parts from
    every where except the USA.

  6. 6 P. Cramer Sep 7th, 2013 at 1:01 pm

    Skeeter. Do you have proof of your info?

  7. 7 Roadrash Sep 7th, 2013 at 2:00 pm

    I wonder the accuracy of this. Everything on this bike looks metric, the radiator, turn signals, mirrors etc. Even the gas tank looks bigger then there sportster tank. Should be interesting in final product if this bike is anything close

  8. 8 Mike Greenwald Sep 7th, 2013 at 2:51 pm

    Ironic. an Indian built Harley

  9. 9 Laurence Zankowski Sep 7th, 2013 at 3:26 pm

    Cyril,

    I keep thinking rotax engines. Looking at a buell 1125 r as a starting point. Probably wrong again, but it seems to fit the v twin strategy / marketing.

    Be well

    Laurence

  10. 10 James just another crazy Kiwi Sep 7th, 2013 at 4:09 pm

    I would think that tank ,saddle bags,indicators possibly pipes maybe diguise.
    Would think a big tank, small tank option would be great. Like the Bonneville of old.
    Remember most countries do not have a Service Station on every corner.
    Economical motor, big tank= large range.
    The “Company” could have different guises for different markets…brilliant

    Suzuki sell a small V-twin but it is expensive albeit a very nice Motorcycle.
    It still looks very cool !!
    Great to see a bike for smaller framed people and women that is a Harley Davidson.

    Jeep Cherokees that we receive for our market were built in Austria.
    I still bought them and they are still a Jeep
    Which is possibly a bigger Brand than Harley Davidson
    Some of Triumphs product is made in Malaysia …I think

    Quality control is the key.If you have that you can make anything anywhere.
    But HD will probably have to always make the big twins in Wisconsin.
    Exciting times.
    PS we just won the first race of tha Americas cup.Long way to go but we are the under dog !!!!

  11. 11 Dave Blevins Sep 7th, 2013 at 5:42 pm

    Since 1988 ( I think ) Honda has made the 600cc VT-DLX v-twin, water cooled, softail type hidden suspension, with forward controls, mid glide forks, and in two or three trim packages. The other major metric manufacturers have similar size and power v-twin motorcycles as well… If Harley is looking to get into this market they are 25 years late, unless the brand name is capable of bringing in the sales.
    Perhaps I am just dumb, and India needs all the 500-750cc water cooled v-twins it can get… or perhaps H-D actually wants to develop a smaller bike for use here in the states and is using the guise of a foreign market as an excuse to get it built, and if it succeeds bring it home to the US, and if it flops they haven’t damaged their “street cred” with its core US market.
    I am probably overthinking this.

  12. 12 Ernie L Sep 7th, 2013 at 6:09 pm

    There is something about the look of the rear head and the exhaust that is very odd. Firstly I do not see a rear head..I see a solid blacked out area..very unlike the air cooled looking front head….you dont suppose they water cooled only the rear head?…

    The rear exhaust pipe seems to approach the rear head at a very unlikely angle,,,,,is this really a single cylinder bike disguised as a twin (shrug)

  13. 13 Seymour Sep 7th, 2013 at 6:30 pm

    Would this primarily appeal to Indians? Otherwise, I don’t see how it can compete on a global scale with Japanese bikes for example. And would the Indians rather own this Harley than a V twin Royal Enfield? Serious question.

  14. 14 Smitty Sep 7th, 2013 at 7:42 pm

    This is why I read this blog. Cyril is on the cutting edge of the motorcycle information and technology world! Print magazines can’t keep up!

  15. 15 Woody's Sep 7th, 2013 at 9:30 pm

    The 80′s just called, they want their Comstar front wheel back :)

  16. 16 nicker Sep 7th, 2013 at 11:36 pm

    Why not simply re-issue that single cylinder Buel… already , already designed, tooled and debugged…???
    Is this one a good business decision…..???

    -nicker-

  17. 17 Mike Infanzon Sep 8th, 2013 at 9:29 am

    Lets have some American iginuity here. If this does hit the US market, think of the possibilities of custom parts. We get a lot of Honda riders that want the Harley look. Think of just what a few cosmetic changes can do.

    Thanks Cyril for the spy pic. NSA is jealous now.

  18. 18 Johnny Wolf Sep 8th, 2013 at 2:20 pm

    500cc twin? I see two exhaust pipes. 2ea 250cc jugs?

    “Spy Photo”….funny.

    More like photo purposely fed to the media to start the “buzz”.

  19. 19 Hungouver Sep 8th, 2013 at 3:45 pm

    i dont think that is an HD. its got Victory turnsighnals that were borrowed from a ducati

  20. 20 Mike Greenwald Sep 9th, 2013 at 12:19 am

    My real concern with any motorcycles produced in India are the metal castings. The H-DMoCo has had enough problems with anomalies in castings. I find that it is somewhat odd that they would source a motorcycle and parts from India which has historically produced castings with cold shuts, porosity and other inclusions. Quality control and resultant warranty issues will plague H-D.

  21. 21 clyde the glide Sep 9th, 2013 at 8:31 am

    It appears that there may be a change in Corporate Strategy:
    Domestic companies manufacture and market in their own countries
    International companies manufacture in their own countries but market internationally.
    Global companies manufacture and market in various global markets, and produce products for that specific market.

  22. 22 Axel Sep 9th, 2013 at 9:08 am

    I will not fish while foggy…I will see at EICMA. Sure they present it there…just rumors…;0)

  23. 23 Michael H Sep 9th, 2013 at 9:24 am

    The new HD Gupta Glide.

  24. 24 99RK Sep 9th, 2013 at 9:33 am

    Looks like India has found its motorcycle from HD! LOL!! Just saw Michael’s ‘Gupta Glide’!! Well said! Don’t think that is for USA…

  25. 25 CafeSportyTC Sep 9th, 2013 at 12:09 pm

    like the rear end.. but who knows if that will transfer to the end product. look if they bring it over to the usa i think it will be a nice motorcycle. hopefully way more reasonably priced to get more people in the door. as long as the dealers will support it and it gets people on board the HD ship who the hell cares. most of you guys make it sound like this is the end of the world. Its smart to expand there line past what some of you 50 year old whiney bitchy babies believe a H-D should be… grow up or get over it..

  26. 26 Bigwoody Sep 9th, 2013 at 2:01 pm

    Would give six pair of Harley jeans and three tee shirts for one all with the Harley logo of course. Made in China.

    Check out at your local dealer.

    So old my harley boots say made in USA. They are worn,been resoled several sets of heels but
    still were made here.
    Harley why not do it again. Gradually your market will diminish because people will not be able to afford the mistique of Harley Davidson.
    Sell it here make it here.

    Talked to the tee shirt salesman from Stratmen, asked about a USA shirt.
    He said “happening.”
    WHY??

  27. 27 Johnny O Sep 9th, 2013 at 2:37 pm

    Harley Davidson, now how will that be spelled in India ? You Greedy bastards are going to get what you have coming one of these days

  28. 28 Andrew Sep 9th, 2013 at 4:39 pm

    @Mike Greenwald – I think you are absolutely right in that Indian metallurgy is their weakest point and a cause for real concern. However, there is nothing odd about HD’s decision. HD will do more than source parts from India, it will build complete bikes there and that’s because the whole purpose of this bike is to sell in Indian market which is mind-bogglingly huge – millions and millions of bikes are sold there every year! Sales in any other markets including USA itself are only a bonus for HD, and a small one at that… However, in order to sell the bike in India they have to make it there, otherwise Indians would tax it beyond any hope of being competitive, Indians are no fools and protect their manufacturing unless some other countries I could name.

  29. 29 Andrew Sep 9th, 2013 at 4:41 pm

    … ‘UNLIKE some other countries’, I meant.

  30. 30 j Sep 9th, 2013 at 8:37 pm

    Buell…er…..

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