The Harley-Davidson scooter was considered “very manoeuvrable and well balanced” and really looks great with its identifiable early 1960s aesthetic. Now more than a vehicle, it’s a work of art.
Imagine running your Milwaukee V-twin motorcycle sales business and then seeing a Japanese manufacturer selling imported compact bikes and small scooters in a market where you were very popular. What do you do ? Simple, build a scooter yourself. And that’s what Harley-Davidson did when, in the late 1950s, Honda emerged as a competitor. Harley’s answer was called the Topper.
The Topper only remained in production for five years with four-digit production estimates, Jalopnik writes in a report. With the exception of the electric concepts that Harley now owns, the Topper was the only scooter the manufacturer had ever built and also mass produced. One of these was found and is now being auctioned off at Mecum’s Las Vegan Motorcycles 2022 auction.
Unlike the big V-twin that powers HD motorcycles, the Harley-Davison Topper was powered by a two-stroke single-cylinder delivering between 5 and 9 hp. It came in three models. It is not known which of them is heading towards Mecum.
Read also : Harley-Davidson’s second mid-power electric motorcycle: smaller, more affordable than LiveWire
All this power was transmitted to its wheels via a continuously variable transmission. American Motorcyclist magazine from November 1959 mentions a starter cord hidden in the chrome instrument cluster.
The Topper was rated “highly manoeuvrable and well balanced” by the same magazine and looks really good with its identifiable early 1960s aesthetic. Now more than a vehicle, it’s a work of art.
Imagine being able to say that you own a Harley-Davidson scooter today. And if you want, you can. Mecum’s auction is scheduled to start on January 25, 2022 until the 29th of the month. Interested? Look for the Harley-Davidson Heritage Collection.
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