Harley to reinvent the Buell Blast?

Rumour: 500cc single-cylinder H-D coming soon

Posted: 21 June 2012
by Visordown News

IF the latest internet rumours are to be believed then Harley might be on the verge of launching a 500cc single-cylinder machine to add a new lower-echelon to its range and entice novice riders to the fold.

While a single from the firm that's synonymous with V-twins might sound odd, in fact the pieces are all in place. Harley may have closed down its old Buell subsidiary, but it's still got access to the 500cc single that powered the rather dull Buell Blast so it wouldn't be a tough job to stick it in something that looks more like a conventional Harley.

Will it happen? Well some forum users claim their dealers have confirmed it to them, so there's a chance. It certainly makes sense if the firm's looking to expand into a new market area without spending a fortune on development.



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Harley doesn't just "have access to the 500cc single." Harley created that horrible engine by lopping off one cylinder of a Sportster engine and then forced Buell to create a bike around it and to sell the resultant product under their name. Because Harley didn't want a beginner bike with normal (non-cruiser) ergonomics to sport the Harley Davidson name.

So f*** Harley Davidson. They shut down Buell, turning down handsome offers from Bombardier to buy Buell and keep the plant open. Harley Davidson laid off 180-200 workers at Buell out just before Christmas in the worst recession we've seen in decades, all out of spite, political in-fighting, and personal vendettas against Erik Buell.

Posted: 21/06/2012 at 15:50

A "Harley" for their plant in India to produce maybe?

A 500cc bike is a "big 'un" over there... that would be a cheap way to tap into the "upscale" portion of the Indian market... and if a few extras are made for export, that would work too...

I doubt that you will ever see them produced at either their York or Milwaukee plants.

Posted: 21/06/2012 at 16:32

Harley has stuck the badge on Euro scooters in the past... why not a HD for the Indian and Asian market.

Posted: 21/06/2012 at 16:48

Might need to adjust the pricing. They make the Sportster as a 'loss leader' to get people into the brand, so will the price of this 500 be too close to the current range to justify paying a few quid extra for the genuine V-twin!?

Think aiming at the Far Eastern markets makes more sense with this. The Blast found a home in motorcycle training centres and still used today in that role, other than that I can not see H-D riders (would be or existing) going for this.

Posted: 21/06/2012 at 17:00

Spot-on, Fred. FUHD!

Posted: 21/06/2012 at 18:39

SCBonneville wrote: "I doubt that you will ever see them produced at either their York or Milwaukee plants."

I'm pretty sure that HD is looking for a bike to use to teach new riders in their U.S. riding schools. That's how they used the Blast. They wanted a cheap, reliable, repairable, bike that would take a lot of abuse while offering beginner-friendly ergos and power delivery.

If they don't product them in the U.S., there's a lot of issue with shipping costs, equipping overseas production lines, etc.

I don't see the Indian market embracing a Blast when they have the beautiful Royal Enfield Bullet 500s in various guises. That's a drop-dead gorgeous classic bike. The Blast looks about as sexy as a toaster by comparison.

Posted: 24/06/2012 at 11:40

You're full of it. If you knew anything about what you were talking about you'd be dangerous.
The Buell Blast's engine was propritary. It was based on the Rotax single which Harley owns approx 20% share of you moron.
Get your facts straight before openig your pie hole.

Secondly, Eric left on his own because he was angry that Harley sold MV Agusta/Cagiva, and wouldn't let him tinker with the bikes.

Posted: 10/08/2012 at 01:50

The Blast engine was basically a Sportster engine with the rear cylinder removed. Look up the parts blow-ups. Look up the parts that are used to hop up the blast engine.

Posted: 18/08/2012 at 16:57

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