Harley-Davidson Bursts into Adventure Bike Market

The 2021 Harley-Davidson Pan-America 1250 marks the iconic Milwaukee company's entry into the hot market for bikes that work off-road as well as on-road.

Dan Carney, Senior Editor

March 8, 2021

14 Slides

The classic American highway cruiser motorcycle brand Harley-Davidson is launching a foray into the globally popular “adventure bike” category with the Pan-America 1250, a dual-purpose bike meant to excel on the road and off it.

Harley points out the before the pavement-eating Electra Glide became the company’s template during the U.S. Interstate highway-building decades of the 1950s and ‘60s, its motorcycles were employed as horse replacements on trails and rutted dirt roads.

During World War II, the famous Harley-Davidson WLA models had to press on with or without a road on the battlefield. That is the same philosophy for the Pan America 1250, which is likely ideal for riders seeking the socially distant great outdoors, much like those who are buying camping trailers.

This bike boasts an all-new liquid-cooled V-twin engine and a bevy of features aimed at making Pan America equally well suited to long rides to distant destinations as well as dusty trails once reaching the remote location.

“From its inception more than a century ago, when many roads were little more than dirt trails, Harley-Davidson has stood for adventure. So I’m very proud to present Pan-America as the first adventure touring bike designed and built in America,” said Jochen Zeitz, chairman, president, and CEO of Harley-Davidson. “The Pan America models exude that go-anywhere spirit, shared today by riders in the US and around the globe who want to experience the world on a motorcycle.”

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Click through the slide show to get a look at some of the Pan America 1250’s features.

About the Author(s)

Dan Carney

Senior Editor, Design News

Dan’s coverage of the auto industry over three decades has taken him to the racetracks, automotive engineering centers, vehicle simulators, wind tunnels, and crash-test labs of the world.

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