Recent VIN documents filed in USA indicate Harley Davidson 338R to be powered by a 353cc parallel-twin, liquid-cooled engine
Harley Davidson is one of the most well-known motorcycle brands across the globe. Most of their products cater to the large displacement category. The company doesn’t have any significant presence at the lower end of the spectrum.
The company tried their hands in the mid-engine segment with Street 500 and Street 750. Unfortunately, that plan did not work as per expectation. The American motorcycling giant is now getting ready to enter an even lower segment of motorcycles – the 350cc segment. A segment where Royal Enfield is the leader with over 90% market share in the Indian motorcycle industry.
Harley Davidson shook hands with Chinese manufacturer Qianjiang Motors, parent company of Benelli, for developing an entry-level bike around the 350cc mark. This motorcycle has now inched a step closer to production as Harley Davidson recently filed documentation for the same in the USA.
Harley Davidson 353cc Motorcycle – VIN Documents
The document in question is in the form of vehicle identification number (VIN) decoder submitted to U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Automakers usually file such a document to explain the VIN format for an upcoming model. In this particular case, Qianjiang has filed a VIN decoder that mentions some details about the upcoming bike.
Each individual manufacturer has its set pattern VIN decoder. The one in discussion doesn’t match the pattern used by Qinajiang but corresponds with Harley Davidson. First three characters of a VIN are always reserved for the World Manufacturer Identifier, a globally standardised ID code assigned for each manufacturer. In this case, the first three characters of the VIN are “1HD” which is WMI for Harley-Davidson.
Harley Davidson 353cc Motorcycle Specs
Rest of the characters in the VIN decoder reveal some crucial information about the upcoming motorcycle like engine type, engine displacement, year of manufacture and more. Based on this information, we can deduce that the upcoming Harley Davidson 338R is expected to be powered by a 353cc, parallel-twin, fuel-injected liquid-cooled engine. This unit is expected to dish out around 40 horses of power.
These documents also reveal that there will be two derivatives of this motorcycle W3 and W4 with respective VIN codes LWZX350 and LWZX350RA. Patent images of 338R were earlier leaked on the internet around eighteen months back which revealed design of the bike. By looks of its, these patents suggest that Harley Davidson has adopted a neo-retro design on a modern scrambler-like naked roadster.
Prominent styling highlights of Harley Davidson 353cc Motorcycle include a round headlamp with an integrated LED DRL, a chiselled fuel tank, short front and rear fenders, a flat tail section, a single-piece step-up saddle and an offset single-pod instrument console. Patent images also reveal an exposed trellis frame suspended on telescopic forks at front and mono-shock at rear.
Harley Davidson would be looking to target developing markets like India and other South Asian countries which have a thing for 350cc modern classic roasters. In India, retail operation for Harley Davidson is currently carried out by Hero MotoCorp. An exact date for its global premiere isn’t known yet but we expect 338R to make its maiden appearance sometime this year.