What Harley-Davidson Mentioned in its 2021 Launch, and What it Didnt

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By Dennis Chung

Harley-Davidson announced the bulk of its 2021 lineup in a virtual launch event last week, highlighting the updates to its Softail, touring and CVO models. The launch was different for Harley-Davidson in two ways. For one, it was held completely virtually in a 40-minute video, a necessity during a global pandemic. It was also unusual in that it was held in the middle of January instead of the traditional September. As outlined in Harley-Davidson’s Rewire plan, this looks to be a permanent change moving forward, positioning the new model launch closer to the start of the riding season.

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While a January launch will be the plan moving forward, it meant there was a longer wait than usual for the 2021 model announcements. Combined with a stated goal of streamlining its lineup by 30% and the long-awaited launch of the Pan America adventure-tourer next month, this year’s model launch faced more scrutiny than in previous years.

Harley-Davidson is putting a lot into the launch of the Pan America 1250, with actor Jason Momoa a big part of that. The Aquaman actor is pictured here riding the Pan America through the mud.

One thing we noticed about the launch event was that the focus was entirely on the models that received changes. Harley-Davidson was oddly silent about the models that are returning for 2021 with just updated paint schemes. In addition to the launch video, the Motor Company sent out a total of six press releases on the day, and there was nary a word on the touring models returning with new colors, the LiveWire, the Street line or the Sportster models. Only the returning Softail models received a mention, with just a one …read more

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