Why Are Harleys So Expensive?

Harley-Davidson produces some of the most recognizable and high-quality motorcycles in the world. They are also one of the most popular choices among new and veteran riders. Riders who are interested in purchasing a Harley-Davidson will quickly learn that they carry quite a large price tag. So why exactly do Harley-Davidson bikes cost so much?

Harley-Davidson cost so much because they are an extremely well-established premium brand. Branding, along with the quality of the bikes they produce have put them in a position where they can charge a premium price that reflects the superior quality of the bikes they manufacture.

That being said, there are several other factors in play that influence the cost of Harley-Davidson bikes. This guide will break down these factors in detail and provide you with price comparisons of other popular brands. You can use this guide to help you decide for yourself if Harley-Davidson motorcycles are worth the price tag.

You can also find a detailed price comparison table at the end of this guide so you can compare Harley-Davidson’s prices side-by-side with other major motorcycle brands.

Factors That Influence The High Cost Of Harley-Davidson Motorcycles

The main factors that influence the high cost of Harley-Davidson bikes are branding and legacy, overall motorcycle quality, and their unique position in the market. A combination of these factors allows Harley-Davidson to put a premium price on their bikes without scaring customers away with the high price tag.

All of these factors will be discussed in detail in the list below. You can use this list to help you better understand the different factors surrounding the price of Harley-Davidson motorcycles. It is important to be aware of these factors when considering purchasing a Harley-Davidson.

harley davidson

Branding And Legacy

One of the main reasons that Harley-Davidson’s are so expensive is because of the brand and legacy that they have worked hard to build. Harley-Davidson is perhaps the most recognizable motorcycle brand in the whole world.

With merchandise to accompany their superior quality motorcycles, Harley-Davidson has built up quite a reputation in the motorcycle industry. Because of this, riders are more likely to pay a premium price to join the ranks of Harley-Davidson riders.

Harley-Davidson successfully sells consumers on a lifestyle, rather than just a motorcycle. Due to the rich history of the company and the many Harley enthusiast motorcycle clubs around the world, riders can feel like they are inheriting a part of that history as well when they purchase a Harley-Davidson bike.

Simple supply and demand have enabled Harley-Davidson to charge a premium price for their motorcycles and still make sales. Lesser-known brands would likely find it difficult to sell their bikes at premium prices but because of their stellar reputation, Harley-Davidson has no problem.

Harley-Davidson riders have carved out a whole subculture for themselves that is very enticing for riders who are looking for other like-minded riders to befriend and attend meetups with. It is this sense of comradery that has helped keep Harley-Davidson so popular.

Overall Motorcycle Quality

The quality and cost of the components associated with making a Harley-Davidson have also caused the price to rise in recent years. Harley-Davidson motorcycles are some of the most durable and reliable in the entire market.

It is not uncommon for a Harley-Davidson to run over 150,000 miles with no major issues. This is a stark contrast to standard motorcycles, as most will start to experience issues at around 50,000 miles. A properly maintained Harley-Davidson has perhaps the longest lifetime of any motorcycle currently available.

The build quality and the quality of the components also play a key role in influencing the price. Like most products, the more expensive it is to make, the more it will cost when it eventually makes its way to the consumer.

Harley-Davidson sets an extremely high standard for quality and because of this, charges a premium price for their bikes. The price of these components can become more apparent when it comes time to replace or repair some part of your Harley-Davidson.

Position In The Market

Harley-Davidson has carved out a unique position in the market that utilizes the premium price to exude the image of luxury to the consumer. Maintaining this image of a premium brand dictates that they must have a premium price tag attached to their bikes.

Harley-Davidson understands that consumers are willing to pay these premium prices for their bikes and capitalize on this by positioning themselves in the market in a way that will entice users. Instead of being turned away by the high prices, consumers are actually drawn in by them due to the prestige that comes with owning a Harley-Davidson.

This is apparent in their marketing strategy that utilizes scarcity to drive interest. There are often long waitlists for consumers who wish to buy the more popular models of Harley Davidsons. This implies that there is considerable demand for the bikes, in spite of the high price tag.

As long as users are willing to pay these prices, Harley-Davidson will retain its place in the market as a premium brand. People will likely continue to pay these prices as Harley-Davidson continues to deliver quality motorcycles year after year.

Harley-Davidson Price Comparison Table

The table below contains the high, average, and low prices of many major motorcycle brands. You can use this side-by-side comparison to see for yourself how Harley-Davidson compares to other popular brands. This can help you better determine if a Harley-Davidson is right for you.

As you will see in the table below, Harley-Davidson bikes are considerably more expensive than most of the other popular brands on the market. Rest assured that the price reflects the quality and experience of riding a Harley-Davidson bike.

How Much Does A Harley Davidson Costs?

BrandHighest PriceAverage PriceLowest Price
Harley Davidson$45,999$25,345$8599
Aprilia$25,000$13,899$7499
BMW$31,999$15,000$5395
Honda$27,000$13,050$5145
Kawasaki$43,000$16,570$5000
Suzuki$18,090$12,999$4500
Yamaha$27,050$13,165$4599

Final Thoughts

This guide has provided you with all of the information that you need to better understand why Harley-Davidson motorcycles are so expensive. In short, the bikes produced by Harley-Davidson carry a premium price tag due to their stellar reputation for quality and rich legacy.

All of the components used in a Harley-Davidson motorcycle are of the highest quality and the build is carefully manufactured for optimal performance. They are also some of the most durable motorcycles currently in production.

A Harley-Davidson is a long-term investment that will pay off down the road. It is not uncommon for Harley-Davidson bikes to last for several thousand more miles than a standard motorcycle. Because of this, you can rest assured that your purchase will last for many years to come.

You can use the price comparison guide to see how Harley-Davidson holds up to other major motorcycle brands in regard to price. This can help you make an informed decision when choosing whether or not a Harley-Davidson motorcycle is right for you.

Harley-Davidson has a dedicated rider base that will enthusiastically purchase their bikes even with the premium price tags. Should you be interested in purchasing a Harley-Davidson but are wary of the high price, you can rest assured that Harley-Davidson is setting the standard for modern motorcycles.

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