With the 1925 Harley-Davidson JD, the venerable motorcycle company made great strides in modernizing its machines -- at least from the standpoint of styling.
A new frame placed the saddle three inches lower than before, wider but smaller-diameter tires gave the bike a huskier look, and the fuel tank took on a rounded teardrop shape. Color choices, however, remained the same as they had since 1917: anything the customer wanted, as long as it was Olive Drab.
Since Harleys still lacked rear suspension, riders appreciated the softer fork springs and new contoured saddle, the latter of which also offered six-position height adjustment.
The shift lever was moved farther forward along the side of the tank for convenience, and a fork-mounted tool kit made a debut appearance.
Sidecars were popular accessories of the day, as these vehicles often served as a family's primary form of motorized transportation.
The first of Harley's famed 74-cubic-inch V-twins was introduced in 1922 and continued with only minor changes through 1928. Some of those minor changes occurred in the JD: Iron alloy pistons replaced the previous aluminum slugs, and 16 Alemite fittings were added to the engine and gearbox to ease lubrication.
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