Harley Davidson posted by

Jay Springsteen Special: 1983 Harley-Davidson XR1000

For Sale: 1983 Harley-Davidson XR1000

Walking the halls of the RSBFS corporate office is an interesting affair: Doug's office sits empty (we store boxes of hats, shirts and koozies in there now), Ian is buzzing around like one of his beloved two strokes, Rem chatters on about Gixxers (I do have a soft spot for those early 750 slabbies), Jared has his head down doing research, Andrew pops in occasionally and the Boss man is busy playing around with Facebook. It's a great group of like-minded enthusiasts. Which brings us to today's bike: A 1983 H-D XR1000.

In all of the years of RSBFS we have never listed an XR1000. That made me think a little bit. We seem to post a lot of Ducati v-twins, and this H-D is a two-banger in similar fashion. We are big on rare bikes, and this XR is as rare as most; fewer than 1,800 were created world wide over a short, two-year time span. RSBFS is all about sport bikes, and this HD is, uh, sport-like, depending on your definition of sport. It is just like a homologation racebike - unless you consider dirt tracking right up there with lawn mower racing and monster trucks... You see, this XR1000 has all the elements of what should be on RSBFS. Still, I'm keeping my Nomex nearby in case a flame war erupts...

The Motor Company created the XR1000 to be a street-going equivalent of the all conquering XR750 dirt track racebike. Utilizing alloy heads with bigger valves atop what is basically a Sportster bottom end, breathing through 36mm Dell'Orto pumpers fitted with K&N filters from the factory, the XR1000 was reported to enjoy a 10 HP increase over the Sportster of the day. With uppright seating position and huge mufflers tracking down the left side of the bike, the bike looked the dirt tracker part.

Sadly, what might have looked good to the buying public did not work as well in real life. Interest in the XR1000 was limited, and dealers struggled to sell their stock of these race replicas at just under $7,000 a pop. This is a rehash of the XLCR story; the H-D buyers didn't want a sport bike, and sport bike riders didn't shop at H-D dealerships. Jeff Karr of Cycle and Motorcyclist fame wrote an excellent piece about the XR1000 in his April 2009 "Stupid Money" column which can be viewed online HERE.

From the seller:
this is an exceptional bike in fine condition, has all original parts available. Passenger pad not shown but is here. all original paperwork and manuals included. If you are looking for a rare collectable ridable bike, this is it! email me with any questions.

The amazing thing about this bike is that as I sat and debated about posting it to the rabid fans that are the RSBFS readers, the bidding caught fire. With only a few days underway, there have been more than 20 bids on this bike. And what started as a $1,000 opening ask has exploded to $10k plus with reserve still in place. When all is said and done, my guess is $12,500 - $15,000 will buy this bike. Say what you want about the suitability of this bike on RSBFS - the eBay community has certainly spoken.

To check out this oddball wonder from H-D, you can visit the auction here. Look, learn, read and enjoy. It might not be Italian and it might only strafe apexes on the left hand side of the track, but this is one rare bike that you won't find every day.

MI

21 Comments

  • Okay, I have to call bovine fecal matter on this. I can hold my nose and pretend that Buell makes sportbikes, but this…. thing, which I’m sure is a rattling, clattering, collection of spare parts in close proximity is not a sport anything. The fact that an HD label will cause the NASCAR crowd to squander the college funds of their progeny means little to me.

    Get your Nomex on. HD will never be anything more than an efficient way to turn gasoline into noise and vibration without the onerous burdens of horsepower and torque.

  • JJ – Its sad you feel this way about this bike . Yeah, there are better bikes out there , BUT , given the quanities that this bike was made in , its intended purpose was to meet homologation rules and its flat track / TT heritage it does truely belong on this site . HD makes a bike for a purpose , no its not going out and racing , and thier bikes fill the intended purpose quite well . And yes , there is a Street Gilde parked inbetween a Guzzi, a Hypermotard and a Tuono in my garage -

  • That ain’t no sportbike ! I had to present this in NASCAR drawl to pay hommage to my fellow previous commentors .

  • This post-AMF oddity has roughly the same power as Burgman 650, and is as desirable to sport bike aficionados as the aforementioned Burgman.

    Shakin’ my head on this post… in my opinion, your first swing and miss since I began enjoying your very informative blog.

  • Poster “JJ” called it right. I’ve ridden one of these things, and it’s worse than you can imagine. It’s no more a sportsbike than a Sportster is, which is to say not at all. Weak sauce.

  • Not that my two cents will buy anything, but i think it belongs. It is a sport bike, just Harley’s definition of a sportbike. Add to that the fact that it is a race homologation makes it worthy. Think of all the famous AMA and MotoGP guys who started their racing career on a flat track, I’d be willing to bet they consider it a sportbike.

  • This is the most genial argument I’ve ever participated in. Phil and Ned both make good points, and the post about the Harley actually made me do some research. From that perspective, the post did exactly what it was designed to do.

  • Thanks for the great comments guys – I love the itelligent back and forth here, many of which were my thoughts as I debated posting this one. This is a very polarizing bike – and one that is bringing more money than I originally expected!

  • I rode one of these at the insistence of my former boss, a heavy daily drinker dickhead and H-D fan. I thought, “where’s the loincloth and club?” and after began a look out for the unibrow, beefier bones over the eyebrows, more sloping and aerodynamic forehead, forward gait, and denser body hair. Not to worry, jackhole J.James stepped up to the vanilla gorilla role, masterjaculationboy style. CRUDE bike.

  • I rode one of these at the insistence of my former boss, a heavy daily drinker and H-D fan. After I asked for a loincloth and club, and began a lookout for the unibrow, sloping aerodynamic forehead, densining of orbital bones, and dragging knuckles, that further riding would surely produce. To my relief, jackholes like J.James glorifyingly masterjaculated vanilla gorilla karma into present oblivion. Crude, man, just crude.

  • You sportbike guys are so smart, half you flamers couldnt ride this bike full speed. The thing has torque way beyond most streetbikes, and I would guarantee you fools couldnt ride it at full boogie. Just keep gsxr’in in your mohawk helmet

  • Hey Adam? I can’t ride a unicycle either. The Yamaha FZ1000 I ride on a daily basis may not even qualify as a sportbike to some, and I promise it will strip the chrome off pretty much any production bike Harley or it’s bastard child Buell has ever come up with.

    I did look up the specs for this thing, and it has roughly the same power as a Burgman 650. Sweet!

  • I have an XR1000 1983 for sale 603-832-3192

  • The HD may be rare, but it’s no sports bike. That like saying that an 883 sporty is a sports bike.

    They HD’s are about as sports like as a boat anchor, and as useful.

  • Fail, Fail, Fail! Shawkrider nailed it. This is a boat anchor at best and does not belong

  • It has a sporting heritage & it’s rare, I wouldn’t want to own it or ride it but I can appreciate its existence in terms of racing history. Glad to see it here.

  • Jj? Are you fat? Unicycles are tricky even for the fit. Fzrs are sweet but im sure youre fast. I have never heard of anyone on the internet that wasnt a master of trivia and real world technique. Whats the torque number on that HD? The fzr may beat pretty much any HD with equal riders but that doesnt change the fact that you cant ride a unicycle but you still talk about unicycles

  • I own a 1984 XR 1000,its a blast to ride and gets a lot of attention any place you go with it.

  • [...] Mike pointed out in a previous post, I spend much of my time at corporate trying to convince anyone who will listen of the greatness of [...]

  • Adds ten horsepower?? Must just about double it……

  • I REALLY WANT THIS BIKE.DOES ANY BODY KNOW IF ITS STILL AVAILABLE.I CANT FIND IT ON EBAY AT ALL.

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