The 1976 Electra-Glide was the final year for Harley-Davidson’s air-cooled V-twin engine, and the final year for the company’s air-cooled V-twin engine in general. For many motorcyclists, this was a landmark year as they watched the company’s iconic V-twin engine fall from grace, due to competition from Japanese bikes with air-cooled V-twins.
In 1976, Elvis Presley made headlines when he purchased a new Harley-Davidson Electra Glide from the jukebox musical, Big River. The purchase of the fabulous motorcycle was followed by the news that the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll had gone broke, and was forced to sell the bike to pay off some of his debt. At the time, the Electra Glide was the most expensive motorcycle in the world. It cost a whopping $17,500.
Of course, you don’t need to explain why anything to do with Elvis Presley can be highly desirable. But the Harley-Davidson the king rode is without a doubt one of the coolest things in the universe. This 1976 Harley-Davidson FLH 1200 Electra Glide motorcycle sold for nearly $1 million in 2019, making it one of the most expensive motorcycles in the world.
Harley Davidson FLH 1976 Elvis Presley | Pioneer Auto Museum
Elvis Presley was not known for his good taste. In fact, his vulgarity is as much a part of his legacy as anything else he did in his musical career. His taste in cars and motorcycles was a bit royal at times, but overall, the King’s garage had a few options that were to his liking.
Elvis Presley’s Harley-Davidson Electra Glide was the last motorcycle the King bought. In the more than thirty years since his Harley rolled off the assembly line, he has only ridden 126 miles. This fact alone makes this bike highly sought after, not to mention the fact that it was owned and tuned by Elvis Presley.
Elvis Presley on another Harley-Davidson | Getty Images
According to the New Atlas, Elvis Presley’s Harley-Davidson Electra Glide would be the most expensive motorcycle in the world, with an estimated value of between $1,750,000 and $2,000,000. However, it did not sell for half the high estimate.
When the 2019 Royal Harley went up for auction, the hammer fell with the highest bid of $960,000. For this motorcycle, the Vincent Black Shadow sold for $929,000. (Technically, the Easy Rider Captain America bike sold for more than $1 million in 2014, but the bike’s history calls that into question, and it may have sold for less afterwards.)
Pictures of the Terminator 2 Harley-Davidson auction: Profiles in History
The New Atlas mentions that the record for the most expensive motorcycle in the world was set because other famous motorcycles have recently sold for a lot of money.
In 2015, a 1959 Harley Davidson Panhead Duo-Glide once owned by Jerry Lewis sold at a Mecum auction for $385,000. Although Great Fireball is one of the most famous rock and roll artists of all time, he is no match for Elvis Presley.
Another iconic motorcycle that sold for a lot of money was the Harley-Davidson Fat Boy ridden by Arnold Schwarzenegger in the movie Terminator 2 : Judgment Day. Fat Boy sold for $512,000.
The list of famous motorcycles could go on endlessly, including Buddy Holley’s 1958 Ariel Cyclone ($450,000), Marlon Brando’s 1970 Harley-Davidson FLH Electra-Glide ($256,000) and the Triumph Trophy 500 Fonzie from the movie Happy Days ($179,000).
This record will move you for a long time. Captain America’s engine is clouding things for now and will continue to do so until another Captain America is auctioned off at the end of the month. Until then, King can rest easy knowing that the world is still willing to pay more for his 1976 Harley-Davidson FLH 1200 Electra Glide than for any other celebrity motorcycle.
APPROPRIATE: Which used Harleys are the most reliable?
Frequently Asked Questions
How much did Elvis Presley’s motorcycle sell for?
The motorcycle sold for $100,000.
How much did Elvis Presley’s Harley sell for?
The Harley Davidson motorcycle Elvis Presley owned sold for $115,000 in 2002.
How much is a 1976 Harley Davidson worth?
A 1976 Harley Davidson is worth about $2,000.
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