Harley-Davidson's new Seventy-Two model gives a nod to the custom car culture of East Los Angeles' Whittier Boulevard, the historic cruising strip also known as Route 72. The machine evokes candy-apple red Sting-Rays and hazy summer twilight, according to a news release.
The cycle features a hard candy-apple red flake paint job, ape bars and narrow whitewall tires.
"In creating the Seventy-Two, we were also inspired by the vibe of the early chopper era," Frank Savage, Harley-Davidson manager of industrial design, said in a prepared statement. "Those bikes were colorful and chromed, but also narrow and stripped down to the essentials. You look at period examples and they are almost as simple as a bicycle. It's a custom style that's very particular to America and that California scene."
Metal flake, an iconic design element of the 1970s, appeared in everything from dune buggies to diner upholstery, according to the release. Harley's new finish is created by applying a black base coat, followed by a polyurethane system that carries hexagon-shaped flakes that are more than seven times the diameter of metal flake used in typical production paint.
Each flake is coated with a thin aluminum film and then tinted red. Four applications of clear coat, combined with hand sanding, create a smooth finish over the flakes.
"The final touch to the Hard Candy Big Red Flake paint is a logo on the tank top and pinstripe scallop details on both fenders," Savage said. "Each was originally created by hand, and we recreated that art in a decal for production, so they still have the appearance of hand-applied graphics in that they are not exactly perfect. The graphics are then covered with a final clear coat application."
A solo seat and side-mounted license plate bracket leave much of the chopped rear exposed on the Seventy-Two. A classic Sportster 2.1-gallon "peanut" fuel tank adds a final period touch to the motorcycle, according to the release.
Click here for a picture gallery of the Harley-Davidson 72.
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