Excitement about the 2021 Harley-Davidson Pan America has been high ever since the bike was announced. No matter how you slice it, it’s a massive step outside its comfort zone for the Motor Company, and into a niche that’s both incredibly popular and extremely competitive. Upon launch, it even turned our former managing editor Sabrina’s head and she’d previously been pretty skeptical about it.
Building on that anticipation even further, Harley-Davidson released this short video that takes us all inside the York, Pennsylvania factory where the Pan America is all coming together. The powertrain may be built in Milwaukee, but important elements including the frame, fuel tank, and fenders are all made on-site in York. The men and women on the assembly line there are also responsible for putting each and every Pan America together, before it can roll out to dealerships and into eager customers’ hands.
Above all, this video stresses, it’s a family affair. Harley’s history, after all, stretches back in time over 100 years. While we don’t know exactly how many families have had multiple generations working for the Motor Company over time, it would be absolutely no surprise at all to find that number is not small. People who work there take immense pride in their jobs, and are excited and eager to show off the work they’ve done to the world. I mean, who wouldn’t want to tell someone that they make motorcycles for a living?
It’s the end of March, 2021, and we’re poised on the precipice of a world that currently doesn’t have Pan Americas roaming throughout it. Soon, that will all change. Harley CEO Jochen Zeitz was on hand to cheer on the workers in York as they sent their first Pan Americas off the line. We won’t have to wait much longer to find out how that Adaptive Ride Height feature works, or what the liquid-cooled Revolution Max 1250 V-twin is like in the wild.
Even though assembly line videos like this are, by necessity, carefully curated glimpses into whatever factory we’re visiting, they’re always incredibly cool to see. I, for one, am always a sucker for “how it’s made” videos, and could probably watch those all day long if I didn’t have other things that needed doing. If you feel similarly, then chances are excellent that you’ll appreciate this little peek behind the curtain, too.