KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) - Harley-Davidson will build two new lightweight motorcycles at its Kansas City plant beginning next year, company officials said.
The new Street 500 and Street 750 models are Harley's first lightweight models since the 1970s, an effort to attract younger customers and drivers who want agile bikes in urban areas, the company said Wednesday.
In bikes, which will cost between $6,700 and $7,500, will include a lean chassis, low seat height and a broad handlebar sweep. They will be powered by a new fuel-injected and liquid-cooled engine, The Kansas City Star reported (http://bit.ly/1bdeQpj ).
"These new bikes are leaner, yet still have a mean streak," Mark Hans Richer, a senior vice president at Milwaukee-based Harley-Davidson, said in a statement. "They're the real deal, made of real steel."
The Kansas City plant will build the new cycles for U.S. buyers and Harley-Davidson's plant in Bawal, India, will build them for international customers.
Production is expected to start late this year or early 2014, and the company said it expects to sell 7,000 to 10,000 in the United States and other countries next year.
The Kansas City plant will not add employees for the new production, but will use seasonal employees, the newspaper reported.
Harley-Davidson President Matt Levatich said in a statement that the Street bikes are the newest members of the Dark Custom lineup, which has helped make Harley the top-selling brand of motorcycles to young U.S. adults in the past five years.
"Both the Street 750 and Street 500 were designed with thousands of hours of input from young adults in cities around the world," Levatich said. "This input guided both the attitude and capabilities of these motorcycles."