The first Harley side valve ‘Flat Head’ V Twin appeared way back in 1929 as the Model D. Its 45 cubic inch engine was smaller than the company’s existing 61 and 74 cui motors which then became known as “Big Twins.” Immensely durable the ’45′ remained in production for more than four decades mainly due to its unstressed reliability. During that time it was used in not only street motorcycles, but also in three wheeled ‘Servi-Cars’ and most famously in the military WLA’s of the 1940’s which make up the bulk of the production.
The military examples continued to be built post War and make up most of the bikes now on the road, genuine civilian examples are not often seen especially in Europe. This ‘Civilian’ WL is a late model being produced in 1948. It was registered in the UK in 2016 and has been part of the collection of a well known TV personality and motoring journalist’s bike collection. In generally good condition and in good running order it remains a nice original example.