Harley-Davidson is about to get within the reach of more pockets and it is about to happen soon. Not long ago, we learned that Harley-Davidson and its Chinese partner Qianjiang finalised the design for the upcoming 338cc motorcycle under the project name HD350. And now, a report on Bennetts (the good folks got their hands on Benelli's product plan for 2020) tells us that the smallest Harley ever is set to launch in China in June this year. Also, the manufacturer referred to the bike as HD338 instead of HD350 previously used during the design freeze ceremony.
Now, how does Benelli come into play here if you're wondering? Benelli is a subsidiary of the Qianjiang motorcycle manufacturer and it is highly likely that the baby Harley will be powered by a Benelli parallel-twin engine. Reports suggest that it will be a derivative of Benelli 302S' twin and that the HD will share the frame with the Benelli as well.
Expect a Harley-Davidson roadster with a hint of Benelli in the design. The specific timeline has yet to be confirmed for but following its launch in China, H-D India could launch it here by late 2020 or early 2021. Currently, the most affordable Harley in India is the Street 750 which retails at Rs 5.34 lakh (ex-showroom). The new HD350 will be more affordable considerably at about Rs 3-3.5 lakh.
The Bennetts report mentions a staggering number of motorcycles that Benelli is planning to launch, including a new TRK800 ADV and a 600N/600RR model - likely a naked and fully-faired version of the same motorcycle.
Harley has the Asian and Indian markets in its sight for the smallest bike in its lineup and does not plan to globalise the product yet. However, considering that Harley-Davidson's sales have been affected negatively in the US owing also to reasons like affordability for younger buyers, we don't see why a small displacement Harley won't work in its home market as well.