Harley Davidson Logo

Harley-Davidson Motorcycles LogoHarley Davidson Logo PNG

The Harley-Davidson emblem, also known as the Bar-and-Shield, pays tribute to the brand’s history and is known worldwide as the hallmark of the manufacturer of legendary American motorcycles. The modern version of the emblem reflects a new concept aimed at the future and the close connection between the past and the future.

Harley Davidson: Brand overview

Harley Davidson is a motorcycle manufacturing company founded by four entrepreneurs: William Sylvester Harley and the three Davidson brothers. In 1903, after unsuccessful motorcycle experiments, they introduced their debut motorcycle. Their first factory was a small wooden shed in the backyard of the Davidson home. In 1908, the enthusiasts managed to sell a motorcycle to the Detroit police. By 1918, the American military had acquired half of the company’s equipment.

Meaning and History

Harley Davidson Logo History

Although the company was founded in 1903, the Harley Davidson logo appeared several years later: according to one version, in 2009, and according to another, in 1910. The brand name immediately became famous in races and endurance tests: the motorcycles took the first seven places.

Janet Davidson invented the famous design. She worked at her uncle Alexander McNabb’s lingerie store and used her artistic talent to create original monograms for delicate textiles. She enjoyed this so much that Janet made a badge for Harley Davidson; she applied it to motorcycles, decorating each tank and wing with a pattern. The elder sister was proud to help her brothers and participate in making their dreams come true.

This logo has been in use for over a hundred years. In 1982, it was officially registered with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. Apart from that, there were temporary trademarks associated with anniversary dates. In 1953, when the first Harley Davidson motorcycle turned 50, the company celebrated this event with a new emblem. The design was carefully thought out: the letter “V” indicated the type of engine, and the version with the medallion was so liked by the owners that they decided to keep it on the front wings of all 1954 motorcycles.

In 1976, for the bicentennial of the USA, artist Paul Smith changed the design of the mark, adding an eagle to it. This variant first appeared on Liberty Edition models. In 1978, for Harley Davidson’s 75th anniversary, another logo was created, but it appeared only on souvenir products. A little later, company managers realized the advertising potential of emblems, and for every fifth anniversary after 1978, they began to release a special series of motorcycles with anniversary signs.

What is Harley-Davidson?

Harley-Davidson is a legendary motorcycle brand from the USA. The company was founded in 1903 by mechanical engineer William S. Harley and three businessmen from the Davidson family (Arthur, Walter, and William). The headquarters of this cult brand is in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

1910 – 1953

Harley-Davidson Motorcycles Logo 1910-1953

On the logos of those years, the phrase “Harley-Davidson” is written with a hyphen and is located in the very center of the brand name. Around the perimeter, it is located in a rectangle with a double frame. The letters are white, narrow, and elongated. The words “TRADE” (left) and “MARK” (right) are typed in small font on the outermost stripe.

A horizontal figure divides two-sided triangles into two halves, resembling shields. At the top is the word “MOTOR,” and at the bottom is “CYCLES.” The letters are of different sizes: they are large in the middle and small at the edges, so the words look like pyramids. The triangles are direction indicators.

1953 – 1981

Harley-Davidson Motorcycles Logo 1953-1980s

In 1953, an anniversary emblem appeared, which the administration liked so much that it was decided to use it instead of the main emblem. In the center is a horizontal rectangle with the inscription “Harley-Davidson.” It resembles handwritten text and is executed in a casual font with an imitation of engraving. The letters are connected, semi-cursive.

The background of the rectangle is the Latin letter “V,” indicating the type of engine. At the top is a shield, indicating the brand’s age – “50 years.” In the sharp triangle formed by the “V” sign, the inscription “AMERICAN MADE” is placed in two rows. All elements are drawn in a circle, making the logo look like a medal.

1981 – today

Harley-Davidson Motorcycles Logo 1980s-present

The modern version is almost identical to the debut one. The only difference is the decorative design of the corners of the shield and a more compact arrangement of letters in the central inscription.

Harley Davidson: Interesting Facts

Harley-Davidson is more than just motorcycles; it’s a big part of American culture known for its quality and history.

  1. How It Started: In 1903, in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, a guy named William S. Harley and the Davidson brothers made their first motorcycle in a tiny wooden shed.
  2. Helping in Wars: Harley-Davidson helped a lot during the World Wars by making over 20,000 motorcycles for World War I and even more for World War II. These bikes helped soldiers a lot.
  3. The Harley Sound: Harley-Davidson motorcycles make a unique sound that’s so special the company tried to trademark it. People say it sounds like “potato-potato-potato.”
  4. HOG (Harley Owners Group): In 1983, they started a group for Harley riders. It’s the biggest group like this in the world, bringing people together who love these bikes.
  5. Used by Police: Since 1908, police departments in the U.S. and other countries have used Harley-Davidson bikes because they’re reliable.
  6. Famous Models: Some famous models are the Fat Boy, Sportster, and Road King. Each one stands for the spirit of adventure and freedom.
  7. Cultural Icon: Harley-Davidson isn’t just bikes; it represents American freedom and has been in many movies, TV shows, and songs.
  8. Harley-Davidson Museum: There’s a museum in Milwaukee where you can learn about Harley-Davidson’s history and see cool bikes and things from the past.
  9. Innovation: Harley-Davidson also makes electric motorcycles, showing they’re thinking about the future and how to keep the planet safe.
  10. Loved Worldwide: Although an American brand, Harley-Davidson is loved worldwide. It brings a sense of adventure and freedom to everyone.

Harley-Davidson started from a small shed and became famous worldwide. It’s known for making quality bikes and connecting with those who ride them.

Font and Colors

Harley-Davidson Emblem

The first symbol, invented by Janet Davidson, is called Bar-and-Shield, as it represents a heraldic shield divided in the middle by a horizontal bar. At the top is the inscription “MOTOR,” at the bottom is “CYCLES” (sometimes “COMPANY”), and in the middle is “HARLEY-DAVIDSON.” This version is considered standard, but each company office has its unique logo. The version created in 1965 is considered iconic. It differs from the classic one with bold letters, wide frames, and a black-and-white color scheme (original).

In 2019, the manufacturer announced a global redesign, stating that the first motorcycles with new emblems would go on sale in 2020. The style change will occur in stages, and the visual concept will change by 2025 to give fans time to get used to the new look of the brand. The old symbol will remain but as a tribute to a bygone era. It will still be used in the context of the company’s heritage.

The designers of the modern emblem retained the Bar-and-Shield, also known as the shield and bar. It represents a heraldic shield divided into two parts by a horizontal rectangle. The new version conveys the modern style of Harley Davidson. The corners and proportions have slightly changed, and the lines have become a little thinner.

Harley-Davidson Symbol

The classic logo contains orange letters “MOTOR,” “CYCLES” (“COMPANY”), and a white “HARLEY-DAVIDSON.” The text on the shield is in a non-standard font: the letters “MOTOR” are stretched upwards, and the letters “CYCLES” are stretched downwards as a frame. The company name is in a standard bold grotesque. The background color is black.

The new, minimalist emblem does without inscriptions. There is no particular variety in the palette: the monochrome version of the shield is presented in black and white.

Harley Davidson color codes

Safety OrangeHex color:#ff6600
RGB:255 102 0
CMYK:0 60 100 0
Pantone:PMS Bright Orange C
BlackHex color:#000000
RGB:0 0 0
CMYK:0 0 0 100
Pantone:PMS Process Black C