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What is high mileage for a Harley-Davidson Motorcycle?

How many miles can you put on a Harley?

We get asked this question a lot.

When it comes to Harley-Davidson motorcycles, understanding mileage is crucial, whether you're purchasing a used bike or assessing the value of your own. At Wilkins Harley-Davidson, we're here to shed light on what constitutes "high mileage" for a Harley, what factors influence it, and how to make informed decisions when buying or selling. Let's dive into the world of Harley-Davidson mileage and what it means for these iconic bikes.


What is Considered High Mileage for Harley-Davidson Motorcycles?

Mileage serves as a fundamental indicator of a motorcycle's condition, wear and tear on its components, and more. Typically, cars are driven between 10,000 and 15,000 miles per year on average, while motorcycles tend to accumulate around 3,000 miles annually. However, this figure can vary based on factors such as the type of bike and the rider's habits.

High Mileage for Sport vs. Larger Bikes:

Sport Motorcycles:

Sport motorcycles, known for their agility, tend to wear down faster as they accumulate miles.

For these bikes, high mileage falls within the range of 20,000 to 30,000 miles.


Larger Motorcycles (e.g., Harley-Davidson):

Larger bikes like Harley-Davidson models can typically withstand more miles without rapid engine wear.

For Harley-Davidson motorcycles, the high mileage threshold is around 45,000 to 60,000 miles.

However, these figures are general benchmarks and don't provide a comprehensive assessment of a used motorcycle's condition or its overall value.

Using Mileage Wisely When Making a Decision:

Mileage is just one factor to consider when purchasing or selling a Harley-Davidson motorcycle.

Here's how to use mileage as a valuable data point:

Consider the Type of Motorcycle:

Cruiser or touring bikes, designed for long-distance riding, can handle higher mileage more gracefully than sport bikes built for high performance.

Evaluate Maintenance and Care:

Investigate how well the bike has been maintained and cared for by previous owners.

Check maintenance records to see which parts have been replaced and what maintenance tasks have been performed.

Additional Factors:

Consider the previous owner's experience level, the bike's usage (gentle or aggressive riding), and its storage conditions (garage-kept or exposed to the elements).

Is Mileage the Sole Factor That Matters?

No, mileage isn't the sole determinant of a motorcycle's value or condition. Several other factors can impact a motorcycle's price and overall quality:

Previous Owner:

Was the previous owner experienced in motorcycle maintenance?

Type of Motorcycle:

Different types of motorcycles can handle mileage differently.

Riding Style:

Consider how the bike was ridden—gentle cruising or aggressive performance riding.

Storage Conditions:

Where the bike was stored can affect its durability and condition.

In conclusion, high mileage for a Harley-Davidson motorcycle can range from 15,000 to 50,000 miles, depending on various factors. At Wilkins Harley-Davidson, we emphasize that while mileage is essential, it's just one piece of the puzzle when determining the value and condition of a used motorcycle. Evaluate all relevant factors to make an informed decision when buying or selling your Harley-Davidson.

As your mileage grows maintenance will always be a concern, the question is do you seek out a trained, professional, technician? Or do you try to do the service yourself?