Riders new and experienced, young and old, are probably familiar with the name ‘Willie G. Davidson.’ For over 50 years, Willie G. served as both chief stylist and brand ambassador for Harley-Davidson. His design influence on the brand, and indeed on American motorcycle culture itself, is probably incalculable.  

That information is well-known and widely available—but what about the stuff that isn’t? When you live a life like that, when you’ve made those kinds of contributions to an industry, chances are excellent that you’ve got at least a few stories to tell, right?  

That’s why, in August 2023, Willie G. Davidson will be releasing his new memoir. Fittingly titled Ride Free, the book will revolve around his personal story and memories, as told by the man himself. From childhood to designing bikes, the influence of motorcycles in his life was there right from the start. 

Gallery: Willie G. Davidson's Ride Free

Naturally, a story like Davidson’s must be told with a combination of words, photos, and artwork—and indeed, Ride Free will include both drawings and watercolor paintings done by Davidson. Motorcycle racing, motorcycle design, art—all these passion points have been a part of Davidson’s life from the beginning, and in this book, he’ll share all those things with all enthusiasts who want to pick up the book and read it. 

"I wanted to share my story with fans of Harley-Davidson and anyone who loves motorcycles. But I also wanted to share my artwork, which has always been a big part of my life. I always describe my relation to the Motor Company as a love affair. And that's really what it was, a lifetime love affair with (wife) Nancy by my side,” Davidson said in a statement. 

Ride Free will officially launch on August 1, 2023. It’s published in partnership with Forefront Books and is distributed worldwide by Simon & Schuster. However, interested fans can preorder the book directly from Willie G. Davidson’s website, which we’ll link in our Sources. As a bonus, preorders will come with a free download of a book chapter that you can read immediately while you wait for the book to arrive at your door in August. 

If you’re planning to attend the 2023 Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, an official Willie G. book release party will be held on Monday, August 7, 2023. It will take place at Outlaw Square in Deadwood, South Dakota, from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.

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