Harley-Davidson may be a symbol of pure, unadulterated freedom, and the American Dream, however, its involvement with foreign brands in a bid for accelerated global expansion is a secret to nobody. We know that H-D has been working hand-in-hand with Chinese motorcycle giant QJ Motor, as well as Hero MotoCorp from India, of which the partnership with the latter has been causing quite the buzz in the Indian market.
Earlier in May, 2023, Harley-Davidson India released images of the first fruit of the MoCo x Hero partnership. Dubbed the X440, this bike was clearly a smaller, more compact model designed to cater to the needs of the Asian market. This time around, Harley has dropped yet another series of images, further revealing the proportions of the upcoming X440, its styling cues, and of course, even more speculation surrounding the tech features and specs of this machine.
For starters, the X440 gets styling that’s congruent with the rest of Harley-Davidson’s model range. It’s more reminiscent of the Sportster series than anything else, given its compact proportions and more neutral geometry. Thanks to its mid controls and upright handlebar, you could say that the X440 offers riders an experience more similar to a naked bike than a full on cruiser – something that’s clearly been done in order to keep the bike practical and efficient in tight urban environments.
The Harley-Davidson X440 gets a round LED headlight with a chrome bezel giving it a classy aesthetic. Beneath the lens, we find a clean Harley-Davidson emblem embossed on the housing. The cockpit consists of a single-pod instrument cluster, and a wide handlebar giving the rider a commanding stance. Meanwhile, on the sides of the bike, we find blacked-out components such as the engine cases and exhaust system.
Despite releasing all these new photos, Harley-Davidson has been tight-lipped about the specifications of the bike, more specifically, its engine. Speculation suggests, however, that it’ll be powered by a single-cylinder engine with a displacement of about 440cc, as its name suggests. Whether the unit will be air or liquid-cooled remains to be confirmed, but there are visible cooling fins on the engine. As for the bike’s underpinnings, it features an inverted front fork and dual rear shock absorbers. Of course, given that this bike will be launched in India, expect tech features such as dual-channel ABS and OBD-2 compatibility.
In the Indian market, Harley-Davidson is expected to release the model on July 4, 2023, coinciding with the U.S. Independence Day. Until then, we’ll have to wait and see what exactly the new Harley X440 brings to the table. Whatever the case may be, this new bike will undoubtedly give models like the Royal Enfield Classic and Meteor 350, as well as the Jawa 42 range, a run for their money.