With Harley’s current emphasis on chaps, vests, and attitude, it’s easy to forget that they were a real force in racing for many years. When I first saw this bike, I thought it was an Aermacchi, but peeking out from behind the fairing is the rear cylinder and enormous air-cleaner of Harley’s iconic air-cooled v-twin.
Made between 1952-1969, the KRTT was powered by a side-valve, 750cc engine. It was a brutal machine, the antithesis of the light, flickable superbikes of today, but it was effective. They were fast, but tiring to pilot and were eventually outpaced by lighter and nimbler competition from Europe.
Not much information in the ad, but this one is certainly worth your curiosity. From the very emphatic original eBay listing: 1963 Harley Davidson Factory Road Racer
1963 KRTT, RESTORED SOME YEARS AGO BY JEFF GILBERT, MOTOR BY GARY BRAY
BEEN IN A PRIVATE MUSEUM FOR YEARS, AND IN MY COLLECT FOR A COUPLE AS WELL.. ALWAYS IN CLIMATE CONTROLLED ENVIRONMENT!!
ONLY A HAND FULL BUILT, AND NOT MANY REMAIN.. 1ST YEAR FOR THE FAIRINGS USED IN R/RACING, PER AMA.. MR-4 CARB., RIBBED BRAKE DRUMS,H.D TACHOMETER,FAIRBANKS MAGNETO,19″ ALLOY RIMS,GELL COAT FUEL TANK, ETC-ETC-ETC..
RESTORED AS THE 1963 DAYTONA 200 WINNER, RALPH WHITE #15 BEHIND THE CONTROLS! CAN NOT LOCATE WHAT MOTOR # WAS ON THAT WINNING MACHINE, SO NOT SURE IF THIS IS IT OR NOT.. BUT, I DO HAVE RECORDS SHOWING WITH THIS ENGINE #, THAT EDDIE WIRTH, MANHATTAN BEACH, CA. RACED THIS KR@ THE SPRINGFIELD MILE,50-MILE EXPERT EVENT, IN DIRT TRACK FORM, WITH # 94X-IN 1966..
DISPLAYS WELL, POSSIBLY MORE HISTORIC THAN WHAT INFORMATION HAS BEEN FOUND SO FAR.. I HAVE GONE THROUGH THIS MACHINE TO THE POINT, WITH FUEL AND OILS, SHE RUN!
This is a very rare machine and appears to be in beautiful shape. Painted up in what is, I think, the best interpretation of HD’s iconic orange and black paint scheme ever, this KRTT is perhaps too collectable to see actual use, especially since the listing implies that more research is necessary to determine the bike’s full racing history. Seems a shame though: I’m sure it vibrates like a dryer full of hammers, but it’d be worth the numb hands to turn a couple laps on a bike like this.