The MX1000 — a 1000cc Harley-Davidson dirt bike!
In the 70s, Harley-Davidson wanted to enter the fast-growing motocross market. They worked with their Italian branch, Aermacchi, to build the MX250 — a 233-lb Harley-Davidson motocrosser with a 32-horsepower 2-stroke motor and chromoly frame (full specs). Only 65 were ever produced. While the bikes struggled in motocross competition, Bruce Ogilvie managed to win the the Baja 500 on an MX250 in 1975. Many said the bikes simply needed more time, tuning, and iteration to compete with the competition.
Enter Takuya Yonezawa — “Yone” — founder of Japan’s Bull Original (www.mc-bull.com). Yone grew up riding motocross and found himself in a Bōsōzoku gang in his teens. After a stint in the USA, he founded Bull Original in 1999. The bike you see here is Yone’s imagining of a 1000cc Harley motocross bike, based on a 1977 Harley-Davidson XLH1000 (Ironhead) Sportster. Says Yone:
“I imagined Harley-Davidson’s MX250 and made a fictitious MX1000…my image was a fictional manufacturer factory bike in the 1970s.”
This 1000cc Harley-Davidson motocrosser is no simple showpiece. As you can see in the photos and vidoe below, Yone is fond of putting his MX1000 to use on motocross tracks and sand races. What’s more, he’ll have the bike road-legal next year! Below, we get the full story on this Ironhead Sportster motocross bike!
Ironhead Motocross Build: Builder Interview
• Please tell us a bit about yourself, your history with motorcycles, and your workshop.
I started riding motocross when I was in elementary school. When I became an adult, I went to the street and connected with various motorcycles.
As for BULL ORIGINAL, Inc…
Since 1991 I have a history of my shop. It was 1999 that I opened as a SHOP.
• What’s the make, model, and year of the bike?
1977 Harley-Davidson XLH1000.
• Why was this bike built?
It is my personal project. This bike will also run on the street next year.
• What was the design concept and what influenced the build?
I imagined Harley-Davidson’s MX250 and made a fictitious MX1000.
• What custom work was done to the bike?
We keep in mind customization without damaging the image of 1977. If you are looking for riding performance, the suspension could use newer components. However, my image was a fictional manufacturer factory bike in 1970.
Front end, rear section, sub frame, exhaust pipe, oil tank, side plate, oil cooler, brake, handle control, seat, fender, paint and many other places are customized.
• How would you classify this bike?
I do not know the category. HAHA!
In the 1970s, Harley-Davidson had the MX250 as a motocross model.
• Was there anything done during this build that you are particularly proud of?
That I can actually ride it 😉