As one of the world’s most recognizable motorcycle brands, few people are aware that Harley-Davidson once ventured into manufacturing golf carts. In 1963, William Davidson joined forces with the company and thus began its foray into this realm. Herein lies an exploration of Harley Davidson’s golf cart history; from different models to discovering your vehicle year – all is revealed here.
The Beginning of Harley Davidson Golf Cart in 1963
In 1963, Harley-Davidson revolutionized the golf cart industry by introducing their first three-wheeled LSV (low-speed vehicles). Throughout the ’70s, some of these models featured an additional wheel and a new fuel source. The original model was powered by a 245 cc dual-cycle single cylinder air cooled engine that evenly blended oil with gas for lighter vehicles. This innovation allowed smaller transportation to become more accessible than before.
Harley Davidson – Electric Golf Cart
In 1969, Harley Davidson ceased producing golf carts following the American Machine & Foundry Company (AMF)’s acquisition of the company. LSV manufactured an electric-operated golf cart in that same year, dubbed as the ‘1969 Harley Davidson Electric low-speed vehicle’. This three-wheeled ride had ample storage space behind its bench seat; a single headlight and shaped steering wheel completed this classic model’s look.
If you wish to determine if your Harley cart is a 1969 electric model, inspect the serial number on the plate that’s situated close to the battery. If it starts with XXDE then congratulations – you have an authentic 1969 Harley Davidson Electric golf cart.
Harley Davidson LSVs Came
In the 1970s, AMF Golf-Carts made a move away from electric golf cart models. After rebranding to their current name in 1971 and equipping carts with their iconic logo the following year, they set out to create two gas-powered variants – one boasting three wheels while the other had four.
Not only was the fuel source and wheel count altered, but the location of the serial plate was moved as well. If you come across a code starting with 3B, it indicates that it is an authorized Harley Davidson gas-powered golf cart. Otherwise, other codes can be compared in this article to determine their origin.
The Harley Davidson AMF Golf Cart
If you’re an avid collector, then take a closer look at your Harley Davidson golf cart if the serial number starts with 4B. These are the last models constructed by AMF and consequently they’ve become highly desired amongst collectors. Furthermore, when you spot the iconic logo stencilled on its body panels, we can date it back to between 1972 – 1981.
The Harley Davidson Par Car Golf Cart
In 1982, Columbia Par Car acquired a golf cart division from AMF and advanced the engine’s pistons. Subsequently, three-wheeled and four-wheeled carts were supplied with a 250cc two-cycle gas motor until 1996 when it was replaced by the superior 4-cycle Briggs & Stratton 9hp Vanguard motor as standard.
Upon transitioning to four wheels, the design of carts was forever altered. To estimate a cart’s age, examine its piston size; if it is larger than usual, you can assume that it dates back to when Columbia Par Car acquired Harley Davidson.
The Classic Harley Davidson Golf Cart
The timeless ‘Classic’ design of the Harley Davidson golf cart is often recognized. It was first manufactured with three wheels in 1963 and eventually, it came to include four. What made this special among other carts was its original tiller steering handle feature which gave unparalleled maneuverability.
The tiller was the bar used to steer instead of a steering wheel. When you opened up the back, you saw everything under the hood. The three-wheel Harley Davison golf cart roamed through any golf course during 1960s and 70s, granting 19 years’ worth of timelessness with its classic design that stayed relatively untouched throughout all those years.
How to Find the Year of Your Harley Davidson Golf Cart?
Unveil your Harley Davidson golf cart’s age with ease by reading the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) located on its rear wheel. Uncovering a treasure trove of information, all you have to do is read the serial plate and suddenly discover your vehicle’s exact date of manufacture.
On most of the initial Harley Davidson and Columbia golf carts, you can spot the vehicle identification numbers on a metal plate that is mounted above the back tire onto the cross brace. On later cart models, they are usually found behind the batteries in a battery compartment wall.
For DE40 and MG IV electric golf cart models made during the late 70s to early 80s, you can find an 8D battery situated just beneath the driver’s seat on a transverse frame member. These vehicles are 36-volt in nature and provide reliable power for your travels.
Beginning in the year 1970, two characters from a car’s serial number signify its model, and the other two represent the year it was made. For instance, ‘HO’ means that production of this vehicle began in 1970; ‘H9’, 1979; meanwhile, 1980 is denoted with ‘JO’ while 1981 can be identified by an ending tag of “J1”.
In the later part of 1982, the decade code in production changed to ‘C.’ Therefore, a C2 was created that year and C8 for 1988. Moreover, for items manufactured during the 1990s decade were designated as ‘D’ within their last two characters.
All in all, the Harley Davidson golf cart has a rich history that extends to decades past. The brand produced various models over time, such as the classic body style that remains highly sought after by collectors today.
For those looking to discover the production year of their Harley Davidson golf cart, there are a variety of reliable methods. Although Golf Cart manufacturing by the brand ceased in the 1980s, it’s legacy persists and is still revered by devoted collectors and aficionados everywhere.
Here are some frequently asked questions about Harley Davidson golf carts:
When did Harley Davidson start making golf carts?
In 1963, William Davidson joined Harley-Davidson and initiated a growing trend of producing golf carts that continues to this day.
What is the classic body style of the Harley Davidson golf cart?
The timeless style of the Harley Davidson golf cart has been around since 1963 and is known for its iconic deep, lift-back body structure. It started as a three-wheeled vehicle but later became a four-wheeler that’s still seen today.
How can I tell if my Harley Davidson golf cart is electric or gas-powered?
Need to know if your Harley Davidson golf cart is electric or gas-powered? Look no further than its serial number. If the digits start with XXDE, it’s an electrically powered model. On the other hand, 3B indicates that yours runs on gasoline.
When did Columbia Par Car purchase the golf cart division from AMF?
In 1982, Columbia Par Car acquired AMF’s golf cart division.
How can I find the year of my Harley Davidson golf cart?
Identifying the year of your Harley Davidson golf cart is as easy as glancing over the vehicle identification number (VIN) inscribed on its serial plate. The initial two characters illustrate its model, and the final two symbols show when it was produced.