Harley WLA: Award-Winning Restoration Deserves a Salute

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Harley-Davidson WLA

One of the nicer Harley-Davidson WLA examples you’ll ever see is also a National Military Vehicle Preservation Association gold winner.

It’s no secret that we’re suckers for both vintage Harleys and military gear. And when those two interests emerge, as they do in the case of the legendary Harley-Davidson WLA, it simply doesn’t get much better. Unless you run across a nut and bolt restored 42WLA good enough to win gold at the prestigious National Military Vehicle Preservation Association (MVPA) Convention.

Harley-Davidson WLA

And that’s exactly what this pristine Harley-Davidson WLA did back in 2012, garnering a total score of 95.76%. The current owner is obviously passionate about his military vehicles, though he recently let this one go via eBay. And while we’ve spotted a handful of WLAs for sale lately, none of them have been nearly this nice. Or this documented.

The current owner has the MVPA judging papers, restoration photos and documentation, and original manuals and books. On top of that, the WLA still proudly carries most of the original tools, bedroll, shovel, and leg guards. So, its new owner can live out all of their Army dreams on one of the coolest-looking bikes ever made.

Harley-Davidson WLA

The WLA was an unmitigated success for both Harley-Davidson and the U.S. military, with 90,000+ produced and put into service. Despite that, few made it home. And many of those that did were converted over for civilian use. But despite their relative rarity, used WLAs can still be had for relatively affordable prices.

Harley-Davidson WLA

And what else is guaranteed to draw as much attention as something like this award-winning Harley-Davidson WLA? From little kids to vets to fans of vintage machinery, you’re pretty much guaranteed to turn heads wherever you go. More importantly, you’re keeping a piece of history alive. And that’s something definitely worth saluting.


Brett Foote is a longtime contributor to Internet Brands’ Auto sites, including Chevrolet Forum, Rennlist, and Ford Truck Enthusiasts.

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