Buell Motorcycle Set To Produce 10 New Bikes By 2024
Buell is “back in the saddle again,” literally.
From a press release: Buell Motorcycle is back in production in America. The new Buell® Motorcycle Company will launch 10 performance models by the 2024 model year. The exciting models will be representative of the superbike performance and handling expected of the legendary Buell brand. Exciting times ahead for fans of American Motorcycles.
EBR Motorcycles (Erik Buell Racing), the company launched by Erik Buell in 2010, has acquired the Buell brand name and trademarks, and has begun to move ahead with production plans for new motorcycles under the direction of CEO Bill Melvin.
Buell 1190 RX on track. Photo by Buell Motorcycle.
“Buell is back!” declared Melvin in a recent press release. “We are excited to bring Buell back with this awesome assortment of superbikes and performance motorcycles. We start with the fastest American production motorcycles, hand built in the USA, so that’s a nice start! We’re building out those platforms for more touring & adventure models, then we’re expanding our displacements to be competitive with other global brands. The passionate Buell Nation can grow and thrive again.”
Buell upcoming models will also include variants for dirt, dual-sport, touring, and cruisers while expanding the lineup to include medium and small displacement motors. Buell is also in the initial exploration phases for a high-performance electric model and is open to collaboration ideas with other companies. The models currently in production are built by hand in Grand Rapids, Michigan and based on the high-performance 1190 platform, known for the innovation of “Fuel in Frame”, Perimeter Brake Rotor, exceptional handling, and high horsepower.
The RX looks fast even at rest. Photo by Buell Motorcycle.
“Buell is known as the American brand for high performance, innovation, & adventure,” stated Melvin. “We have already launched a dirt bike with Cipala Racing that won an AMA Championship and Buell will be dominating at NHRA this year.” EBR Motorcycles acquired the Buell brand in early 2020 and began developments to bring Buell back.
To give a bit of background, Erik Buell launched Buell Motorcycles way back in 1983, debuting their first machine, the RW750, a grand prix race bike purpose built for the AMA Formula 1 class. AMA eliminated the class, so the Buell race bike never saw action. Only two were ever produced.
From 1985 to 1992, while running a successful race parts and engineering consulting business, Buell partnered with Harley-Davidson to develop a range of sport/street motorcycles utilizing the Sportster powerplant. By 1993, Harley purchased a minority interest in Buell, then by 1998 Buell sold 48 percent of the company to H-D. Eventually, Harley completely bought out Erik Buell, keeping him on as Chief Technical Officer.
The bike that started it all- 1984 Buell RW750. Also, the popular XBR9 Firebolt, from 2002. Photos by Buell Motorcycle.
In the recession of 2009, Harley-Davidson shut down the Buell Motorcycle Company and liquidated all of its assets. But Erik Buell reinvented himself and launched Erik Buell Racing, or EBR, building race bikes and parts. The company eventually reentered the street space, offering the 1190 RS and 1190 RX sport bikes. The 1190 RX soon found its way onto the track in both the AMA Pro Superbike and FIM World Superbike series.
Hero, an Indian motorcycle brand, had been contracting with EBR for some engineering work, so took the plunge in road racing by sponsoring the EBR teams in the Superbike series, even buying a minority stake in the brand (we know what you’re thinking). When Hero ran into financial difficulties, unable to keep up payments, EBR found itself in hot water again as well, resulting in the doors closing once again in 2015.
A glimpse into Buell future- the 1190 SX naked sport, and the 1190 HCR, AMA Hillclimb champioship bike of 2020. Photos by Buell Motorcycle.
The company that originally helped Harley liquidate Buell, Liquid Asset Partners, was called in again to do the job. By the way, the CEO of LAP at the time was none other than Bill Melvin. This time, the liquidation firm stepped out on a limb and decided to buy EBR, and keep the American brand alive. Melvin eventually stepped over to the role of CEO at Buell Motorcycle, and the rest, as “they” say, is history. Again.
Erik Buell himself has no affiliation with the brand carrying his namesake, focusing his energies instead on an electric motorcycle and bicycle enterprise known as Fuell. Kind of strange, we agree. But, we’re glad to see the return of a legendary American sport bike company, and we wish them the very best. The Buell name has always been synonymous with innovation, cutting edge design, and of course, speed. We look forward to seeing and sampling their machines in the coming months and years.
Check them out here:
*All photos by Buell Motorcycle.