Based on a true story, Harley and the Davidsons charts the birth of this iconic bike during a time of great social and technological change beginning at the turn of the 20th century. Walter, Arthur and Bill risked their entire fortune and livelihood to launch the budding enterprise. Each of these men faced very different challenges, but it was the motorcycle that united their dreams and ambitions.
For Walter Davidson, the venture was a chance to escape from the confines of society – to ignore the rules and build a bike that could go anywhere and ride hard. For Arthur Davidson, it was an opportunity to finally make good on his name. And for Bill Harley, the bike gave him hope to break free from his overbearing parents and apply his talent as an engineer.
Built in a shed out of Milwaukee, these motorcycles were able to survive nearly every condition imaginable. And Walter certainly put the bikes to the test. His ferocious ambition propelled him to become a top motorcycle racer while competing in the deadly competitions sweeping the nation. Walter’s daredevil exploits put Harley-Davidson on the map – and while risky – pushed the company to eventually overtake their archival competitor, Indian, which had a stronghold on the market.
Fuelled by ingenuity, innovation and design, the founders of Harley-Davidson faced off against their much bigger rivals. If things couldn’t get any more difficult, the Great Depression hit and the motorcycle industry was decimated. But Harley-Davidson continued to defy the odds with their forward-thinking business ideas.
The three-part mini-series, Harley and the Davidsons, premieres Sunday, October 2 at 9PM on Discovery Channel (Astro Channel 551).