How Porsche Collaborated with Harley-Davidson on the V-Rod's Engine

Harley-Davidson and Porsche, two titans in the automotive world, each commanding significant influence in their respective realms of motorcycles and cars, seemed unlikely collaborators. Yet, in the early 2000s, these iconic brands joined forces to create the legendary V-Rod cruiser. This wasn't their first collaboration; back in the 1970s, Harley-Davidson had sought Porsche's expertise for the innovative but ultimately shelved Nova engine project.

The V-Rod, officially known as the VRSC, represented a departure for Harley-Davidson with its liquid-cooled, 120 horsepower Revolution engine. Developed from the VR1000 Superbike racing engine, this DOHC four-valve V-twin boasted dual overhead cams and fuel injection, setting it apart in Harley's lineup known for air-cooled engines like the Evolution that once saved the company from bankruptcy.

While the V-Rod attracted a new demographic of younger riders with its modern design and powerful performance, it faced resistance from traditional Harley-Davidson enthusiasts. Despite this divide, the bike found success in the market, appealing to a broader consumer base as intended.

Harley-Davidson persisted with the Revolution engine, powering various models over nearly two decades until discontinuing both the V-Rod and the engine in 2017. Although it didn't revolutionize Harley-Davidson permanently, the V-Rod remains a unique chapter in the company's history, blending Porsche's engineering prowess with Harley's iconic style.