THE Harley-Davidson dealership in Dubai is competing to become the top custom bike builder across Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA), in a contest of ultimate customization using one of the latest models. The dealership’s entry, the ‘Desert Warrior,’ was recently unveiled to the public at an event held at the brand’s flagship store in the UAE. This is the first time that the Dubai-based dealership has taken part, with last year’s Middle East entrants including Kuwait and Morocco.
This year’s competition, hailed as the largest bike customization contest in the industry, will be based on customizing any model from Harley-Davidson’s Dark Custom Sportster range, namely the Iron 883, Forty-Eight and Roadster. It is one of the most popular Harley-Davidson model ranges for customization, representing the ideal blank canvases to demonstrate the customization skills of the Harley-Davidson dealerships.
The design of the ‘Desert Warrior,’ a customized Roadster, was inspired by ‘Shamal,’ a north-westerly wind that blows over the Gulf region which challenges anything in its path – an apt reflection of the 1200cc powered Harley-Davidson Roadster’s character. Painted elements of the bike have been handcrafted to represent the movement and shadows on sand dunes, with warm paint tones. With parts and accessories on the model taken primarily from the latest Harley-Davidson collection, the customization team also extended the rear swing arm and lowered the bike, finishing the eye-catching look by adding a flurry of copper elements.
Elsa Abi Nader, Regional Marketing Manager at Harley-Davidson Motor Company – Middle East and North Africa, said: “2017 marks the second year that the Middle East and North Africa have participated in the ‘Battle of the Kings’ contest and the Dubai bike build team have truly demonstrated the versatility and personalization that can be achieved. At the same time, they have included a clear nod to the region’s culture with the name and inspiration behind the ‘Desert Warrior.’ “Dubai’s ‘Custom King’ technicians are going up against competing dealerships across the EMEA, where Harley-Davidson’s rich custom heritage and the huge breadth of talent across our dealer network will be exhibited. The Dubai entry will be on show at the Sheikh Zayed Road showroom and we encourage the public to come and take a look for themselves.”
The 2017 Battle of the Kings competition will run until November 2017, when staff from authorized Harley-Davidson dealerships across EMEA will compete to demonstrate their originality and creative customization skills. The presentation of the esteemed award will take place at one of the most renowned motorcycle shows in the world, EICMA, in Italy in November 2017.
Dark Custom is the underground, contemporary face of Harley-Davidson; stripped-down and styled with an authentic retro-inspired slant. Encapsulating a raw, authentic finish, Dark Custom bikes are for those who take a different route, allowing them to unleash their rebellion and take to the open road in style. Dark Custom bikes feature matte or blacked-out finishes, vintage cues and accessible pricing to attract new entrants to the brand. — SG