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HardNine’s ‘Godzilla’ Is A Stunning Tracker Based On Harley’s XLCR Cafe Racer

Photos: Marc Holstein & Christine Gabler

First introduced in 1977, Harley’s XLCR — often called the “Excelsior” — was a production cafe racer designed by Willie G. Davidson that was the Bar and Shield brand’s fastest production model yet and unlike anything else to leave the Milwaukee factory. With only 3,200-or-so units produced, the cafe’d cruiser has become a sought-after collector’s model. As such, putting an XLCR under the grinder is typically seen as sacrilegious, though there’re rare exceptions such as this stunning XLCR tracker build from HardNine Choppers.

The Swiss customs outfit started by treating the XLCR’s 997cc 45-degree, OHV V-Twin to a KB Performance piston upgrade that raises displacement to 1,340cc’s. The bored-out mill now inhales through an S&S carb and ejects spent fumes from a bespoke nickel-plated exhaust culminating in dual under-tail Supertrapp pipes. Performance upgrades include a 38mm Showa fork fitted with Ohlins internals, a set of Bitubo rear shocks, and a custom Beringer dual-disc setup with magnesium rotors. The build’s pièce de résistance is without a doubt its bodywork: a hand-beat vented tracker tail section and a stretched split-tank with the gas on one side and the oil on the other. Final details include a gorgeous gloss white and baby blue livery with gold striping and bespoke “H9 Godzilla XLCR” badges.

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