1950 Harley Davidson WL45


  • Restored in 2018
  • In beautiful condition 
  • Completely unique look and style

The Appeal

When the WL series launched in 1937 it was a bit of a hit, the under stressed 45 cubic inch engine was a very durable unit that provided enough power to get you down the road. 

Further proof of the versatility of this bike the Army would use them throughout Europe during the war. 

This example appears to have lived abroad for the majority of its life, the first V5 was issued in September 2017, it would then go for restoration with Steve Piper Motorcycles in 2018 and it is still presented like it has just been finished. 

The History and Paperwork

  • Built in the USA this bike would then start its travels to the first owner
  • Possibly the first owner was within the USA
  • Looking at some Dutch paperwork it would appear that it would enter the Netherlands in 1967
  • This is a bit of an educated guess, but some of the Dutch paperwork has been photographed
  • The Dutch do like their Americana so this would make a bit of sense 
  • Looking at the V5 we can see that it was first registered for the UK in 2017 
  • It has since had a full restoration at Steve Piper Motorcycles and doesn’t it still look amazing
  • Within the paperwork folder, you’ll get the normal and important V5 and some assorted Dutch paperwork
  • There is also a printout from Steve Piper which appear to be instruction on how to start the bike
  • It is now your chance to get to grips with this beautiful classic Harley
  • Just imagine this bike sitting in your collection, it will look gorgeous!
  • Time for you to write the next chapter in this bike’s history

The Condition

  • Lovely two-tone finish 
  • All the chrome is in good condition 
  • Twin rear saddle bags
  • Classic looking wire wheels 
  • Lots of street presence
  • It will look great in your collection

Well, what a beautiful looking bike we have here. 

When you think of a classic Harley Davidson this is the sort of style you think of, the large saddle style seat, big mudguards, and wide handlebars all create the full package. As this bike was restored a few years ago the condition is still amazing.

Looking at the more tactile elements of the bike, such as the handlebars, seat, and footrests we can see that they are presented in amazing condition. The seat itself looks lovely and large, which hopefully means it’ll be comfortable to sit on when you’re out on an afternoon cruise. The black material used is in great condition with no obvious signs of wear and tear. 

This condition is then matched by the footrests and handlebars. The footrests even have rubberised, Harley Davidson stamped, inserts that will keep your feet nice and secure when you’re out and about. 

It is not only the tactile items that are well presented, but the more external elements also look amazing. The black and red two-tone paint job manages to be both subtle and eye catching at the same time, thanks to the restoration it looks as good, if not better, than new. 

You will be getting one great looking bike indeed. 

There are a few areas of the bike that do show some signs of wear and tear, but nothing that should be a deal breaker at all. There is a small area behind the front mudguard and just next to the exhaust that has experienced some corrosion and the chrome is flaking off, hopefully, this can be a quick fix. 

A small area of chrome on the Harley Davidson badge has also flaked off, but once again this is only a small blemish on an otherwise beautifully presented classic Harley. There does appear to be some sort of tarnishing or oil to the exhaust.

The bike is adorned with a lot of shiny finishes. Looking at the front end we can see that the headlight, horn, suspension elements, and handlebars are all finished in chrome, and they are all presented very nicely indeed. 

If you are ever looking for something to do on a quiet weekend, then this bike will provide you with hours of polishing fun. T

he chrome features continue throughout the bike, with lots of the engine parts being finished in the shiny silver material, along with the rear parcel shelf and even the chrome studs on the two rear saddle bags. All of this chrome results in a wonderful looking bike indeed. 

Overall, the condition of this bike is very good. All of the individual parts pull together to create a bike that wouldn’t look out of place within a museum. 

This will look amazing sitting in your garage, or cruising down a country lane. 

The Mechanics 

  • 45 cubic inch high compression engine 
  • 3-speed tank shifter
  • Known for their reliability
  • A unique piece of history

The WL45 was never designed with the intention to be a world record holder when it came to speed and performance, but it was designed to be dependable, rugged, and easy to work on. 

This attribute came into its own when some 90,000 army specification examples were sent out across Europe during the Second World War.

This example keeps to the ethos of rugged dependability, it will fire straight into life and idle away nicely. As soon as you swing your leg over and get comfortable in the seat you will wonder how you’ve gone this long without a WL45 in your life. 

The V-Twin revs out nicely throughout the gears and encourages you to go for just one more mile.

The current owner has mentioned that it rides incredibly well and hasn’t missed a beat for them. 

One of the only areas that may need a little improvement is the front brake, it was mentioned that although it does pull you to a stop it may need a little adjustment to make it even better. 

It is possible that the engine and mechanical parts received a bit of love during the 2018 restoration, but this is difficult to say without seeing any paperwork to prove it. 

The restorer did include a printout on how to start a WL45, so if this is your first time owning one of these bikes then you may wish to give it a quick read.

Hopefully, during your ownership, you will take this bike out on lots of rides up and down the country exploring some of the most scenic roads. 


This Harley Davidson is a beautiful example of an iconic bike. 

Thanks to the restoration in 2018 it is now presented to you in amazing overall condition. 

Not only will this bike looks great parked up amongst your other vehicles, but it will also look amazing out on the road. The classic Harley soundtrack should turn a few heads as your cruise past. 

Don’t miss out on this wonderful looking and riding bike.

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Vehicle specification
  • Year 1950
  • Make Harley Davidson
  • Model WL45
  • Colour Red and Black
  • Odometer 21,095 Kilometres
  • Engine size 750
  • Town Sutton
Auction Details
  • Seller Type Private
  • Location Surrey
  • Country United Kingdom
Bidding history
16 bids
  • volupta•••• £19,500 01/09/22
  • Bruntol•••• £19,000 01/09/22
  • volupta•••• £18,500 01/09/22
  • Bruntol•••• £18,250 01/09/22
  • volupta•••• £17,750 01/09/22
  • david-b•••• £17,500 01/09/22
  • volupta•••• £17,250 31/08/22
  • Bruntol•••• £17,000 31/08/22
  • volupta•••• £16,500 30/08/22
  • Simonbs•••• £16,000 28/08/22

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