It would appear Harley Davidson has a significant problem on its hands, though the iconic motorcycle manufacturer seems to be downplaying the problem, and it’s causing people to be injured while riding their Harleys.
A “death wobble” is basically a high speed oscillation that causes the bike to quickly jerk back and forth, eventually reaching the point of causing a crash if the rider isn’t able to slow down enough to bring the bike back under control. While they’ve been known to occur, for the most part they’re isolated incidents caused by mechanical failure or a “perfect storm” of riding conditions. However, in Harley’s case, it seems to be a design flaw, and it’s one that needs to be addressed promptly as it has already caused several crashes.
The rider featured in this news clip had several decades of experience on a motorcycle, but was unable to reign in his Harley when it began to wobble, causing him to lay the bike down. The crash left him with a quadruple compound fracture in his leg, several broken ribs and a punctured lung. He spent several days in a coma and hasn’t, and may never, regain full use of his leg and ankle.
Harley Davidson, it seems, doesn’t want to take responsibility for the issue, despite video evidence that certainly seems to be rock solid proof that there’s an issue with the bikes themselves and not the riders or road conditions.
There are already several lawsuits that have been filed about this issue, and if things don’t change, there will almost certainly be more. Have you ever been on a bike and experienced a death wobble? What was it like? Did you feel like it was the bike itself causing it, or were there other factors at play? Let us know in the comments!