Icon 1000 Axys Collection

Buell RW750

Buell RW750
I have to admit that I’m indifferent to most of Erik Buell’s creations. Like some, I’m not really in Buell’s target market. His greatest achievements—aside from cultivating a distinctive brand within the moribund Harley-Davidson group—have always come from his engineering prowess. So it seems fitting to pay tribute to the guy by taking a look at where it all started. The Buell RW750 was a two-stroke, ‘square-four’ racer that ran in the 1983 AMA Formula One series. It was originally the flawed creation of an obscure Welsh engine maker called Barton, but Buell ingeniously re-engineered it, building a competitive bike that was clocked at 178 mph at Talladega. Then the AMA changed the regulations and the RW (‘Road Warrior’) became redundant overnight. Still, it was enough to launch Erik’s career. And I suspect—indeed hope—we haven’t heard the last of him.