Harley-Davidson makes historic sale in Wausau

Published: Jun. 14, 2019 at 2:58 PM CDT
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On May 8, Harley-Davidson made history when the 5 millionth motorcycle to roll off the assembly line in York, Pennsylvania was purchased in Marathon County. Friday, Wayne Bartlett of Wisconsin Rapids and members of Bull Falls Harley-Davidson of Wausau celebrated that special moment.

But this isn't Wayne’s first time on a bike.

"When I got my first Harley and got on it… just the ride it gave me and the feeling of it and the power-- it was like, ‘yes this is a nice bike,” he said.

In 1973, Harley-Davidson motorcycle production moved from Milwaukee to York, but its loyalty from Wisconsin riders remains strong. For Wayne, he didn’t intend to be the owner of the historic motorcycle.

"I decided I was going to come up here and look, looking for a used bike and, wound up test driving a new one and liked it, so that's what I went with. They were keeping it a secret, even the salesman that sold it to me didn't even know,” Wayne explained of the manufacturing milestone.

The bike is a 2019 Black Heritage Classic. Salesman Zac Jones convinced Wayne to pull the trigger-- An unforgettable sale for Jones, who was in his first month as a salesman at Bull Falls Harley Davidson of Wausau.

"This is monumental. Something I'll never forget, and a relationship with Wayne.. [I] will never forget something like this,” Zac said Friday.

Quite a way to kick off a new job and a new chapter for the dealership which was taken over by new owners in April.

Owner Erik Vandervest said he’s excited to be part of Harley’s history.

"We were excited and honored to be a part of that… to have this bike stay home in Wisconsin where Harley was originally founded is awesome in itself,” he said.

Bartlett says he already has 500 miles on the bike, and that's just the beginning.

"Next year I hope to go to what they call the dragon's tale in Tennessee. It's 11 miles of curves and mountains,” Wayne ended.