The Larz Anderson Auto Museum in Brookline, Mass. welcomed Erik Buell, sportbike designer, engineer, Chairman and Chief Technical Officer of Buell Motorcycle Company on Friday, January 19, 2007. Erik spoke about his personal design philosophy and the company’s unique role as the only sportbike maker in America. Many vintage and new model Buell motorcycles were on display, including a 1989 RR1200 in pristine condition owned by John Sweeney, executive director of the Larz Anderson Museum.
Erik Buell’s appearance attracted 150 motorcycle enthusiasts and members from various motorcycle clubs to the event, 60 of which attended the VIP reception before the speech. The reception was a casual meet-and-greet session with Erik in which enthusiasts gained Erik’s view on racing, Buell motorcycles, and guitars (Erik’s other passion, as if creating motorcycles is not enough, is making guitars by hand).
Erik Buell’s career with Harley-Davidson began in 1979 when he joined the Company as a Junior Test Engineer. He worked in a series of positions including Product Engineer, Project Engineer and Senior Project Engineer until Erik left the Motor Company in 1983 to build his own Buell racing motorcycles. In 1987, he formally incorporated the Buell Motorcycle Company. In 1993, Harley-Davidson acquired 49 percent of Buell Motorcycle Company and by 2003, H-D acquired 100 percent of the Buell Motorcycle Company.
As Chairman and Chief Technical Officer, Erik Buell is responsible for the long-term strategic vision for Buell Motorcycle Company as well as all technical issues for that company, ranging from current product engineering support through future product design, and including information services.