Leeds Harley-Davidson dealership revving up for big revival

An artist's impression of how the new Harley-Davidson dealership will look.
An artist's impression of how the new Harley-Davidson dealership will look.
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American muscle is roaring back into Leeds this summer as Harley-Davidson returns just 10 months after its city store closed.

Legend Motorcycles has taken over and is in the midst of refurbishing the closed branch, on the Wellington Road Industrial Estate in Leeds, less than a year after administrators were called in.

Previously run by Summer Retail, the store’s financial troubles left up to 25 jobs in the balance last year – but many of those workers are set to return next month.

Shahzad Ahmed, managing director at Legend, said: “Leeds was one of the first northern UK Harley-Davidson dealerships, so it has been very closely connected with the brand – it therefore made sense for this to continue.”

Mr Ahmed and Sohail Khan have taken over the site, which will house around 20 bikes and is being revamped to have “an old heritage look”.

Staff interviews are complete, with some Summer Retail workers set to return, and the store is set to open at a ceremony in May.

Mr Ahmed said: “We are very passionate and motivated about the brand and we are hoping that our enthusiasm will show to customers and they will share our passion and vision.”

The iconic motorcycle company, which started life in America at the turn of the 20th century, also used to have a showroom on Kirkstall Road in Leeds.

Racing legend Eddy Wright had two showrooms for the popular motorcycle firm, which were originally designed for cruising down the highways of America.

But when the recession started to loom, Mr Wright decided to sell his businesses to set up a smaller, separate business in Shipley.

Mr Ahmed said: “It offers great facilities such as a large showroom and ample bike parking and had a lot of great customers.”

Wright’s Kirkstall Road showroom, which has been vacant for over a year, is now believed to be in the hands of a bathroom firm and is currently undergoing refurbishment.