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Non Sequitur: Chinese Airports and Italian Minibikes

 

Since 1851, Kiehl's Apothecary in New York City has been committed to the adventurous spirit of American men and women who live and love in the great outdoors. A visual statement of this commitment is the drug store's collection of vintage motorcycles. Kiehl's displays these pristine machines at their retail establishments around the world for travelers and customs to admire and enjoy.

How do I know this, and why should you care? I Googled it, of course. Until I literally bumped into this '67 H-D M-65 from Kiehl's collection at the duty-free store at Taiwan International Airport last March, I'd never heard of the high-end face cream, nor seen the MoCo's diminutive two-stroke street bike. Exfolliants and Italian minibikes make strange bedfellows, but when you're 6,800 miles from home, you take your two-wheeled diversions any way you can.

 

Some of you may be familiar with Harley's foray into family motorcycling. For a time from the 1960s into the late '70s, diverse, low-cost product offerings from Japanese marques had H-D scrambling to broaden its product range to satisfy value-conscious and/or size-averse motorcycle buyers. Harley commissioned the Aermacchi Motorcycle Co. in Varese, Italy, to produce these machines, most of which were rebadged small-discplacement 4-stroke Euro street bikes or 2-stroke-powered minis like the M-65 seen here.

How an Italian moped in H-D livery licensed for operation in the state or California passed through a Big Apple drugstore on its way to becoming a POP display in a Chinese airport is anyone's guess. I Googled it for an hour and came up empty-handed. What I can tell you is this:

Fewer than 2,000 M-65's were imported from Aermacchi by Harley-Davidson in the 1967 model year, and at least one owner of these fine machines is a serious mouth breather (cue soundtrack on accompanying YouTube video.)

 

 

Taiwan is littered with motorcycle relics from many bygone eras, and some day we'll do a photo feature on the best of them. On this trip I was so preoccupied with real business, I didn't have time to comb Taichung's dark alleys for photographic proof of the country's sketchiest scooters. There are over 30 million pint-sized putters in Taiwan, and sometimes it feels like 50 percent of them are revving their stinkers outside my hotel room. Kiehl's stylish display paints an antiseptic picture of The Flower Island. The streets of Taiwan are greasier than the clapped-out skooters that ply them.

For now, let's give thanks to Kiehl's Apothecary for their love of motorcycles, and to Harley for selling an affordable entry-level motorcycle… even if it was 43 years ago.


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Commented on 4-7-2010 At 01:13 pm
 

I want that tank....and headlight! hahahaha

Commented on 4-7-2010 At 01:26 pm
 

That is a hell of a tail light!

Commented on 4-7-2010 At 02:23 pm
 

I've built up two of those headlights for chops - they're great! You can get still get NOS buckets and trim rings on Ebay.

Commented on 4-7-2010 At 02:28 pm
 

The original Kiehl's which is on the corner of 13th st and 3rd Ave in NYC has a very impressive collection of Harleys and Indians. Unfortunately, the gestapo security guards that work there enforce a strict no bike photography policy.

Commented on 4-7-2010 At 03:17 pm
 

I always stop and take a few photos of that same bike on my way home from Taiwan. head to the Kiehls in San Diego at the Fashion Valley Mall......they've got a great Ironhead dressed up like an FLH on display there as well next time you're in town.

Commented on 4-7-2010 At 07:37 pm
 

Lost in all this talk of vintage motorcycles is the fact that Kiehls has some super hotties working at their stores. As it turns out, if you sell facial cream for $80, the person selling it has to have flawless skin (and amazing hair, makeup, and cans are also welcome). Cool story for sure.

Commented on 4-7-2010 At 11:37 pm
 

The Kiehl's in the South Coast Plaza has a really nice restored Panhead. Worth checking out.

Commented on 4-7-2010 At 11:46 pm
 

For anyone who doesn't live in Orange County; South Coast Plaza is in SoCal.

Commented on 4-8-2010 At 12:12 am
 

this guy breathes like uncle pervy

Commented on 4-8-2010 At 12:30 am
 

you gotta love this kind of stuff! especially when its a two stroke!

http://www.zombieperformance.com/
http://www.zombieperformance.blogspot.com/

Commented on 4-8-2010 At 02:24 am
 

yep that tank is definitely a killer!

Commented on 4-8-2010 At 01:22 pm
 

Lame, I went to check out the the Kiehl's store in Boston to see if there was anything cool displayed, and it was only a stock early evo sportster.

Commented on 4-8-2010 At 08:27 pm
 

Didn't J.James build a bike for them w/his newest CFL frame?Thought I saw their name on one of his bikes.

Commented on 4-9-2010 At 03:09 am
 

just cause it says harley on it , dont make it cool. a scoot is a scoot. nice example of this particular model.

Commented on 4-9-2010 At 07:21 pm
 

thats funny i just seen one of these for sell on crages list i thought it was a fake. so HD really made these little bikes. i mite try to buy it

Commented on 4-12-2010 At 01:48 am
 

Man I would love to find one of those and rip the headlight the rear tail light and the tank off. I guess I could sell the rest for scrap metal there giving a pretty good price for a pound now days.

Commented on 4-12-2010 At 01:48 am
 

Man I would love to find one of those and rip the headlight the rear tail light and the tank off. I guess I could sell the rest for scrap metal there giving a pretty good price for a pound now days.

Commented on 4-12-2010 At 01:48 am
 

Man I would love to find one of those and rip the headlight the rear tail light and the tank off. I guess I could sell the rest for scrap metal there giving a pretty good price for a pound now days.

Commented on 4-13-2010 At 11:04 pm
 

i got the headlight ,rear fender,and front end ,from a red.one

Commented on 4-13-2010 At 11:05 pm
 

i got tha stuff...

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