It’s been said by many a biker that the Panhead motor is the most beautiful engine ever built. There’s a reason so many of us love Pans. Look at the thing: The lines and shape of the rocker covers really work together. Naturally, there were a lot of them at the Mooneyes Hot Rod Custom Show in Japan this year. I had the great privilege of being able to attend this awesome event and harvested galleries of all kinds of custom motorcyclery for the readers of Hot Bike and Street Chopper.
You have to wonder if the design crew behind the Panhead knew just how legendary their creation would become in the decades after it was created. Panheads came into prominence in the 1940s and continued into the 1950s, which were definitely great times for the hot-rod movement. When the last Pan rolled off the line for the 1965 model year, though, consumer demand had shifted away from what it represented and the Shovelhead took over production duties up until Harley-Davidson was bought back by company executives in the 1980s. All through that, though, the Pan remained the most recognized and respected motor in the Big Twin family. Here are just a few of the Panheads we came across at the 2017 Yokohama show.