The Arlen Ness Motorcycles Facebook page has announced the passing of its patriarch on March 22, 2019. Born on July 12, 1939, Arlen Ness became a giant in the custom motorcycle business, often referred to as The King of Custom Motorcycles.
In addition to Arlen Ness Motorcycles in Dublin, Calif., which dates back to the 1970s, Ness had a fruitful relationship with Victory Motorcycles. A series of Special Edition Arlen Ness Victory motorcycles amplified the Minnesota-based brand’s credibility in the 2000s. In 2016, Ness earned the Sturgis Lifetime Achievement Award. Ness was inducted into the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame in 1992.
Ness described our sport this way: “Motorcycling has been a great ride. My whole life since I’ve been motorcycling has been wonderful. I’ve met so many nice people. Friends all over the world. We can go almost anyplace and stay with friends. It’s been great.”
There will be a memorial service and celebration of life at a later date. Ness is survived by Beverly, his wife of 59 years, along with his children and grandchildren. Ness’s son Cory and grandson Zach are also noted custom motorcycle builders.