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Ride Review: Harley-Davidson Touring ST Models for 2022

By General Posts

by Dustin Wheelen from https://www.rideapart.com/

Balancing the raceway and the roadway.

Automotive and motorcycle dealers popularized the term “Win on Sunday, Sell on Monday” in the 1960s. While both motorsport and vehicle sales tactics have evolved over the decades, most manufacturers still leverage on-track supremacy for showroom success—including Harley-Davidson.

From the hillclimb to the drag strip, from board tracking to flat tracking, racing has been in the Motor Company’s DNA since Walter Davidson won the 1908 Endurance and Reliability Run. However, Harley’s Post-War production lineup made the brand synonymous with cross-country tourers in the latter half of the 20th century. Despite the XR750 becoming the winningest motorcycle in AMA (American Motorcycle Association) history and the company’s countless NHRA drag racing titles, the FL Touring platform remains the Bar and Shield’s top seller.

When MotoAmerica introduced the King of the Baggers (KotB) Invitational in 2020, the one-off race merged Harley’s flagship tourers with its racing lineage. Unfortunately, the MoCo’s first outing fell short of the top step, but the Screamin’ Eagle Harley-Davidson team seized the 2021 KotB championship with Kyle Wyman in the saddle. H-D is wasting no time—or development dollar—following that title run, equipping the 2022 Street Glide ST and Road Glide ST with track-worthy components.

To test just how much race-bred technology has trickled down to its production models, the Motor Company invited us to Wilcox, Arizona to spin some laps around the inimitable Inde Motorsports Ranch. Harley certainly handled business on Sundays this previous season, and with the new ST range, it hopes to also dominate the competition on dealership floors.

Turning A Corner
With the U.S.’s interstate system crossing vast expanses of land, the Street Glide and Road Glide families prioritize comfort and convenience. Packing a six-gallon fuel tank, sub-27-inch seat heights, and a 64-inch wheelbase, the long-distance tourers allow travelers to munch miles to their heart’s content. On the other hand, track duty calls for a different set of attributes, and Harley outfits the ST models accordingly.

The design team lightens the load by trimming the front fender, adopting low-profile engine guards, and ditching the passenger pegs and seat. Harley developed the new saddle specifically for the ST tourers. That single-seat locks the rider in a more commanding position. The leather cover also allows users to smoothly slide across the saddle, easing side-to-side transitions through chicanes and back-to-back corners.

Gone are the Special trim’s stretched bags too. That decision may reduce luggage capacity from 2.7 cu-ft to 2.3 cu-ft, but it also supports the MoCo’s weight-cutting regiment. The efforts pay off as well, with the Road Glide ST saving 11 pounds at 842 pounds and the Street Glide ST coming in 13 pounds under its Special counterpart at 814 pounds.

To raise the ride height, H-D engineers exchanged the standard Street Glide and Road Glide rear shocks for units found on the Road King. The suspension swap bolsters rear wheel travel from 2.1 inches to 3 inches and stiffens the chassis for spirited direction changes. That nearly extra inch of travel may not increase maximum lean angle (31 degrees left, 32 degrees right), but it does modestly reduce trail to 6.7 inches.

What doesn’t show up on the spec sheet though is the confidence that the borrowed shock provides. In fast, sweeping bends, the STs feel planted and stable, encouraging riders to incrementally increase speed with each lap. Under acceleration, the shocks also accurately communicate grip, notifying the rider of the slightest slip of the rear wheel.

Both ST Glides retain the 49mm Dual Bending Valve Showa front end featured on all H-D Touring models, but the new rear suspension is a noticeable upgrade on the track. Performance-oriented customers will undoubtedly spring for the Screamin’ Eagle and Ohlins co-branded front and rear suspension upgrades in the long run, but the stock equipment does surprisingly well in the meantime.

Mo’ Powah!
The Street Glide ST and Road Glide ST may not boast the massive 131ci (2,151cc) Milwaukee-Eight V-twin powering the firm’s 2022 KotB race steed, but the performance baggers join the new Low Rider ST as the only non-CVO models touting the company’s 117ci (1,923cc) engine. Thanks to the mill’s 10.2:1 compression ratio, camshafts, high-flow air intake, and exhaust, the V-twin pumps out 127 lb-ft of torque and 106 horsepower.

Those numbers may sound daunting on the spec sheet, but the STs’ fueling and linear powerband make big-bore V-twin surprisingly tractable. The powerplant still offers gobs of torque on demand, but the smooth roll-on makes most of that 127 lb-ft (at the crank) quite useable. Again, those pushing for performance can always bump displacement to 128ci (2,097cc) or 131 ci (2,151cc) with the Screamin’ Eagle catalog.

Following a morning spent nailing apexes on the track, we rolled the Street Glide ST and Road Glide ST onto the surrounding highways, testing the performance baggers’ touring prowess on the open road. The 117ci engine may soup up the STs to set new lap records, but the V-twin remains ultra-smooth at speed.

In sixth gear, the Milwaukee-Eight spins just over 2,500 rpm at 70 mph and just below 3,000 rpm at 75 mph. Minor vibrations only course through the floorboards at 3,500, and the bars faintly buzz at 4,500. However, with the air/oil-cooled V-twin’s 5,500-rpm redline, those negligible tremors never become troublesome over the long haul.

While that even-keeled nature may be perfect for road trips, it can become problematic under heavy acceleration, especially in the lower gears. Due to the smoothness, I frequently hit the rev limiter before realizing I was banging on the 5,500-rpm redline. With time and practice, owners will be able to bypass that issue, but it squandered drive and momentum more than a few times on the road and track.

Middle-of-the-Road
Most Harley bagger fans have a preference between the Street Glide and Road Glide models. Chalk it up to aesthetics, creature comforts, or fairing coverage, but Harlistas typically favor one FL over the other. While ST variants offer the same track-oriented upgrades, they still have a personality all their own. For that reason, the Street Glide ST performed best on the track while the Road Glide ST proved its merit on the interstate.

With its fork-mounted fairing, the Street Glide ST offers enhanced visibility on track, allowing riders to keep their eyes on lines, apexes, and corner exits. However, the Street Glide’s short windscreen introduces turbulent buffeting to the rider’s helmet on the highway. That’s a problem that Harley’s Parts & Accessories (P&A) catalog can easily remedy but it’s never an issue on the raceway, where pilots frequently duck behind the fairing on long straights.

Conversely, the Road Glide ST’s frame-mounting fairing stretches away from the rider, providing comprehensive wind protection. That attribute comes in handy while touring, but the broad fairing also obstructs visibility on the track. In addition to wind protection and visibility, weight will play a role on closed courses. The Street Glide ST may shed 13 pounds off the Special trim, but its 814-pound wet weight is nearly 30 pounds under the Road Glide ST’s 842-pound curb weight.

That’s no small difference on the circuit, where every advantage matters, but most owners will use the ST models for long-distance trips, weekend canyon rips, and the occasional track day. With premium features like a Boom! Box GTS system, 6.5 TFT display, and two 5.25-inch speakers, we highly doubt that owners will want to risk sending their $29,999 bagger into a gravel trap. Instead, the ST line functions as a great starter kit for those interested in starting a performance bagger build, not a dedicated race bike.

Conclusion
Ultimately, the Street Glide ST and Road Glide ST are balanced entries into the performance bagger genre that don’t sacrifice too much on-road practicality for on-track performance. Despite lacking touring-friendly features like heated grips and stretched bags, the STs allow owners to ride to the track in the morning, spin laps all day, and cruise back home at sunset.

While the Street Glide and Road Glide may dip their toe into the performance end of the pool with the ST range, bagger racing is still in its infancy. If the MoCo continues to win on Sunday and sell on Monday, we can expect even more performance-focused components from Harley’s P&A and Screamin’ Eagle arms. Brembo radial master cylinder, a quickshifter, and 17-inch wheels come to mind first, but we’ll have to wait and see what the Motor Company cooks up following the 2022 King of the Baggers season.

New Harley-Davidson Cruiser Models

By General Posts

MORE POWERFUL LOW RIDER S AND NEW LOW RIDER ST MODELS JOIN HARLEY-DAVIDSON CRUISER LINE

MILWAUKEE, WI (January 26, 2022) – Harley-Davidson injects exciting performance and adds versatility to its 2022 Cruiser motorcycle line-up with the introduction of the new Low Rider® ST and more powerful Low Rider® S models. Both motorcycles offer the taut handling performance of the Harley-Davidson® Softail® chassis and the V-Twin muscle of a Milwaukee-Eight® 117 powertrain. The Low Rider S 117 model is an aggressive performance kingpin designed for the rider seeking unapologetic power. The new Low Rider ST model offers the versatility of hard bags and a fixed fairing. Both of these new models have a lean, performance-comes-first posture that defines West Coast custom style.

Milwaukee-Eight® 117 High-Performance Engine

The Milwaukee-Eight® 117 V-Twin engine with precision oil/air cooling is the pinnacle of torque and displacement from a factory-installed, regular-production Harley-Davidson® powertrain. This engine delivers outstanding performance and instant bragging rights on the street.

  • 117 cubic inch displacement
  • 125 ft. lbs. of torque at 3500 RPM for a performance boost the rider can feel with every twist of the throttle
  • High-performance camshaft is matched to displacement and air flow intended to maximize performance
  • High-performance, tuned Heavy Breather intake with forward-facing exposed filter element flows more air into the engine to produce exciting mid-range torque, and gives the motorcycle added hot rod presence
  • High-performance 2-into-2 offset shotgun exhaust is tuned to provide smooth and broad mid-range torque while producing a stirring tone
  • Dual counter-balancers reduce primary vibration at idle for improved rider comfort
  • Dealer-installed Screamin’ Eagle® Performance Parts Stage Upgrades from Harley-Davidson® Genuine Motor Parts & Accessories are available to boost engine performance even further

Low Rider ST Model

This is how Harley-Davidson does sport-touring, with style rooted in the California “tall bike” movement. The saddlebags ride high and tight, the rear suspension is jacked up, the handlebar is high, and the FXRT-inspired fairing is frame-mounted. The Low Rider ST model puts the rider in a commanding position on top of the bike, and the riding sensation is direct and reflexive. When the road trip is over, simply pop off the saddlebags to convert the Low Rider® ST model from cross-country mode to urban performance cruiser.

“A key element of this model is the frame-mounted fairing, which has a shape inspired by the classic FXRT Sport Glide model fairing favored by West Coast customizers,” said Brad Richards, Harley-Davidson Vice President of Design. “With a dominant central headlamp flanked by side vents, the genetic connection to the original FXRT remains familiar. The sharper creases and revised proportions in the Low Rider ST fairing provide a look that is intended to be modern, athletic and aerodynamically superior to the FXRT fairing. The raised fitment of the saddlebags high above the exhaust reinforces the performance of the model – the message being that these bags will not limit lean angle when the bike is pushed to the limit.”

The shape of the new frame-mounted fairing was developed through CFD (computational fluid dynamics) analysis and real-world testing. Triple fixed splitstream vents help limit rider head buffeting at highway speeds. A six-inch high windshield has a Dark Smoke tint, and the fairing holds a single 5.75-inch LED headlamp.

The lockable, rigid saddlebags feature a sleek clam-shell design that makes them easy to load and unload. The bags can be opened with one hand by a seated rider, and a damping device allows the saddlebag lids to open smoothly. The bags can be removed in seconds with an internal quick-release mechanism. Combined saddlebag capacity is 1.9 cubic feet (53.8 liters).

A deep solo seat helps hold riders in place during aggressive acceleration and cornering. A one-inch moto handlebar is mounted on four-inch pull-back risers while a low-profile textured-black console tops the five-gallon fuel tank. Instrumentation is presented by a compact digital display inset in the handlebar riser for a custom, “no gauges” look.

Ride and handling are enhanced by the chassis, optimized to reduce weight without sacrificing rigidity. The Milwaukee-Eight 117 powertrain is rigid-mounted in the frame to further enhance chassis stiffness. A 43mm inverted fork stiffens the front end for a responsive ride, and its single-cartridge internal technology keeps the front wheel planted for improved braking and handling performance. Fork rake is 28-degrees.

The Low Rider ST is equipped with a taller rear monoshock than the standard Softail® chassis monoshock (1/2-inch more stroke, 1-inch more rear wheel travel, ¾-inch higher at the seat) which raises the rear of the motorcycle. This provides improved ride comfort and increases lean angle by more than one degree, which improves dynamic performance for enhanced ground clearance and improved rider confidence during aggressive cornering. Under-seat hydraulic pre-load adjustment allows the rider to maintain optimal suspension performance for the prevailing load and road conditions. Dual front brakes with 300mm discs deliver the responsive braking demanded by aggressive riders. Standard ABS (antilock braking system) provides confident braking performance when conditions are less than ideal. Premium Michelin® Scorcher® 31 tires (Front 110/90B19, Rear 180/70B16) enhance ride and handling performance. Other features include a Signature LED headlamp, bright LED tail/brake lamps and a USB charging port.

Rugged, blacked-out styling includes Wrinkle Black finish on the powertrain, primary cover, triple clamps, top clamp, rear fender supports and tank console; the derby cover, intake, lower rocker covers, and handlebar riser are Gloss Black. The handlebar is Satin Black. The forks are anodized black. Mufflers and exhaust shields are Jet Black. Radiate cast-aluminum wheels (19-inch front and 16-inch rear diameter) are finished in Matte Dark Bronze for an intriguing contrast to the motorcycle’s dark components.

  • Accessory Audio: A high-performance motorcycle deserves high-output audio. The accessory Harley-Davidson® Audio powered by Rockford Fosgate® – Inner Fairing Audio Kit was designed alongside the Low Rider ST for outstanding performance and an ideal fit within the fairing. The system includes a compact 250-watt amplifier with digital signal processing (DSP) technology and a pair of 5.25-inch woofers and two remote tweeters. Connect to a mobile device via Bluetooth to play stored or streaming audio. Learn More about the Harley-Davidson Audio powered by Rockford Fosgate.

Available Paint Colors: Vivid Black, Gunship Gray

The Low Rider ST model will be available at authorized Harley-Davidson® dealerships globally beginning in late March 2022.

Low Rider S Model

The Low Rider S model is a cruiser designed for riders seeking unapologetic power and willing to push their bike to the limit. The Milwaukee-Eight 117 powertrain produces five percent more torque than Milwaukee-Eight 114 engine that powers the 2021 Low Rider S model, and gives its owner instant bragging rights. Premium suspension enhances the riding experience. Straight from the factory this bike bundles the big attitude of West Coast style and unrelenting performance previously only attainable with significant investment in accessories.

The 2022 Low Rider S model is equipped with a new handlebar-mounted combination analog tachometer/digital speedometer, which replaces the tank console instruments as seen on previous Low Rider S models. The handlebar location places the gauge closer to the rider’s line of sight. A low-profile textured black tank console with FXLRS badge now tops the fuel tank. Outstanding lighting performance is provided by a signature LED headlamp and LED tail/brake lights.

The same taller rear monoshock featured on the Low Rider ST model raises the rear of the Low Rider S model for improved ride comfort and 1.3 degrees more lean angle than the previous Low Rider S model for enhanced ground clearance and improved rider confidence during aggressive cornering. Under-seat hydraulic pre-load adjustment allows the rider to maintain optimal suspension performance for the prevailing load and road conditions. A 43mm inverted fork with single-cartridge internal technology stiffens the front end for a responsive ride and improved braking and handling performance. Fork rake is 28-degrees. Dual front brakes with 300mm discs deliver the responsive braking demanded by aggressive riders, with standard ABS (antilock braking system) for confident braking performance when conditions are less than ideal. Michelin® Scorcher® 31 tires enhance ride and handling.

Other features include these key West Coast styling elements: A one-inch diameter moto bar on four-inch tall risers, a deep solo seat, mid-mount foot controls, and a color-matched mini speed screen fairing that frames the headlamp and blocks the wind when chasing down the freeway. The powertrain, front end and exhaust are totally blacked out, with Radiate cast-aluminum wheels (19-inch front and 16-inch rear diameter) finished in Matte Dark Bronze to contrast the motorcycle’s dark components.

Available Paint Colors: Vivid Black, Gunship Gray

The Low Rider S model is available now at authorized Harley-Davidson® dealerships globally.

Harley-Davidson stands for the timeless pursuit of adventure and freedom for the soul. Go to H-D.com to learn more about the complete line of 2022 Harley-Davidson motorcycles, gear, accessories and more.

New Harley-Davidson Touring ST Models

By General Posts

DARK & POWERFUL STREET GLIDE ST, ROAD GLIDE ST ADD PUNCH TO 2022 HARLEY-DAVIDSON TOURING LINE

MILWAUKEE, WI (January 26, 2022) – Harley-Davidson elevates bagger performance and brings the purposeful style of the championship winning Screamin’ Eagle® Factory race bikes to the street with the introduction of the Street Glide® ST and Road Glide® ST models. Both models combine the power of the Milwaukee-Eight® 117 V-Twin engine with new dark-and-bronze finishes. Harley-Davidson Grand American Touring models take riders beyond the horizon with the comfort and convenience that makes the journey spectacular.

Milwaukee-Eight 117

The Milwaukee-Eight 117 V-Twin engine offers the most displacement and torque available from a factory-installed, regular-production Harley-Davidson® powertrain. With 117 cubic inches of displacement, the Milwaukee-Eight 117 with precision oil/air cooling produces up to 127 lb. ft. of torque at 3750 RPM, power riders can feel on the street with every twist of the throttle. The engine features a high-performance camshaft, a high-flow intake, and high-performance exhaust tuned to maximize engine performance while maintaining 50-state compliance and producing a stirring tone. Dealer-installed Screamin’ Eagle® Performance Parts Stage Upgrades from Harley-Davidson® Genuine Motor Parts & Accessories are available to boost engine performance even further.

Street Glide ST Model

Meet the new breed of speed from Harley-Davidson – hot rod bagger performance for the rider who wants to strafe corners in comfort. The Street Glide ST model pairs the muscular Milwaukee-Eight 117 powertrain with new dark-and-bronze finishes.

The iconic Harley-Davidson batwing fairing features a splitstream vent to limit head buffeting and a low-profile dark windshield. A low-profile tank console with side fuel fill and low-profile engine guard adds custom style and differentiation from other Touring models.

With the purposeful stance of the Screamin Eagle® Factory race bike, the Street Glide ST model is drenched in black – front end, controls, powertrain, and exhaust. The only bright bits are pushrod tubes and tappet covers, and machined cylinder fins. Matte Dark Bronze finish on the Prodigy cast aluminum wheels, the color band on the lower rocker box, timer cover medallion, intake medallion, and the classic script tank graphic provide subtle contrast to dark finishes. There are two paint options – Vivid Black or Gunship Gray. The front fender is trimmed for a sporty profile and lighter look and standard-length saddlebags replace the extended bags on Street Glide® Special model. A Heavy Breather intake with forward-facing exposed air cleaner element reinforces performance-first styling, while the new solo seat gives the Street Glide ST a lean and aggressive look.

Emulsion-technology rear shock absorbers feature a single knob to hydraulically adjust pre-load for optimal ride and control. The 49mm forks with dual bending valve suspension technology deliver linear damping characteristics for a smooth ride. Reflex™ linked Brembo® brakes with ABS are standard. Other features include the Boom!™ Box GTS infotainment system with color touch screen, two fairing-mount speakers and hidden radio antenna. Electronic cruise control holds a steady speed for comfort on long rides. A Daymaker® LED headlamp pushes out an impressive punch with a bright-white beam that lights up the road. Smart Security System with proximity-based, hands-free security fob offers peace of mind.

Road Glide ST Model

The sleek Road Glide ST model projects the attitude of the Screamin’ Eagle® Factory championship winning race bike and backs it up with the street-scorching power of the Milwaukee-Eight 117 powertrain. Undiminished rider comfort and the shark nose fixed fairing appeals to a rider who wants to make quick work of the open road.

The distinctive and aerodynamic shark nose Road Glide fairing features triple splitstream venting to limit head buffeting. The fairing is topped with a low-profile dark windshield and holds dual Daymaker® LED headlamps that push out an impressive punch with a bright-white beam that lights up the road. A low-profile engine guard and tank console combine to give the Road Glide ST trim lines.

A new solo seat exposes the rear fender and adds a purposeful attitude along with standard-length saddlebags and a trimmed front fender. The blacked-out front end, controls, powertrain and exhaust contrast with bright pushrod tubes and tappet covers, and machined cylinder fins. Further contrast is provided by a Matte Dark Bronze finish on the cast aluminum Prodigy custom wheels, the color band on the lower rocker box, timer cover medallion, intake medallion, and the classic script tank graphic. There are two paint options – Vivid Black or Gunship Gray. A Heavy Breather intake with forward-facing exposed air cleaner element reinforces performance-first styling.

Emulsion-technology rear shock absorbers feature a single knob to hydraulically adjust pre-load for optimal ride and control. The 49mm forks with dual bending valve suspension technology deliver linear damping characteristics for a smooth ride. Reflex™ linked Brembo® brakes with ABS are standard. The Road Glide ST is equipped with the Boom!™ Box GTS infotainment system with color touch screen, two fairing-mount speakers and hidden radio antenna. Electronic cruise control holds a steady speed for comfort on long rides. Smart Security System with proximity-based, hands-free security fob offers peace of mind.

Cornering Rider Safety Enhancements by Harley-Davidson

Offered as an option for the Street Glide ST and Road Glide ST models, Cornering Rider Safety Enhancements by Harley-Davidson is a collection of technologies designed to assist the rider in maintaining the rider’s intended path through a curve. This technology package provides the following enhancements:

  • Cornering Electronically Linked Brakes
  • Cornering-ABS
  • Cornering-Traction Control with modes
  • Drag Torque Slip Control
  • Vehicle Hold Control
  • Tire Pressure Monitoring (TPMS)

Harley-Davidson stands for the timeless pursuit of adventure and freedom for the soul. Go to H-D.com to learn more about the complete line of 2022 Harley-Davidson motorcycles, gear, accessories and more.

Travis Wyman joins Harley-Davidson Factory Team for King of Baggers

By General Posts

RACER TRAVIS WYMAN JOINS HARLEY-DAVIDSON SCREAMIN’ EAGLE FACTORY TEAM FOR KING OF THE BAGGERS SERIES

Brothers Travis and Kyle Wyman to Race Factory Road Glide Special Bikes at Road America

MILWAUKEE (June 10, 2021) – The Harley-Davidson® Screamin’ Eagle® factory racing team will field multi-talented racer Travis Wyman as a second entry in its MotoAmerica King of the Baggers road racing series. Travis Wyman will race a factory-prepared Harley-Davidson Road Glide® Special powered by a modified Screamin’ Eagle® Milwaukee-Eight 131 Performance Crate Engine. He joins his brother, Kyle Wyman, on the two-rider team for the King of the Baggers race June 11-13 at Road America near Elkhart Lake, Wis.

In addition to its factory team effort, Harley-Davidson is offering a nearly $30,000 cash contingency program for qualified Harley-Davidson® racers competing in the King of the Baggers series.

“We are ready to turn up the heat in MotoAmerica at our home track of Road America by adding Travis to the Screamin’ Eagle factory team,” said Jochen Zeitz, chairman, president, and CEO Harley-Davidson. “The King of the Baggers series is bringing big excitement for fans and we’re pleased to add to the show by expanding our team to two top riders representing Harley-Davidson and Screamin’ Eagle.”

The three-round MotoAmerica King of the Baggers series is for race-prepared, American V-Twin touring motorcycles equipped with a fairing and saddlebags. In the series debut on May 2 at Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta, Kyle Wyman placed second on the Harley-Davidson Screamin’ Eagle factory Road Glide Special motorcycle.

Travis Wyman is the owner of Travis Wyman Racing, based in Las Vegas. He is currently also competing in MotoAmerica Stock 1000, Honos Superbike and Superbike Cup. The 29-year-old racer finished the 2020 MotoAmerica season in second place in the Superbike Cup and third in the Stock 1000 championship. Travis Wyman also competed in the MotoAmerica King of the Baggers invitational race last October at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca, scoring a fourth-place finish aboard a Harley-Davidson Road Glide. Kyle and Travis Wyman are the sons of Kim Wyman, owner of Harv’s Harley-Davidson in Macedon, N.Y.

Round two of the King of the Baggers series is June 11-13 at Road America near Elkhart Lake, Wis. The series continues July 9-11 at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca, Calif.

About the Screamin’ Eagle® Milwaukee-Eight 131 Performance Crate Engine: The Screamin’ Eagle® Milwaukee-Eight 131 is the most-powerful street-compliant performance engine offered by Harley-Davidson. Built from the bottom up in Milwaukee, this 131-cubic-inch (2147cc) Screamin’ Eagle® crate engine delivers 131 ft-lb of torque to the rear wheel, and may be installed in 2017-later Harley-Davidson Touring models.

New Harley-Davidson Stage IV Kits Turn Softails into Meaner Screamin’ Eagles

By General Posts

by Daniel Patrascu from https://www.autoevolution.com

It was only at the end of August that Harley-Davidson announced the availability of “the biggest, most powerful street-compliant engine Harley-Davidson has ever created,” the crate Screamin’ Eagle 131. But since a complete engine swap might seem a bit extreme for some, here come some upgrade kits for a slightly smaller tuning job.

There are a number of them made available this week by the Milwaukee bike maker, dedicated to Softail bikes manufactured from 2018 and Touring motorcycles made from 2017.

The biggest and most extreme is the 114ci to 131ci upgrade, one that is described by the company as “the largest Harley-Davidson bolt-on engine upgrade to any Milwaukee-Eight motor.” Sporting things like CNC-ported heads with 1 mm bigger valves, high-lift SE8-517 cam, high compression pistons and a 64 mm throttle body and intake manifold, the kit gets the engine’s power all the way up to 124 hp and 135 ft-lb of torque – these levels are achieved when the upgrade kit is backed by the Screamin’ Eagle Street Cannon Mufflers.

Next up is the 107ci to 128ci upgrade, featuring, naturally, about the same changes. In this case, the output levels go to the same horsepower rating as with the larger kit, 124 hp, but torque output is somewhat lower, at 127 ft-lb of torque – Screamin’ Eagle Street Cannon Mufflers are needed here as well.

The 114ci/117ci to 122ci upgrade also brings increased power. Depending on the bike it is used on, there are up to 15 percent more horsepower and 13 percent more torque squeezed out of the engine. Last but not least is the 107ci to 119ci upgrade that adds 23 percent more horsepower and 17 percent more torque.

The new kits are already out, and you can find more information about them on the bike maker’s website. You should note that Harley offers 24-month vehicle limited warranty when the kits are dealer-installed within 60 days of vehicle purchase, or 12 month otherwise.

Zero Miles Harley-Davidson VRXSE Destroyer Is a Speed Junkie’s Dream Ride

By General Posts

by Daniel Patrascu from https://www.autoevolution.com

So, a decade and some change ago, the world’s favorite motorcycle builder, Harley-Davidson, decided to do something crazy: come up with a factory-build dragster that would shred the hell out of the competition on the strip.

This is how the VRXSE Destroyer was born, a CVO-handled monster of a two-wheeler powered by a chunky Screaming Eagle engine. 1,300cc in displacement, the powerplant churns out 165 hp and, aided by things like stroker crankshaft, high compression pistons, a racing transmission with a multi-stage lock-up clutch, and two-stage launch control, it had enough punch to shoot the missile to the end of the quarter-mile distance in under 10 seconds.

Initially, Harley planned to make at most 300 units of the thing, but the impact it had it was (naturally) immense, and before you knew it, the production run doubled in size to 600 units.

The motorcycle had such an appeal that not everybody bought one to race it. In fact, there are quite a few people who paid the little over $30,000 asking price just to have sit around in a garage somewhere, as a museum piece.

This is what happened to this here Destroyer. Now available for sale at the hands of Porsche specialist Canepa, it shows “no miles, no driving, no wear, nothing,” as its description says.

The bike was purchased new and sat for a very long time in a larger collection of dragsters, in the select company of a Kent Fuller nitromethane dragster and the likes. It then ended up over at Canepa, who is selling it for an undisclosed price.

Now, don’t go thinking this is the only Destroyer on the market. There are others, of course, but most of them, if not all, have been put to some use in the past, and are not quite as pristine as this one.

We only hope whoever buys it chooses to enjoy it the way it was meant to, not only visually.

Harley-Davidson’s Most Powerful Crate Engine Now Available for Softails

By General Posts

by Daniel Patrascu from https://www.autoevolution.com

Back in early 2020, Harley-Davidson announced the introduction of the Screamin’ Eagle 131, a V-Twin described as “the biggest, most powerful street-compliant engine Harley-Davidson has ever created.”

At a time of its introduction, the engine was advertised as being made specifically for Touring bikes manufactured starting with 2017. Now the Milwaukee bike maker announced the powerplant should work just as good and is available on select Softail models.

More specifically, the bolt-in 131 is the perfect replacement for the Milwaukee-Eight engine fitted from the factory on 2018-later model Harley-Davidson Softail motorcycles.

“Our adrenaline-seeking riders asked for thrilling power and torque with reliability,” said in a statement Harley-Davidson Product Manager James Crean. “The Screamin’ Eagle 131 Crate Engine delivers exactly that. Developed by the Screamin’ Eagle performance team and factory-assembled at Harley-Davidson Powertrain Operations to ensure the highest quality standards, this high-performance engine is genuine Harley-Davidson.”

When the engine was introduced, Harley advertised an output of 121 hp and 131 ft-lb of torque at the rear wheel when paired with Screamin’ Eagle Street Cannon mufflers, but in the Softail configuration we’re told the powerplant would churn out 124 hp and 135 ft-lb of torque, also when combined with Street Cannon mufflers.

The numbers were achieved by matching the 4.5-inch stroke of the Milwaukee-Eight 114 engine with new 4.31-inch bore cylinders and fitting high-lift camshaft, high-performance cam bearing, high-compression forged pistons, a 64mm throttle body and intake manifold, and high-flow fuel injectors.

Harley offers the engine through authorized dealers and comes in two finish treatments, Black and Chrome or Black and Gloss Black. Making sure everyone know what V-Twin your bike is packing is 131 Stage IV badging on the cylinder heads and timer cover.

Harley sells the crate engine from $6,195 for the oil cooled variant and $6,395 for the Twin-cooled one. Depending on the bike it is intended for, there might be need for a new oil pump or clutch plate kit.

The Only Harley-Davidson Bits on This Dragster Bike Are the Engine and Transmiss

By General Posts

by Daniel Patrascu from https://www.autoevolution.com

Like it or not, the name Harley-Davidson is the dominant one in the world of motorcycle building. You get bikes made in Milwaukee either in factory-form or as one of the countless interpretations made by garages across the world. But you also get Harley DNA in most of the otherwise full-custom motorcycles out there.

That’s because the hardware made in Milwaukee – and that includes first and foremost the engine and transmission – is suitable for all kind of projects, provided you have all the required parts to accommodate them. And Thunderbike, one of the major players in the custom bike segment in Europe, sure does.

The motorcycle you see in the gallery above is called RS-O. Just like other builds made by the Germans, it is based on a frame called Dragster RS – one of the about 15 such frames available in Thunderbike’s portfolio. The frame, and pretty much everything else, with the exception of the engine and transmission, are custom made.

But first things first. The Dragster RS is more of a kit than a simple frame. It comes in thick-walled steel tubes and CNC-milled side profiles, oil and fuel tank, aluminum swingarm with battery holder, rear section, rear wheel axle, motor bracket, and seat plate.

Inside it, the shop fitted a Screamin’ Eagle engine and tied to a Harley 5-speed transmission. The unit gets its jolts from a custom fuel injection system, and breathes through a custom exhaust.

The bike is wrapped in a graphic signed by the shop’s usual partner in this field, Kruse Design, and we must say it really sticks out in the crowd: the bright orange on the bodywork looks even better offset by the blackness of the engine block, and the chequered pattern adorning the fuel tank and the rear fender bring a touch of character.

The RS-O, as it’s called in Thunderbike speak, was completed a while ago for one of the shop’s customers. We’re not being told how much it cost, but the frame alone is worth over 11,000 euros (close to $13,000), so it isn’t exactly cheap.

Harley-Davidson R-Odynamic Is Screamin’ Eagle Heart in the Right Custom Body

By General Posts

by Daniel Patrascu from https://www.autoevolution.com

If we were to choose between a custom made motorcycle (that means built from the ground up, with different parts made to fit together in previously untried ways) and an extreme conversion of an existing series production model, we’d certainly go full custom.

Perhaps that’s owed to the countless hours spent in front of a TV screen in our childhood, seeing the likes of the Teutuls working their magic on metal while fighting each other like they were enemies. Thanks to them and others that go back decades, custom motorcycles are still very hot in America today.

Not the same can be said about Europe. There are far fewer shops there, and most of them are involved in bringing back to life old, locally-made models the likes of 1970s-1980s BMWs. Sure, there are shops specializing in reimagining Harleys, as we’ve seen in the recently concluded King of Kings competition, but almost none of them is in the business of mating Harley engines to custom frames, for instance.

We said almost because in Germany there’s a very active shop that goes by the name Thunderbike. The group has in its portfolio literally hundreds of Harley builds, most of them based on existing models, but also around 15 frames they have been playing around with for the past 25 years.

One of those frames is called Dragster R-Odynamic, and is used to underpin the bike in the gallery above. Specifically designed to work with 21-inch rear tires, it only includes the single-side swingarm, meaning everything else has to be carefully fitted to work with it.

First, the engine. The shop went in this case with a Harley-Davidson Screamin’ Eagle 110. Tied to a Harley-Davidson 6-speed transmission and ignition, it breathes through a Vance & Hines exhaust system.

A combination of Harley and custom Thunderbike parts was used to put the whole thing together. Aside from the engine and transmission, Milwaukee also made the headlamp, electric system, and the primary, while the Germans are responsible for the suspension, grips and handlebar, rims (23-inch front and 21-inch rear), brakes, and pretty much everything else.

The bike was completed back in 2011, and was put through its paces down Germany’s roads, as you can see in the video attached below. We are not being told how much the entire assembly cost, but you should know the frame alone is worth over 12,000 euros (roughly $14,000).

 

Harley-Davidson El Fuego Brings German Heat to the Road

By General Posts

by Daniel Patrascu from https://www.autoevolution.com

A custom, German-made frame, a proven, Harley-Davidson Screamin’ Eagle 110ci engine sitting inside, and a paint job to die for – these are the three elements of the custom motorcycle known as El Fuego.

Shown in all its glory in the gallery above, the El Fuego is one of the hottest builds coming our way from Germany-based custom garage Thunderbike. Responsible for literally hundreds of custom motorcycles, all based or inspired by the Milwaukee-made two-wheelers, the crew behind this machine surely outdone themselves with this one.

First, the frame. Thunderbike has around 15 in its portfolio, meaning it could design bikes to suit all tastes. The one used here is called Dragster RS, and is more of a kit: it includes the frame itself, the fuel and oil tanks, CNC-milled aluminum swingarm with battery holder, rear section, rear wheel axle, motor bracket, and seat plate.

Ready for the road, it only needed an engine and some wheels to get it moving. In the case of the former, the shop went for the Screamin’ Eagle 110ci, adn tied it to a Thunderbike exhaust. For the latter, the elements of choice were monoblock wheels, milled from solid aluminum blocks and wrapped in Metzeler tires.

The flowing lines and curves of the build would have been nothing without a proper paint job. As usual, Thunderbike turned to Kruse Design for the visual tweaking, which in this case translated into a hot combination between the black on pretty much all parts of the motorcycle and the metallic orange on the tanks, fenders, and wheels.

Thunderbike does not say how much El Fuego cost to make, but you should know the Dragster RS frame kit alone is worth close to 12,000 euros. That’s about $14,000 at today’s exchange rates.