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Harley Davidson Motorcycle
Road Tests & Reviews

Harley-Davidson Motorcycle Guide

Harley-Davidson motorcycles, founded in 1903 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, by William S. Harley and brothers Arthur and Walter Davidson, is the largest American motorcycle manufacturer and the world's oldest continuously operating motorcycle manufacturer. The company is still headquartered in Milwaukee, in the same location on Juneau Avenue since 1906. In 2008 Harley-Davidson opened a large museum in downtown Milwaukee that coincided with the company's 105th anniversary celebrations. Harley-Davidson motorcycle reviews depict one of the world's most recognizable brands, and the company has a very loyal, brand-centric community, organized in part through the Harley Owners Group (H.O.G.).

Harley-Davidson’s 2013 FXDB Street Bob Tour Test

The re-constructed bell-tower tells the traveler that he has arrived at Mission San Miguel.

Clement Salvadori
May 6, 2013

“Give me a road-trip report,” says Editor Tuttle, tossing me the keys to the Harley Street Bob. “Let me know if the modifications we asked for made it into a decent cruiser-touring bike.” Bob is your basic big twin, styled like a 1950s bobber, when it was the fashion to cut down, or bob, the... Read more »

Harley-Davidson’s H-D1 Program

I found the two-up seat to be very comfy, but the rear part did not get high points from my passenger.

Clement Salvadori
May 6, 2013

The Street Bob is the least expensive of Harley’s big twins at $12,999, but it and the Sportster 1200 Custom can be ordered with enough options using the HD-1 program to take them in many directions, be it even more custom cruiser, cruiser tourer or something in between. You choose from the factory... Read more »

Ridden & Rated: 2013 Harley-Davidson Breakout

Toss on a backpack and “urban prowler” Breakout shifts into weekend tripper.

Paul Garson
April 29, 2013

Once upon a time, wide 240-series rear tires were only found on $50,000 custom motorcycles, or bikes heading for the drag strip that needed a big footprint to maximize traction. Today, they’re pretty common on cruisers, many of which handle poorly because of them. Not so for the new Harley-Davidson... Read more »

2013 Harley-Davidson Breakout – First Look

2013 Harley-Davidson Breakout

Rider Staff
March 8, 2013

Custom Vehicle Operations is Harley-Davidson’s skunkworks, the division where new designs, features, paint schemes and accessories are conceived and implemented on limited-edition models. Each year, H-D unveils four CVO models about a month before it pulls the covers off the rest of its model-year... Read more »

2013 Harley-Davidson CVOs

The CVO Ultra Classic Electra Glide provides an ultra touring experience, with top-shelf audio, a Garmin Road Tech 660 GPS, power locks and more.

Greg Drevenstedt
November 7, 2012

To maintain their exclusivity, Harley-Davidson has limited production of motorcycles in its Custom Vehicle Operations (CVO) line to about five percent of total annual production. For 2013, that amounts to roughly 12,500 units spread over four models. 2013 is also Harley’s 110th anniversary, and less... Read more »

2013 Harley-Davidsons

Three Street Bobs customized with special paint and Drag, Pullback and Mini-Ape handlebars.

Mark Tuttle
November 7, 2012

Harley-Davidson isn’t releasing any all-new, regular-production models for 2013, but it’s got some new CVOs (see page 22) and made some great changes and additions to the lineup to help kickoff the Motor Company’s 110th birthday festivities. The yearlong international celebration began with a Museum... Read more »

2012 Harley-Davidson CVO Road Glide Custom Road Test

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Greg Drevenstedt
August 9, 2012

From the menacing, brushed-nickel skulls on its prow and tank, to the smoky graphics swirling around its sharknose fairing, Harley-Davidson’s 2012 FLTRXSE CVO Road Glide Custom means business. Even the names of its high-end accessories—Agitator wheels, Rumble Collection components and Heavy Breather... Read more »

Ridden & Rated: 2012 Harley-Davidson Softail Slim

The Slim is trim, with bobbed fenders, a solo saddle and no windscreen, saddlebags or unnecessary adornments.

Greg Drevenstedt
August 7, 2012

By Greg Drevenstedt * Photography by Kevin Wing Whereas the CVO Road Glide Custom is freighted with extras (see page 30), the new-for-2012 Harley-Davidson FLS Softail Slim is stripped down to the bare essentials, like bobbers built in the ’50s by former servicemen. It’s no surprise, then, that Captain... Read more »

2012 Harley-Davidson Fat Bob vs. 2013 Victory Judge Review

These big-inch power cruisers blend performance with varying degrees of comfort.

Bill Stermer
June 1, 2012

(This Retro Cruiser Shootout was published in the June 2012 issue of Rider Magazine.) Aggressive, big-inch, V-twin cruisers with style and muscle have always been a favorite on the American road, and two of the latest are the Harley-Davidson Fat Bob (updated for 2012), and the Victory Judge (just released... Read more »

Harley-Davidson Styling Chief Willie G. Davidson to Retire

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Press Release
March 16, 2012

After nearly 50 years as head of styling, Willie G. Davidson is retiring from Harley-Davidson on April 30, 2012. Willie G., Senior Vice President and Chief Styling Officer, is widely recognized as a legend in the world of motorcycling and motorcycle design. He will continue his involvement with the company... Read more »

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Harley-Davidson Motorcycles, Who Uses Them?

Harley-Davidson motorcycle reviews emphasize classically styled cruisers and touring motorcycles, nearly all of which are powered by air-cooled, 45-degree V-twins (the lone exception is the liquid-cooled V-Rod).


Harley-Davidson Motorcycle Standouts

The Harley-Davidson Sportster, introduced in 1957, is one of the longest-running and perhaps most widely known models in Harley's lineup; with 883cc or 1,200cc engines, Sportsters are smaller than Harley's "Big Twins," making them less expensive as well as popular among newer and younger riders. Harley-Davidson's FL, or Touring, line of motorcycles includes the Road King, Road Glide, Street Glide and Electra Glide, and with their windscreens, fairings (on some) and saddlebags they are among the most popular models for hitting the open road. The 1992 Harley-Davidson V-Rod, or VRSC, introduced the 60-degree Revolution V-twin, an engine jointly developed with Porsche that was the first to be offered by Harley with overhead cams and liquid cooling.

After Harley-Davidson motorcycle road tests, the Heritage Softail Classic became Rider's 2000 Motorcycle of the Year because it introduced the more powerful, markedly smoother counterbalanced Twin Cam 88B V-twin, as well as a stiffer chassis, better brakes and other refinements.

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