Custom – Contact with the Harley-Davidson Softail 2018 range – Page 5 – Test Low Rider 2018

TEST

Contact with the 2018 Harley-Davidson Softail range

Custom - Contact with the Harley-Davidson Softail 2018 range - Page 5 - Test Low Rider 2018

Site briefly tested four of the eight new Softail models in the 2018 Harley-Davidson lineup: Fat Bob, Fat Boy, Street Bob and Low Rider. This short contact reveals some real improvements on these bikes now powered by the new eight-valve twin, the Milwaukee-Eight.

In the saddle !

Page 5 – 2018 Low Rider Test

Like the, the 2018 Low Rider joined the Softail range in 2018 following the withdrawal of the Dyna name. And like the Street Bob, this’ 70s inspired look bike is only available with the 1745cc air-oil-cooled Milwaukee-Eight 107, like all new Softails..

Custom - Contact with the Harley-Davidson Softail 2018 range - Page 5 - Test Low Rider 2018

Aesthetically, the Low Rider renews its pretty soft and rounded lines, in contrast to the aggressive style of the. Examination of the details reveals an exemplary finish and deported instrumentation on the 18.9-liter tank, which provides information, among other things, on the time, the gear engaged or even the engine speed with scrolling from the left commodo.

Like the other new Softails, the Low Rider also conceals a USB socket behind its steering column and receives LED lighting. And skips the levers adjustable in spacing and a hinged tank cap ! 

More visible details: the handsets of the previous model give way to a discreet horizontal shock absorber connected to the new frame, announced "65%" more rigid. Displayed at € 16,660, the Low Rider thus takes on the appearance of "Hardtail", ie a motorcycle without rear suspension. We also note the abandonment of a front brake disc…

And braking, then ?

Handlebars in hand, this braking system amputated by 50% is quite timid and little biting. No wonder with 300 kg all round to stop! Systematic use of the rear brake is obvious. Small false note in the Harley marketing argument, which never ceases to extol the dynamic progression of the new Softails …

Custom - Contact with the Harley-Davidson Softail 2018 range - Page 5 - Test Low Rider 2018

Apart from this aspect, the Low Rider presents convincing aptitudes for its class, well helped by its pleasant position and its well padded saddle. Its handlebars curved towards the chest are easily caught and its footrests located in the axis between its cylinders of 100 mm in diameter (111.1 mm of stroke) do not create unacceptable tensions.

More obvious to grip than the, this old Dyna offers only limited resistance to tilting despite its 30 ° caster angle and its large 19-inch (16 "rear) wheel. "reasonable" tires (110 and 180 mm) explains its relative agility, as well as its low center of gravity and the proven progress of the new chassis. 

The Milwaukee-Eight "107" and its 8 valves round off the list of improvements favorably, giving the 2018 Low Rider an immediately palpable increase in responsiveness compared to the old Twin Cam 103. Its acceleration is tasty, as it is dotted with generous chunks of torque between 2000 and 4000 rpm ! 

Review: a good vintage, these Softail 2018 !

Obviously, the rise of certain competitors – mainly Indian – has pushed Harley-Davidson to revise its copy in terms of performance, without cutting too much on the "house" character despite the constraints of Euro4 standards: who cares? will pity ?! 

Custom - Contact with the Harley-Davidson Softail 2018 range - Page 5 - Test Low Rider 2018

All the more so when this development is accompanied by commendable progress on the chassis (lower weight + stiffer chassis = increased pleasure in curves!), Which pulls up the dynamic performance of other 2018 Softails. excellent vintage, waiting for the next one in 34 years … in 2052 ?!

Street Bob 2018 technical sheet 

Engine

  • 45 ° V-twin, tumbled, air-oil cooled. 4-valves per cylinder
  • 86 hp at 5020 rpm and 145 Nm at 3500 rpm – Milwaukee-Eight "107" (1745cc)
  • Final belt drive

Cycle part 

  • Double steel cradle
  • Non-adjustable telescopic fork, single-shock preload adjustable
  • 130 mm ground clearance
  • 1630 mm wheelbase
  • 30 ° caster angle
  • 690 mm seat height
  • 13.2 liter tank 
  • Tires in 110/90/19 and 180/70/16
  • 300 kg all full

Price 

  • € 16,660 in black and € 16,960 in color

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