Harley-Davidson Inc. unveiled its largest every product development project that included eight cruisier-motorcycle redesigns for 2018, including motorcycles that have been mainstays of the company for a number of decades.
Harley said its new Softail models, that will be available in the fall, come with the company’s most powerful engine offered on cruisers.
Its new bikes, which are aimed at the 115th anniversary of Harley’s are going to roll out as the most makers of touring and cruiser motorcycles are experiencing a drop in sales across the U.S.
Harley is working toward a goal of 10-years of attracting millions more clients, which is of great importance since baby boomers begin ageing out of motorcycle riding.
The motorcycle maker said that large amounts of research as well as testing were involved in the making-over of some of its well-known lineup of motorcycles including its Heritage Classic.
Dyna and Softail product lines at Harley, as riders knew them are now gone. It is only one platform for all, said a Harley-Davidson spokesperson.
As part of its research, Harley-Davidson said it conducted interviews with over 3,000 riders to get their opinions on cruisers, which is a versatile style with a relaxed riding position and suitable for riding long distances, but nimbler that the big touring bikes.
The eight new motorcycles including the Fat Boy, Low Rider, Heritage Classic, Deluxe, Softail Slim, Street Bob and Fat Bon, have all-new chassis as well as suspension system that the bike maker says deliver rides that are far better.
The motorcycles are powered by the Milwaukee Eight engine that is specially configured. The Milwaukee Eight was first introduced in 2016 for the company’s touring bikes.
Harley-Davidson said that the 107 cubic-inch engine provides a 10% quicker acceleration, than the engine on its previous models the High Output Twin Cam.
A 114 cubic-inch Milwaukee Eight engine that is more powerful is available for four new Softails – Fat Boy, Fat Bob, Heritage Classic, and Breakout.
The new models are as much as 35 pounds lighter and the company said the eight bikes all have an improved ratio of power-to-weight for better handling, quicker acceleration, and better braking.
Harley-Davidson gave the new bikes a large amount of classic cruiser looks, including vintage 1950s looks, while also incorporating its modern features like LED lighting, keyless ignition, anti-lock brakes, USB charge port, digital instrument panels, lockable saddlebags and mono-shock rear suspension.