Harley-Davidson Fat Boy
By now, the Fat Boy’s FLSTF designation is practically iconic. But never mind. It’s the motorcycle itself that matters, and the Fat Boy certainly matters in a very large way. As H-D says, the Fat Boy defined the fat custom look, and it continues to do so to this day, with fat tires, handlebar, fenders, tank and headlight. Then there’s that Softail chassis and the burly, rigid-mounted (but counterbalanced) Twin Cam 103B powerplant with 6-speed Cruise Drive transmission. New color options are the only change for 2013.
Harley-Davidson Fat Boy Lo
The Fat Boy Lo brings more to the party by offering less—less suspension travel and, consequently, a lower saddle height. Otherwise, all the things you love about His Fatness are present and accounted for: Softail frame for the hardtail look without the pain, a 103B V-twin, rigid-mounted for quality vibes, but counterbalanced to take the edge off, and a big, fat custom presence few motorcycles can equal. The Lo also comes as a 110th Anniversary model with Vintage Bronze/Black paint, bronze tank badges, and Security package (ABS and H-D’s Security System).
Custom touring bikes have become as common as perfidy during an election year. Ah, but if such a motorcycle could take on each role—custom or touring—separately, that would be something. H-D’s Switchback is just that motorcycle. At heart it’s a Dyna chassis surrounding a rubber-mounted Twin Cam 103 engine, with decent quality suspension and visually striking 5-spoke cast wheels. The magic’s in the removable touring pieces; leave on the hard bags and windscreen for the open road, take ’em off when you’d rather ride the mean streets of the urban jungle. See? You can have it all.
Harley-Davidson Softail Slim
A mid-year 2012 release, the Softail Slim is another elemental Softail, and one that is, according to H-D, pared to the bone. But, unlike the Blackline, the Slim channels the vibe of postwar bobbers, the home-built customs of the 1940s and 1950s. And it does so with minimal chrome, a relatively narrow rear tire paired with a fat front, classic Fat Bob tank, over/under shotgun exhausts and more. Motive power comes from a solidly mounted (but counterbalanced) Twin Cam 103B V-twin, naturally in a Softail chassis. New paint options are the sole change for 2013.
The original Softail was a pretty bare-bones motorcycle, and the Blackline arguably takes the Softail back to its roots as a basic, stripped-down motorcycle, lean, mean and ready to rumble. True to the first Softail, the engine is rigid-mounted, but now in counterbalanced—and more powerful—powder-coat-black Twin Cam 103B form mated to a Cruise Drive 6-speed. Of course, there’s the Softail chassis with twin shocks neatly hidden. The one thing H-D didn’t pare back was style, which you’ll find in the raked out front end, bobbed rear fender over a narrow, 144mm Dunlop blackwall, Split Drag handlebars, and a low, sleek saddle.
Harley-Davidson Fat Bob
At Harley-Davidson, the organization of obesity, the conspiracy of corpulence, the fine-tuning of fatness continues unabated. Which is all good, especially when applied to H-D’s capable Dyna Chassis as it is in the Fat Bob. “Truly fat from start to finish,” is how H-D characterizes the Fat Bob, and the words ring true, starting from that 130mm front tire, carrying on back to forward-mount controls, on through the black-powder-coated drivetrain with rubber-mounted Twin Cam 103, and ending with beefy, 180mm-wide rear rubber. New paint color options are the only alteration for 2013. Let the parade of pudginess proceed.
Harley-Davidson Night Rod Special
Harley-Davidson reworked the Night Rod Special pretty thoroughly for 2012, so it should come as no surprise it returns unchanged for 2013. But that’s OK. The same things that made the Night Rod so freshly appealing last year resonate just as strongly. There’s the more humane ergonomics thanks to shorter reaches to the flat handlebar and the footpegs, improved ride quality from fiddled suspension rates and lighter wheels, and a little added eye candy in the tapered tail section. That it flat hauls—because of that potent, rubber-mounted 1250cc liquid-cooled V-twin—is just icing on the cake.
Harley-Davidson V-Rod Muscle
V-Rods just never seem to get the respect they deserve from the Harley faithful. What’s more, a lot of that attitude appears directed at the Porsche-designed liquid-cooled DOHC 60-degree Revolution V-twin. That’s a shame, and undeserved, especially when that stellar powerplant resides in the V-Rod Muscle. If Webster’s had an entry for the term Power Cruiser, you could make a case the illustration for it would be this very V-Rod. One twist of the right wrist should convert even the most doughty doubter, as the V-twin’s formidable torque pastes the 240mm rear Michelin to terra firma. Triple Brembo brakes, decently sorted suspension and aggressive styling ought to seal the deal.
Harley-Davidson Wide Glide
Ever since its original introduction in 1980, the Wide Glide has been the go-to canvas for H-D’s most reliably outré styling licks, and the same is true for 2013. Wide, raked-out fork with 21-inch wire-spoke rim? Check. Far-forward foot controls? Check. Fat rear tire, slammed rear suspension and chopped fender? Check, check and check. For a little more style, there’s the Tommy Gun exhaust, kicked-back ergonomics, and optional two-tone paint—with flames, of course. Providing motive power is H-D’s excellent 103-cubic-inch air-cooled V-twin with 6-speed Cruise Drive, all packed into a Dyna chassis, one of H-D’s best.
Harley-Davidson Super Glide Custom
It didn’t exactly set the world on fire when it was first introduced in 1971, but H-D’s Super Glide has since aged nicely, now anchoring the Big Twin lineup as the least expensive such model. The requisite coolness comes from a long, low-slung profile, Fat Bob fuel tank, mini pull-back handlebar, spoke wheels and, of course, a muscular V-twin—in this case H-D’s Twin Cam 96 with 6-speed Cruise Drive—all in a Dyna chassis. New for 2013 is the 110th Anniversary model (shown here) with special paint, a slathering of bronze, and ABS plus the Special Security Package as standard.
Harley-Davidson Street Bob
For 2013, Harley has freshened its Street Bob with a load of styling licks. H-D applied the black-out treatment to the triple-clamps, Twin Cam 96 powerplant and battery box, then added a full-length, wrinkle-black finish console atop the fuel tank. A retro, round air filter cover graces the engine bay, while a side-mounted license plate and stop/turn/tail lights fluffs the chopped fender, and rubber-mount handlebar risers atop a forged top-clamp reduce vibration. And for those who want to step up the styling H-D’s made the Bob eligible for the company’s H-D1 Factory Customization program, with more than 2000 factory-installed options.
Harley-Davidson XL 1200V Seventy-Two
Now this, is your basic candy-colored, metal-flake streamlined baby. Where H-D mined its way-back pages for the look of the Forty-Eight, the Motor Company comes forward in time about a quarter century for the Seventy-Two. A late-2012-introduction model, the Seventy-Two sports a heavily raked front end with a 21-inch front wheel, narrow-whitewall tires, ape-hanger handlebar and longer-travel suspension than the rest of its slammed Sportster brethren. Frame and engine are basic 1200cc Sportster stuff. It’s a perfect canvas for H-D’s optional Hard Candy Custom Color paint, with super-fat metal flakes.
Harley-Davidson XL Forty-Eight
There’s just something iconic about a peanut-tank Sportster. That tiny 2.1-gallon fuel cell might not be very practical, but it just looks right—especially when it’s parked on a stripped-down streetfighter the Sportster’s always been. Underneath the tank sits an equally iconic air-cooled V-twin, blacked-out here, as is most everything else, and the whole bike sits on chunky 16-inch-diameter balloon-tire Michelin Scorchers, highlighted by shorty fenders. All together, the Forty-Eight is one of those motorcycles that hits the monkey nerve every motorcyclist has—if they’re honest. New for 2013 is H-D’s optional Hard Candy Custom Color paint.
Harley-Davidson XL 1200C 1200 Custom
Think of the 1200 Custom as the Fat Sportster in H-D’s lineup. So much about it seems larger than life, such as the chunky, 16-inch-diameter Michelin Scorcher tires on chrome 5-spoke wheels, the 4.5-gallon walnut tank (shared with the SuperLow), wide fork spacing and mini-ape-hanger handlebar. Otherwise it’s classic big-bore Sportster, with a torquey rubber-mounted 1200cc V-twin, 5-speed and shorty dual exhausts. New for 2013 is 110th Anniversary Edition model, featuring special paint, solid bronze tank medallion and air cleaner cover trim ring, and H-D’s Smart Security System as standard.
Harley-Davidson XL 883L SuperLow
The SuperLow heralds its arrival into 2013 with new color options, with a pair each of solids and two-tones. Otherwise it’s business as usual for the Sportster with the lowest saddle height—just 26.8 inches above the blacktop. That means power comes cascading out of an air-cooled and rubber-mounted 883cc Evo V-twin mated to a 5-speed tranny and belt final drive. H-D makes the pitch its SuperLow dovetails nicely with riders not only short on inseam, but experience too, courtesy of what Harley says is a canny combination of steering geometry, wheel sizes and radial tires.
Harley-Davidson XL 883N Iron 883
If you’re looking for the easiest, cheapest entry to new-Harley ownership, and the H-D family, then step this way to the Iron 883. This is motorcycling at its stripped-down essence, raw-boned and real. It’s also, as H-D says, the “anti-chrome” Harley model, blacked-out from the 13-spoke cast-aluminum wheels, to the powder-coated engine, to the fork sliders and gaiters, and more. Running gear is basic H-D as well: air-cooled 883cc pushrod V-twin with 5-speed, belt final drive and single-disc front brake. New color options—Big Blue Pear, Candy Orange, and Black Denim—are the extent of the changes to the Iron for 2013.