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Words by Afzal Rawuther
Harley-Davidson has just launched five new Touring bikes and eight all-new Softail Big-Twin cruisers designed under the largest product development project in the company’s history. Each new cruiser was redesigned from ground-up and features the new Milwaukee-Eight engine, an all-new frame and other technological updates. The eight new Softail models include: Fat Boy, Heritage Classic, Low rider, Softail Slim, Deluxe, Breakout, Fat Bob, and Street Bob. While the new Touring models include facelifts of the top-selling Street Glide Special and Road Glide Special models and three new top of the line Custom Vehicle Operations (CVO) models powered by the new 117(1917cc) Milwaukee-Eight engine, the most powerful ever offered by Harley-Davidson.
Harley-Davidson promises that these cruisers are the most powerful, agile V-Twin cruisers that they have ever made.
The new boldly redesigned 2018 Harley-Davidson Fat Bob features aggressive, styling and your choice of the powerful Milwaukee-Eight 107(1753cc) or 114(1868cc) Big Twin Engine. Changes to the chassis include a stiffer suspension setup and reinforced chassis for improved handling. It is also 5.9kg lighter as compared to the old bike. Even the engine is now a part of the frame, mounted directly, as a stressed member.
The all-new monoshock rear suspension has certain new features too. Single coil-over shock links swingarm to the frame and is hidden under the seat. The travel also has been increased and higher pre-load should also allow for comfortable long rides.
New technology features on each model include ‘Daymaker’ Signature LED Headlamps, an integrated USB charging port, improved electrical system charging, new instrumentation and fuel tanks.
“The new Softail models are the result of the most extensive research and development program in the company’s history,” said Paul James, manager of product portfolio, Harley-Davidson at the launch event. “Thousands of hours of testing were put into the complete redesign of these new cruisers. We focused on taking the total rider experience to a higher level, where authenticity, heritage and soul meet the modern edge of technology for a ride that must be felt to be believed. The new 2018 line-up reflects our mission to attract current riders and inspire new ones,” continued James. “These bikes were designed to celebrate the universal pursuit of independence, authenticity, individuality of riders, with innovations that deliver an unbeatable riding experience for them on the open road.”
To build excitement, the company partnered with social media influencers around the world to be among the first to experience the new models. Each will reveal the new bikes to their fans with unboxing sessions across their social media channels. The full line-up of new 2018 Harley-Davidson motorcycles, gear and accessories start rolling into American Harley-Davidson dealerships immediately.