The first thing that may surprise you about the Harley-Davidson V-Rod Muscle is that it features a liquid-cooled engine, which is a departure from the typical air-cooled engines that most Harley-Davidsons feature. However, rest assured that this does not detract at all from the comfort and power of this cruising bike.
The 2013 Harley-Davidson V-Rod is a beautiful looking bike, with polished aluminum and chrome everywhere, including anodized aluminum body panels. You’ll find satin chrome, dual side exhaust and turnout mufflers which are not only efficient, but give this bike the classic road presence that has always been synonymous with Harley-Davidson. The air box cover of side scoops and woven wire mesh provide a cool, racing-inspired style. The inverted fork design increases assembly strength and fits perfectly with the overall look of the bike. If you’re looking for a bike that’s a head-turner, pick up a Harley-Davidson V-Rod; you’ll have no problem getting the attention you crave.
Looks are one thing, but to the true bike enthusiast, it’s all about power and performance. The 2013 Harley-Davidson V-Rod has the power to match just about any V-Twin sports bike on the road, and if you’re looking for a sports bike with a Harley style, you’ll want to look at the V-Rod. The V-Rod Muscle comes complete with 122 horsepower from its 1250cc Revolution engine, with 86 lb-ft of torque, giving you plenty of juice to open things up on the road, and you can fairly easily shift through the five-speed transmission with Harley’s ""slipper"" clutch, which reduces friction, to get to the gear you need, although you may find first gear to be a little longer than necessary. You should be able to get the V-Rod up over 120 mph, and you should be able to do so in about 15 seconds, which is about as competitive as any street legal bike you’re likely to find on the road. The V-Rod Muscle’s Revolution engine is also one of the most durable motorcycle engines on the road, as evidenced by its performance on the rigorous Dusseldorf Test.
With all that power, you may worry about confidence behind the handlebars, but this bike is actually pretty stable, with secure handling allowing good control, although a bit more ground clearance would be helpful for those tight turns. Speaking of those handlebars, they’re definitely designed with the biker in mind, as they’re positioned drag-style, with an aluminum shell that hides wiring and provides a clean look, and an attached triple gauge cluster that’s well situated and easy to read. Attached to the handlebars are well-positioned mirrors which house LED turn signals, to go with the highly visible LED turn signals located in the rear fender. The dual disc front brakes and disc rear brakes should also give you some confidence, as these are reliable brakes that can stop you pretty quick if necessary.
Useful options on the 2013 Harley-Davidson V-Rod Muscle include a lifting seat for shorter drivers, a back support pad for passengers, saddlebags to improve cargo capacity, and Harley-Davidson’s trademark H-D Smart Security System, which consists of a hands free fob you carry with you which deactivates electronic security as you approach the bike with it, and arms the security system when you walk away.
If you’re looking for a V-Rod that’s really something special, and a little scary, look to the V-Rod Night Rod, with a blacked out look and aggressive styling that makes this bike look easily like something that could have come out of a video game or a sci-fi movie, while still retaining a trademark Harley-Davidson look that commands respect.