2008 Harley Davidson XR1200 | Price approx. $14,500 At Current Exchange Rates
The pipe-rack steel skeleton is essentially what came on-line with the 2004 Sportster. The XR steepens rake and cuts trail to sharpen the steering. There's also a tasty cast-aluminum swingarm. Rubber mounts spare us from nasty engine vibration.
The 43mm Showa cartridge fork offers no external adjustments, but it's still Harley's best yet. Shocks deliver a harsh ride over rough pavement if you choose the stiff end of the spring-preload range. Adjustable damping would help there. Maybe next year?
The sportiest Sportster makes about 18 more horsepower than a standard XL1200 thanks to 10:1 compression, Buell cams and extensive respiratory therapy. Buell's SuperTT feels stronger, but the XR spreads power over a broader range.
Nissin supplies four-pot calipers for the hardest-stopping Harley-Davidson street machine yet. The 292mm Sunmax rotors are a bit smaller than what you'll find on frontline Japanese supersports, but never lack for power and wilt only slightly at a malicious street pace.
|Engine type: a-c 45-deg. V-twin||Rear brake: Single Nissin two-piston caliper, 260mm disc||Corrected 1/4-mile: 12.28 sec. @ 107.8 mph|
|Valve train: OHV, 4v||Front tire: 120/70ZR-18 Dunlop D209 Qualifier||Top-gear roll-on 60-80 mph: 3.87 sec.|
|Displacement: 1200cc||Rear tire: 180/55ZR-17 Dunlop D209 Qualifier||Fuel mileage (high/low/avg.): 43/36/41 mpg|
|Bore x stroke: 88.9 x 96.8mm||Rake/trail: 27.8/5.1 in.||Colors: Orange, black, gray|
|Compression: 10.0:1||Seat height: 29.2 in.||Availability: na (overseas only)|
|Fuel system: Delphi/Dell'Orto EFI||Wheelbase: 59.6 in.||Warranty: 24 mo./unlimited mi.|
|Clutch: Wet, multi-plate||Fuel capacity: 3.5 gal.||Contact: |
Harley-Davidson Motor Company
3700 W. Juneau Ave.
Milwaukee, WI 53208
|Transmission: 5-speed||Weight (tank full/empty): 586/565 lbs.|
|Frame: Tubular-steel double-cradle||Measured horsepower: 77.1 bhp @ 6750 rpm|
|Front suspension: Showa 43mm inverted fork||Measured torque: 67.9 lb.-ft. @ 3750 rpm|
|Rear suspension: Dual Showa shocks, adjustable for spring preload|
|Front brake: Dual Nissin four-piston calipers, 292mm discs|
Harley's strongest Sportster favors quality over quantity. Torque production tapers steadily beyond 3750 rpm, but the horsepower curve is about as linear as you'll find. Buell's SuperTT is 8.5 horses stronger, but the XR is much easier to ride.
Pegs ride higher and migrate a bit farther rearward than we'd like relative to your basic Sportster. Good cornering clearance comes at the expense of some legroom for lanky types, though the dirt-track-style handlebar welcomes long arms.