Harley-Davidson calls it the “original stripped-down hot-rod bagger,” but however you spin it, that fork-mounted Batwing fairing is iconic. It’s been trolling the highways and byways as one of Harley’s most popular touring machines for almost 15 years, and for 2020, it leaves well enough alone, with a Milwaukee-Eight 107 engine as the sole powerplant option, though it adds ABS as a standard feature. Fairing and locking hard bags aside, you’ll also find some other ride-enhancing elements here too, like a Boom! Box 4.3 infotainment system, USB and Bluetooth connectivity, and a Showa Dual Bending Valve fork up front to absorb bigger hits while keeping the tire firmly planted. Touring riders and urban profilers alike have traditionally gravitated to the Street Glide, which offers plenty of room for a passenger out back, as well as a good starting point for many a customizing project.
When he rode the up-spec Street Glide Special version a couple of months back, Motorcyclist Editor Adam Waheed noted: “The crisp exhaust note and clocklike precision of the six-speed gearbox give this big twin a level of refinement that needs to be experienced to be believed. Love ’em or hate ’em, there are few engines on Earth that deliver the prodigious levels of character, refinement, and power.” Other fork-mounted-fairing touring bikes in the segment include the 2020 Indian Chieftain, which also rolls with a big-inch V-twin, as well as Yamaha’s Star Eluder.
For 2020, the FXLH gets a few new color choices and now has ABS as standard. The Reflex Defensive Rider Systems (RDRS) is a $995 option. Upgraded trim packages can be had with the Street Glide Special and CVO Street Glide, both of which bring different paint options, more powerful 114ci and 117ci engines, and other premium amenities.