Harley-Davidson Road Glide Custom Review – webBikeWorld

24 Jan 2015 | Author: | Comments Off on Harley-Davidson Road Glide Custom Review – webBikeWorld
Harley-Davidson FLTR Road Glide

The word irony is often misused, but in this case, Webster’s classic definition is right on the money: A state of affairs or events that is the reverse of what was or was to be expected.

Search webBikeWorld and print every word related to cruisers and you wouldn’t have enough to fill a thimble. The focus has always been on European sport and sport/touring motorcycles, because that’s what I like and that’s what I ride. And since the buck stops here, I get to call the shots for once in my life.

But bikes is bikes; they’re all good in my eyes. So when Mr. Editor Kenn Stamp at 2WF.com called and asked if I’d be interested in borrowing a brand-new 2010 Road Glide Custom for a few weeks to do a review, only one word came to mind.


And that’s the irony. After all the words devoted to BMWs, Ducatis, Moto Guzzis and the rest that have filled these pages, how ironic is it that Harley-Davidson is the one to come knocking on the door?

But there’s more to it than even the Harley-Davidson marketing folks knew. Until 3 weeks ago, I had never been on a cruiser in my life. Not a one.

All I knew was what I read and heard in the street knowledge and rumors that pass for wisdom among my sportbike-riding friends; that is, Harleys were big, heavy beasts that couldn’t turn their way out of the driveway, didn’t have enough power to pass a school bus and couldn’t out-brake a Schwinn.

I was pretty skeptical, but I figured I’d go into this with an open mind and see what it’s all about. I’m glad I did, because those myths were busted wide open.

By the way, this is a good example of how our cross-publishing relationship with 2WF.com is paying off. The idea was to increase the readership of 2WF.com motorcycle reviews by also publishing them on webBikeWorld.com in the hopes of attracting more interest from the manufacturers.

The manufacturers would offer more bikes for review, which would allow us to bring you more reviews (more here ), which would increase the visibility and interest in the products. and the cycle (pun intended) continues. It’s working!

Road Glide Style

Even with a list price starting at $18,999.00, the Road Glide Custom is not quite at the top of the 2010 Harley-Davidson lineup. It’s the latest in a long history of Glide models however, which apparently started with the Hydra-Glide of 1949. That was before my time, thank goodness, because the original ‘Glide had a hand shift and foot clutch on the left side — well beyond my ability to coordinate!

Harley-Davidson FLTR Road Glide

Have no fear though, because there’s a very up-to-date motorcycle hiding under the Road Glide Custom classic bodywork. This modern ‘Glide possesses a sleek style that looks more modern than some of the other retro-focused Harleys. It is one of the easiest Harley-Davidson motorcycles to recognize, with its Shark Nose fairing and dual headlights setting it clearly apart.

That fairing is also mounted to the frame, unlike the Bat Wing handlebar-mounted fairing of the more popular Street Glide.

I have always liked the Road Glide’s sense of style; it’s sort of a touring bike hiding behind a custom look. I don’t know enough about Harley-Davidson history to tell you what the Custom moniker adds to the Road Glide; there is no standard version of the Road Glide listed on the Harley-Davidson website, so Custom it is.

I did a little research before I picked up the bike and discovered that the basic Road Glide Custom (a paradox in terms, no doubt!) is available in the Vivid Black shown here, a very bright Scarlet Red and something called Black Denim which appears to be a matte black version of the bike I picked up.

The very beautiful, thick and high-gloss black paint on this bike is a perfect canvas for the deep chrome accents found on just about everything that isn’t painted. I hadn’t been within 50 feet of a Road Glide before I laid eyes on this one, and when it was rolled out of the garage, the first phrase that came to my mind was work of art.

The black and chrome is perfect — and perfectly stunning. There’s no question that Harley-Davidson has the best paint and chrome in the business, and this one’s a classic example.

Somehow, the bike also seemed a bit smaller than I imagined it would be. The big fairing dominates the styling and its counterpoint is the low, squat, crouched rear that makes the bike look like a jaguar, about to leap forward. Very cool!

Harley-Davidson FLTR Road Glide
Harley-Davidson FLTR Road Glide
Harley-Davidson FLTR Road Glide

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