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February 11, 2019

Harley-Davidson Heritage - Evolved

Harley-Davidson Heritage - The Best Of Both Worlds

The new Harley-Davidson Heritage, like the other machines in the soft tail range, has had an extensive re do. It now benefits from having the new Milwaukee-Eight engine as well as a brand new frame. Handling and power delivery promise, therefore, to be improved.

The first impressions are good. The bike has the benefit of both the new frame and engine. It is therefore, a significant step up from the previous model. Details such as having more powerful and effective LED headlights do make the difference. Both the windscreen and the lockable and sealed panniers are detachable.

The bike is a cruiser and it does that very well. The ergonomics are more than comfortable with a deep seat and a set of medium high bars. The springs add to this with a completely re worked front end and a fully adjustable mono shock down the back.

Harley-Davidson Heritage - The Milwaukee-Eight

Once on board the seat is so deep and comfortable that it feels almost too big. It’s also low at 680mm so it shouldn’t present a challenge to any rider. While the pegs are a forward mounted set they aren’t so far away that they are like the ones on the Breakout. The bars, while looking high, are just a little higher than my waist.

The motor is the afore mentioned Milwaukee-Eight and both the 107 and the 114 cubic inch offerings supply a whole load of torque. Harley don’t reveal the brake horsepower of either motor. We expect that the bigger one is putting out somewhere in the mid ninties with regards to peak output. Where all of these types of bike are concerned the BHP figures are not nearly as relevant as the torque ones are. That’s because the latter is what you use to get off the line before a one-litre sports bike on the morning commute! 145 nm of the good stuff is more than acceptable. The new engine is significantly more comfortable than anything that the motor company has previously used. Heavy vibrations are now a thing of the past. The fuel injection works very well and rewards the rider with instant and predictable drive.

Harley-Davidson Heritage - Reframed

Where the new range is concerned a stronger, stiffer and lighter frame needed to look part. To this end they’ve hidden the rear shock to make it look like a hard tail while making it handle like a more than modern motorcycle.

The saddle bags are actually quite clever and don’t take from the machine. Once closed properly they are sealed against the elements and thanks to the locks are scumbag resistant. The really nice feature is that they open with one touch.

The wiring system is a totally modern can-bus one. The indicators are still one for each side and self-cancel once the bike is straightened. The windscreen is smoked all the way up to the halfway mark. This gives the whole machine the look of a seventies cop bike and adds an awful lot to the Harleys look.

Harley-Davidson Heritage - A New Standard

If like me, you’d rather not have it on the bike, the screen is easy to remove. Even a motorcycle journalist can have it off the bike in a few short minutes without causing any harm to either the bike, themselves or any innocent bystanders.

Thanks to the newer electronics the bike comes with a host of new standards including ABS as well as cruise control. The suspension coped with everything that our roads could throw at it and while the pegs decked out easily the exhaust system and the frame rails didn’t.

If you’re attempting to ride one of these as you would a sportsbike then you’ll have no fun whatsoever. If, however, you’d like a very cool motorcycle that is comfortable, looks the part and holds its value get in touch with your local dealer and book yourself a test ride.

The bike is available to test ride from Waterford and Dublin Harley-Davidson dealerships. You’ll get them on 051 844 200 and 014642211 respectively.

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