July 5, 2022

There isn’t any doubt the good-looking new liquid-cooled Harley-Davidson Sportster S is a revolutionary mannequin for the normal heavy motorbike firm.

Nevertheless it’s a Sportster in title solely.

Harley had registered the title Bronx which was suspected to be the brand new household title, however they clearly need to hold the venerable 65-year-old Sportster moniker alive.

Sorry, however no Sportster fan can be fooled.

Harley-Davidson Sportster S and outdated Sportser

The place is the dual shock, iconic oval air-cooler and fore and aft header pipes of the outdated Evolution motor?

If something they need to have referred to as it a V-Rod with its fat-tyred, low-slung look and water-cooled engine.

2016 Harley-Davidson V-Rod Muscle air-cooled
V-Rod Muscle

The brand new Revolution engine first appeared within the additionally revolutionary Pan America 1250 Particular journey bike, albeit downtuned from 112kW at 750 revs to simply 90kW at 7500rpm.

Harley-Davidson Pan America Special
Harley-Davidson Pan America Particular

Not less than that exhibits the engine is able to being tuned up for drag work similar to the V-Rod has been for years.

However the V-Rod, inbuilt 1999 in collaboration with Porsche, was not an incredible success besides in Australia the place it had an enviable fame on the drag strip.

Sportster has lengthy been the entry mannequin for Harley however this new mannequin is their most costly Sportster but at $A26,495 ($NZ28,750) trip away. 

There has by no means been a Sportster that price greater than $20,000.Harley-Davidson Sportster S

The brand new Sportster S is an attention-grabbing styling train in holding the bike low and imply with fats entrance and rear tyres highlighted by brief fenders, low and flat bars with bar-end mirrors and a slender horizontal headlight so it doesn’t present up above the bars when driving.

From the cockpit it virtually appears like you might be flying.

The bronze particulars and brown/black “Chocolate Satin” paintwork are very Nineteen Seventies. It additionally is available in Stone Washed White Pearl and Midnight Crimson.

Whereas styling is subjective, I reckon this bike will attraction to youthful riders than the normal over-50s Harley followers and to them the Sportster title most likely means little.

One level of styling that could be polarising is the distant mudguard with rego plate, cease mild and indicators.Harley-Davidson Sportster S

Already American aftermarket firm Corbin has launched a $US455 tail tidy which relocates all this to the brief rear fender.

It must be straightforward to switch as Harley has anchored this part with simply three bolts, though there’s a good bit of wiring relocation to be finished.

Earlier than going forward with this modification you must examine together with your transport division about whether or not this contravenes car requirements. 

Corbin has additionally launched a $US653 Gambler Smuggler dual-seat choice to switch the solo seat. Harley additionally has an adjunct passenger seat and backrest and a consolation rider seat though I discovered the usual seat surprisingly snug.

Corbin twin seat

Queenslanders could desire to retain the solo seat which attracts 50% registration charges.

The seat top is a low 752mm and the hand levers are adjustable, so it ought to go well with shorter riders even with its barely ahead foot controls. Nonetheless, a mid-mount conversion equipment can also be accessible.

One other divisive styling concern is the large, high-mount, virtually scrambler-esque twin muffler. Harley-Davidson Sportster S

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We suspect aftermarket pipes are additionally within the pipeline, when you’ll excuse the pun.

Different styling points are extra in regards to the element such because the abundance of matte again plastic and the radiator which appears to take a seat out far too extensive.

The fashionable, digital single-dial 4.0-inch-diameter TFT instrument display screen seems prefer it has been tailored from the electrical Livewire.

It has complete data, however the display screen has unhealthy glare in daylight.Harley-Davidson Sportster S

The devices are suitable with smartphones so you possibly can function your cellphone navigation, music and calls from the swap block or through voice activation swap.

The Sportster S additionally encompasses a useful cruise management, traction management, three engine modes plus two rider-customised modes, LED headlight, two energy factors for heated driving gear, a proximity-based safety system and a USB-C port for charging a cellphone or different machine as customary.

It additionally comes pre-wired for accent heated hand grips. Harley-Davidson Sportster S

Sportster S is powered by the identical engine as within the Pan America 1250 Particular which has 127Nm and 150hp/112kW at 8750.

It has the identical torque output however much less energy at 121hp/90kW at 7500 revs, so it’s extra in tune with cruising.

Sportster followers will discover it completely non-traditional in really feel because it’s smoother, revs extra and sounds extra “brittle”, virtually tinny.

Whereas the engine generates the identical quantity of warmth because the Pan America, the driving place means your legs are above the engine, so the one scorching spot is on the again of your legs when driving in slow-moving summer time site visitors.

As you slip by way of the site visitors snarl, it’s possible you’ll discover the bar-end mirrors somewhat too extensive to suit between lanes of site visitors.Harley-Davidson Sportster S

A slick transmission makes gear adjustments straightforward and impartial simpler to seek out than normal for a Harley, however the clutch pull is heavy and sluggish site visitors could possibly be tiresome.

Out on the freeway, the Sportster S is a effective machine, rumbling alongside at a leisurely tempo with loads of grunt for overtaking with out having to downshift.

However that is no tourer because it comes with a 12-litre gasoline tank that’s solely good for about 160km earlier than the reserve mild comes on with about 60-70km of vary left.

There’s additionally nowhere to connect panniers and even tie down a rear bag and Harley solely provides a small “mailbag” accent choice.

Harley additionally provides a removable windscreen, however this hardly makes it a tourer.Harley-Davidson Sportster S

It’s not a canyon carver, both.

Regardless of the absolutely adjustable Showa 43mm upside-down forks and Showa Piggyback reservoir rear shock with hydraulic hand-adjustable pre-load, it has brief and unforgiving suspension and a lean angle of 34 levels.

It doesn’t deal with bumps effectively in any respect on again roads and can scrape the footpegs quickly and all of the sudden on most corners.

However the largest dealing with concern comes from the selection of Dunlop/Harley-Davidson GT503 tyres, 160mm up entrance and 180mm on the again.

The extensive tyres make cornering tough, requiring loads of deliberate counter steering effort and handlebar power to the hold the bike turned.

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As quickly as you wind on throttle it needs to face up and run straight.

It’s not a lot the tyre width that’s the downside, although.

The excessive 70% tyre profile circumstances the bike to bounce over high-frequency bumps which makes braking tough because the wheels are skipping over the bottom. It additionally makes the stand the bike up in corners when it hits a bump.Harley-Davidson Sportster S

It may have been so significantly better with lower-profile skinnier tyres, however then the cornering clearance concern would even have been worse.

Stopping energy is surprisingly good contemplating the 228kg bike has just one entrance disc.

Nevertheless it’s a giant 320mm disc with Brembo mono block four-piston calipers whereas the low trip and lengthy wheelbase means the rear wheel stays on the bottom underneath heavy braking and provides to the stopping energy.

So it’s not nice in site visitors, as a tourer or a canyon profession.

Maybe its fundamental declare is on the city cafe route. Which implies it could have been higher named the Bronx, in any case.

Harley-Davidson Sportster S RH1250SHarley-Davidson Sportster S


$A26,495 ($NZ28,750) trip away




89.2 in. (2,265 mm)

Total Width

33.2 in. (843 mm)

Total Peak

42.9 in. (1,089 mm)

Seat Peak, Laden

28.9 in. (734 mm)


Seat Peak, Unladen

29.6 in. (753 mm)

Static Floor Clearance

3.66 in. (93 mm)

Rake (steering head) (deg)


Fork Angle (deg)



5.8 in. (148 mm)


59.8 in. (1,518 mm)

Tires, Kind

Dunlop® Harley-Davidson Collection, radial

Tires, Entrance Mannequin


Tires, Entrance Specification

160/70TR17 73V

Tires, Rear Mannequin


Tires, Rear Specification

180/70R16 77V

Gas Capability

3.1 gal. (11.8 l)

Reserve Gas Capability, Gas Injection (warning mild)

0.8 gal. (3 l)

Oil Capability (w/filter)

4.75 qt. (4.5 l)

Transmission Capability


Major Chain Case Capability


Coolant Capability

2.32 qt. (2.2 l)

Weight, As Shipped

486 lb. (220 kg)

Weight, In Working Order

502 lb. (228 kg)

Gross Automobile Weight Score

922 lb. (418 kg)

Gross Axle Weight Score, Entrance

359 lb. (163 kg)

Gross Axle Weight Score, Rear

595 lb. (270 kg)

Baggage Capability -Quantity




Revolution® Max 1250T


Chain-driven, DOHC, hydraulic self-adjusting lifters, consumption & exhaust VVT; 4 valves per cylinder


4.13 in. (105 mm)


2.85 in. (72.3 mm)


76.4 cu in (1,252 cc)

Compression Ratio


Gas System

Digital Sequential Port Gas Injection (ESPFI)


Air Cleaner

Downdraft consumption, tuned velocity stacks, washable filter media


2-into-1-into-2; catalyst in muffler

Lubrication System

Semi-Dry Sump


Major Drive

Gear, 49/89 ratio

Closing Drive

Belt, 80/34 ratio


Mechanical, 8 plate moist, help & slip, 1090N



Gear Ratios


Gear Ratios


Gear Ratios


Gear Ratios


Gear Ratios


Gear Ratios




Harassed-member, excessive power low alloy metal trellis body; stamped, forged, and solid junctions; MIG welded; aluminum solid mid-structure


Excessive power low alloy metal, tubular sections, stamped x-member, solid axle junctions; MIG welded

Entrance Fork

43 mm inverted fork with compression, rebound and spring preload adjustability.  Aluminum fork triple clamps.

Rear Shocks

Linkage-mounted, piggyback monoshock with compression, rebound and hydraulic spring preload adjustability

Wheels, Non-obligatory Model Kind



Wheels, Entrance Kind

Aluminum forged, satin black


Wheels, Entrance Width

4.5 in. (114 mm)

Wheels, Entrance Peak

17 in. (432 mm)

Wheels, Rear Kind

Aluminum forged, satin black


Wheels, Rear Width

5 in. (127 mm)

Wheels, Rear Peak

16 in. (406 mm)

Brakes, Caliper Kind

Entrance: radially mounted, monoblock, 4-piston caliper Rear: floating, single piston caliper

Brakes, Rotor Kind

Entrance: single rotor, floating, tower- mounted Rear: strong uniform enlargement rotor

Brakes, Entrance Diameter

12.6 in. (320 mm)

Brakes, Entrance Thickness

0.2 in. (6 mm)

Brakes, Entrance is twin


Brakes, Rear Diameter

10.2 in. (260 mm)

Brakes, Rear Thickness

0.2 in. (5 mm)

Entrance brake lever free journey


Rear brake pedal free journey


Brakes, Anti-Lock Braking System (ABS)


Suspension Journey, Entrance

3.6 in. (92 mm)

Suspension Journey, Rear

2 in. (51 mm)


Engine Torque Testing Methodology


Engine Torque

94 ft-lb (127 Nm)


Engine Torque



121 HP / 90 kW @ 7500 rpm

Lean Angle Testing Methodology


Lean Angle, Proper (deg.)


Lean Angle, Left (deg.)


Most hill-starting means


Gas Economic system Testing Methodology

Estimated Metropolis/Hwy

Gas Economic system

49 mpg (4.8 l/100 km)


CO2 Emissions Testing Methodology


CO2 Emissions




Sealed, maintenance-free, absorbed glass mat (AGM) battery, 12V, 12Ah, 225 CCA at 0°F


Three-phase, 45 Amp system (300 Watts @13 Volts, 1200 rpm, 585 Watts max energy @ 13 Volts, 2250 rpm)


0.9 kW electrical with direct drive starter motor engagement

Lights (as per nation regulation), Headlamp

All LED headlamp, high and low beam with signature place lighting

Lights (as per nation regulation), Tail/Cease

All LED Tail/Cease lamp with signature tail lighting

Lights (as per nation regulation), Entrance Sign Lights

LED Bullet Flip Alerts

Lights, Rear Flip Alerts

LED Bullet Flip Alerts


4 inch viewable space TFT show with speedometer, gear, odometer, gasoline degree, clock, journey, ambient temp, low temp alert, facet stand down alert, TIP over alert, cruise, vary and tachometer indication BT succesful – cellphone pairing to entry cellphone calls, music, navigation (H-D App ONLY)

Auxiliary Lamps


Electrical Energy Outlet

USB C-Kind , Output 5V at 2.4 Amp

GPS System


Reverse Gear


Guarantee And Service


24 months (limitless mileage)


Service Interval

First 1,000 miles (1,600 km), each 5,000 miles (8,000 km) thereafter

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