MOTORS: MOTORBIKES: HARLEYHOTROD; HARLEY DAVIDSON: Modified to Cope with Bendy UK Roads

Coventry Evening Telegraph (England), February 11, 2005 | Go to article overview

MOTORS: MOTORBIKES: HARLEYHOTROD; HARLEY DAVIDSON: Modified to Cope with Bendy UK Roads


Byline: By MARC POTTER Editor, MCN

THIS is the bike that Harley-Davidson reckons will tempt us off sports bikes and on to some serious American metal.

While most Harleys are perfect for Route 66 and arrow-straight US highways, the new Street Rod - which we tested in the States at the weekend - has been designed to tackle our European roads; which means it's been built to go around corners.

So while the engine remains the same as its cousin, the chrome-clad V- Rod, the Street Rod's chassis has been modified to turn this Harley into a bit of a handler.

Don't be under any illusions that you're going to be hassling GSX-R1000s and CBR600s on your next Sunday morning blast, because despite its roadster pretensions, the Street Rod is still long, low and heavy.

It needs to be ridden smooth and flowing, quick and aggressive. But there's no doubt it suits Britain's bendy roads more than any Harley before.

It also stops better than any other Harley thanks to the kind of kit you normally see on Ducatis and Aprilias: Brembo brakes.

Though many cruiser riders would argue that the most comfortable way of sitting on a bike is with all their weight on their bums, with hands and feet hung out in front them, the Street Rod's riding position is more conventional.

With footpegs and handlebars positioned something like a Fazer 1000 (nowhere near as extreme as a sports bike), your weight is spread more evenly, while the new clamshell-shaped instruments provide a slight break from wind blast. …

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