Lv 6
Paul asked in Cars & TransportationMotorcycles · 10 years ago

Will HD ever make a modern touring bike?

I considered s HD Ultra Classic when I purchased my new Goldwing and wondered if HD will ever make something modern to compete with Goldwing. Specifically, a liquid cooled engine that puts out a minimum of 120HP, modern electronics with bluetooth that integrates cell phone, audio, etc, aero dynamics, full heaters and all that competes with GW price point.

Perhaps if HD did that they would start to attract a younger more technologically advanced demographic. Also, I may have purchased one...



One of the biggest downers is that they HDs are SOOOOOO underpowered. I will say the HD is more comfortable than my wing but they simply dont have enough power and arent aerodynamic. Plus, HDs dont have the amenities the BMW or Wing have. Although the BMW is new it still doesnt have the amenities of the GW. Its got 160hp, compared to the GW 120hp and the HD's laughable 60hp, but it isnt even out yet.

Update 2:


Actually, I did look at the FLHTCUI.... Refer to my original post. The FLHTCUI puts out about 60HP (cant believe HD still uses such a crappy motor), electronics suck because there arent any (my GW has builtin GPS/NAV/XM), Its not aerodynamic (for touring this kind of sux), sound system simply doesnt compare with my Wing (go listen and compare) and it was more money to boot!

Update 3:

@War Eagle

Honestly, im not trying to be argumentative or condescending but your post is utterly laughable. Please re-read my original post.

First of all, your the first person I ever had a conversation that didnt understand a Goldwing is about as technically advanced as you can get in a motorcycle. Even HDs concede that. Traction control??? Dude, its not a car.. lol. Engine performance modes?? Suzuki uses them - HD doesnt Second, "modern" is relative to time. Im glad you know all about engines but the engine Honda uses in their Goldwing is FAR superior in technology and performance to the 96ci that HD uses. The motor HD uses isnt crappy perse', its just that it has lousy performance. Is that clear enoguh for you?

FYI... The V-Rod engine was designed and manufactured by Porche - not HD.

Seriously, you really need to understand posts before you comment on them. Your responce to mine is hilarious.

Update 4:

@War Eagle

Honestly, at the end of the day you compare motorcycles and price and make a decision on what to buy. My original question stands as a test to HD to make a bike that is really more comparable, technologically speaking. If you compare the HD and GW with amenities and price the HD simply fails. If you like the HD because of the style, comfort or nastalgia then that is a personal choice that cant be argued.

Considering how bad the market is because of the economy, its amazing that HD isnt out of business yet. At the end of the day their name is carrying the company, which is exactly why they have considered moving out of Milwaukee, Wi and considering other locations - including Mexico.

Im NOT Harley bashing but the company keeps making serious business blunders. One of the things they are doing as of late is pumping out different models. Its a good thing but they are all based on the same v-twin that import bikes laugh at.

Again, at some very close point in time, HD is go

Update 5:


In case you were unaware, HD has been having significant problems financially lately. Although most manufacturers are in the same boat, HD has been hit especially hard because of the cost of their motorcycles (refer to union issues). Common sense dictates that HD has reall competition with other motorcycle companies, so people buy based upon comparative information, just like when you buy a TV.

"There is no real need for more than 100hp just to cruise". Defensive opinion. There is a reason that BMW, Honda, and custome bikes all put in large motors that put out well over 100hp!! Only HD doesnt and people get defensive about it saying it is needed. Its all about choice and HD makes you spend about $7500 on a 110 kit to get adequate power. If Im wrong then why do most people who buy HDs upgrade the motor???

"There is no need for electronics, ABS or another amenities" Defensive opinion. Just beecause HDs dont have them DOES NOT mean people dont want them. I could easily use

7 Answers

  • 10 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    The vrod is kind of a marketing failure. They fired Mr Buell. I think harley is set on selling reproductions of a 1940 harley and the harley brand of costume shop biker leathers and logo stickers. Emissions requirements are going to be a problem for them continuing in this way. But Harley doesn't seem to have any desire to build a motorcycle that would be sellable when you subtract the emblem.

  • 10 years ago

    You cant call a 1800 cc goldwing engine putting out 120 Hp "modern". You ought to be ashamed. I've got a stock 1975 honda 750cc putting out 70 HP and @ less than half the cc's. Calling a horizontally opposed volkswagon engine stuck in a "lazy boy" and given wheels is far from advanced. I dare to say, taking on the equivalent Harley or BMW in any dynamics test, i'd gamble on the competition.

    Also, "modern" isn't bluetooth, isn't heated grips, isn't a chihuahua carrier. A modern bike would have variable valve timing, forced induction, at point fuel injection, variable driving modes, traction control options, breaking modes, engine performance modes. All these things are modern in terms of the motorcycle industry, neither the goldwing or the HD has them in their touring models.

    You can't call HD's motor's crappy my friend. They've been dominating these roads for years with minimal changes. Call it what you will, but that engine is sound. I know, because i have a 1942 sitting in my garage, original, that will start right now.

    I vote they put the Vrod motor in the touring models and we will all be happy :)

    I'm not trying to be argumentative either haha The v-rod engine was designed by Harley's Powertrain engineering and Porsche's Engineering together. The engine is liquid cooled and has a 115 Hp. So if performance was your issue with Harley's touring model, wouldn't the placement of the Vrod engine in the tourning models achieve your desire? Thats the only reason i made that statement.

    You referred to modern first, and ofcourse its time related. As far as traction control and such, i just pointed out that those are the modern things in the technology of new bikes. Whether i agree or disagree wasnt the topic i was pointing out and no i dont want it on my bike. Yes traction control is for car's, but so is heat, a stereo, and GPS/NAV/XM presumably lol

    My response was intended to mock the touring motorcycle industry. I hope you really dont have a chihuahua carrier lol

    Harley has lots of issues with demographics and marketing. Their bikes are not as techincally advanced as the Goldwing, i never claimed so. I was merely pointing out that the harley engine isn't crappy and the goldwing engine isn't modern.

    I guess to appopriately answer your response: Harley has a touring line, which competes with the goldwing but in your case the goldwing was best suited for high horsepower high comfort. End of story.

    But, im glad your riding, its a whole lotta fun. I road to work today on my 'lack of creature comforts' old honda lol

  • Mark
    Lv 7
    10 years ago

    They make a modern touring bike, its not just what you want. I have ridden and owned the wing, the ultra and my current bike the BMW K1200LT. Each bike is different and appealed to a different part of me. By your definition of Modern you probably should have gotten the new six cylinder K1600GT BMW, which by all accounts is more of a "modern" motorcycle than any wing or previous BMW. Personally I'm sticking with what I have. I like the ride, that in the end is the most important part to me.

  • 10 years ago

    Probably not.

    The "business blunder" has kept them in business for a long time.

    It seems like it will continue to do so until ALL air cooled engines are outlawed.

    That's all the standing up for HD I'll do. The rest below is just personal opinion concerning all motorcycles.

    There's no need for more than 100 horses to just cruise.

    There is no need for the electronics, ABS, or other "amenities".

    Might as well drive a convertible cage.

    I'm on a Harley now, as it was my son's last gift to me. I had just bought another Honda.

    The only thing on that bike was a Vetter fairing and matching bags.

    Source(s): I ride FXD35 #2347 in memory of the 2347th U.S. KIA in Iraq. RIP, Junior.
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  • ?
    Lv 5
    10 years ago

    You see more old Harleys than you do Goldwings,But if you are needing the 120 hp to drag race go for the Goldwing.

  • 10 years ago

    That's like asking the following.

    I really like Hershey Kisses. I bought some. I wonder if my dog will ever start crapping out Chocolate Kisses.

    Just stick with Hershey!

  • Anonymous
    10 years ago

    F.L.H.T.C.U.I. is the modern touring bike they make I guess you forgot to look at it?

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