Jul 282010
 

Well ArtBiker Readers, I spent a few hours pouring over the specs of the new 2011 models last night and was a touch let down by advances made, but still just as excited as ever.  I can’t help it… new Harleys just make my heart race.

As faithful readers know, it was my 40th birthday last month and I had been promising myself a new touring rig for three or four years now.  I had planned on getting it for myself when I hit that “over the hill” age.  But, with my birthday being in June, I couldn’t commit to buying anything without waiting for the new models to be released.  So, I bought the Ol’ Lady her dream Nightster instead.

I had predicted a couple things with the new bikes, one being a factory set up touring model using the V-Rod platform.  I was wrong.  I still think that it would have been a very good move on the part of the Factory.  However, they did make a “New” touring model out of the Road Glide.  Now there is a Road Glide Ultra, which is the best handling Harley model with the addition of a tour-pak.  The pic below looks pretty good, but I don’t think I am a fan of the new blue color.

The other prediction I made that did come true was a return to dual pipes on the touring rigs.  I think it is a better aesthetic decision and it seems the Factory has agreed.

Besides the new Road Glide Ultra, the only other new models live in the Sportster category.  Of course, we have the previously announced XR1200 X (which replaces the XR1200), and the new Sportster SuperLow with its 25.5-inch seat height (this is comparable to the Nightster and Iron, but with a more traditional Sportster look).

Key improvements to 2011 Harley-Davidsons include:

  • A PowerPak for select touring models, which bundles a Twin Cam 103 engine (essentially a stroked 96) with ABS and a security system for $1,995
  • New seats for touring models (which were introduced mid-cycle in 2010 for select bikes), featuring a new seat pan, foam shape, and cover with narrower width for easier reach and a deeper bucket
  • A Security Package, which combines ABS and a security system (available on Softail, VRSC, and Touring models without the PowerPak) for $1,195
  • An ABS option for all Softail motorcycles except the Cross Bones
  • A return to dual exhaust pipes for FLHX and FLTRX models
  • New hand controls for Softail models, featuring a separate trip switch, a larger digital odometer with gear and rpm display, fewer wires, and a separate hazard button

There was a change in the CVO bikes this year as well as the Fat Bob was dropped in order to place in a new CVO Road Glide Ultra.  If you were a fan of the Fat Bob CVO, I hope you picked one up last year.

The 2011 Harley-Davidson CVO lineup features four bikes, all powered by Screamin’ Eagle 110 engines:

2011 Harley-Davidson CVO Road Glide Ultra Priced at $35,999, the Road Glide Ultra gets an upgraded BOOM! Audio system, and will be limited to 3,000 units.

2011 Harley-Davidson CVO Softail Convertible Priced at $29,599, the 2011 CVO Softail Convertible will be limited to 2,400 units and features a new mini-ape handlebar, larger saddlebags, a two-speaker stereo with an iPod, cruise control, and ABS.

2011 Harley-Davidson CVO Street Glide Priced at $32,499, the CVO Street Glide wears a 19″ front wheel– the largest ever on a touring Harley– and will be limited to 3,700 units.

2011 Harley-Davidson CVO Ultra Classic Electra Glide Priced at $36,499 and limited to 1,500 units, the CVO Ultra includes a Road Tech zumo 660-navigation system, a power locking system, ABS, and a new dual-heated hammock-style suspended seat.

So, was it worth the wait?  Yes, of course… am I going to go out and buy that touring rig?  Well, I am thinking about it.  Unfortunately, like everyone else in the world, the available funds, or lack thereof, dictate such actions.  But, regardless of what really happens, if the world were my oyster and I could do anything I wanted, I would run out right now and buy a new 2011 CVO Street Glide in green and black.

With funds running the way they are, that is out of the question… So a backup plan would be to run out and buy a 2011 Street Glide OR Road Glide.  I would have to do some real test riding to decide which one I wanted to live with for a very, very long time.  And, it goes without saying that I would need the 103 engine upgrade right out of the gate.

But with funds running the way they are, that is probably not an option either.

However, if I can sell my Deuce, I might be able to swing a used 2009 Electra Glide Standard (the last year they made them and the first year with the new frame).  And over the next few years, turn it into a CVO Street Glide…  Yeah, that might be the only option.

But I ain’t complainin’,

Love, Respect, and Ride Safe,

ArtBiker