In fact, on CVO models the 1800cc (110 cu in) engine produced copious amounts of torque and high horsepower numbers… it was the key to happiness and a big smile. It’s H-D’s analog approach to a mostly digital world.
But, let’s start from the beginning.
Remember the day you sat in your basement, in your bedroom with the lights off, driving the stereo speakers to the point of distortion, listening to music that energized you and soothed your soul at the same time?
Well get READY! Along comes the 2012 models and we’re talking about a one-hundred watt smile which emanates from the Harman/Kardon Advanced Audio system. The kids these days might be listening on earbuds, but the H-D creators are clearly freaks for sound. Who says high-end motorcycle audio has to be difficult?! What’s coming out of the speakers on the new models is positively mind-blowing.
I’m financially challenged, but even I was doing the calculation on a new 2012 CVO Street Glide from Harley-Davidson… New this year is a second 100W per channel amplifier and bridged tweeters mounted in the saddlebag lids. That’s a total of eight speakers and two power amplifiers kicking out 400W of lower mid-range and crisp highs of crashing cymbals. Not quite the gut-kicking bass of JBL concert speakers during a U2 concert, rather it’s like a warm ooze embrace of a digital sound field. It’s the aural grease you’ll need to make it through the day!
The new 2012 CVO Road Glide Custom gets a boosted 100W (up from 80W) amplified Harman/Kardon system too. The speakers are not the $3000 a pair Dynaudio BM15A’s you’d find in a music studio, but new this year are the two-way 5×7’s for booming down the boulevard. If I had either of these motorcycles I’d park it in the garage and shut all the windows because the music tracks on this system mean you’ve got to crank the volume – up enough – that you’d be in the same room with the band. Yeah, it’s that good.
For many riders they will stop right there when reviewing the new 2012 models and look for the check book. But there is more… H-D standardized on the Twin Cam 103 engine (with automatic compression release) as standard equipment on Softail, touring and most Dyna models. H-D launched the V-Rod 10th Anniversary Edition and the new Dyna Switchback. Some additional 2012 highlights include:
- A Security Package that pairs Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) with Smart Security System with proximity-based, hands-free security fob is available for all 2012 V-Rod, Dyna, Softail, Touring and CVO models. The Security Package is standard equipment on CVO models and on the Road Glide Ultra, the Electra Glide Ultra Limited and the Road King Classic. The Security Package is a factory-installed option for all other models.
- The Night Rod Special is updated with new tapered tail section, lighter-weight wheels, an inverted front fork and improved ergonomics. Harley-Davidson celebrates a decade of power cruising with the V-Rod 10th Anniversary Edition motorcycle, finished in Brilliant Silver Pearl bodywork. All V-Rod models will carry V-Rod 10th Anniversary badges.
- The new Dyna Switchback combines hard saddlebags and a windshield with the eager handling and Twin Cam 103 performance of the Dyna chassis. It’s a custom-touring bike ready for a long weekend trip, until the detachable bags and windshield are removed.
- The Fat Boy and Fat Boy Lo have a new reduced-reach handlebar for more-comfortable ergonomics. The Softail Deluxe and Heritage Softail Classic will be available with a new optional “tubeless” Chrome Aluminum Profile Laced wheel option for ease of tire replacement and repair.
- On Touring models, the Twin Cam 103 is equipped with an oil cooler. All Touring models except the Ultra Limited will offer a new “tubeless” Chrome Aluminum Profile Laced wheel option.
- The Sportster line cuts across a broad range of riders with models ranging from the XR1200X to the SuperLow to Dark Custom roadsters like the Iron 883, Nightster and Forty-Eight. The Sportster 1200 Custom can be personalized for fit, function and style with H-D1 factory customization, and new 1200 Custom color options have been added to Bike Builder this year.
If any of this appeals to you go online to H-D and check it out.
Photo courtesy of RCA/Popular Mechanics (circa: 1958)