2012 Harley-Davidson Night Rod | Preview

2012 Harley Night Rod Special

Ten years after its inception, Harley-Davidson’s V-Rod is still known as the ultimate “muscle bike.”

And for 2012, Harley has released three editions of the VRSCDX V-Rod – a 10th Anniversary, a Muscle and the Night Rod Special discussed here.

The Harley-Davidson Night Rod is the most sinister of the group, arriving with blacked-out, no BS styling. The Night Rod edition of the V-Rod features a “tapered tail section, lighter-weight wheels, and improved ergonomics with reduced reach to both the rider footpegs and handlebar.”

And of course it arrives with all the muscle from Harley-Davidson’s Revolution 1250cc engine, a liquid-cooled V-Twin with dual overhead camshafts, four-valve cylinder heads and Electronic Sequential Port Fuel Injection (ESPFI).

After transferring through an Assist and Slip clutch, five-speed transmission, and carbon-fiber belt drive, all this power is laid to the ground on a 240mm tire. And when it’s time to stop the Harley-Davidson Night Rod, braking comes through the high-tech Brembo braking system, featuring triple discs with optional anti-locking braking system (ABS).

2012 Harley-Davidson V-Rod Night Rod Features:

  • Harley-Davidson Rubber-mounted, liquid-cooled, 1250cc Revolution engine with Electronic Sequential Port Fuel Injection (ESPFI); 125 hp @ 8,250 RPM; 85 ft. lbs. @ 7,000 rpm.
  • Straight-shot exhaust with brushed finish dual mufflers; black end caps and exhaust shield.
  • NEW Black, split five-spoke cast aluminum wheels are three pounds lighter than previous wheels.
  • NEW Tapered tail section with flush-mount LED taillight.
  • NEW Pullback handlebar places controls three inches closer to the rider and optimizes overall feel with a low, wide position.
  • NEW Reduced reach, forward-mounted rider footpegs.
  • NEW Inverted front forks.
  • NEW Two-up seat with custom stitching.
  • NEW Stylized, black speed screen visor.
  • NEW Slim design, center-mount license plate.
  • NEW Graphics options include Sedona Orange or Vivid Black with perforated graphics on the side of the air box and tail section, and Denim Black with orange racing stripes.
  • Black powder-coated engine with black covers.
  • Blacked-out frame, handlebar, front fork, triple clamps and covers.
  • Sport front fender with painted brace supports.
  • 240 mm wide rear tire.

2012 Harley-Davidson Night Rod Colors/MSRP:

  • Vivid Black: $15,299
  • Black Denim, Sedona Orange: $15,609
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One of the few moto journalists based on the East Coast, Ron Lieback joined the motorcycle industry as a freelancer in 2007 and is currently Editor at Large at Ultimate Motorcycling. He is also the author of 365 to Vision: Modern Writer's Guide (How to Produce More Quality Writing in Less Time).