2012 Harley Sportster Custom | Preview

2012 Harley-Davidson Motorcycle

Harley-Davidson produced the Sporster Custom line for the rider who wants agility and balanced handling combined with fat styling.

From the fat front end to the fat triple clamps to the fat 130mm front and 150mm rear tires on five-spoke wheels, the Harley-Davidson Sporster XL1200C cruises with a swelling style.

Due to this, its popularity continually grows; knowing this, Harley didn’t change much on the 2012 Sportster Custom, except to offer it with new black side panels and new color options.

And with factory customization being one key to Harley’s success, the 2012 Harley-Davidson Sportster Custom can be ordered using the H-D1 process.

Harley says: “And, with the H-D1 factory customization process, customers can personalize their 1200 Custom with seat, handlebar, foot control, wheel, security, paint and engine finish options straight from the factory.”

Following are the highlights, specs, color options and MSRP of the 2012 Harley-Davidson Sportster Custom XL1200C.

2012 Harley-Davidson Sportster Custom XL1200 C Highlights:

  • NEW Black side covers to match bodywork finish
  • NEW Paint color options
  • Evolution V-Twin powertrain with Electronic Sequential Port Fuel Injection (ESPFI)
  • Rubber-mounted powertrain to reduce vibration
  • 5-Speed transmission
  • Dual staggered exhaust
  • Disc brakes
  • Handlebar-mounted electronic speedometer
  • Optional Harley-Davidson Smart Security System with hands-free security fob
  • Chrome, 5-Spoke cast aluminum wheels front and rear
  • Michelin Scorcher “31” tires
  • Wider fork spacing and polished
  • triple clamps
  • Reshaped classic Sportster “eyebrow” over the headlamp
  • Taillight is smaller and has a new shape with a bright, low-maintenance LED element
  • Front suspension rates are re-tuned to match the new tire/wheel combination. 39 mm front fork with 30 degrees rake.
  • Pull-back handlebar mounted on a curved riser incorporates an LED warning light display
  • Polished forward foot controls
  • Two-up seat is standard with 26.5 inch laden
  • seat height
  • 4.5-gallon fuel tank offers long riding range
  • Powertrain finished in black powdercoat with chrome covers

2012 Harley-Davidson Sportster Custom XL1200 C Specs:


  • Air-cooled, Evolution
  • Displacement (in./cc): 73.3/1200
  • Fuel System: Electronic Sequential Port Fuel Injection (ESPFI)
  • Transmission: 5-speed
  • Miles Per Gallon: 48 MPG combined City/Hwy
  • Fuel Capacity (U.S. gals/liters): 4.5/17
  • Power: 79 ft. lbs. torque @4000 rpm


  • Length (in./mm): 87.4/2220
  • Seat Height (laden) (in./mm): 26.6/676
  • Wheelbase (in./mm): 59.9/1521


  • Michelin Scorcher “31” front and rear
  • Front: Scorcher “31” 130/90B16 72H
  • Rear: Scorcher “31” 150/80B16 77H


  • Front: Chrome 5-Spoke Cast Aluminum 16 in. x 3 in. (406.4 mm x 76.2 mm)
  • Rear: Chrome 5-Spoke Cast Aluminum 16 in. x 3 in. (406.4 mm x 76.2 mm)
  • Optional Style: Black Contrast Cut 5-Spoke Cast Aluminum; Steel Laced; Black Steel Laced

Weight as Shipped (lbs./kg):

  • 553/251

2012 Harley-Davidson Sportster Custom XL1200 C Color Options/ MSRP:

  • Vivid Black / $10,299
  • Big Blue Pearl / $10,599
  • Brilliant Silver Pearl / $10,599
  • Ember Red Sunglo/ Merlot Sunglo / $10,809
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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).