2014 Harley-Davidson Low Rider
Following a five-year hiatus, the Harley-Davidson Low Rider returns as a mid-2014 model.
The Low Rider, known for catering to the no-B.S. rugged rider, now features the powerful Twin Cam 103 that produces 98.8 ft.-lb. of torque at 3500 rpm combined with a restyled Dyna chassis designed for “perfect-fit ergonomics.” And of course, Low means low, and the new bike arrives with a 25.4-inch seat height.
The Low Rider first arrived on the market in 1977 as an FXS, built on the legendary Super Glide chassis. The model immediately pleased, and it outsold all other Harley-Davidson motorcycles in its first year of production. The Low Rider remained popular throughout the years, but was discontinued following the 2009 model year. The bike then received quite a cult following, and it was only a matter of time before it returned.
And this happened for 2014, a significant year for The Motor Company. Why? Along with the Project Rushmore lineup and the Street 750 / Street 500 models, the Low Rider helped Harley achieve its largest year for new-model launches in the Milwaukee-based company’s 110-year history. Harley-Davidson also unveiled another new model alongside the Low Rider – the Superlow 1200T.
Harely says the new Low Rider (FXDL) features suspension designed for all-day comfort and optimal cruising-style handling, including 49mm forks and coil-over rear shocks with tri-rate springs. This suspension is mated with Michelin Scorcher 31 tires that are mounted to split five-spoke cast-aluminum wheels (19″ x 2.5″ front, 17″ x 4.5″ rear).
Adding to this comfort are new “perfect fit” ergonomics, which Harley says utilize three features – two-position adjustable seat, adjustable handlebar risers, and footpegs that are relocated two inches forward.
“We wanted the new Low Rider to offer an expanded comfort envelope, and worked in three stages toward that goal,” said Paul Weiss, lead engineer on the Low Rider project. “We started with live feedback from riders of all sizes, and then employed Pro/Engineer computer simulations of posture and riding positions to project the best locations for rider controls.”
Harley used computer-generated rider triangles that represented heights from 5’ 1” to 6’ 1” to fit comfortably on the Dyna chassis. These triangles depicted not just the reach of the respective riders, but also the more critical comfort zones within the range of reach, Harley says.
“We next had to design solutions we could put into production,” said Weiss. “Inspired by the idea that you’d adjust a car seat to meet the controls, we devised the two-position Low Rider seat that can move the rider forward or backward 1.5 inches. By next adding handlebar adjustability, we were able to accommodate the riders in our defined comfort envelope. The final change was relocating the footpegs two inches forward of the previous Dyna mid-mount position.”
Stopping the 644-lb. (dry) Low Rider are dual 300mm front discs squeezed by four-piston calipers, and a single 292mm rear disc squeezed by two-piston caliper.
The 2014 Low Rider will be available in Vivid Black for $14,199, or either Brilliant Silver/Vivid Black or Amber Whiskey/Vivid Black for $14,929.
Stay clicked to UltimateMotorCycling.com for a First Rider Review from Daytona Bike Week, where Harley is launching the Low Rider.
2014 Harley-Davidson Low Rider FXDL Features:
• Rubber-mounted Twin Cam 103 engine is rated at 99 ft. lbs. of torque at 3500 rpm. The engine is equipped with Electronic Sequential Port Fuel Injection (ESPFI) and Automatic Compression Release (ACR), and is mated to a 6-speed Cruise Drive transmission. The powertrain is finished in wrinkle black powder coat with chrome-plated covers.
• Unique handlebar riser offers 2.4 inches of adjustment and seamless integration.
• Two-position ergonomic seat is tuned to fit a broad range of riders with a removable bolster that moves the rider 1.5 inches forward; laden seat height is 25.4 inches. High-performance perforated seat cover features a classic stitching pattern.
• Mid-mount foot controls are positioned to best fit most riders with an in-command riding position.
• Split five-spoke cast aluminum wheels feature a classic, muscular look. The wheels are finished in wrinkle black with diamond cut highlights
• Chrome 2-into-1 exhaust emits a throaty sound and pays homage to the original Low Rider.
• Wrinkle black console holds an analog speedometer and analog tachometer. Indicator lights are integrated into the tachometer.
• Chrome-plated rear fender strut covers feature wrinkle black cutouts.
• Chrome-plated battery box insert with wrinkle black highlights.
• Classic headlamp visor.
• Polished front end.
• Dual disc front brakes.
• Suspension features 49mm front forks and coil-over rear shocks, both with tri-rate springs; each tuned to deliver all-day comfort and excellent performance.
• Michelin Scorcher tires.
• Custom ignition switch located on the left side of the motorcycle.
• H-D Smart Security System with hands-free, proximity-based security fob as a factory-installed option.
• Anti-Lock Braking System (ABS) is a factory-installed option, standard in select markets.
• Chrome steel-laced wheels an available option in select markets
• Color choices include: Vivid Black, two-tone Brilliant Silver/Vivid Black and two-tone Amber Whiskey/Vivid Black.