2020 Motorcycle Previews Harley-Davidson Sportster Lineup Cut For 2020

Harley-Davidson Sportster Lineup Cut For 2020

Harley-Davidson Superlow, Forty-Eight Special, and 1200 Custom Disappear

With all the attention directed at the new and updated motorcycles in the 2020 Harley-Davidson lineup, an overlooked aspect of the coming model year is the loss of three of seven Sportster models.

While the Iron 883, Iron 1200, Forty-Eight, and Roadster will all be 2020 Harley-Davidson Sportsters, the Forty-Eight Special, Superlow, and long-running 1200 Custom are nowhere to be seen. This change leaves the Iron 883 as the sole member of the Harley-Davidson XL 883 family.

Forty-Eight Harley specs
2020 Harley-Davidson Sportster Forty-Eight

The Harley-Davidson 1200 Custom XL 1200C was introduced in 1996, and has been a mainstay in the Sportster lineup ever since. The Superlow debuted in 2011 and, as its name implies, had the lowest seat-height in the Sportster range. The Forty-Eight Special came into the fold in 2018, so its life has been a short one.

The high-bar Iron 1200 should satisfy those who would crave the Forty-Eight Special, so that looks like a natural pruning. However, the Iron 1200 has mid-mount pegs, a narrower front wheel, and less chrome than the Forty-Eight Special, so they’re certainly not clones. Another option for Forty-Eight Special fans is buying a Forty-Eight and making the appropriate modifications.

Shorter riders who might have been interested in the Superlow will have to step up to the Forty-Eight. The Forty-Eight has a seat height less than a quarter-inch higher than the Superlow, along with a 1200 motor rather than an 883. The downside for the new riders will be the forward foot controls, less-comfortable handlebar bend, and higher price.

Roadster 1200 price
2020 Harley-Davidson Roadster XL1200

Anyone looking at the 1200 Custom will also be directed to the Forty-Eight or Iron 1200, neither of which is a particularly close match. The Forty-Eight has considerably less comfortable ergonomics than the 1200 Custom, and some riders will be reluctant to trade comfort for style. The Iron 1200’s mini-apes have a significantly different presence than the swept-back bar bend on the 1200 Custom, and you lose 1200 Custom’s fat front tire and chrome.

Of course, Harley-Davidson has a welcome habit of introducing additional motorcycles as the model year progresses, so we will have to wait and see what is still to come in the 2020 Harley-Davidson Sportster lineup.

2020 Harley-Davidson Sportster Lineup Photo Gallery

Don Williams
Don Williamshttp://www.ultimatemotorcycling.com
With 50 years of riding experience, Don Williams is a fan of all kinds of motorcycles. He enjoys sport bikes, cruisers, dirt bikes, touring bikes, adventure bikes, dual sport bikes, and rideable customs. Ask Don what his favorite bike is and he will tell you, "Whatever bike I'm on."

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