New Harley-Davidson Forty-Eight Model. A True City Brawler.

harley48cyrilhuzeharley48cyrilhuze1Because of media obligations, sometimes it’s quite difficult for me to keep my keyboard silent when I am aware of big news like the launch of a new Harley-Davidson model. Now that yesterday evening at the Ace Hotel in New-York City, Willie G. Davidson (with Harley-Davidson styling team members Casey Ketterhagen, Frank Savage, Ray Drea, Rich Christoph and Paul Martin) have unveiled and celebrated with the media the new Forty-Eight motorcycle, I can publish and tell you all what I know.

harley48cyrilhuze2harley48cyrilhuze3First, you have to know that I like very much this City Brawler in the legendary tradition of the hot rod Sportster line with the raw, elemental appeal already expressed in the Dark Custom™ bikes. The first thing you will notice is its bulldog appearance due in great part to the two 16″ black steel laced wheels with a front dressed with a tall MT-90 130 mm front tire (requiring now a fat front end) and a 150 mm rear tire. The muscle stance is exaggerated by a very slammed suspension (by factory standards), a solo seat 26″ high and a small 2.1 gallon peanut tank. And for those who want to know why this model is called the Forty-Eight, a little bit of motorcycle history that Harley-Davidson didn’t provide at the launch. It’s in 1948 that Harley used for the 1st time the peanut gas tank, but not on a Sportster (1957). It was on a 125-S model, the peanut tank being a copy of a DKW built by the German Wehrmacht between 1939 & 1945. So, to be historically correct, this new model should have been called Thirty-Nine and not Forty-Eight! But it’s another story…

cyrilhuzeharley48The Forty-Eight runs a blacked-out rubber mounted Evolution 1200 cc V-twin engine and got the raw and elemental appeal already found in its brothers of the “Dark Custom”™ line. Evidently, Harley is pitching this bike to the twenty and thirty years old segment as an “about-town” motorcycle or “bar bike”, trying to redirect its image to the core attitude of the brand and offering a price not breaking the bank (starting at $10,499 in Vivid Black). Harley considers the Forty-Eight a ready to ride radical custom, but as a matter of fact it is also primed to take on its owner’s character and personality. Nothing more the factory wishes than Gear Heads turning the Forty-Eight iron canvas into rebellion spirited customs. We are ready…

harley48cyrilhuzerearRadical attitude and straight on style come from a series of distinctive elements. Black components including air cleaner cover, clutch and brake levers and turn signals, low custom handlebars with under bar mounted mirrors, side mount license plate, unusually clean chopped rear fender with combination stop/turn/tail lights, shorty dual exhaust to pound out the distinctive Harley sound, fork-mounted turn signals, slammed speedometer mounting bracket and fork brace with lightening holes, dual texture solo seat (passenger pillion, foot-pegs and backrest are available). The Forty-Eight is available in Vivid Black, Brilliant Silver and Mirage Orange Pearl colors. Soon at your Harley-Davidson dealer.

harley48cyrilhuze7In conclusion, you will not be surprised to know that all marketing and advertising efforts of Harley-Davidson are going to focus on social medias, blogs, with products placement on counter-culture programs, Tv series like Sons Of Anarchy, etc.

Back in black. Back to a collective past where bikers were sharing the same values. Back to what made Harley a core bikers brand. It took a deep recession and hundreds of lost millions for Harley to understand again its market. Great…Harley-Davidson (pictures copyright Harley-Davidson)

94 Responses to “New Harley-Davidson Forty-Eight Model. A True City Brawler.”

  1. 1 jspfc Jan 22nd, 2010 at 2:28 pm

    I think it looks pretty cool but it’s a Sporster. How do they get over the image that Sporsters are for women?

  2. 2 bobx Jan 22nd, 2010 at 2:39 pm

    seems like they’re trying to appeal to the younger generation…lets hope its not too late….

  3. 3 fuji Jan 22nd, 2010 at 2:59 pm

    This bike is awesome, Who said Wile Willie and the boys couldn’t come up with great ideas. A true city brawler it is. Sure to put those foreign bikes on the curb.
    This design and the R&D that went into it had to be very time consuming.
    That is one happy design team lead by a dynamic trend setter.
    Are they singing “Vaya con Dios Mi Amigo “

  4. 4 bobx Jan 22nd, 2010 at 3:25 pm

    smells like sarcasm….could just be me though.

  5. 5 KJK Jan 22nd, 2010 at 3:28 pm

    It looks good but using a Cheech Marin movie quote “It’s the same only different”
    I feel they should put the V-Rod engine to other uses. Maybe a state of the art sport tourer or something similar.

  6. 6 bobx Jan 22nd, 2010 at 3:35 pm

    i can already hear the local dealer moaning about another sportster. i think they’ve got 20 or 30 used ones there now from the sportster trade in program they had last year.

  7. 7 fuji Jan 22nd, 2010 at 4:04 pm

    Cheech and Chong ,
    Cheech ,looks like dog shit
    Chong, smells like dog shit.
    must be!

  8. 8 Ron Jan 22nd, 2010 at 4:19 pm

    If Harley really wants to appeal to the younger generation, they had better drop their prices to be more reasonable and competitive. That’s why the American auto makers dropped in sales, and being motorcycles are considered a “luxury”…

    I bought my Heritage in 1999, and will be paying Yen to put gas in it soon.

  9. 9 EvosRule Jan 22nd, 2010 at 4:19 pm

    I am torn…. I want to like it… I want to hate it…. I just can’t get past the fact that it feels like Harley is trying too hard. It is kinda icky. It reminds me of when you hear someone say “da bomb” today and they honestly beleive they are being “in tune” with the younger generation.

    I liked the Nighster too… but never bought one. I liked the concept of the XR1200, but again, never bought one. I had an Ironhead back 15 years ago (before they were hip like they are today)…. maybe I would own XR750 but aside from that, I don’t see myself or anyone I know buying sportsters. It almost feels as if this bike is being targetted to the hipster duffas scooter guy with his little fedora hat and his Steely Dan beard who wants to evolve past 45mpg (barely).

    Make it 3999.00 and I am in! Otherwise, for 11K there are a shitload of other bikes I would buy in a heartbeat and this ain’t one of them.

    Like I said, the verdict is out, but not just with this bike but with all of HD right now…. are they simply trying to hard? I guess we’ll see.

  10. 10 Scott Jan 22nd, 2010 at 4:23 pm

    That butt ugly peanut tank screams just another Sportster. Replace it with an ever-stylish fat bob tank. Sorry Willie try again.

  11. 11 Friar Jan 22nd, 2010 at 4:25 pm

    Sure it looks cool(-ish). But three thoughts come to mind:

    1. Talk about ‘drinking the Kool-Aid’ (or did we just cut-and-paste The Company’s press release?).
    2. There’s really nothing new here, from whatever angle you view it.
    3. Who is this bike really aimed at?

  12. 12 just my opinion Jan 22nd, 2010 at 4:25 pm

    fuji; You are absolutely right, it must have been one hell of a brain storming session that came up with a great new model like this one. Willie must really have his hand on the pulse of modern style designs and what paople really want. I bet this will be the model that saves HD.

    Look at the face of the guy on the left in the photo. Looks like he is real impressed.

  13. 13 Brett Jan 22nd, 2010 at 4:41 pm

    Yeah I have to say $10 grand for a Sportster isn’t really aiming a bike at 20 & 30 year olds. $6 to $7 grand, you may have something.

    Also, whats the deal with just coming up with new named Sportsters? Yeah some of them look cool, but seriously, I’m 6 feet tall. My wife has an 883L, when I get on it, it looks like I’m on a toy.

    Since they got rid of the Night Train, why not bring back the Softail Standard & make it cooler. Slam the Hell out of an FXST & make it the roided up brother of all these Sportsters or something & get it so that is around $10 grand & you may have something people want. Yeah guys may like bar hopping, but soon enough, they also want a chic on their bike too. Good luck getting a descent size guy & his lady on one of these.

  14. 14 Manhattan Choppers Jan 22nd, 2010 at 4:43 pm


  15. 15 fuji Jan 22nd, 2010 at 4:54 pm

    just my opinion : Look at the face of the guy on the left in the photo. Looks like he is real impressed.
    He’s content playing with his Johnson

    The guy to Willys left in photo. just gave Willy the thumps up. That is why he looks surprised.

  16. 16 matt b Jan 22nd, 2010 at 5:02 pm

    just gonna put my two pence worth in, another re design of the sporty, yet again harley are coming up with the ideas 2 to 5 years after everyone else has, count the sportys and dynas out there with fat front wheels, thousands. Whats with the chrome pipes too?, every time a ‘new’ ‘dark’ bike is unveiled, it has chrome pipes, and as for the price, does sticking a fat front wheel in really justify the price? Its expensive for you guys in the USA, but over here, Harley prices are ridiculously high, (UK). Before you all attack me, i will tell you, i have no problems with Harleys in general, ive ridden 140,000 miles on them in the last eight years, i just think that they really have lost their way and are trying to appeal to the wannabe’s and are forgetting the people who actually use their bikes every day…….rant over, ride safe, and free

  17. 17 matt b Jan 22nd, 2010 at 5:04 pm

    ps, the guy on the left is the lookout, for rotten eggs etc being thrown……

  18. 18 CYCLE CITY of TN. Jan 22nd, 2010 at 5:09 pm


  19. 19 bob Jan 22nd, 2010 at 5:16 pm

    “Make it 3999.00 and I am in! Otherwise, for 11K there are a shitload of other bikes I would buy in a heartbeat and this ain’t one of them.”

    exactly. for the same $$$ you can pick up a (non sportster) bike thats only a year or 2 old with next to no miles on it.

    and theres nothing wrong with a sporty. ive wanted one for awhile…but with the prices on them..every time i look around i see a nice used soft tail or fat boy for not much more and the thought of the sportster gets trumped.

    it is a cool looking bike though. it was cool when it was the nightster and the iron as well.

  20. 20 Jeff Nicklus Jan 22nd, 2010 at 5:18 pm

    It is a friggin Sportster ….. wow! Good job Willie …. you topped the V-Rod with this one ….. now retire!

    Over & Out,


  21. 21 raycwheeler Jan 22nd, 2010 at 5:19 pm

    if it looks like a Sportster and smells like a Sportster–it just might be.

    From the start they were the baddest bike on 2 wheels. Bonnie Truett built an ex- drag strip rocket that I owned and rode in the mid west during the late 60’s. My first ex-wife would tow me by the drivers side door handle a few times and the motor would finally belch to life. Since the compression was in the neighborhood of 12.5 to 1 and running a mag, kicking was not an option and there are very few hills in Wichita, Ks. Made one helleva dirt bike.
    Ah, the good old days.

    enjoy the ride,

    raycwheeler usa

  22. 22 Cyril Huze Jan 22nd, 2010 at 5:25 pm

    To “Guess Who” in Oklahoma hiding behind your screen. I will reply to you the day you post a valid email. Not very courageous…

  23. 23 raycwheeler Jan 22nd, 2010 at 5:26 pm

    try stickin a V Rod drive train in it? or S&S’s latest motor?

    raycwheeler usa

  24. 24 Woody Jan 22nd, 2010 at 5:41 pm

    I dig the wheel/tire combination, now it just needs a new seat, rear fender, gas tank, turn signals, rear frametail appearance……………………………………sigh.

  25. 25 Seymour Jan 22nd, 2010 at 5:51 pm

    Willie G. displayed the same ridiculous glee when he rolled out the V-Rod. I used to Love HD, well it’s been a ways back now. Maybe they just don’t Give a F anymore..

  26. 26 CYCLE CITY of TN. Jan 22nd, 2010 at 5:52 pm

    Way to go Cyril, Don’t take no shit from guess who. Everybody in my store enjoys your blog. Keep up the good work.

  27. 27 goldgunner Jan 22nd, 2010 at 5:53 pm

    Hmmm, I sure have fun hot rodding and carving with my sporty 1200. I’m 6ft and it just dances with me, and I’m not talking about the waltz dancing I see the ALL of the baggers and soft tail and fatties that I see being ridden like the blue hairs drive thier Buicks.

    Girls bike – Yup, girls who like to fox trot and swing it. Nope, not for fat asses on put put scooters.

    But, this eternal nonsense discussion is tiring – isn’t it? If you haven’t jived on a somewhat hopped up 1200 sportster in some time – go do it. Twist the throttle – a lot.

  28. 28 Pitbull Jan 22nd, 2010 at 5:59 pm

    Come on people, dont you know that Harley tries to copy what the public does?
    They see what the trend are and then put their spin on it, just like when Denny Berg customed a Softail for Tom White (White Bros) that was a springer with bags, Willy Saw it in Sturgis and then 1 or two years later Harley came out with the springer nostaligia, yep.

  29. 29 HAPPY DAN Jan 22nd, 2010 at 6:08 pm


  30. 30 Sniperman Jan 22nd, 2010 at 6:10 pm

    Willie G strikes again with another design copy………..

    first it was the V-Rod copying the V-Max

    Now it’s a Sportster imitating one of Russell Mitchel’s Exile bikes…………

    Like Jeff Nicklus said Willie:…….”retire”


  31. 31 Dave Blevins Jan 22nd, 2010 at 6:19 pm

    Don’t get me wrong, I like Sportsters, but I just don’t see any noticable difference. Here’s my idea for a new Sportster model…
    1… Put the Buell 100 horsepower motor in it, a tried and true engine with plenty of power.
    2… Put a gas tank shaped like a peanut but a little larger, and work out a small tank mounted instrument cluster in it (clean up those cluttered handlebars).
    3… Go ahead and put some good progressive shocks on it, the stock ones feel like crap, no one likes them. No one!
    4… Design an oil tank that looks worth a damn, the Sporter has always had the ugliest oil tank/battery tray in the entire HD line.
    Give it some attitude, and a name that makes more sense, like.. Sportster.

  32. 32 alan Jan 22nd, 2010 at 6:23 pm

    i like to know what is new on this sportster
    we are doing the same in europe for the last 20 years
    or maybe this one is built in china maybe that the big news

  33. 33 rough rider Jan 22nd, 2010 at 6:35 pm

    O.M.FG. What will they think of next ??? I wouldn’t go as far as saying it’s a copy of Russ Mitchel but I would say it’s a definite 150% copy of the SPORTSTER. What then hell are they thinking ??Maybe they think we are all morons like them……………(Lets put a fat tire on a sporty and fool all of them, they will never know the differance ), thing willie’s been smoking the carpet.
    Oh yea !! WILLIE Wall Mart’s looking for greeters……………………………………..

  34. 34 golfish Jan 22nd, 2010 at 6:47 pm

    I guess this is why

    “Because of media obligations”

  35. 35 hp Jan 22nd, 2010 at 6:49 pm

    agree with the posts above, nothing new here, fat tire on the front of a sportster does NOT make it a new model. and if it is aimed at a younger market, they should put it in their price range. only if we had a bike that appealed to those crotch rocket riding crowd. oh yeah, we got rid of buells.

  36. 36 John Hanf Jan 22nd, 2010 at 7:02 pm

    what is Harley Davidson making such a big deal of , the NEW “48” is a Sportster with a Wide Glide front end & fat front tire ,don’t see what the big deal is. Lets make some changes 240 rear tire , keep the right side drive, 110ci fuel injected motor , 40* rake& 2″ over in the Front end , NOW YOUR TALKING “NEW” , Cyril you should modify Willie G’s idea!!!!

  37. 37 Doc Robinson Jan 22nd, 2010 at 7:45 pm

    Golly Cyril, your blog seems to attract a lot of knockers, whiners and semi-illiterate posts. As for the personal attacks on Willie G. seriously, they are below contempt. Anyone out there care to be patriotic for a change? Positive? Supportive of a great American company that has done more for the USA’s international relations than all the Nobel Prize Peace Laureates put together. BTW Russell Mitchell didn’t invent fat front wheels and nobody owns any styling cues. They’ve all gone round the block many times. Check out pics of bobbed bikes from the 50s.

  38. 38 Jeez Jan 22nd, 2010 at 7:52 pm

    Like the 48. Period. Support Harley. Support all US manufacturers.

  39. 39 R.Alan Jan 22nd, 2010 at 8:07 pm

    WAlmart Greeter….ROFLMAO!!!!!

  40. 40 R.Alan Jan 22nd, 2010 at 8:30 pm

    Buddy of mine had a ’69 900 Sportster w/a 10 over front end on it. Took the back shocks off and had couple of chrome plated steel bars bolted where the shocks should’a been. Sucker had those frickin 8 bend handlebars. Back end is dropped down, front end is jacked up…and when you turned a corner your hands would go up over your shoulder…Bar hoppin’ took on whole new meaning on that Sportster…and as far as women riding it were concerned…they were smart enough to know what shock absorbers looked like…and where they should be on the bike, and I know I heard more than one say…”is it safe”?

  41. 41 WILLIE Jan 22nd, 2010 at 9:33 pm

    way over priced .MAYBE 2995.00

  42. 42 BubbaKahuna Jan 22nd, 2010 at 10:27 pm

    Meh … too little too late from the Milwaukee Motor Company.
    I’d rather bob a Road Star for that kind of money.
    Much bigger motor, much better built bike, much less $$$$.
    Maybe for about $5K, that’s this thing’s actual build value.

    Good luck with this one HD, you’ll need it.

  43. 43 fuji Jan 22nd, 2010 at 10:53 pm

    Doc Robinson . says
    American company that has done more for the USA’s international relations than all the Nobel Prize Peace Laureates put together. ———————————————————————————————— ” Nobel Peace Prize ”

    Good point Doc. Please explain to those out there that don’t realize what Harley Davidson contributed to international relations and The Nobel Peace Prize.

    I try to collect Harley Davidson history when I can but not being the most literate person I some times have to rely on those that have facts. Good for me that I don’t wright articles for some publisher. Thanks for filling us in Doc.

  44. 44 nicker Jan 22nd, 2010 at 11:01 pm

    Nothing wrong with Sporties, for boys or girls. But……….

    “…Willie G. Davidson ….with Harley-Davidson styling team members Casey Ketterhagen, Frank Savage, Ray Drea, Rich Christoph and Paul Martin… have unveiled and celebrated…”

    If it took all these people to come up with this offering, it may be time to get outside help.
    Another missed chance to do something really cool. But no, it was back to the old parts bin.

    They could-a gone to Merton for some of those Lawwill street tracker heads.
    And then throw all that stuff into one of his way cool chassies.

    Mert builds “Real” motorcycles.

    Hell, posers who dismiss a Sportsters as a “Girls Bike” typically can’t ride their way out of a wet paper bag anyway.

    Sorry, i just calls-em as i see-em.

  45. 45 GRIP ACE - DIGITAL SWITCHES Jan 22nd, 2010 at 11:05 pm

    Harley Davidson is pulling out all stops to see what is going to work. I hate to say it, but the rebel yell crowd is maturing past HD’s current offerings and they are starting to look at trikes and or sell their current bikes to put money back in the bank for retirement, especially the every other other week end warrior riders. So let’s not knock HD for doing something. It may work. The younger generation was not as affected buy lay off’s, falling stock prices and property values. They have time to recover They are also working jobs that can afford the small payments on a sporty.

  46. 46 Jim C Jan 22nd, 2010 at 11:12 pm

    The tank looks out of place on that bike. I like the rest of it. Just my .02

  47. 47 russell Jan 22nd, 2010 at 11:20 pm


  48. 48 Bob Walker Jan 22nd, 2010 at 11:28 pm

    To paraphrase President Clinton while running against the first President Bush, it’s the engineering, stupid. What Harley needs now is good, new engineering. Something that rises to the level of the introduction of the Sportster in ’57 or the invention of the softail. Merely copying stying ideas already thought of by others won’t save Harley – it can’t survive continuing to only live on its past engineering.

  49. 49 just my opinion Jan 22nd, 2010 at 11:50 pm

    fuji; HD has made huge contrabutions to the international community. Where do you think all those metric bolts come from? And what about all the Clothing they sell? it don’t come from the USA
    Hell that trailer fender on the new spertster is probably stamped out in taiwan. I think they should get a Nobel Peace Prize. Besides these new motorcycles will sell like flat bread over in India.

  50. 50 BAJerry Jan 23rd, 2010 at 12:09 am

    Bring back The XLCH, with a mag, no-battery oil bag, (best lookin’ oil bag ever on a Sportster), and a kicker- now that would be “New” now wouldn’t it!! .

  51. 51 Looper Jan 23rd, 2010 at 12:28 am

    Yawn. It would have been cool 6 years ago. Nothing wrong with a Sporty … but at that price, I can find much better handling and performance. How about a Buell instead.

  52. 52 R Whit Jan 23rd, 2010 at 2:05 am

    The younger generation does not want a sporty , they want a 180 mph rocket.

  53. 53 DanVVArider Jan 23rd, 2010 at 6:22 am

    That thing is sphincter-ugly. While I don’t see Sporties as bikes for women I do see this as excess packaging with no real product. I should mention I like Sporties, been workin’ them since the Ironhead days. They cry out to be chopped, bobbed, modified, and whatever, but not made ugly on purpose – except to sell at an overprice, of course.

  54. 54 stephen Jan 23rd, 2010 at 7:06 am

    I hope it works for H-D, none of us want to see them go down. It looks really ordinary to me and it seems a bit overpriced but the market will decide.

  55. 55 fuji Jan 23rd, 2010 at 8:02 am

    nicker .

    You may have to explain to some who Lawwill is . Lawwill ruled back when and today. flat track forever.

  56. 56 Fausto of Jan 23rd, 2010 at 8:08 am

    It has that “nouveau-retro” look. Ont peut voir les touches de film noir partout.

    C’est magnifique!

    Une vrais bijou!

  57. 57 Brent Zemor Jan 23rd, 2010 at 8:12 am

    Beautiful retro looking Sportster. Want one!

  58. 58 TPEvans Jan 23rd, 2010 at 9:23 am

    Excellent. True to the timeless Sportster design and image – but updated. Go for it Harley – sell a million of them. Do whatever it takes to stay in business. Just survive – then hopefully prosper. You can drag all the naysayers down the road with you if you are here. If you are not, then I am sure there is a fledgling motorcycle company in Brazil or China or India just itching to tell us there are Americanized and that we should buy their bikes. Because they have a government without oppressive environmental and workplace regulation, they can actually produce a bike for $3,999 or $5,999 or whatever.

    Can’t happen you say? That Bud Light on your lips is foreign owned. Jaguar is owned by Tata Motors. Hummer is a Chinese brand. There is no ground in stone rule that says Harley will always be an American company. The only thing preventing it from happening is our support of the Company. It’s not nearly enough to moan about what could have been done after it’s over. Hey – compalin all you want – we all do that well. There will be plenty of time for all the bellyaching down the road. For now – if you want Harley to be what it has been, go buy something from Harley.

  59. 59 disturbedvn Jan 23rd, 2010 at 9:46 am

    YAWN :0 another over priced machine from Harley ….. Whatever just stay in business, do what you have too…. People will still buy it, that is if they can get financed.

  60. 60 Lisa H Jan 23rd, 2010 at 10:10 am

    I like it; but it’s still a sporty.

  61. 61 R.Alan Jan 23rd, 2010 at 10:48 am

    Put a black RSD breather on that thing a black 2into1 pipe from Hacker or RB Racing, get it chipped and buy yourself a kevlar half helmet and you’d be set…yeeehaaa!!

  62. 62 Woody Jan 23rd, 2010 at 11:02 am

    Doc, I don’t think folks are so much anti-Harley as they are disappointed in such a luke-warm makeover being debuted as a new model. Except for the front tire, it looks like a weekend project of inexpensive bolt-on parts. The rear turn signals look like JCWhitney + Krylon.
    I expect more from the factory, even in rough times they have the resources to do things beyond the norm. It takes just as much time & money to do an ugly fender as a cool one, likewise a custom seat. That stock pad looks worse than anything you’d find in Corbin’s dumpster. I want H-D to succeed, but they are going to have to work a little harder at it than this.

  63. 63 grayhawk Jan 23rd, 2010 at 11:50 am

    Hey at least it does not have the rubberband front end as did the 48

  64. 64 BOB Jan 23rd, 2010 at 1:06 pm

    Why doesn’t Harley lower the price of the 48 by a couple of thousand ,then sell a whole bunch of them. This would bring back the workers to the Harley factories and everyone wins.
    I really like the looks of the Indian Dark Horse but at $28,000 (before taxes) how many are they going to sell? My Harley Road King only cost $16,000 in 2006 and I haven’t had a single problem with it. I hope the American motorcycle industry, along with the unions, wake up!

  65. 65 CYCLE CITY of TN. Jan 23rd, 2010 at 2:21 pm

    A new Honda has more American made parts on it than a new Harley does. The great american motorcycle company with almost NO American made parts.

  66. 66 Wrench Jan 23rd, 2010 at 3:01 pm

    Forty-Eight? So what’s that, the number of months untill Harley files for bankruptcy? Harley has a real serious demographics problem, and it’s going to take a lot more than black paint to fix it. Killing off your sportbike division…that was brilliant. I don’t want to see Harley fail, but they sure seem to have lost touch with the average rider. (And what the fu@k is it with those forward controls? I hate those damn things!)

  67. 67 choppertom Jan 23rd, 2010 at 4:39 pm

    yeh, whatever. you can’t win a beauty contest with a pig……..or can you?
    just wait ’till all the rules change.
    big government & big business has been telling us what we want for years. all we have to do is succeed.

  68. 68 Jesse James Jan 23rd, 2010 at 7:34 pm

    What style? It’s what I’d expect from a moke who walks around in a french beret . . .

  69. 69 MDK Jan 23rd, 2010 at 10:05 pm

    Willie G. hasn’t really helped HD ever in my opinion he has held it back for way to long and this is just another example.

  70. 70 Rider2 Jan 23rd, 2010 at 11:49 pm

    Booooorrrrrrinnnggggg… another bike with surplus of parts HD doesn’t know what to do with. It’s a sportster with a 16″ front, similar to their Dyna and other softails with a fat front tire. Nothing new here, but if the price is right and they spray paint this thing in black, it actually might sell. They need it considering they’re down again 20%+ this 4th quarter.

  71. 71 Manhattan Choppers Jan 24th, 2010 at 3:54 am

    True CYCLE CITY of TN. All accords and alot of acuras are built in marysville ohio, been there..

  72. 72 James (KIWI) Jan 24th, 2010 at 4:11 am

    Yea, I like it .Would not suit my frame size. But looks cool.!!
    My Wife has an 06 custom and with minor mods and it blows away most big twinkies.I’m not sure I want her to see this….

    James (KIWI)

  73. 73 Andy Jan 24th, 2010 at 1:44 pm

    Three words: Sucker Punch Sally

  74. 74 rough rider Jan 25th, 2010 at 10:18 am

    Hey DOC ROBINSON, You must work for harley, are you so stupid and blind that you can only see as far as you own nose, give me a break with all your Harley bullshit and the american way stuff, get a life half the shit on Harley are made in china ,japan, so don’t come on here and try and be the the American Idol dude with the American way or haven’t you noticed what America is doing to everyone That’s the American way “horay for us and the hell with you” Oh yea and lets all be supportive of a company that is over rated, over priced, and can put a Sportster on this web site call it a 48 and make everyone one think it’s some kind of new bike, SHUT THE F- – – UP, you need to join willie at his new job at WALLMART being a door greeter

  75. 75 WILLIE Jan 25th, 2010 at 10:25 am


  76. 76 Geno Jan 25th, 2010 at 10:36 am

    looks good
    they need to do this to the Super Glide too

    the tank looks right on the money to me
    I hope they offer mids or read sets as well as the forwards
    be a cool lane splitter with the mids or rear sets with a set of hiway pegs

  77. 77 texican Jan 25th, 2010 at 12:04 pm

    Looks like it has all been said. I hope HD is reading this site and takes notice. I don’t see it as HD bashing, rather as tough love. Please HD pull your heads out of your collective asses and innovate. You can do it! You must do it!

  78. 78 WILLIE Jan 25th, 2010 at 6:57 pm

    $2,995.00 would be a good price..3,995.00 would be tops.DID SOMBODY SAY $10,000.00 NO WAY……..

  79. 79 bikerspaceman Jan 25th, 2010 at 7:48 pm

    A $10,000 Sportster?!?!?Are they nuts? How about a $5,000 Sporty and spend the other 5k to make the bike your own…that’s called “customizing”! And what part of it is radical, the cost?

  80. 80 Jeff Nicklus Jan 26th, 2010 at 10:48 am

    Damn Jesse …. that is some funny shit! Way to start my Tuesday!

    Over & Out,


  81. 81 john Jan 26th, 2010 at 8:44 pm

    i will just laugh at the fact that “rough rider” just said Omfg…

  82. 82 rvonroberto Jan 28th, 2010 at 7:30 pm

    it is a very expensive bike, I mean, I have to save money for ten years to buy a Harley.. come on man… I want to be still young to ride a Harley… not 40 years old…
    In Chile this bike will cost USD 16.000 or more.. That is the Dealer’s working way in Chile.. that su@ks!!!!

  83. 83 live2rideaglide Jan 29th, 2010 at 10:18 am

    To each his own, I like the styling , it looks like the bikes we built in the 60s cause thats all we had to work with. Our base was ironhead sportsters that we chopped, bobbed and put wheels from flh,s on. This would be a great Saturday night stomper. I think the folks this style would appeal to are old and few like me. All it needs is heads cams and nitrous. burn out and be cool .nitroglide

  84. 84 Dylan Jan 29th, 2010 at 10:34 pm
  85. 85 Brett Feb 11th, 2010 at 9:28 pm

    Just sold my Buell Lightning this evening… my XB9R stuntbike is going this Saturday… and last week I got rid of a pitbike. I plan on working plenty of OT at my job the next month or two, so I can purchase a Forty-Eight. I value my friends, family, and neighbors too much not to support this country and our manufacturing jobs. Harley isn’t perfect, but I’ll love them anyway.

  86. 86 taino1 Aug 3rd, 2010 at 6:04 pm

    I love it, but upon purchasing mine I will put a 240 rear and a fat bob tank with a little more rake to it, to give it alittle more attitude to it. good luck Willy on your future endeavours.

  87. 87 douglas Sep 14th, 2010 at 1:40 pm

    the forty-eight is my third brand new bike and first sporty, out of five big v-twins and one kawa-socket to me owned. the “forty” ended a seven year no-bike spell, due to a dirty woman and layoff. i’m 57 years old. it was build again and wait to ride, or buy and ride. i chose to ride now. love the “forty”. i’m a faster moving target for the cages now and love riding in town like never before! And really, isn’t about the ride?

  88. 88 Miguel Oct 21st, 2010 at 6:18 pm

    All of you putting down this bike, I haven´t tried it but I have had a 2001 xl for a while and recently tried the new injection 883R and although they look the quite the same, I can say that the new one is much easier to ride, smoother… a lot of invisible improvements have been made and has a similar the price to a Triumph Bonnevillle or a Guzzi v7, (other same segment bikes)

  89. 89 Mike Oct 22nd, 2010 at 12:57 pm

    I wanna know who is in charge of R & D at Harley, they need to do like the automotive industry & make “concept” bikes first so that way they can get a feel for what REAL Harley riders want ,quit tryin to appeal to the european style cafe’ racers & Wtf ever else Harley is thinking is cool now,case in point the Rocker & Rocker-C “REALLY” who made that brain fart,first you get a Fat Bob which is basically a Fat Boy dyna,& now the Forty Eight which looks like a Fat Boy sportster,America is eating too much cuz now we got the whole FAT Family ,just rename those 3 bikes to FAT BOY,FAT GIRL & FAT BABY , but I guess no matter whats rollin out at Harley its still better then buyin a metric at least its still MADE IN THE USA…..

  90. 90 Freddy Dec 15th, 2010 at 4:19 am

    …I own a 2011 Forty Eight, and I’ve loved Sportsters since I started riding in the ’60’s. If anyone knows the history of the Sportster, they know that it was the hot-rod of it’s time. Nothing by today’s Moto GP bike standards, certainly, but it put the beat-down on all of the Brit bikes that were on the scene. I only added exhaust, high-flow “Heavy Breather” kit, and Screamin’ Eagle Pro Tuner on mine, and it is rockin’! I cannot sit at a coffee shop or restaurant without several strangers coming up to ask me about or rave on my Forty Eight. But none of that matters, I own it because I get CRAZY enjoyment from riding it, and that’s all that counts. If it’s two wheels, I dig it-we are all brothers, so respect each other’s opinions…

  91. 91 Easy E Jan 27th, 2011 at 4:36 pm

    I just picked up a 2011 HD 48. Here’s a quick observation. Why is it that the ladies sitting on the back of baggers (like potted plants or chattel) are always flirting with the guys on slammed Sporty’s? Seriously.

  92. 92 JC Oct 10th, 2011 at 1:26 am

    Sportsters are for girls, and this is a sportster.

  93. 93 YD Oct 29th, 2011 at 8:12 pm

    If Sportsters are for girls, then I want a Sportster so I can be with the girls. Us girls are gonna beat ya to the next Cafe. Good luck finding a place to park that beast. An obvious extension for a failing.

    I road a 48 recently, and it was obvious that it wanted to become part of me. The cornering, the inertial ease, the power to weight. It wanted to do what I wanted to do. Like a road racer races best when they become one with the bike and not just sit on something and steer like the bigger hogs.

    The tank was obviously too small but other than that, when I get a job, ones mine.

    Just my experience.

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