Harley-Davidson Owners Allege That The 103″ Twin Cam Engine Is Defectively Designed

Two Harley owners from Los Angeles County allege that the Twin Cam 103” engine equipping their motorcycles emit high heat, which can burn riders, and shorten the life of the engine.

A complaint was filed by attorneys Zimmerman Reed LLP and Boucher LLP on behalf of Michael Berke and Wolfgang Costelloon and all others similarly situated on December 2, 2016

The plaintiffs allege that they suffered damages from purchasing Twin Cam 103″  equipped motorcycles and that Harley-Davidson is responsible because the defendants did not warn that the engine is defectively designed.

They claim violation of the Unfair Competition Law and other counts and request a trial by jury, seeking an injunction against the defendants, ordering them to repair or replace the Twin Cam 103 engines, all legal fees and any other relief as the court deems just. The case is number 2:16-cv-08939 in U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.

Zipper's

51 Responses to “Harley-Davidson Owners Allege That The 103″ Twin Cam Engine Is Defectively Designed”


  1. 1 MakeAmericaDumbAgain Dec 14th, 2016 at 10:00 am

    Sounds like a pant load of Buyers Remorse addled frivolous bs to me !

  2. 2 Chief Waldo Dec 14th, 2016 at 10:35 am

    An air cooled engine might get hot? Who knew?

  3. 3 Pegster Dec 14th, 2016 at 10:45 am

    Next they will probably sue someone that sold them hot coffee. These two clowns are the epitome of whats wrong with today’s society. What a bunch of Jabronis.

  4. 4 BobS Dec 14th, 2016 at 11:42 am

    One of them will probably become the next president.

  5. 5 rebel Dec 14th, 2016 at 11:48 am

    its up to the judge to dismiss the case and order them to pay all court and attorney cost plus stand in the corner for 4 hours

  6. 6 richards Dec 14th, 2016 at 12:36 pm

    REDICULOUS!!!

  7. 7 Git Real Dec 14th, 2016 at 1:42 pm

    Boys Boys Boys

    For many years HD has not been forthcoming with many many issues (more than I would like to count with owning 35 through the years) …

    Sell Sell Sell…just sell it and we will deal with the issues later or a recall. If you have owned as many HDs as I have then you should/would know.

    You all are all to quick to call ’em out….If by chance any of you do own a Twin Cam 103 then you know first hand that they get excessively hot, especially in start/stop traffic (rear cylinder on or off) and summer weather, and will burn your inner thighs. Twin Cam 103 motors are excessively hot enough that I am looking at alternatives for my next bike, which will be this spring, or build me another one with plenty of room for air-flow between the gas tank and rocker boxes plus the rear cylinder.

    Get a life BOYS…..Now Git Real!

  8. 8 D.nous Dec 14th, 2016 at 5:32 pm

    I’m surprised no one has mentioned the 110″… they definitely suffer similar issues.
    103″ are in more population and more likely therefore to have more complaint I guess. If these guys had 110″ I reckon they would still be pursuing the legal path but would read 110″… haha

    A ThunderMax will help cool it off a bit… I haven’t had any experience with T/max Cali.compliant version though but they still state – Cooler, Smoother Running Engine!!

  9. 9 D.C. Dec 14th, 2016 at 5:44 pm

    Quit profiling,put it in gear,and RIDE IT!

  10. 10 Vaquero Dec 14th, 2016 at 5:56 pm

    We can blame Russia for that too.
    They must have had designs altered. 😂

  11. 11 Brett Dec 14th, 2016 at 6:04 pm

    Get Real…most here have owned them & part of an air cooled motor is it gets hot…..even the new precious Indians with their Thunderstroke 111….they get hot. That is why people have started an after market for different typed of heat shields to cover the rear cylinder by you leg & crotch for the Indian.

    The problem isn’t design. The problem is riders who refuse to embrace new technology but what more power & torque out of these motors.

  12. 12 Mike Greenwald Dec 14th, 2016 at 6:23 pm

    H-D 103 has been running hot since inception. Oil system is partially to blame. Fuel, spark, design and quality control are additional co-contributors.

  13. 13 morpion Dec 14th, 2016 at 7:55 pm

    TWO CLOWNS,,,,,,

  14. 14 rocket Dec 14th, 2016 at 9:55 pm

    good thing I own a 96…..guess I’ll get a 107 instead of a 103 if I get a different bike.

    al kidding aside , these asshats need to hear one thing from the judge, ”Take this shit out of here!”

  15. 15 bigitch Dec 14th, 2016 at 10:20 pm

    i knew that when i got a bigger engine that i would have more horse power but i never dreamed i’d get burnt cuz i was hung like a horse

  16. 16 Badams Dec 15th, 2016 at 1:41 am

    An air cooled motor sitting in LA traffic with thousands of cars around. A lawsuit? Craptacular.

  17. 17 JohnnySpeed Dec 15th, 2016 at 6:33 am

    I’m pretty sure the argument here is that it gets hotter than an air cooled engine should. But, at the same time, twinkies running hot has been common knowledge for a very long time now and the more fairings on the bike the worse it is. Partly emissions controls and partly poor design of the oil system and airflow. Of course if it’s common knowledge why haven’t they fixed it yet? Who knows how this’ll end.

  18. 18 Rick Dorfmeyer Dec 15th, 2016 at 8:01 am

    Gas powered engines between your legs get hot?
    Who knew!

  19. 19 coma Dec 15th, 2016 at 8:01 am

    They should get an app (iOS or android) to get rid of the excessive heat. Or they could try and outsource it to China or the cloud.

  20. 20 Also Cagle Dec 15th, 2016 at 8:11 am

    An air cooled motorcycle overheating in California traffic? Why would you sit in traffic? Keep moving, split lanes to keep air moving on your air cooled motorcycle.

  21. 21 Jeff Duval Dec 15th, 2016 at 8:16 am

    Two prime LA arseholes plausibly spending more time looking at themselves in shop windows than venting these air cooled motors… Let them ask Trump for redress! 🙁

  22. 22 Chris Dec 15th, 2016 at 8:19 am

    It’s an internal combustion engine!!!!
    Of course it gets hot!
    Buy the electric bike if you wanna be coooooool

  23. 23 Tim Dec 15th, 2016 at 8:21 am

    103 gets real hot yes. Lawsuit no. When I got mine in 2012 I was stopped in traffic in Orlando on labor day weekend (very warm yes, real hot no) and mine did really over heat after about 10-15min. rear cylinder shut down and my leg did get burnt. I installed a Jag fan assist oil cooler and have not had a problem with that since, also the Thundermax helped a lot too. The bike does run real hot, could the factory have fixed it yes. there ends fact.
    Now my opinion: HD has determined their bikes run hot and water (?!?) cooling the heads has not solved the problem, the 2017 now have a fan assist oil cooler (thanks JAGG) to cool the oil. It works. The EPA also holds a lot of the blame. Their ridiculous emission standards make todays motorcycle run way way too lean to meet them. one of the first things done to bikes is “fatten them up so they run right. I beleive (and I welcome this to tell me where I am wrong) a motor properly tuned for performance and efficiency will work better, last longer, and in the end pollute less too much said

  24. 24 calif phil Dec 15th, 2016 at 8:43 am

    Silly lawsuits like this should get thrown out and the they should have to pay the state for wasting their resources. Judge should force them to buy a gold wing.

  25. 25 Wallie Dec 15th, 2016 at 9:02 am
  26. 26 Matt W. Dec 15th, 2016 at 9:41 am

    Out of all the design issues of the 103 this seems like the most frivolous.

  27. 27 Tony Davidson Dec 15th, 2016 at 9:58 am

    Buy a new Indian motorcycle

  28. 28 Tony Dec 15th, 2016 at 10:21 am

    I own a sportster and the twin is junk! LOL ) and f**! these 2 idiots for suing the motor company. Its a combustion engine, you morons. It gets hot. If your not careful you get burned. Everything you buy has a design issue, otherwise it would all be perfect out of the box. I wonder what these 2 do for a living?

  29. 29 Rogue Dec 15th, 2016 at 11:01 am

    Will all of you please think of the restrictions that have put on everyone who make an internal combustion engine by THE E.P.A.
    These restrictions among other things Restricts The Exhaust Flow. The longer the exhaust stays in the pipe and muffler the hotter they get.
    Changing the exhaust system on Harley Davidsons is one of the first things that people do and in most cases that makes the motorcycle run cooler and better.
    It is all over the news that Trump’s Transition Team is going to make serious changes at the EPA.
    This is a Perfect Time To Contact Your Elected Officials and Request That They Make Changes to the Current Laws Pertaining to Motorcycles.
    The fact that a motorcycle has an exposed engine and therefore exhaust system that goes back to the first ones built I doubt that a design flaw will hold much weight.
    Start with Getting Rid Of The Catalytic Converter and restrictive mufflers.
    This will greatly reduce the heat issue.
    Just for everyone’s general information the average lawn mower emits more pollutants than a motorcycle.
    As far as noise level that can be kept in tolerance. Please remember that the decibels from the exhaust are supposed to be checked at highway speeds. This is not how it is now being done. Sitting and revving an engine with no load on it produces louder decibels.

  30. 30 Rogue Dec 15th, 2016 at 11:09 am

    Here is my comment and I can go deeper if needed.

    Will all of you please think of the restrictions that have put on everyone who make an internal combustion engine by THE E.P.A.
    These restrictions among other things Restricts The Exhaust Flow. The longer the exhaust stays in the pipe and muffler the hotter they get.
    Changing the exhaust system on Harley Davidsons is one of the first things that people do and in most cases that makes the motorcycle run cooler and better.
    It is all over the news that Trump’s Transition Team is going to make serious changes at the EPA.
    This is a Perfect Time To Contact Your Elected Officials and Request That They Make Changes to the Current Laws Pertaining to Motorcycles.
    The fact that a motorcycle has an exposed engine and therefore exhaust system that goes back to the first ones built I doubt that a design flaw will hold much weight.
    Start with Getting Rid Of The Catalytic Converter and restrictive mufflers.
    This will greatly reduce the heat issue.
    Just for everyone’s general information the average lawn mower emits more pollutants than a motorcycle.
    As far as noise level that can be kept in tolerance. Please remember that the decibels from the exhaust are supposed to be checked at highway speeds. This is not how it is now being done. Sitting and revving an engine with no load on it produces louder decibels.

  31. 31 SYF Dec 15th, 2016 at 11:32 am

    I’ve heard that the Milwaukee 8 runs pretty hot too.

    As far as saying it’s an air cooled motor, that’s what they do. I call BS. My Evo rarely gets hot enough to feel it through my jeans.

    It’s EPA rules, bad oiling, etc.

    But a reason for a lawsuit, HELL NO.

  32. 32 SIGFREED Dec 15th, 2016 at 12:06 pm

    Its like suing a prostitute, because she is too hot and she did not issue an advance warning, that her heat will make you spill some bodily fluids.

    Strange though, the TC is effectively outdated, yet now this issue “heats up”. Something smells fishy here – perhaps it is time for the Republic of California to go its own way – lets see how long that will last…

  33. 33 Woody's Dec 15th, 2016 at 12:38 pm

    FWIW, my Shovels weren’t hot either. ‘course they wouldn’t pass today’s kangaroo court EPA rules, either. Harley and their many “loyal” riders who promised to stop buying their bikes if they were all turned into V-Rods can all sit in a circle and blame the person to their left for this. Hopefully the incoming EPA head will finally state that CARB only applies to ONE State, and mfrs. will have the balls to stop shipping to CA.

  34. 34 Willyd Dec 15th, 2016 at 3:07 pm

    I live in northern Michigan and the reason I bought a new Road King last year it that it came with a heater as standard equipment!!

  35. 35 1550tc Dec 15th, 2016 at 3:34 pm

    Jeeeez your better off to sue Trump and Hillary for lying ………..where is Johnny Cocharoach when you need him!!

    Too hot WTF ………. go buy a 1980 Malibu with ice cold AC

  36. 36 Laurence Zankowski Dec 15th, 2016 at 4:24 pm

    @wallie,

    Big thanks on that link. My Road King I bought new in 2000 is in the stages of melt down. A cam chest rebuild is the order, but in truth, i am going to sell it. Loved sportsters since forever. Now i have a reason to buy a Harley again.

    I like the idea of lighter, quicker bikes.

    Thanks again

    Laurence

  37. 37 Mike Dec 15th, 2016 at 4:28 pm

    They live in around LA, and they don’t like heat? I’ll trade. It’s 10 ° here, and wind blowing over the frozen snow. I’ll trade this for a little heat. Honestly, I have never had a comfort problem with any of these bikes that are supposed to be so hot. They oughta get an old Volkswagen. No heat there!

  38. 38 Boulevard Bill Dec 15th, 2016 at 5:51 pm

    The “Milwaukee Eight” 107″ runs cooler… larger oil cooler, idols at 800 RPM instead of 1200 RPM… repositioned exhaust and motor to help the rear jug get more air flow. The 103 doesn’t get excessively hot in my opinion. Wear big boy pants not khaki shorts and your problem will go away. These guys are the same ones that complain of the “helmet buffeting”… it’s a motorcycle folks. Buy a Gold Wing… you can continue to wear your shorts.
    I have owned and presently own twin cam H-Ds and don’t consider myself to be more pain tolerant than others and I’ve not had any issues. They’re trying to make a buck. Some people just don’t get it.

  39. 39 takehikes Dec 15th, 2016 at 6:26 pm

    I have a yamaha Roadstar, its a 102Cu In V twin air cooled. Rear pipe in the stock setup is very close to the riders leg and I noticed heat when stuck in traffic for sure. I changed to a pipe that is similar to the HD’s and not near as hot. However you know the biggest change? I took the stock tank off and put a old School sporty tnak in the Frisco position. Heat cut to not much at all. The stock tanks are for fit over the engine and it holds in and down a massive amount of heat. I was stunned at the difference.

  40. 40 bigalyts Dec 15th, 2016 at 11:47 pm

    Looking for some Partners and a Class Action Suit Pays real WELL! I guarantee they will have plenty of Bull shitters join in.

  41. 41 Kroeter Dec 16th, 2016 at 1:03 pm

    I’m with Dorfmeyer

  42. 42 Eric Dec 16th, 2016 at 7:38 pm

    My 2007 FLSTC got hot to, from the dealer to my garage. One set of cams, an oil cooler, and a GOOD tune later, problem solved!!! Did the same on a buddies 103, same thing, no problem! And no attorney either!

  43. 43 Wallie Dec 19th, 2016 at 9:14 am

    @Eric.

    So you made a lot of extra expenses to get the bike run like it should be in the first place when it came from the dealer? Would this not be a shame?

  44. 44 Batterycap Dec 19th, 2016 at 9:41 am

    Yeah, they run hot. That’s why you have to change the air/fuel mixture. You can’t do it on a stock bike. You have to get a Thundermax fuel injection module. When you buy one of these bikes, you ain;t done spending. You have got to delete the exhaust with a new, non-catalytic version, and change the module. It’s going to cost around $2,000. Just the way it is. Once you do this, you are good to go.

    They must inspect bikes in CA to make sure stock pipes are in place. Otherwise, the CA guys would have been all over this.

    If they want to sue – sue the EPA. Yes, the EPA that has made diesel engines in Chevy’s Ford’s and Dodge’s cost a fortune and last 1/3 as long as the pre-2008 versions.

    Harley ain’t got a choice if it wants to be in the bike business. You have to do what the EPA says. The fact the EPA gets a pass in all of this is a mystery.

  45. 45 SPG4IT Dec 19th, 2016 at 1:11 pm

    Its a motorcycle get off it and buy a car pansy

  46. 46 Ted Clark Dec 19th, 2016 at 2:27 pm

    I made a hobby of laser measuring HD engine temperature
    right after they were turned off. Measurements were take at the machined
    flats next to the spark plug. 80″180 degrees, 88″220 degrees, 96″250 degrees,
    103″280 degrees. That’s too darn hot. All measurements were in 70-80 degree ambient
    temperatures and on multiple stock bikes. As mentioned more air intake and a
    remap for A/F ratio is the best way to extend engine life and rider comfort.
    I’m back to riding an EVO which may get an S&S big bore 96″ kit.

  47. 47 Mike Dec 19th, 2016 at 6:09 pm

    A Power Commander will fix it . Oops that would be illegal .

  48. 48 Andy Fat Boy Dec 20th, 2016 at 11:15 am

    Had A TC103B in a softail for 10 years no iseues. I ride in Florida gulf coast it ain’t cold. Is it hot at a stop light yep but not enough to burn or do motor damage. A lot of miles with no issues. I’ll buy a used one any day.

  49. 49 WTBIKER Dec 20th, 2016 at 12:43 pm

    There are ambulance chasing scumbag lawyers on every corner and plaintiffs with no sense of personal pride that will extort money from anyone they can that has deep pockets. These lowlifes knew what they purchased or didn’t do their homework before the purchase and were probably better candidates to be riding Chinese scooters. They are just looking for a big out of court settlement. What we need in this country is massive tort reform and a “loser pays” system, like in the UK. It’s makes the bottom feeding attorneys think twice before taking cases on a contingency. These guys need to man up and sell their Harleys and hopefully quit riding. Trump would call them pussies for sure!

  50. 50 Jeff gundlach Dec 20th, 2016 at 11:02 pm

    Caution, all motorcycles can burn you…

  51. 51 Martin Twofeather Jan 6th, 2017 at 11:51 am

    Buy some Love Jugs and ride!!!!

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