Harley-Davidson Low Rider S (2021) Review | Road Test | Visordown.com
com, and today i want to talk to you about harley davidson’s 2021 low rider s. So, as you can see, i am perched here outside of my shed. I was going to go somewhere more exotic to film this maybe brinklow, but as the weather in the uk at the minute, doesn’t seem to know whether it’s gon na snow hail or tornado. I thought i’d do it here and then, if it pisses it down, i can go in there and stay dry. Although, actually on that last note tornado that could be quite appropriate because, if you’re chasing tornadoes in the lower states of america, you would want something that wasn’t going to get blown away and at 305 kilograms claimed wet weight. This thing’s going nowhere, but enough of the frivolities let’s have a look at the bike. So this is sixteen thousand nine hundred and ninety five pounds in euro five trim it’s a bit. I think it’s gone up slightly um since its launch. It is available in two color schemes, so there is the vivid black color scheme, which you’re probably looking at on your screen now and then there is this one midnight crimson uh, which is the bike that we’ve got in front of us here and it is festooned With these lovely retro harley davidson graphics on the tank – and i think it looks like a really nice bike – um, the paint on it is luxurious. In fact, it looks like it’s still wet and it’s got like a slight tint of metallic going on in.
There hardly describe this, and this is going from their own press bump. As a blacked out factory custom performance. Cruiser i mean it is really a classic west coast cruiser um you’ve got the mid set. Pegs you’ve got a small sort of fly screen in the headlight cowl and you’ve got kind of the upright riding position from the kind of the handlebars there. I don’t think it’s a true performance cruiser um, but out of the harley range it might stand out as having more performance than some of the other cruisers that they sell. I mean the biggest thing to talk about with the any harley really is the engine. It is 75 of the bike really so here we’ve got the milwaukee 8 114 cubic inch engine, which equates to 1868 cc, says it down there on the frame. If you can’t do the old imperial measurements, so it’s pushing out 114 pound foot of torque um and we’ve got about 93 brake horsepower, so it is quite perky. I mean there was a time when harley’s of this style, you know they would create a sort of a bit of an asthmatic, 70 bhp and and not really pull the skin off a rice pudding. But this is a very peppy engine. I mean this is in standard and this sort of frustrates me about harley davidson in the uk, all the bikes that they they give to us press. They are all standard euro spec, euro homologation regulations, none of them have had anything to do with them and if you’ve ever owned a harley or you know anyone who has you will know that the first thing that happens to any harley when it gets bought.
Is it gets a stage one kit thrown at it, which comprises of a change to the air filter, a remap to the exhaust system and a new exhaust that’s, the smallest modification that everybody does, and the simple reason is? Is it makes your harley sound and feel like a harley davidson um? It is quick. I mean i’m, not don’t. Get me wrong, 100 horsepower, even in something that weighs over 300 kgs, even if it’s, just a tiny amount and it’s still a lot of power, and it does get down the road really really quickly. But the kind of all the action happens in quite a small window, so you get above sort of 3500 rpm and then all of a sudden the engine comes alive and then it whizzes up to the red line of about four and a half thousand five thousand Rpm um, so you’ve got to get used to riding in in that very small window of opportunity. But once you get your head around, that you can make progress and overtakes are obviously not a problem, because you’ve got all the torque that you’d ever want to get around whatever. It is that’s in front of you and nine times out of ten you’re going to be doing that without dropping any cogs. So, on that front, it is quite rewarding to ride and it’s got that harley davidson character, it’s, just a shame that it is so sort of tied back by those euro 5 regulations that don’t quite make it sound and feel like a harley davidson really should, while We’Re talking about the engine got to talk about the gearbox on this thing, um.
It is a typical big ball. Harley davidson gearbox in that you’ve got a long, throw on the lever and when you engage the next gear there is an absolutely music thwack of the cogs engaging you will know about it, and so will everybody else on the a447 um it’s a clutch is light. It’S, quite a long throw on the clutch as well, but it’s it’s, rewarding uh, changing gear on it. You can clutch the shift, although it’s better, to modulate the the sort of the gear changes with the clutch. You get much smoother progress. If you do that, for a few years now, harley davidsons have got better and better at the things that people used to say that they didn’t do very well. So on that front, i am predominantly talking about the suspension, the brakes and the handling um they’re, not completely there in terms of would they rival a european performance cruiser or a triumph rocket three or a ducati diavel, for instance? No, but they are miles better than they used to be. It does corner and handle actually surprisingly well. Ground clearance is an issue as it is with any harley davidson cruiser with low set pegs. I mean i have taken fairly hefty chunks out of these footrests ever so sorry, harley davidson and whoever’s going to have to replace those when it goes back. But it is a really rewarding thing to ride and there is a kind of a pleasure and a sort of like a a glee that you get when you’re, hammering down a country lane on something that is this long, this low and this heavy um and making Progress in a way that really sort of defies belief, the braking system, the real thing that holds it back is the abs.
The abs is a bit antiquated um. It feels like an abs system from around about five or ten years ago. Um, it doesn’t create a very reassuring lever, feel when the abs cuts in you lose all the all the pressure out of the lever. It goes back to the handlebar and but then again, if you are riding a bike like this and you are having to rely on the brakes so much that the abs is cutting in, especially on a day like today, you are really riding it wrongly um. The engine braking is phenomenally strong to the point that knocking it down into first gear from about 30 miles an hour will result in chirps from the rear wheel. So if you’re having to rely on the brakes that much you shouldn’t be, you should be relying on the gears and using that engine braking to slow. You down talk about the comfort because it is a cruiser it’s not designed to go massive distances. I think i’m. Getting to about 150 miles before i start to get a sweaty forehead and i’m looking for a petrol station, and that said, i have had some fairly long days in the saddle on it and it’s really comfy for your backside. The seat is the plushest seat that i’ve ever sat on um. It is just super super soft it’s got tons and tons of padding, but because of the kind of the style of the bike and the way that you sat, you do kind of have the aerodynamic drag coefficients of an octopus on a washing line in that you’ve Got your arms outstretched in front of you, you’ve got your feet.
Sort of in line with your body and you’ve got your bum as the furthest thing back on the bike, so you are kind of just a big parachute on the bike. It’S, okay for a while, if you’re, just cruising along it’s sort of 50 60 miles an hour, it’s, absolutely fine, not a problem at all, um who invited you, but i did spend a uh about an hour and a half on the motorway on this thing. Getting over to donington for another bike launch the other week um, and it did get rather tiresome to the point that i couldn’t cruise 80. I had to drop it down to about sort of 70 75. um, the sort of headlight cowl on the front, with the sort of fly screen over the top of it. It works to a point but, like i said when you get on the motorway from my height, the top of my head is just in the bubble of sort of turbulent air. To the point where, if i stoop a little bit, my head will be sort of inside the bubble, but it gets really uncomfortable after a while you’re, either going to have to be shorter than me or taller than me, and then you’re going to be either in The bubble or in clear air above it and it won’t, be so much as of a problem. So what do we like about the uh lowrider s? Um? The handling has really surprised me.
I’Ve ridden a lot of modern harley davidsons and they keep getting better and better every single one that i ride and the last harley that i rode that i thought really really handled really well was the fat bob, the latest generation fat bob – and this is much Sharper, it turns faster it’s got these different sort of profile tyres on it, it’s, not so fat at the front and it’s slightly slimmer at the rear as well. It just seems to get into corners and stay there and be much more short footed on a twisty b road, which is where i kind of think these bikes in the uk are most at home um, the styling of it i really like, and especially as a Point of note is this: this paint finish on the crimson uh red one. I i don’t know what the black one looks like in the flesh: i’ve not seen it, but having seen this one with that kind of just real light, metallic sort of feel to the paint, i think, it’s an absolute winner. I love the retro graphics. They kind of remind me of the stranger things logo at the beginning of a strange things episode as well, which is quite cool um. I also like the way that, as a single seat bike you’ve got no pillion seat. You’Ve got no pillion foot rest it’s, just an unashamedly self centered and selfish motorcycle, which is really cool. I mean, if you’re, you know, if you’ve just dropped your your lump sum on your pension and your other half’s nagging you to go and buy a sports car.
Go and get yourself one of these, because it will make you a lot happier what don’t we like about the lowrider s, um i mentioned earlier. The abs feels a bit antiquated, i think, there’s things that could be done there to update that and just make it a more more modern feeling system. I might be wrong, but i’m i’m pretty sure there is so yeah the engine in euro five trim. It just feels like it’s, being sort of choked by the emissions regulations. Um, like i said, it’s, not an issue because the first thing that anyone does when they buy harley davidson is they give it a stage one tune, and then it looks, feels and sounds and goes like a proper harley davidson should um the other thing. That is a bit of an issue. Is the the buffing around my head anything over 70 miles an hour just becomes tiresome on the motorway Music. So while harley described this bike as a performance cruiser in my mind, it might not be a performance cruiser to rival the likes of ducati with the diavel and triumph with the rocket 3. um. But it is probably the best performance cruiser from harley davidson. And if you want a v twin, cruiser that’s got performance potential in terms of the handling, at least, and you want that american made flavor there really isn’t anywhere else that you can go a lot of v twin cruisers can talk the talk but not walk.
The walk and the low rider s can walk the walk. It can do both just up to a point. You have to understand its limitations. It might just be the exception to that rule. So there are a lot of people out there who ride naked and sport. Spikes and what we’ll call normal motorcycles and they look at cruisers like this in any v twin cruiser with less than 100 horsepower and they kind of think well what’s. The point i think for me: you really have to ride a harley and you have to put into it what you want to get out of it: it’s, not it’s, not a bike that is just kind of flatter or riding and just make. You feel that way that you would, if you’re riding a thousand cc naked, it takes work and you have to put effort into it. Um and they are physical bikes to ride. You’Ve really got to put yourself in the hot seat and you can do that in a minute. Harley i’ve got these on the the demos at the dealerships up and down the country. So there we go that’s our review of the lowrider s after a couple of weeks of spinning around the uk countryside on it. Please let us know what you think in the comments below and while you’re there don’t forget to hit like and subscribe, and the notification bell so that you can stay up to date with all advisordown’s latest videos.