When it comes to quality, Harley Davidson has done its part and its reputation stands alone, supported by decades of loyal followers who support the company through their purchases and excellent reviews. Some models seem to stand out above others for one reason or another and if you ask riders why they have favorites, the answers will be as varied as the bikes that the brand produces, but they all share a common trait. They're passionate about their Harleys. The spotlight has turned to the Harley Davidson Forty-Eight and if you're already on board with its awesomeness, you may agree with what we have to say. If not, here are ten things you didn't know about the Forty-Eight.
1. 2017 48 is a blend of nostalgia with modern innovation
This bike a Dark Custom that reached back into the past to deliver Harley enthusiasts with a trip back into the past. This was the intention of the design team because they know that there are still Harley riders from decades ago that would appreciate, so they carried forward the 2.2-gallon peanut tank for a yesteryear effect.
2. It's built for short distances vs long
You can ride the 48 for long distances if there are plenty of gas stops in between. It's small fuel tank averages around 40 mpg although it's rated at 48. This means that at best you're going to get up to 100 miles on a tank of fuel, but more realistically, you'll need to stop every 80 or 90 miles unless you want to get stuck on the side of the road waiting for a ride to the nearest station.
3. The engine is Iconic
When an element has been proven to be a winner, there's no need to tinker with perfection. The engine used in the 48 is inspired by the Ironhead and Shovelhead engines that have been relied upon since 1984. The four-cam gear train and overhead valve design can be traced to the brand's race program and the surge of torque you feel every time to twist the throttle is confirmation enough. Sure, there have been some refinements, but not much was needed to create a brute of an engine, suitable for the 48.
4. They threw in nostalgia from the '70s
The peanut fuel tank wasn't the only nostalgic element that the design team decided to add to the bike. The 2016 Sportster Forty-Eight was privileged to sport something old and something new. The something old is the 70's inspired graphics place on the tank as a nifty aesthetic. The something new is the improved seat, suspension, brakes and the new mag wheels made out of lightweight materials.
5. It tops out over 110
The average top speed for the Forty-Eight rests at 110 mph. This is an average with some bikes a little under and some a little over. The only way to know for sure is to take her out and open her up. With a torque of 72 lb-ft at 3,230, we're sure that you'll feel the surge of power rumbling with each acceleration.
6. The beauty goes far beyond its captivating aesthetics
The technology employed in the Forty-Eight is impressive, and it influences the good looks of the bike with an integrated electrical system that cuts down on fuses, relays, switches and wiring harnesses. The seats are new in the Sportster line and they're made from new materials that have a plush feel and a minimalist appearance. The tech isn't used to create fancy gizmos that get in the way. They've maintained the clean lines by using the knowledge and updates to put the innovation where it counts the most and it's in design and builds.
7. The stock pipes are quieter than aftermarket
Many people don't realize that the stock pipes that come on a new Harley are a lot quieter than what you hear on bikes that have been equipped with aftermarket pipes that are louder. You still get the Harley rumble and they're plenty loud, although some would disagree.
8. It's easy to customize your Forty-Eight
Not that it really needs to be tweaked, but every rider has their own preferences. Harley-Davidson is well aware of this fact, so they carry an array of parts and accessories and are more than happy to help you fully customize your bike. It has the bases covered with its powerful 1200cc Evolution engine and more, but there may be something you want to add, so let them know and they'll certainly oblige.
9. Some riders call the Forty-Eight "Dorothy"
One look at the metallic red paint option will be all the explanation that is needed. The paint is reminiscent of the ruby slippers that Judy Garland wore in her role of Dorothy on "The Wizard of Oz." It's a quaint nickname and it speaks of the beauty and magnificence of the red paint.
10. It draws a lot of attention
Most people look twice when they hear a Harley rumbling up beside them. Some of them are so splendid that it's hard not to just sit and stare at a traffic light. The Forty-Eight is no exception, although it's a little different than the others which often inspire a nod, smile or thumbs up. The Forty-Eight is a conversation piece that will gain you verbal compliments and long stares. If you don't believe this, just ask somebody who owns one and they'll tell you all about it.
Written by Garrett Parker
Read more posts by Garrett Parker