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Harley Milwaukee 8 Test Ride


Harley Davidson have unveiled an all new “Milwaukee-Eight” engine for its touring range of bikes the Street Glide Special, Road Glide Special and Road King/Road King Classic, it is said to be the biggest, most powerful Harley production engine ever produced.

Unveiled at events all over the country on 29 September, the reports from those who have ridden it have been good of this new engine, but as well as new engine changes have been made to improve handling including new suspension from Showa.

The engine is liquid-cooled and 107ci (1745cc) or 114ci 1870cc in the limited-edition CVO bikes and we are informed they make about 11% more torque than the previous engines so get ready to pull trees up folks, and both feature new four-valve cylinder heads which they say give 50% more intake and exhaust flow capacity and help make the engine cooler.

But I do not do technical reports, and with just a short test ride booked it will not be a deep review but just what the actual normal rider thinks of it choosing a street glide as my weapon of choice. For we can always hope the engines may come down the range in the next few years.

So on a very damp Saturday I went out for a spin. Sadly the horrid weather did not mean I could feel the real power of the bike however you could feel it has a very smooth delivery and with the stage 1 sounded ace, but why do you have to add extra to make it right? The screen on the street glide kept the worse of the rain off but I wasn't brave enough to try the radio as well. But even with the bad roads the bike was stable and smooth really showing how the new suspension smoothes the bumps. It was almost a bit clinical like the Yamahas I used to have, It really did have a feeling that this would really pull well in the dry,  can we hope now for shaft drive one day?

a big thank you to the staff at Guildford Harley Davison for the test ride.