New frames, new engines, new styles for Softails

2018 Harley Softail range

Written by Ben Purvis , Date 2:14 PM
2018 Softail range

Harley-Davidson has released its 2018 Softail range and confirmed that the bikes will all move to Milwaukee-Eight engines as we revealed last week.

Perhaps more surprisingly, the firm has also eliminated the entire Dyna model range. Former twin-shock Dyna models – the Street Bob, Fat Bob and Low Rider – all adopt the new Softail frame.

Harley claims that frame is lighter, stiffer and simpler than before. It’s made of fewer parts, with fewer welds and 65% more rigidity. The resulting bikes are up to 17kg lighter than their predecessors.

Engine-wise, the 8-valve Milwaukee-Eight replaces the old Twin Cam across the board. It’s available as the 1745cc ‘107’ or in 1868cc ‘114’ form, with 107lbft or 119lbft of torque at 3000rpm, depending on the version. Harley doesn’t mention power, but both motors are likely to make around 90-100bhp. There are also several 115th Anniversary special edition models using the ‘114’ version of the engine.

The new frame is offered with two different swingarm widths to suit different rear tyres, and the suspension at both ends is improved. The forks are dual-bending valve type, as introduced on the 2017 Touring range. Rear shocks are all preload adjustable.

All the Softails feature LED ‘Daymaker’ lights, better electrical systems and new instruments. There are also new fuel tanks, keyless start and a USB socket on the steering head.

The Softail range in Harley’s own words

2018 Softail range

2018 FLFB Fat Boy.

Fat Boy

    • Aggressive, steamroller stance and front end design
    • Modern-day interpretation of the classic headlight nacelle
    • A 160mm front tire, the widest-ever on a Harley-Davidson production model, wraps the solid Lakester front wheel
    • 16kg weight reduction to previous model
    • Standard ABS
    • 240mm rear tire with solid Lakester rear wheel
    • Optional: Milwaukee-Eight 114 Engine

2018 Softail range

2018 FLHC Heritage Softail Classic.

Heritage Classic

  • New detachable windscreen
  • New rigid, lockable, sealed, water-resistant saddlebags
  • Taller suspension with increased passenger and cargo payload capacity
  • 17kg weight reduction to previous model
  • Optional: Milwaukee-Eight 114 Engine
  • Standard cruise control and ABS

2018 Softail range

2018 FXLR Low Rider.

Low Rider

  • Throwback-style dual tank-mount speedo and tachometer gauges, headlight visor and fuel tank graphics
  • 19-inch front and 16-inch rear Radiate cast wheels
  • 2-into-2 Shotgun exhaust

2018 Softail range

2018 FLSL Softail Slim.

Softail Slim

  • Dark finishes adorn the laced wheels, Hollywood handlebar, and all-new front-end design
  • Low-slung tuck and roll seat
  • Bold and smooth new front nacelle and fork cover styling
  • 17kg weight reduction to previous model

2018 Softail range

2018 FLDE Softail Deluxe.


  • Signature all-LED lighting from front to back: headlight, running lights, Tombstone taillight and blade-like turn signals
  • Signature pull-back handlebar
  • 17kg weight reduction to previous model
  • Standard ABS

2018 FXBR Breakout.


  • New smooth-top 13.2 litre fuel tank
  • Long and wide with low-slung raked out 49mm front forks
  • 18-inch rear (240mm tire) and 21-inch front (130mm tire) Gasser-style gloss-black powder coated cast aluminum wheels
  • Distinctive Daymaker Signature LED headlamp
  • Low-profile riser-mounted digital instrument screen
  • 17kg weight reduction to previous model
  • Standard ABS
  • Optional: Milwaukee-Eight 114 Engine

2018 Softail range

2018 FXFB Fat Bob.

Fat Bob

  • 2-1-2 upswept performance exhaust with a custom finish
  • Largest aggressively treaded tires from the Motor Company: 150 mm front and 180 mm rear
  • Dual disc front brakes
  • 2 litre fuel tank
  • 15kg weight reduction to previous model
  • Inverted 43mm cartridge style front forks
  • Optional: Milwaukee-Eight 114 Engine

2018 Softail range

2018 FXBB Street Bob..

Street Bob

  • Smooth-top 13.2 litre fuel tank
  • Black spoke wheels with chopped fenders
  • Low-profile riser-mounted digital instrument screen
  • 7kg weight reduction to previous model
  • Lowest MSRP in Softail line



Article Categories:   Harley-Davidson News

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