So yeah it's low but five other models sit lower. On the other hand, at a dry weight of 536 pounds the SuperLow is the lightest of all the H-D models; the next closest is the Nightster and Forty-Eight which both come in at 545 pounds. Maybe they should call it the SuperLight? Actually we're a little confused about the naming-more specifically the spelling of this bike, as over in the Softail line the word "low" is spelled l-o (Fat Boy Lo), whereas on the Sporty side, "low" is spelled properly (SuperLow, 1200 Low)-sorry for going off on a tangent. OK, back on track.
Everyone's gotta start somewhere and by designing the SuperLow to be a bike that inspires rider confidence, H-D is hoping newcomers to motorcycling, and maybe even the brand, will throw a leg over and ride right out of the dealership. So with that H-D ditched the 883 Low from last year and created a bike that was lighter and could handle better. So where do you cut weight on an already pretty light motorcycle? Well, H-D designers looked at the wheels and felt that dropping down one notch to an 18-inch front and 17-inch rear was a good start. This change alone resulted in a loss of 5 pounds in the rear and an overall improvement in steering response and effort. The tires were also replaced with a pair of Michelin Scorcher radial tires, which were specifically designed to improve handling and reduce steering effort.
Front ABS Braking setup mounted between the downtubes on a Heritage Softail Classic.
One of the first things we noticed while riding the bike was when we let out the clutch, and pulled away. To help smooth out acceleration when taking off from a stop and at low speeds, one tooth was added to the output drive sprocket (to a 29-tooth sprocket) for a 2.34:1 final drive ratio. We quickly got used to it and did notice the improvement. Overall low speed handling was very effortless due to the change in rake to 31 degrees and increased trail of 5.7 inches. And lock to lock, the steering geometry was increased for easier low speed maneuverability. Ergonomically, the bike is definitely set up for shorter stature riders. The bars have a slight rise and pull back that places the hand controls in a pretty neutral riding position, not too wide and not too low. Down below a set of mid controls had us crunched up a bit, but for a new rider mids are perfect when coming to a stop, you just place your feet straight down to the ground.
One would think that with the SuperLow everything would be cut or decreased, but H-D was able to add 3/4 inch of travel to the rear suspension without raising the seat height, and the front has 4.1 inches of travel. The company was also able to add more padding to the seat without messing with the height. Lastly, the gas tank went from 3 1/2 gallons to 4 1/2 gallons so that you can spend more time riding and less time huffing fumes.
Adjustable vented lowers on a Road Glide Ultra.
In the short time we spent on the SuperLow, we could see how the bike could quickly and easily get a new rider up to speed, so to say, and willing to continually challenge his or her riding skills. As the least expensive H-D model, it's well suited for someone looking to get on two wheels or to get back in the saddle after a long hiatus.
Once you feel you've mastered the SuperLow and are confident in your high speed cornering ability, you may want to consider the XR1200X. A modern iteration of the iconic XR750, the XR1200X is an upgrade from last year's XR1200. Inspired by H-D's long history in racing, the XR1200X took everything that was great about the XR1200 and made it better, specifically the suspension and brakes. With crisp and minimal body lines and an all black drivetrain and exhaust system, it's hard not to walk up to the XR1200X and just start ripping up the streets.