2008/13 Harley-davidson XR1200
Harley’s European attack that fell flat
What we said then “The XR1200 performs and handles better than any Harley before!” What happened next Inspired in its looks by the legendary XR750 flat track racer, the XR1200 was a machine demanded and inspired by the European market. Despite being built to appeal to European tastes, and having its own accompanying race series, the sportiest ever Harley failed to make any impact in the sales charts. What’s happening now With the current retro-inspired market the XR1200 is unbelievably in demand. In fact, finding a used one for sale is quite a challenge and if you do locate one, it’s going to cost you a pretty penny. It ticks all the fashionpleasing boxes – flat tracker styling, famous brand name on the tank, air-cooled motor – in fact all it is missing is its own beard and sleeve of tattoos! Those who snapped them up for £4000, which was their rock-bottom price, must be laughing. How does it ride? The Sportster motor certainly isn’t the fastest lump out there, but with loud pipes allowing it to express itself fully it is a thing of great joy. Even if the gearbox is horribly agricultural. But on the XR it is the handling that really makes you smile.
The 17in rear and 18in front wheel, inverted forks and unique chassis, manage to make this 250kg bike surprisingly good in bends. You can hustle the XR and enjoy its cornering ability while also being able to
stop thanks to a good twin front disc set-up. The XR reminds you of the MT-01 – also on this list. Except the Harley has more spirit and looks great thanks to its flat track styling and Harley racing orange colour. What to look out for The XR1200 was joined in the model range by the XR1200X in 2010, which came with uprated fully-adjustable Showa Big Piston Front forks, piggyback shocks and black exhausts and was only sold in black. When it comes to buying a used XR, a full service history is always a good sign, mainly so you can check it has never been near a race track! On any Harley condition is key.
O Price From £5000 to £7500 O Engine 1202cc air-cooled 4v V-twin O Power 90bhp @ 7000rpm O Torque 74ftlb @ 3700rpm O Weight 250kg
‘Hustle the XR and enjoy its cornering’
abilitygood surprisingly in bends and a spirited performer