Horowhenua Chronicle


Harley-Davidson’s Nightster is a smaller (and darker) alternativ­e to the Sportster S


Following on from the release of the new generation Sportster, Harley-Davidson has followed up the Sportster S with an all-new smaller capacity option in the Nightster.

The 2022 Nightster is the first bike in the Harley-Davidson lineup to run the smaller capacity 975cc version of the Revolution Max T engine.

Previously we've seen the Revolution Max in 1250 guise in both the Pan America and the Sportster S, but the Nightster opens the door for more potential sub-1000cc models. This means we might actually see the Bronx streetfigh­ter become a reality as well if the Nightster does well.

Just like the bigger versions of the Revolution Max, the small capacity version is used as a stressed member of the chassis and runs the same high-tech design including variable valve timing and hydraulic self-adjusting lifters for a balance between performanc­e and low maintenanc­e.

Peak power is a lively 67kW/ 95Nm, which should translate into a fun bike on Kiwi roads.

The styling of the new bike is on point, with a classic long and low Sportster silhouette. Interestin­gly, the bike has its 11.7-litre fuel tank hidden away under the seat while the traditiona­l space for the tank is actually a steel airbox cover.

As the centrally mounted fuel cell indicates, Harley has taken steps to blend classic style with good handling with the new Nightster and the suspension looks to be up to the task despite its old-school design. While there is no fully adjustable USD fork or monoshock here, it should be capable of soaking up the weight of the 218kg Nightster. Up front is a 41mm Showa Dual Bending Valve convention­al fork, while the use of twin shocks at the rear end rather than the monoshock favoured by Harley in recent models also links back to the previous generation Sportsters.

Up front is a 19-inch front wheel (matched to a 16-inch rear) with a classic headlight cowling while the controls are mid-mounted. Behind the headlight is a traditiona­l analogue speedo with LCD insert to keep the rider informed rather than the TFT of the Sportster S.

As you'd expect, the Nightster is backed by the latest in safety aids and electronic­s including three rider modes (Road, Rain and Sport), ABS, traction control and Harley's drag-torque slip control system.

Naturally, the Nightster comes in under the Sportster S, with NZ pricing confirmed to start at $25,495 for the Vivid Black option while the brighter colours are priced at $25,830.

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