Harley-latest Davidson’s addition to the new Sportster series, the Harley-Davidson 2022 Nightster Cruisers, is a blend of the brand’s present and past. The Sportster’s fundamental profile is still the same, but the remaining bike has been updated to keep up with the MoCo and the rest of the increasingly high-tech motorcycle industry. This latest Sportster model significantly improved over its predecessors, thanks to its brand-new engine and sophisticated ride-quality electronics.
Harley-Davidson 2022 Nightster Cruisers – Features and Specs
Let’s examine the motorcycle’s ancestry before we get into the specifics of the Harley-Davidson Nightster. The Sportster series of Harley motorcycles have been around since the Iron head era of 1957, or even earlier in 1952, with the flathead-powered K Model. The Sportster series, developed in response to competition from British mid-size sport bikes like bikes, has been in production up to the present day. Sportsters with Evolution engines first appeared in 1986 and only recently have been updated to use the more powerful Revolution Max 975T.
Minimal fenders and a blackout treatment maintain the entire unique design. A bullet-style fairing adds a café-chic touch, and oddly enough, it has a vent built right in to flatten the wind bubble over the rider.
Another throwback may be found around the back of the fairing in the form of a single circular four-inch gauge that controls all instruments and more advanced electrical functions. Like a drag bar, a low-rise handlebar forces the rider forward into an aggressive stance but may be pushed back up to a more natural, upright position if desired. Bar-end mirrors have a sleek appearance and a unique feel, so mark me as another enthusiast.
All the electronic yummy goodness and ride quality controls are accessed via the switchgear in the handlebar housings; there is no touchscreen available on this model. (Yet?) The quality of the construction is excellent, and the black accents and solitary splash of color on the air box, which is styled like a gasoline tank, are charming. The contour of the air box structure is a nod to the classic teardrop shape; however, it features sharper edges for a more modern and edgy appearance. The standard configuration has a single saddle, so inviting a friend along will cost extra.
The loaded seat height is 27.1 inches, but you’ll need to weigh at least 180 pounds for the rear shock to compress to its most comfortable setting. The standard size of the seat is 27.8 inches. The gasoline filling is accessible via a hinged seat that flips up to reveal the tank, located low in the frame and immediately forward of the rear tire to maintain a low center of gravity.
All lights are LED to maximize visibility in all directions, and the headlight has a distinctive position light to distinguish it from others. To complete the control triangle and provide the rider with a stable, authoritative stance, mid-mount foot controls are installed.
The Nightster’s s front forks and yoke-style, rectangular-stock swing arm are both mild steel, but the rear frame is constructed of welded aluminum sections. True, it has an attached headstock for the motor, and like the rest of the world, it relies on the powertrain to act as a stressed member and relocate a substantial section of the frame. At least for the newest Sportster models, the age of down tubes and cradles appears to be ended.
Front-end flotation is handled by non-adjustable RWU Showa forks that, thanks to Showa’s Dual Bending Valve technology, provide a ride quality much above standard stems. The twin coil-over shocks in the back can adjust their spring preload mechanically, but it will require you to go on your hands and knees.
The low center of gravity and the steering stem’s rake angle of 30 degrees with a trail of 5.4 inches makes for a decent mix between cornering quickness and straight-line stability. Because its wheelbase is 61.3 inches long, this Sportster doesn’t have the typical “small bike” feel of its kind.
The standard lean for the platform is 32 degrees in any direction, but that isn’t enough. Keep in mind that I can pull my jiffy stand on deep left bends without trying and that my primary ride has similar lean-performance values. It may be called a “sport bike,” but by today’s standards, it’s not one.
The cast-aluminum wheels have a black satin finish, and they’re shod with Dunlop H-D Series Bias Blackwell tires in sizes 100/90-19 and 150/80-16, respectively. The governor only allows for 112 mph. However, the tires can manage speeds up to 130 mph because of their “H” classification.
For the front brakes, the assembly line opted for a single disc with a four-bore Brembo binder, while a single-pot Brembo caliper handled the rear brakes. Across the Sportster lineup, ABS is now standard as part of the new Rider Safety Enhancements package.
The Nightster has a variety of features aimed at ensuring the safety of its riders, the drivetrain ABS being only one of them. Protection for the rear contact patch during acceleration and engine braking is provided by the switchable Traction Control and Drag-Torque Slip Control System, both of which are part of the standard equipment. Ride Modes that Can Be Changed to Suit the Weather Are Also Included.
Just like the rest of the Nightster, the Revolution Max 975T engine is a product of the most recent evolutionary leap. As a liquid-cooled mill, it does away with traditional cooling fins, making for a strikingly distinctive and cutting-edge mechanical design. The over-square configuration of the 97 mm bore and the 66 mm stroke is unique. While most Harleys have an under square or long-stroke format, the increased compression ratio helps the Sporty reach higher RPMs and produce more power than ever.
For the engine to produce its 90 horsepower, a compression ratio of 12 to 1 is used. The maximum horsepower is achieved at 7,500 rpm, and the peak torque of 70 pound-feet is reached at a leisurely 5,000 rpm. Similarly to its forerunner, the new Sportster engine and transmission are sold as a single, integrated item.
Harley-Davidson 2022 Nightster Cruisers – Price
Motorcycle enthusiasts may purchase an H-D Nightster in one of three different paint schemes at correspondingly different rates. Of course, at the bottom of the stack is a Vivid Black package, complete with a $13,499 price tag and white graphics on the tank-like air box. Black drawings are featured on the Gunship Gray and Redline Red variants, which can be purchased for an additional four dollars. However, remember that the air box cover is the only visible part of the device that is colored differently. The front fender, the rear fender, and the bullet fairing are all given a virtually total blackout independent of the color scheme.
Harley-Davidson Nightster vs. Scout Bobber Twenty
In particular, I picked this bike for my comparison ride because of its extensive blackout treatment, unique touches, and powerful engine. As for the custom appearance, the compact headlamp nacelle and ape hanger handlebar set the scene pretty nicely with significantly bobbed fenders that are decreased in size even further than the H-sheet D’s metal. Likewise, all models include bar-end mirrors, and the standard model features a single seat.
A V-twin engine also powers India’s entry, but unlike its rival, it is liquid-cooled and has larger cubic inches. Compared to the Harley’s 90/70, the new bike has 100 horsepower and 72 pound-feet of torque thanks to its larger engine. The Bobber is available with or without anti-lock brakes, but other than that, it appears that Indian has no response to H-rider D’s electronics, at least in this price range.
That leaves the MoCo in an advantageous position, even if the Scout Bobber Twenty is a skosh more affordable at $12,499 for the black finish but costlier in the upper end with a $13,899 price on its two-tone package.
Harley-Davidson 2022 Nightster Cruisers – Technical Specifications
|Seat Height, Laden||27.1 in.|
|Ground Clearance||4.5 in.|
|Tires, Front Specification||100/90-19 57H|
|Tires, Rear Specification||150/80B16 77H|
|Tire, Type||Dunlop Harley-Davidson Series Bias Blackwall|
|Fuel Capacity||3.1 gal.|
|Oil Capacity (W/Filter)||4.75 qt.|
|Weight, As Shipped||462 lb.|
|Weight, In Running Order||481 lb.|
|Type||Revolution Max 975T|
|Displacement||59.5 cu. in.|
|Fuel System||Electronic Sequential Port Fuel Injection (ESPFI)|
|Exhaust||2-into-1; catalyst in the header|
|Engine Torque Testing Method||J1349|
|Engine Torque||70 ft-lb|
|Engine Torque (RPM)||5000|
|Horsepower||90 HP / 67 kW @ 7500 rpm|
|Lean Angle, Right (Deg.)||32|
|Lean Angle, Left (Deg.)||32|
|Fuel Economy Testing Method||Estimated City/Hwy|
|Fuel Economy||52.4 mpg|
|Primary drive||Gear, 49/89 ratio|
|Gear Ratios (Overall) 1ST||12.21|
|Gear Ratios (Overall) 2nd||9.022|
|Gear Ratios (Overall) 3rd||6.994|
|Gear Ratios (Overall) 4th||5.641|
|Gear Ratios (Overall) 5th||4.731|
|Gear Ratios (Overall) 6th||4.131|
|Front fork||41mm SHOWA Dual Bending Valve conventional forks. Aluminum fork triple clamps.|
|Rear Shocks||The rear suspension is dual outboard, direct-acting (no linkage) emulsion technology shock absorbers, including coil springs and a threaded collar for pre-load adjustment.|
|Wheels, Front Type||Aluminum cast, satin black|
|Wheels, Rear Type||Aluminum cast, satin black|
|Brakes, Type||Front: single rotor, floating, hub-mounted; Rear: solid uniform expansion rotor|
|Brakes, Caliper Type||Front: axially mounted, 4-piston caliper; Rear: floating, single-piston caliper|
|Lights (as per country regulation), headlamp, tail/stop/front signal lights||All LED headlamps, low and high beams with signature position lighting headlamps, All LED rear lighting, LED bullet turn signals|
|Gauges||4-inch viewable round gauge area analog display with, Speedometer, L/R turn Indication, Traction Control Indication, Coolant Temperature Alert, ABS alert, Fog Lamp Indication, Battery Voltage Alert, High Beam Indicator, Low Fuel Indication, Rear-ABS Disabled Indication, Failure-Indication Alert, Neutral Position Indication, Low Tire Pressure indication, Check Engine Light indication, Oil Pressure Alert, Service Indication.|
|Screen Size||4″ Analog Instrument with Segmented LCD|
|Vehicle Information Screen (Air Temperature, Oil Pressure, And EITMS)||Total Odometer (Selectable Miles or km), Trip A/B, Gear Position Indication, Fuel Range, 12/24 Hr Clock, Digital Tachometer, Segmented Fuel Level, Ride Mode Indication|
Rider safety enhancements
|Anti-lock brake system (ABS)||Included|
|Traction Control System (TCS)||Included|
|Drag-Torque Slip Control System (DSCS)||Included|