Martin is a super cool customer of ours here at Maidstone Harley-Davidson® and he decided that he wasn't just going to read about the new Milwaukee-Eight™ engine but he was going to put it to the test. Opting for the Street Glide® Special, Martin hit the roads of Kent to get the full experience and really put the Street Glide® through its paces, scroll down to read Martin's full review or click the link below to get yourself booked in for a test ride:
From the minute your thumb hits the starter button on the 2017 Harley-Davidson Street Glide® Special you can tell that while on the surface the bike looks familiar, things have moved on. I last rode the previous model of the Street Glide® Special about six months ago, a machine that shared the same 103 Twin Cam engine as my Dyna Switchback; but this new model - bearing the 107 Milwaukee-Eight™ engine - burst into life far more effortlessly than the 103, with the obvious clue to the motor’s new DNA being given by some techy sounding mechanical whine from the top end.
The gearbox seemed different too, as even from cold it quietly snicked into first – I’ve become accustomed to more of a clunk. As I pulled out onto Forstal Road from the forecourt of Maidstone Harley-Davidson® I was impressed (and indeed surprised) by the quick and willing acceleration from the new power unit, finding myself propelled towards Junction 6 of the M20 a little sooner than I’d expected to. But instead of joining the motorway I headed across Penenden Heath towards Bearsted before taking the A20 towards Hythe, my destination. There’s a saying in the UK that we don’t drive on the left of the road - we drive on what’s left of the road; but the Street Glide® Special’s uprated suspension seemed to cope well with all but the biggest bumps and craters, with the bike feeling very planted and positive. This would be due in no small part to the Showa dual bending valve front forks (I don’t know what that means but it seemed an improvement over the previous model) and the adjustable emulsion rear shocks, together giving renewed confidence in corners and sweeping bends. Having selected an A road route down to Hythe, the easy to use touch screen sat nav pointed me towards my final destination once I got into the town.
I grabbed a coffee on Fisherman’s Beach (always good to get a photo of a bike with the sea in the background!) and then headed west along the coast road to Old Romney before picking up the relatively quick but frequently busy A2070 to Ashford. The Milwaukee Eight engine made short work of a series of cars, vans and trucks, with the responsive motor providing plenty of go in any gear at any speed. Bearing in mind I’ve been riding a lighter bike with the 103 Twin Cam engine for six months, I cannot get over how torquey and smooth this new engine is, and even though the bike I was riding had standard exhausts, they sounded pretty throaty when you turned the taps on. The brakes have improved too, with a linked Brembo setup being a noticeable improvement on the Road Glide® Special I rode on a round trip to Seville during a hectic week back in 2015. From Ashford I joined the M20 west to get a perspective of the bike’s motorway capabilities, and all too soon I was back at MSHD, where I reluctantly handed the fob back to Andy.
If you have any questions about a new 2017 Touring model or would like further information on the Discover More competition or would like to arrange a test ride, please call 01622 711680 during opening hours, or send us a message via the link below and we'll answer your query as soon as possible.