It seems to us that you are either a die-hard Harley-Davidson Street Glide fan, or you’re a die-hard Harley-Davidson Road Glide fan. And you don’t think twice about the other. We asked the Harley-Davidson Motor Company a few questions about this phenomenon and how one of its consumers choose between a Road Glide and a Street Glide. Was it an easy choice? Did a customer automatically identify with one style over the other? Did they gravitate toward a frame-mounted fairing, or were they more interested in the fork-mounted fairing?
So many questions… We also wanted to know if folks were more interested in a Street Glide Special or Road Glide Special with the blacked-out trim versus the regular old Street Glide or Road Glide. Here’s what they had to say.
BAG: What would you tell a Harley newbie who asked the question, "Should I buy a Street Glide or Road Glide?" Why?
H-D: You need to test ride it to choose what one suits your preference for riding and style best. From the steering head back on both of these bikes, everything is the same. It's the fairing that is different. The Road Glide has a frame-mounted fairing and the Street Glide has a fork-mounted fairing. So from a styling perspective they both look very different, but they also handle differently. So it comes down to personal preference for each rider. Due to the differences in the fairing, the wind protection varies and the rider triangle is different. Thus, Harley-Davidson recommends getting some miles under your belt on both bikes to truly understand which one is for you.
BAG: What sold better in the United States after Milwaukee-Eight was released, Street Glide or Road Glide?
H-D: While we cannot give specific numbers the batwing, fork-mounted fairing bikes on the Street Glide models are more popular.
BAG: Are age demographics similar for Road Glide or Street Glide sales? If not, what are the differences?
H-D: They are virtually the same.
BAG: What's the feedback of the new "Special" variations for each model (all black trim)? Are you finding consumers are more interested in black vs. chrome?
H-D: The Special models are very on-trend in their styling and customer feedback has been as expected -- our customers love to have lots of features and content on their bikes from the factory. Many of our customers are digging the blacked-out styling on the Specials, but customers who want a chrome-based model have plenty of options to load up their bike from the factory too. For 2018, a customer can take a base Street Glide and upgrade it with security, ABS and the premium radio from the factory now as well.
BAG: Anything else you can add about how a consumer can make a choice between one of these models?
H-D: Test ride! Contact your local dealer or locate one of many HDMC sponsored-events that host demo rides. Or try one of the best methods - loan a bike for a rental or tour through Eagle Rider.