Harley Davidson XL 883 Sportster Iron: Introduction to a myth.

Engine: The air-cooled V-twin, fueled by injection 883 cc engine, delivers 50 bhp and 70 Nm torque, nominal values.
     There is only an electronic speedometer, no rpm meter provided. The engine revs up slowly, producing some vibration, as well as a nice and relatively discreet sound.
     Top power delivery feels moderate considered the engine capacity, while torque is satisfying.

     H-D fans are kindly asked to skip the following phrase, that means without reading it. At the limit of engine revs, first gear produces 60 km / h extremely fast, second gear produces 100 km / h very quickly.
     Probably this is something like the useless information of the week to a Harley owner or future customer. On the contrary many people will claim that this is not what a H-D bike stands for and indeed they are right. There is no point torturing the engine, performance is not the strongest point of the engine, the low rpm torque is adequate to make things going.
     There is quite a different sensation derived from engine operation though, that is on leisure riding or highway cruising at about 80-100 Km/h. Riding is sweet and comfortable then, yet almost exciting for the rider.
     Although a speed higher than 160 km / h may be indicated, the Iron is not very effective then. Actually acceleration is decreased above 100 km / h. Gearbox feels relatively firm.
     Riding position: There is a considerable cavity on the saddle. As a result , riders regardless of their height, will be placed in a specific area on the saddle. The height of the seat is low, every rider will step both feet firm on the ground. Small sized riders will make themselves comfortable quite easily on the Iron.
     The dimensions of the bike are average, especially the width, which is small. The bike feels rather heavy, 251 Kgs dry, while centre of gravity feels a little above the middle of the motorcycle.
     Rider feels mostly in the bike, just a hint on the bike, riding position is relatively neutral. Rider is inclined slightly forward, a sense of alertness is produced.
     On the road: The  firmness deriving from the two shock absorbers is moderate, the fork is relatively firm.
     The tyres fitted are made by Dunlop, the model used is the D401. However they have got the Harley Davidson stamp on them. Their dimensions are 100/90-19 to the front and 150/80-16 to the rear. The wheels are cast aluminum.
      On urban rides the Iron is a neutral, easy and relatively agile bike, despite the 1510 mm wheelbase. As one would expect, the Iron creates a certain relatively slow pace mood, while riding position results in alertness.
     No compromises will be required except from the average steering lock. During filtering the height of the handlebar is about the same with that of car mirrors, it will not be an issue though.
     Street imperfections are absorbed relatively well by the fork, the shocks will not be very sufficient to that. In the case of large imperfections, they are not absorbed efficiently by the fork either.
      On B-roads the Iron is a pleasant - neutral bike. Rider will be fulfilled by enjoying the process of riding instead of charging. Riding position again decreases the relaxing feel which is common on Harley bikes.
     At a faster pace, handling is still greatly neutral. Ground clearance is quite higher compared to the superlow model. Cornering will be pleasant on the Iron, in terms of the cruiser and street category.
     Of course on high quality roads, cornering is improved. Feedback from the tires is moderate on low-average friction factor roads. Engine power is weak to make things going at the fast pace.
     On the highway the Iron will be efficient on short-medium trips. The cruising speed is between 80-120 km / h, engine does not feel comfortable above these figures, air resistance gets increased.
     Single disc brakes are used front and rear. At the front a two-piston caliper is used while a single-piston caliper is equipped at the rear. Braking is relatively powerful, progressive, quite user friendly, providing relatively good feedback.
     Reliability: Quality build and finish are very good, there are no particular problems reported.
     Comments: There is a button for the left indicator and one for the right indicator on the handlebar. The cancellation of the indicators operation , is set automatically. Actually this works quite well.
     It seems that the side stand requires some familiarity , it doesnąt feel very secure like other makes supporting the bike. However the dealership was reassuring, they were certain that there is no problem at all.
    Since there was a special reference to the shape of the saddle , it should be mentioned that the seat may be changed, there are several seat types. Additionally the pegs may be moved forward or an extra pair may be mounted at the front, which is common to all sportsters. Of course there are numerous factory accessories available.
     The black matte color enhances a vicious bike look. Compared with other Harley models, very little chrome is used on the Iron.
     It is considered to be an introductory model in the range of the company, suitable for commuting as well.
     The Iron owner will comprehend the advantages of the specific brand, which may be: Low speed riding satisfaction, and a classic riding sensation.
     Compared to the competition, its really closer to the sensation of a retro bike combining engine vibes, metal parts and grease which was provided by the bikes of the past.
     However the feeling provided to the rider is not very close to the ultimate sensation provided by the top models of the brand.
    In order to point out the differences with other makes and reviews, extreme riding aspects were also evaluated. These are not significant to Harley - Davidson owners. From the other hand, in our days, a sense of practicality is appreciated to everything we use. That may apply to mythical symbols, as well.
Price: 9950  €

+ Sensation

+ Practicality – a user friendly Harley

+ Low tag price is meticulously unnoticed

-Not really close to the top-of–the-brand models provided sensation

-Engine performance

More, specifications


  • 883
    Riding the 883 Iron is interesting, I've owned a lot of bikes, Italian, Jap etc. Engine: Sounds great with the right pipes, lots of vibration coming up through the bars when power is laid on. Torque is pleasant. When the traffic slows, the bike will plod nicely without 'hunting for fuel' too much, just get the gear right. Gearbox: Agricultural with a big old clonk as you go through the gears. In this day and age, could be slicker. Handling: Surprisingly good, the bike is nimble around town and as it is narrow, filters through cars quite well. Bike balance is good, centre of gravity good. For a heavyish bike, its nimble going through the traffic. Its a little low down, but its OK for average height riders. Brakes: Just give the front lever a good old squeeze, the lever feels thick/heavy, back brake is OK, just remember you'll need that front brake if you need to stop in a hurry. Build: Its OK if you look after it. Invest in a can of ACF50, some parts will corrode if you don't do this - look after it. I can see why folks buy these, really old skool feel, a real motorbike with vibes. Don't expect a jap bike ride, the 883 is from a bygone age, feels coolest on a hot summer day 45 - 55mph.
  • Born again biker
    Well my first bike for 30 years, last one being a 250 Honda super dream . Picked my black iron up last Saturday, only got off it to go to work. Plenty of power for me and that's trying to keep the revs down to 3000 rpm as I'm running it in. Great riding position I'm 6ft tall, and handles in my inexperience hands very well. Best thing about it is the smile I get leaning into gentle bends on B roads . I did not get the bike to go fast, but to enjoy the road and country side around me. Perhaps I'm a boring 51 year old, but I enjoy being bored on my iron.
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