2016 Harley-Davidson CVO Pro Street Breakout

Editor Score: 88.0%
Engine 18.25/20
Suspension/Handling 13.25/15
Transmission/Clutch 8.75/10
Brakes 8.25/10
Instruments/Controls4.75/5
Ergonomics/Comfort 8.5/10
Appearance/Quality 9.75/10
Desirability 9.5/10
Value 7.0/10
Overall Score88/100

If you’ve been salivating over Harley-Davidson’s Breakout since its CVO introduction in 2013, you’re in luck. After a year hiatus, the Breakout returns for 2016 in CVO form with a variety of changes (upgrades?), and for a price tag $800/$1,200 less than its predecessors ($26,499/$26,899 MYs 2013/2014 vs $25,699 MY 2016). There’s the standard Breakout for $18,799, but we’re going big, and when you go big you go CVO.

2013 Harley-Davidson CVO Breakout Review

Like the original CVO Breakouts, the 2016 iteration is powered by a Screamin’ Eagle Twin Cam 110B V-Twin, with a Screamin’ Eagle Heavy Breather Elite air intake, and an Assist & Slip clutch that lightens clutch pull and reduces reverse engine torque. Claimed torque remains at 112 lb-ft at 3,500 rpm, while claimed wet weight increases from 728 lbs to 730 lbs, and seat height increases by a claimed 0.2 inches from 25.8 in. to 26.0 in. Harley doesn’t mention changes to the frame, so we’ll assume the switch from a 21-inch front wheel to a 19-incher (and possibly the new fork) are responsible for the wheelbase reduction of 1.2 inches from 67.3  in. to 66.1 in. and a change in rake/trail from the original’s 37°/5.7 in. to the new model’s 35°/7.7 in. Some of the most notable differences to the 2016 Breakout, however, are visual.

Breakout

The drag strip-inspired speed screen fairing sets the styling tone for new Breakout. 1.25-inch drag bars clamped by a “technical triple clamp” follow suit. Note the LED headlight arrangement, and three-bolt lower triple tree.

The 2016 CVO Breakout comes dressed in drag… drag strip, that is. Pro Street styling begins at the front with a drag-strip inspired speed screen fairing, chin spoiler, and a 1.25-inch drag bar. From there it travels back to a new race-inspired seat with CVO badging, all rolling atop new 5-spoke Aggressor wheels.

2013 Harley-Davidson FXSB Breakout Review

Unmistakably different from the flashy paint and chrome of the original CVO Breakouts (the Hard Candy Gold Dust and Liquid Sun with Pagan Gold remains one of my all-time favorite paints), the new CVO Breakout is subdued in Starfire Black/Starfire Black, White Gold Pearl/Starfire Black (pictured) paint schemes. Still remarkably beautiful and seemingly dripping wet in a dark and brooding kind of way.

Breakout

Sorry, Evans, but photographs just don’t do justice to the subtle beauty of Harley’s new Smoke Satin Chrome seen here on the exhaust header shields, oil lines and lower rocker cover. The timing cover (and matching derby cover) are mechanical in appearance finished in either solid Starfire Black or two-tone White Gold Pearl/Starfire Black.

Harley designers used the CVO Breakout to showcase its new Smoke Satin Chrome finish. The contrast between it and the gloss black paint is simply delicious. We’ll let Harley-Davidson’s Senior Stylist, Dais Nagao, explain. “We’ve carefully placed Smoked Satin Chrome next to a black surface so it creates a layered effect. For example, the top rocker cover is gloss black, and the lower cover is Smoked Satin Chrome. It’s on the exhaust header shields next to the black engine and black mufflers. We used Smoked Satin Chrome on the oil lines and fittings to add an unexpected detail.”

The 2016 CVO Breakout utilizes the same powertrain as previous models but there are two major improvements in performance: an inverted fork and dual front disc brakes. Where the 2013/14 models wore a traditional 49mm telescopic fork, the 2016 Breakout’s front end is suspended by a pair of 43mm inverted fork legs. The Breakout’s stopping power was doubled with the addition of second front brake caliper and rotor.

Breakout

Improved front end performance comes in the form of upside-down fork legs, and dual front disc brakes. Cornering clearance is slightly less going from Right/Left 25.3°/26.2° on the older models to Right/Left 24.8°/25.5° on the 2016 Breakout.

While still wearing the fat 240-series rear, the 2016 CVO Breakout comes equipped with a new 19-inch front in lieu of the 21-incher on the old model. The smaller diameter wheel quickens the Breakout’s turning ability, and helps lessen the effect of leveraging the large rear tire off its wide center patch. Speaking of leverage, the drag bars aren’t as wide as the old buckhorn bars, but the leverage provided by the wider bars on past models isn’t as necessary for turning the smaller diameter front wheel.

Power from the Screamin’ Eagle Twin Cam 110B V-Twin flows as smooth as can be coming through the 6-speed Cruise Drive transmission with Isolated Drive System (IDS), and the Assist & Slip clutch. Throttle response is crisp with no abruptness, and no driveline lash. Forward thrust is exhilarating, but the bike’s 730-pound wet weight stifles what should otherwise be an intense rush of 112 lb-ft of torque.

2016 Harley-Davidson CVO Pro Street Breakout
+ Highs

  • Improved suspension/brakes
  • Assist & Slip clutch
  • Reduced MSRP
– Sighs

  • Reduced cornering clearance
  • Weighs as much as a K1600GT
  • Doesn’t feel as fast as it should

I found the new race-inspired seat to be incredibly comfortable. It also does a great job of supporting your lower back when traveling for extended freeway periods, as well has hold your ass in place when being applying prodigious amounts of throttle. The new drag bars force more forward lean than that of the buckhorn bars, but nothing to really complain about, especially considering its pro street style.

Breakout

Analog tach with digital speedo, GPI, odometer, trip meters, etc. The gauge turns colors to account for bright daylight or dark nighttime riding. The breakout retains the same twin tank breather tubes and flush-mount fuel cap. The CVO Breakout is also equipped with a keyless ignition, cruise control, and a security system.

The pro street look is new, but the Breakout continues the tradition of exclusivity, performance and style customers have come to expect from Harley-Davidson’s Custom Vehicle Operations. If you didn’t get one the first two go-arounds the 2016 CVO Pro Street Breakout offers more performance for less money – a better deal, in our opinion.

2016 Harley-Davidson CVO Pro Street Breakout Specifications
MSRP $25,699
Engine Type Screamin’ Eagle Air-cooled, Twin Cam 110B V-Twin
Bore and Stroke 4 in./4.374 in.
Compression Ratio 9.2:1
Torque (claimed) 112.1 lb-ft @ 3,500 rpm 
lb/torque 6.5
Transmission 6-speed Cruise Drive
Final Drive Belt
Front Suspension 43mm Inverted
Rear Suspension Hidden, horizontal-mounted, coil-over shock
Front Brake 4-piston fixed, ABS
Rear Brake 2-piston floating, ABS
Front Tire 19 in x 3.5 in.
Rear Tire 18 in x 8 in.
Rake/Trail 35°/7.7 in.
Wheelbase 66.1 in.
Seat Height 26 in.
Curb Weight (Claimed) 730 lbs.
Fuel Capacity 5 gal.
Colors Starfire Black/Starfire Black, White Gold Pearl/Starfire Black
Warranty 2-year, unlimited miles
  • SRMark

    Better forks. Reduced ground clearance. Who thinks this stuff up?

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  • Old MOron

    It’s Friday night, and I just had a fabulous supper of carne asada and habanero salsa. Washed it down with a Negra Modelo and checked in here to see about the latest bikes. You MOrons just spoiled my meal. WTF is this?

    Let me see, T-rod. You recently reviewed the new Thruxton and got us all excited, giving the bike a score of 90.
    http://motorcycle.com.vsassets.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/thruxton_silver.jpg

    You also rode the new Bonnie T-120 and scored it a 90, again, generating much enthusiasm.
    http://motorcycle.com.vsassets.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/t120_black-608×389.jpg

    Now you ride this feet-forward, no-ground-clearance barge and score it an 89.5?
    http://motorcycle.com.vsassets.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/Harley-Davidson-CVO-Breakout-Pro-Street-9825-633×388.jpg

    Sorry, man. Either my enthusiasm for the Triumphs or your credibility in general must down the shitter!

    • Sayyed Bashir

      This is an unexpectedly excellent and unbiased review from Tom Roderick. Every bike must be scored on what it is, not on what somebody thinks it should be. Harley’s must be reviewed by Harley enthusiasts, not by sport bike enthusiasts. A lot of Harley riders also read these magazines and buy their products and they are entitled to a informative, unbiased review of their motorcycles. Good job MO!

      • Old MOron

        Actually, this is an unexpectedly excellent and unbiased review from Tom Roderick: https://youtu.be/64WmE1dOr1c?t=7m18s

        • Sayyed Bashir

          That is a nice shootout. I hadn’t seen it before. Thank you! Good reviews of the Sportster and the V-Rod. I test rode a Indian Scout at the International Motorcycle Show in Long Beach, CA in Nov 2014 and was disappointed. I kept looking for a sixth gear that wasn’t there. I am not used to revving engines too high and normally use just the mid-range. Tom said you cannot get the look, feel and sound of a Harley from any other bike. The Japanese bikes were especially bland. Good performing but not exciting.

          • Chris Allen

            What is exciting to you? Underperforming? Or just loud?

    • Pook

      I think that you just don’t like Harleys. You really don’t need to comment on EVERY MO article. There are bikes I don’t like, too. It doesn’t mean I comment on that article and insult the author. smh

      • Old MOron

        I’ve got nothing against the bike, itself. I wish the MOronic review scale had some consistency.

        But you’re right. I’ll shut up.

    • http://motorcycle.com/ Tom Roderick

      Any of our single-bike reviews are scored in a bubble, judging the bike on its own merit, and taking into consideration the parameters of the genre in which it exist. I don’t have the time, but rest assured there are numerous past examples when a single-bike score does not reflect what that bike’s score will be once it’s judged against its competitors. For example, the Breakout’s price of $25k is reasonable for a CVO model in the H-D universe (although I still gave it only a 7 in the Value section of the ScoreCard). Against similar competitor bikes, it’ll probably get its ass handed to it in many of the ScoreCard sections.

      • Sayyed Bashir

        Some people like premium bikes and are willing to pay for them. They do not compare them to any other bikes. That is the bike they want and that is the bike they buy. They do not have to explain themselves to anyone. It is like buying a Rolls Royce vs buying a Honda Accord. One will get you to the grocery store and the other will get you to your palace, but they will never get compared, power and performance notwithstanding.

  • TheMarvelous1310

    Why is it so hard to combine forward controls, low seats and decent lean angles? Just make the damned bike, somebody! Anybody! Please?

    • Born to Ride

      Low seat plus high ground clearance would mean impossibly cramped ergos. Also, the X-Diavel?

    • Max Wellian

      I think the “real” lean angle is probably pretty good. The pegs have feelers and will deck early. Unscrew those and lean angle will improve some. Keep leaning and the footpegs will fold up providing considerably more.
      If it wasn’t so pretty and expensive, scraping the mufflers and such wouldn’t be a big deal.

      • TheMarvelous1310

        My uncle used to make his own skidplates for his exhaust by welding hose fasteners under chunks of drain pipe. It looked ugly, but as long as the fasteners held it was basically indestructible, made cool sparks and came right off for shows. I wish I had pictures, but those were Polaroid days.

  • Max Wellian

    Harley’s on their way. It now looks a lot like my 2007 Warrior, with upright ergos, 5 spoke wheels, and USD forks. And now for only roughly triple the price!
    FWIW, at least they are backing away from the Liberace paint jobs.

  • Buzz

    I like the looks of the Breakout but I’ve owned one softail and will never own another.

    I’ll take the fancy new Low Rider over this any day.

    • Pook

      What didn’t you like about the softail?

      • Buzz

        Mainly the rear suspension. It’s just so limiting and occasionally punishing.

        Plus the balanced motor makes a weird wucka wucka sound.

        I’ve had all three big twin platforms and I’m a Dyna fan.

        • Pook

          I’m a dyna fan as well but that is all I’ve ever owned or ridden not counting the MSF bikes. I had heard that counter balanced motor was smoother than the dyna at idle but not once you open the throttle.

          • Sayyed Bashir

            I have ridden Softails for 30 years and love them. I had a 1986 Softail Custom for 16 years, 56,000 miles and now have a 2007 Softail Custom with 144,000 miles. They are the most comfortable bikes around for commuting as well as for long distance travel (the longest trip I did on the 1986 Softail was 1224 miles from Daytona Beach to Ft. Worth TX in 23 hours). The big wide seat with a step up for the passenger is like sitting on a sofa. The rear suspension is only 2 inches so you learn to watch out for pot holes, but for smooth freeway travel, it is excellent. No vibration from the balanced engine. Lots of torque, six gears for easy highway speeds, nice sound, great looks. The Softail Custom has everything chrome plated. I especially like the chrome U-shaped oil tank under the seat, instead of the battery box of a Dyna. Also no visible rear shocks on a Softail, solid disc rear wheel with 200mm tire, narrow spoked front wheel, gold flake Harley logo on the tank, two tone paint job (burgundy and cream).

    • Douglas

      Me too. It’s the only new H-D I’d consider, mainly because the controls are where they belong (or very close). Is it worth trading in my 08 FXDC for? Haven’t ridden one yet, so can’t say…..but I do like it.

  • Gabriel Owens

    26k….reduced price. Ok.

  • Paul Currie

    Yawn

    • Sayyed Bashir

      Have you seen it or ridden it?

      • Paul Currie

        Ask ask yourself this…how long can HD keep regurgitating the same engine/frame and still be relevant? If this was the automobile industry, would you still be content with a 64 chev?

        • Sayyed Bashir

          Harley is still selling 265,000 bikes a year so it seems a lot of people are willing to vote with their wallet rather than their keyboard.

        • spiff

          I’m not a Harley guy, but the thought of a new 65 Impala convertible sounds pretty good. A factory resto mod. It is essentially what Triumph is doing as well. Credit to Triumph for also make the Speed Triple etc. The difference is that everyone is brain washed into thinking Harleys deserve these outrageous MSRPs. It is all a result of brilliant lobbying for and then against tariffs in the 80 and low supply (im unsure if this was on purpose) in the 90s.

          Ps
          I have ridden Harleys, and yes I understand their appeal. I just think the prices for the played out platforms are stupid.

          • spiff

            btw Paul, I agree with you except I want the old Chevy.

          • spiff

            btw Paul, I agree with you except I want the old Chevy.

  • KLRJUNE .

    $26 grand?!!!? HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

    • Jaime Berrones

      the editor score of 7.0 of 10 in value seems almost mercyful dont you think

  • QuestionMark666

    At your local Ducati dealer you’ll find the new X-Diavel. Forward controls, belt drive, fat rear tire a greater lean angle, better brakes and suspension, 156HP and 95 ft/lb torque plus 200lb lighter!
    I have seen SE 110s on dynos several times and they are all 96hp-100hp
    I wanna see a X-Diavel vs CVO Breakout showdown!!

    • Dean Baas

      Exactly, that is the comparison test I need, looking at both currently and the only reason I like the CVO is you can ride with someone larger than a size 0, but its 200lbs heaver. The xdiavel pillion looks cool, but has no real life function.

  • Craig Hoffman

    It is interesting how Harleys need to be reviewed on their own terms. They are the only bike that obtains that kind of consideration. There is Harley, and then there is everybody else. The Motor Company has come a long way since teetering on the brink of oblivion back in the 80s. Ya gotta hand it to them, sales numbers and the prices their bikes command don’t lie.

    HD is not really my cup of tea (the new Thruxton is, and if we are talking tea, ya gotta include the Brits). Seems the more things change, the more they stay the same. The two coolest bikes on the road still come from HD and Triumph. We have finally come full circle after all these years.

  • GodWhomIsMike

    $26K? Yep, at that price, it’s a bike I will never experience in this lifetime. Although, that weight (730 lbs) is almost in the realm of full dressers.

  • TalonMech

    “Weighs as much as a K1600GT? With no luggage, and no fairing? ……WTF does HD build these bikes with? Lead? Depleted uranium? LoL. What a joke.

    • Jaime Berrones

      Is what you pay for about 35 bucks per pound , heavier pricier is something the rest of the world doesnt underestand

  • Racing Enthusiast

    Remember the excitement when the R/T version of the Dodge Aspen came out?

    I’m feeling it again…

  • John

    Harley’s version of the Suzuki M109.

  • chuck.norris

    I’ll keep my M109R, better performance, better looks, less maintenance, and almost half the price.

  • radarobertson76

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