Harley-Davidson Road King

The Harley-Davidson FL series of motorcycles, introduced in 1941 with a 74 cubic inch Knucklehead engine, designates the larger, touring bikes in Harley’s line-up, as well as the Softail models. For the 1994 model year Harley-Davidson replaced the FLHS Electra Glide Sport with the FLHR Harley-Davidson Road King. The original Panhead-powered FLH Harley-Davidson Electra Glide was introduced in 1965 and takes it namesake from the model’s electric starter.

The original FLHR Harley-Davidson Road King was powered by Harley-Davidson’s 1,340 cc Evolution V-Twin engine. The new Harley-Davidson Road King featured a host of upgrades over the Electra Glide it was replacing, including an improved wiring harness with waterproof connectors, detachable saddlebags and windshield, and taller gear ratios. Other features of the Harley-Davidson Road King included air-adjustable forks, dual front disc brakes, and a passenger seat that could easily be removed. So the Harley-Davidson Road King was positioned as a combination cruiser and touring machine.

In 1996 Harley-Davidson offered both the FLHR and FLHRI, the “I” indicating a Harley-Davidson Road King with fuel injection. The Weber Marelli fuel-injection system, standard on the 30th Anniversary Ultra Classic Electra Glide, allowed Harley-Davidson to pass California’s stringent emission system without adding catalytic converters to its bikes – better fuel mileage was an added benefit.

2011 Harley-Davidson Road King

In 1999 the Harley-Davidson Road King, as well as other Harley-Davidson models, came from the factory powered by the new Twin Cam 88 engine. The engine’s name came from the addition of second cam to actuate the push rods for the opening and closing of the intake and exhaust valves, thus the new engine had two cams, one cam with two lobes for each cylinder’s two valves, compared to the Evolution engine’s use of a single cam with four lobes. The gears driving the cams in the Evolution engine were replaced with a chain in the Twin Cam engine. The 88 represents the displacement of the engine in cubic inches (1447cc). The engine also incorporated other improvements such as oil jets positioned to spray the bottom of the pistons to help cool the engine, and increased cooling fin area. In 2000 Harley-Davidson offered a 95 cu. in. big-bore kit that increased Twin Cam 88 engine displacement to 1550cc.

In 2004 the FLHRSI Harley-Davidson Road King Custom was introduced. The Custom featured leather hard bags, wide handlebars, a wind-swept headlight and lowered rear suspension. By 2007 it was time for another engine upgrade, this time being the Twin Cam 96. Same basic engine as the Twin Cam 88 but displacing 96 cubic inches (1584cc).

The Harley-Davidson Road King enters its 17th year of production in 2011 and, as with most Harley-Davidson models, the Road King remains largely the same as it was when introduced. The Road King is also widely used in police and fire departments in the United States as well as foreign countries.

Harley-Davidson Road King Reviews View all Reviews

2013 Harley-Davidson FXSB Breakout Review

With a long, low stance and styling that puts the emphasis on its major components, the new Harley-Davison FXSB Breakout is a no-nonsense power cruiser that embodies the spirit of motorcycling while eschewing the trappings of trendiness.

Harley-Davidson 2013

To celebrate its 110th anniversary, we joined Harley-Davidson for a five-day tour of the Pacific Northwest. We sampled its lineup of 2013 models, including a revised Street Bob, a group of anniversary models and some eye-catching Hard Candy customs.

Best Motorcycles of 2012

It’s again that time of the year when we select Motorcycle.com’s Best Of choices – our annual MOBO awards. Surf along as we look back at the standout motorcycles of the past year.

2013 Harley-Davidson CVO Overview

If you’re in the enviable position of positive cash flow, a right-side-up mortgage and general liquidity in your financial affairs, Harley-Davidson has a motorcycle for you from its Custom Vehicle Operations lineup.

2013 Harley-Davidson CVO Breakout Review

The 2013 Breakout from Harley-Davidson’s Custom Vehicle Operations is a dream bike. Pictures do not convey the beauty of this new model. Harley’s CVO group prides itself on creating “artistry you want to ride,” and the Breakout embodies this philosophy.

2012 Harley-Davidson Seventy-Two Review

Since Harley-Davidson’s done a lot of the heavy lifting by keeping styling tight and simple, the Seventy-Two strikes us as a blank sheet waiting for a rider to personalize it into a one-off modern-day chopper.

Harley-Davidson Road King Comparisons

2012 Harley-Davidson Sportster SuperLow vs. Triumph America [Video]

If you’re eager to have a user-friendly cruiser that won’t break the bank and yet still offers reputable performance and is welcoming of new and/or returning riders, then gaze upon the Harley-Davidson Sportster SuperLow and Triumph America.

2011 World Cruiser Shootout [Video]

What do the United States, United Kingdom, Italy and Japan have in common? Cruisers! We pit iconic motorcycles from Harley-Davidson, Triumph, Moto Guzzi and Honda against each other in our World Cruiser Shootout.

2011 Bagger Cruiser Shootout

Baggers are big business these days. We take three of the most prominent players and place them in a 2011 bagger blowout brawl! Read on to see who reigns supreme – Victory’s Cross Country, Harley-Davidson’s Street Glide or Star’s Stratoliner Deluxe.

2022 Harley-Davidson Road King

2021 Harley-Davidson Road King

2020 Harley-Davidson Road King

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