road king vs softail

The Ultimate Road King Vs Softail Comparison

Harley-Davidson, a name synonymous with strong, striking motorcycles. For decades, bikers have been drawn to the iconic Harley-Davidson brand. Of all the models they offer, two of the most popular are the Road King vs Softail. In this article we will explore what makes each bike unique so you can make an informed choice on which one is best for your needs!

Design and Styling

With an iconic design and styling, the Road King is a classic Harley-Davidson model that stands out. It offers comfort with its large fuel tank, wide handlebars and plush seat – ideal for long distance touring. Impressively too, it also boasts a detachable windscreen coupled with hard saddlebags to provide extra protection from the elements while on your journey!

In contrast, the Softail is built to appear more contemporary with a graceful and slim silhouette. With its hidden rear suspension, you can keep that classic hardtail look without sacrificing any comfort as you ride. The Softail also has a shorter seat for an even sportier feel as well as a smaller fuel tank than the Road King.


When it comes to performance, the Softail has a clear advantage over the Road King thanks to its larger engine choices. The 107 cubic inch and 114 cubic inch engines both come standard with the Road King, while those looking for more power can opt for either a 120 or 124 cubic inch engine on their Softail model. This allows riders to get superior torque and acceleration alongside Harley-Davidson’s signature V-twin sound that they know and love

Although the Softail’s concealed rear suspension gives it an upper hand in handling, compared to the Road King. The traditional suspension of the latter can make maneuvering at high speeds or taking tight turns a bit intimidating.

Comfort and Convenience

When it comes to comfort and convenience, you simply can’t beat the Road King. The larger seat size accompanied with a detachable windscreen makes long-distance touring effortless while providing ample storage space in its hard saddlebags for all of your essentials. Advantage: Road King!

In contrast, the Softail has a sportier design and lower seating position which may result in discomfort on long rides. Additionally, it offers less storage space than the Road King.

The Verdict on Road King vs Softail

Ultimately, it’s essential to test ride both the Road King vs Softail from Harley-Davidson to determine which motorcycle suits your specific needs. If you’re in search of a comfortable and convenient touring bike, then the Road King would be an excellent option for you. However, if riding more sporty is more suitable for your wants and requirements, then go with the Softail! Although either one of these bikes can take you on incredible adventures – so don’t forget that it all boils down to what best fits your style.

FeatureRoad KingSoftail
Design and StylingTraditionalModern, Sleek
Engine (cubic inches)107 or 114107, 114, or 120
SuspensionTraditionalHidden Rear
HandlingChallenging at high speeds or tight turnsBetter handling
Comfort and ConvenienceComfortable and convenient for long-distance touringSportier look and lower seat, less comfortable for long rides
Storage SpaceAmple storage space with hard saddlebagsLess storage space
Best suited forLong-distance touringSportier, agile riding

Note: This table is based on general information and may vary based on specific models and configurations, it’s always best to test ride the motorcycle and check the specs to make sure it fits your needs.


Below are some of the most frequently asked questions on the Road king vs Softail comparison:

What is the difference between the Road King vs Softail?

The Road King is a timeless beauty, made for long-distance trips with its ergonomic seat and wide handlebars that provide plenty of fuel for the journey. On the other hand, the Softail showcases a contemporary design geared towards sportier rides; it features a low sitting saddle partnered with an invisible rear suspension system – designed to offer both speed and agility on your travels!

Which one has better handling, Road King vs Softail?

The Softail’s hidden rear suspension grants it an upper hand in handling compared to the Road King’s traditional suspension. This makes the Softail easier to maneuver at high speeds and sharper turns, whereas with the Road King you may find yourself struggling against its potential lack of flexibility.

What is the engine size of the Road King and the Softail?

When it comes to the Road King, you have a choice between two engines- 107 or 114 ci; on the other hand, if Softail is your preferred option, then select among three: either 107ci, 114ci or 120ci engine.

Which one is more comfortable for long rides, Road King vs Softail?

The Road King is the ideal choice for extended excursions – it sports a broad seat and detachable windscreen, allowing you to remain comfortable during your journey. On the other hand, its counterpart Softail has an edgier design with a lower profile seat that may not be as pleasant over long distances.

Which one has more storage space, Road King or Softail?

The Road King has generous storage capacity thanks to its hard saddlebags, while the Softail offers lesser space for stowing items.

Is the Road King or Softail better suited for me?

Depending on your individual needs and tastes, the Road King is more suitable for travelers looking to cover long distances in comfort. Alternatively, if you desire a nimbler bike that can maneuver with ease – then investing in a Softail should be top priority. Of course, the best way to decide which one suits you best is by taking both models out on test rides!

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