Riders have been outfitting Sportsters for touring duty for a long time. Now The Motor Company has done the work for you with the 2014 SuperLow 1200T.
To make the 1200cc Sportster touring-friendly, Harley added a 14-inch polycarbonate windscreen capable of being adjusted on the fork depending on rider preference. It also pops off easily. The windscreen works well, diverting air over the crown of a rider’s head with a little wind coming up from underneath.
Harley also added a set of locking saddlebags wrapped in black vinyl. The bags will hold a couple day’s provisions but aren’t overly large, Harley needing to maintain the aesthetic balance of the narrow-framed Sportster. A couple of screws hold each in place for quick and easy removal. It also has factory-installed rear docking hardware for the addition of a luggage rack and sissy bar with backrest.
The Sportster SuperLow 1200T sees updated suspension and brakes, too, the 39mm Showa fork retuned and tauter while the rear suspension now features a preload adjustable emulsion shock with a convenient hand dial on the left side. While the front compressed fully a couple of times on direct hits, the rear does an admirable job of sheltering riders while smoothing out the ride.
The SuperLow 1200T gets new dual-piston 34mm Nissin calipers to go along with a bigger front rotor. Braided stainless steel brake lines provides better feel and makes the front quick to respond. Both all-aluminum master cylinders have been updated too. ABS is a $795 option that’s worth the extra piece of mind.
For me at six-foot-tall, the rider’s triangle is very compact, its bars providing one of the easiest reaches around. Mid-controls and a 26.1-inch seat height leave me just enough room to squeeze in comfortably, but also locks me into place for long hauls. It does make it a cinch to place both feet squarely on the ground at a stop, ergos of the SuperLow 1200T claimed by Harley to be tailored toward riders from 5’1” to 5’7”.
Other factors that make the SuperLow 1200T rider-friendly is a light clutch pull and rubber isolated mini-floorboards. The two-up touring seat moves riders forward a bit and it’s been narrowed where it meets the tank.
Dynamically, the 1200T is typical Sportster, a motorcycle with light steering, easy transitioning, and a grunty 1200cc V-Twin. Rubber mounting keeps vibes tolerable, while plenty of low-end torque gets it up to freeway speed in a snap. We also noticed a nice top-end surge in 5th gear around 3650 rpm. Thanks to an rpm display in the updated electronics package, we were able to pinpoint the surge.
The SuperLow 1200T gained about 28 pounds over the standard Sportster, but the engine has more than enough power to compensate. The new touring features are functional, practical, and can be removed quickly, providing riders with essentially two bikes in one.