As a teenager I had 2 Electra Glide posters on my bedroom wall. Always liked the look of them, but they cost a fortune! Thirty years later and I started to feel very mortal. If I didn't get one soon, would I ever get one?

In October 2008 I arranged the funding and ordered a 2009 model blue Electra Glide standard. I also arranged to have the King Tour Pak and the additional dials as standard on the Ultra Classic. No bike was available in the UK so I had to wait for one to come off the production line and then arrive in Britain.

The bike was manufactured on 27/10/2008, registered on 12/12/2008 and delivered the next day.

December 2011- Living with the Harley

I've now had the bike for 3 years and covered 13500 miles, so these are my  thoughts on it:

  • It's heavy, with myself & Karen on board it weighs half a ton!

  • It oozes class, it's the most iconic motorcycle in the world

  • I covered 2167 miles on our holiday to Spain in 2009. It's a good tourer and can carry a lot of luggage

  • The gearbox is very agricultural. There's a huge clunk as you change gear. Fifth gear make a whining sound.

  • The instrumentation in the batwing fairing looks like something from a '70s Cortina

  • Low speed turns are challenging, fast sweeping bends are no trouble (as long as you remember it's a big cruiser, not a roadster)

  • Sixth gear is good for cruising with the engine sweet spot at 3000 RPM.  Don't expect any sort of rapid acceleration unless you want to shift down into fifth

  • The standard exhaust sounds good

  • The paint  scheme looks first class

  • The quality of finish on the metal is poor, the chroming is so thin! Some alloy parts are untreated. You need to wash and dry the bike every time you take it out

  • When 9 months old I had to have 5 relays replaced due to corrosion. At 18 months the front mudguard was replaced due to paint bubbles. At 3 years old it failed it's first MOT due to a collapsing rear wheel bearing (only 13500 miles).

Conclusion

Personally I love the Electra Glide, but I wouldn't want it as my only bike. Riding one is an experience; they're not easy to ride but the ride is very rewarding. The build quality is very poor for the money they cost, but HD have you by the b*lls. If you want the genuine article then you have to accept the warts and all. The Japanese  try and copy, but there's nothing like riding a big twin Harley.

Click here for a list of the accessories I've fitted

Last Updated 21/11/2013