Harley Davidson Water Cooled Heads Patent – Updated

Harley Davidson V-Twin with water cooled heads

Harley Davidson V-Twin with water cooled heads

Everyone keeps talking about Harley Davidson making the move to water cooling, but there's nothing like a patent to show us what they're up to. Charles from Strasbourg sent me a note about this patent they just turned up, and sure enough, it's Harley Davidson's plans to water cool the heads on their touring models by hiding the cooling system within the leg shield portions of the fairing.

Harley Davidson V-Twin with water cooled heads

Harley Davidson V-Twin with water cooled heads

The cooling system, consists of 2 radiators, fans and hoses hidden within the fairing. A water pump is centrally located at the bottom front center of the frame. The water passages within the heads are rather basic, a simple loop that carries the coolant more or less along the exhaust passages and wraps back around the valves before returning to the radiator.

Harley Davidson V-Twin water cooling system

Harley Davidson V-Twin water cooling system

Although the patent shows and describes the cooling system installed on a Harley touring bike, the patent states:

Before any embodiments of the invention are explained in detail, it is to be understood that the invention is not limited in its application to the details of construction and the arrangement of components set forth in the following description or illustrated in the following drawings. The invention is capable of other embodiments and of being practiced or of being carried out in various ways. Also, it is to be understood that the phraseology and terminology used herein is for the purpose of description and should not be regarded as limiting.

... which basically means it can show up arranged to work on any of the bikes in their lineup.

The entire cooling system seems pretty well worked out and ready for production which may mean it will show up very soon, maybe as soon as 2012. It's only a matter of time.

Link: US Patent Office

Charles from Moto Infos sent us this tip. Thanks!

Harley Davidson V-Twin water cooling system front view

Harley Davidson V-Twin water cooling system front view

Harley Davidson water cooling system rear view

Harley Davidson water cooling system rear view

Comments

  1. Devilish says

    What…when…I won’t hold my breath. Harley will only put this in production when everyone else has gone to something much more modern and efficient. After all they have a history to live up to….I’m just saying.

  2. Klaus says

    This just shows how far HD has maneuvered themselves into a corner! They have to stay true to their history of air cooling, so they have to hide the radiators, which are necessary to keep their bikes competitive. It’s the opposite of watercooled Japanese cruisers who feature bolt-on fins to make it look like an air-cooled Harley!
    I wonder how they plan to patent it when seperate radiators in the fairing is nothing new.

  3. JustThunkin says

    Okay, I’m not an engineer specializing in heat transfer or thermodynamics….but…certainly this basic layout will prove that a H-D Big Twin head will boil water, and, other than that, what??

    The rather small “jacket” and limited contact with the head mass doesn’t seem like it would pull any meaningful amount of heat from the engine…hence there would be a minimal cooling ability to accompany any increased CR or cam specs for horsey increases.

    I’ve seen some IR scope reading of the Dyna and Evo motors, and the heat signature is very linear in increasing from the bottom of the cylinder to head. Which leads me to believe that if there is any meaningful cooling, there is going to be some unusual stresses, and hence, head sealing and reliability issues?

    Any R&D guys out there to clarify?

    • says

      Porsche has engines with oil cooled cylinder heads while keeping the cylinders air cooled – guess it must work somehow.

      • says

        Porsche and Harley have been working together since the 70’s, I wouldn’t doubt that this is Porsche’s idea.

        the R&D guys I talked to in Milwaukee said they canned this idea because they couldn’t get anymore horses out of the motor even with water…

  4. says

    This is no surprise to me as I was working at a Harley dealer when the V-Rod emerged and people were beginning to backlash against that bike. Many people knew that the V Rod was a step forward for HD toward becoming emission compliant in the days ahead, because North American emissions standards were beginning to really shake up Milwaukee, and the writing was on the wall that in time the air cooled engines would no longer be suitable in regards to emissions output.

    While I understand the need for HD to stick to its “core values”, perhaps they need to partner up with Porsche once again as they did on the V Rod program. Not so much in engineering, but in marketing. Porsche long was the quintessential air cooled sports car, but was forced by the emissions laws to move to water cooling. While some stalwarts remained loyal to the air cooled cars, Porsche enjoys a huge client base that go for both air cooled and water cooled machines, recognizing them simply as Porsches collectively.

    I think that once again HD is placing themselves on the wrong path as this appears to be a half hearted approach to solving the problem. What I fail to understand is why after spending the money on the V Rod program have Milwaukee limited that engine to just one machine. They should take a look around and potentially design a new chassis for their outdated touring machines to accomodate the V Rod mill in my opinion. I just don’t see the logic in what goes on in the Motor Company’s management halls.

    • Ken says

      Half hearted is right. It seems that either HD is incapable of moving forward or they throw just enough money at something to say they tried.

      Personally, I see nothing wrong with keeping their core products as long as they adapt and intergrate new products. I always thoght the Vrod’s biggest failure is that it looks like an oddball cruiser instead of a street fighter (or even a copy of a Japanese copy of a Harley!). I was so excited watching “the making of the Vrod” until I saw the finished product. Talk about a let down… Then I thought Buell would get that motor for sure. Let down. Again.

      • hoyt says

        The Helicon motor is so much better than the Revolution motor, unless you are thinking of the VR motor in the early days before it became the Revolution motor.

        The Helicon motor is arguably more handsome than the Revolution motor too. Although the Helicon is a 72 degree twin, its “v” looks better than the Revolution’s 60 degree “v” and the Helicon is more compact which is better suited for the Buell line.

        Good one…”(or even a copy of a Japanese copy of a Harley!)”

    • DnA says

      I’ve often thought the same thing: Why doesn’t Harley develope a touring bike based on the VROD engine? It’s such a great engine and seems ideally suited for a tourer. Someday.. maybe…

    • Java says

      Well the thing is harley had not had a new bike in decades before the v rod it sold its bikes based on the heritage. Hence its was clear that the people have a fixed image of harley in their minds, so you can’t blame them if they feel the v rod is not really a harley cus they feel harley is a heritage motorcycle company. so harley will first need to dismantle this image and then hope the people will accept there new products.

  5. Tin Man says

    This is just right for the Tour Models, just a touch of cooling to keep them emission compliant while retaining the HD look that is the Gold Standard in Baggers. The capability of water cooling other models in the BT line up will enable HD to up the HP levals to satisfy those few who think they need more power,without going to far off the V twin look.

  6. Doug says

    The idea of keeping the lower maintenance qualities of a pushrod engine, and the benefits of liquid cooling seems straight forward enough application for a street going touring motorcycle. The “pirate & power rangers” polarities will whine though.

  7. Ken says

    With the limited amount of cooling this would supply since there is only one line going through the head and the placement of the radiators (pointing directly at the riders legs). My guess is this system will be used for a heater in cold weather and not for cooling the engine…. but I could be wrong.

    • Paul Crowe - "The Kneeslider" says

      From the patent:

      air passing through from the right and left radiators is directed away from the motorcycle by a right and left air duct that is positioned within the right and left lowers, respectively.

      • Jim says

        We will need to see it in production to know how it will work, but…
        Air hitting an obstacle tries to return to the path it was flowing after passing the obstacle, which will be the space occupied by the riders legs. Additionally I know Electroglide riders who remove the lowers in hot weather

  8. hoyt says

    What if HD stopped playing into the “power/displacement race” and perfected the 96 inch engine? Would an oil cooler help HD keep the 96-inch motor emission compliant for the next decade? If so, this could help them develop a proper re-do of the Revolution line instead of spending money on the above “Waterhead”.

    The air-cooled HD motor has never been about hp anyway (at least not from the factory), so why continue to build bigger & bigger motors that will run hotter and hotter?

    They chased after Victory’s 106 c.i.* by building a 103 & 110 c.i., so now it’s as though they can’t return to a 96 inch because that would “lose the displacement race”, wouldn’t it? Oh the Shame! Please…I’d rather have the smaller motor with oil cooling.

    * Victory’s motor has used an oil cooler since it was a 92 c.i.

    • Paul Crowe - "The Kneeslider" says

      “Waterhead”

      That does have a certain ring to it and the Motor Company might like it …

      But if it overheats, “hothead” or boils over, “bubblehead” :-)

  9. hoyt says

    Plus, where would all the aftermarket speakers go with these rads in the fairing? Conjuring up the SouthPark episode

  10. B50 Jim says

    Wow… it looks as if Harley-Davidson finally is moving into the 20th century! This system appears to be a step above the thermosiphon principle as Ford used on his Model T (See? It has an actual water pump!). But it seems to cool only the exhaust area and looks like the engineers grafted in some tubing ad rudimentary jackets — as if someone in Management said as an afterthought, “By the way, maybe we should think about water cooling.” It’s half-hearted at best. H-D so fears its customers that it won’t dare to design a fully-water-cooled engine, even though the writing is on the wall in the form of environmental regulations. No reason it couldn’t make an effective water-cooled engine that has sufficient decorative fins to make it still look like its air-cooled ancestors. Or H-D could make a bold statement by designing the engine to look like it came off a steam locomotive, with rivets and black castings and not a hint of fins. The paranoia over a visible radiator would be greatly diminished by examining the competition that has effectively incorporated radiators and hoses into the bike’s design. Or maybe do the opposite and hang it right out in front of God and everyone; call it a “Screamin’ Eagle Heat Exchanger” and add a couple more letters to the model designation, and the Faithful will line up to buy it.

    • Boog says

      Yeah, lose the fins. Some of the drag bikes shave the fins off anyway for weight purposes. Add sodium filled valves for heat exchange and you might bump the HP up enough to make v-twins interesting. You would still have the hot-rod sound that everybody seems to hold so dear…pipe that water through the frame and put the radiator on the back where it could double as a license plate holder.

    • BobG says

      You HD haters are so predictable that it’s actually funny. You call for HD to do this or do that, and when they step up and do something, you bash them anyway. Face it, you’re never going to buy any bike that they make, even if it is declared the best ever produced. And that’s ok. You just sound like complete A-holes. Please keep it up ’cause it’s entertaining.

      • Boog says

        Well, I’ll not resort to name-calling here, but I “cut my teeth” on rattrap clutches, tank shifters, and spark advance grips on the left side, and NO electric start…so don’t call me a HD hater. I also went through the AMF years when you would ride for a day and wrench for a week.
        My beef with HD these days is the COST…the “counter-culture” of HD “lifestyle” has driven the price of these out of my reach. Yeah, I know you can buy a new Sportster for xxxx dollars, but if I want a small bike, there are better alternatives, in my estimation. I have a metric copy of a Softtail sitting out in my garage right now, and it rides and sounds good, and it is air cooled, and is quite reliable. Most days, I choose the inline-four sitting next to it for a ride, tho…on the other hand, Gold Wings are expensive, too.

      • Ken says

        First of all BobG, when you call everyone “haters” it makes me chuckle. I’m still a younger guy and I won’t use that term as it sounds childish. Second, I don’t hate Harleys, they just do not make a bike for me. You have no idea how many times I went to a dealership thinking this year, HD is going to make a bike that will make me trade in my Shadow. Every year I leave dissapointed that it doesn’t exist. The Fat Bob has come the closest, but it was priced to high. I had a choice, new vehicle for the family or new bike for me. Family wins out every time. Can’t strap a baby to the bike like a bedroll. Give me a 750 tracker that will fit my 6’3″ frame for less than 10K.

        • Ken says

          I bought my 1100 shadow sabre used in 2002 if memory serves me correctly. I was looking at a fatboy, also used but 15K with the same set up (bags, vans & hines pipes) but the shadow was 7K. I saved myself a few bucks AND i thought it was a better looking bike. Still do.

          Also, the Iron and many other bikes didn’t exist then. My taste has changed since then, but I am still drawn to the exhaust note like a moth to the flame. I tried a sporty, but it was more cramped. If I had my garage still, I probably would have bought a cheap, hardley used 883 and chopped it up into a proper scrambler. Another bike I wished they would make! No garage means I cannot modify. Working in the parking stall is a no-no where I live. I still think a 650-750 twin would be the way to go….

        • BobG says

          Glad I made you chuckle! I understand you’re problem as I’ve been in the same situation. I’m not saying they are the best bikes because they aren’t. they are not cheap and I have spent way too much money on them. But that’s my choice. It’s just one style of bike I’ve always liked. I just get tired of hearing the same old bs from people who dislike them. I don’t mind critics, but go ride one and come up with something new if you don’t like it. I would bet that 90% of them never even ridden one.

    • Jim says

      Me thinks HD is missing a great opportunity to move forward to a modern water cooled motor while deflecting owner angst by blaming ‘guvmint’ and tree huggers.

      BMW is going to water cooled boxers and there is hardly a peep coming from the traditionalists.

      • Klaus says

        Of course there’s no peep – BMW technology has always been top notch, starting with shaft drive. Their boxers were radically improved over the decades while HD’s minor changes didn’t make much of a difference. That was part of their success, people liked the old-fashioned style. But now it comes to haunt them because the same people are not interested in ‘modern’ old-fashioned bikes.

      • Dickey says

        Of course, but Beemers are so ugly anyway that there’s not much you can do to make them uglier.

  11. Don says

    We’ll see what happens; HD is typically pretty good at keeping things secretive till the annual dealer meeting….announcing the new lineup/changes.

    Personally, as a huge HD fan/rider, they probably have to do it to stay competitive and meet the ever restrictive EPA requirements. Just wondering where all the hot air goes; the riders legs??

    Also, with limited water “cooling” as depicted it would seem to cool (or heat) unevenly, causing problems in the long run

  12. says

    Well…so, this is an enigne where water is used to cool the head. Has this never been done before, so a patent is needed at all? I`m just wondering.
    Also, read in a german magazine that the BMW boxer is also moving on to watercooled heads in the next model change…seems to be the way to go. While i guess that the BMW-solution is propably a little more…sophisticated.
    just my 2 cents.

  13. Sid says

    How is this halfass facade going to be perceived any better than a fully functional, well-engineered modern motor with proper aesthetics and power?

    Ford manages to sell lots of Mustangs to the younger and older crowd that loves both the 60s-era and current cars.

    Yeah, the motorcycle motor is on display more than a car, but that does not mean a liquid-cooled motor cannot be designed to look great.

    The next 5-10 years will be interesting to watch HD….the “heat” is on :)

    • DoctorNine says

      My thoughts exactly, Sid. Engineering, form to function, properly executed, is always beautiful. This is as ugly as braces on a buck-toothed mule. Even if you get the teeth fixed, it’s still a mule when you’re done.

  14. Paulinator says

    Say it aint so…?

    I donno but it seems like a good idea to me. Taking heat from the hottest part of the engine cools everything else by eliminating heat transfer before it happens. A well designed set-up should reduce heat-stress in problem areas like exhaust valves and seats, too. Perhaps this stream-lined cooling system has an unusually high operating temperature and a correspondingly high 3 or 4 bar operating pressure, coupled with a very high flow rate. The heat exchange at the radiator is dependant on the temperature delta between the ambient air and the coolant, so its overall efficiency may actually be well beyond what we are basing our assumptions on IE/ the automotive norm.

  15. Dave Murray says

    First, seems to me that any first year student at “Earl’s Law School & Live Bait” could blow this patent out of the water on the basis of prior art.
    Why add another fluid, pump, lines, etc? You’ve already got oil in there, use it as a coolant, as my Hinckley Triumph Thruxton does. All you would need is a bigger oil cooler and maybe enhanced oil flow to the head, as they did on the XR 1200.
    DWM

    • Azzy says

      Patent office isnt full of the brightest and best thinkers, from what I am told. They let the courts and lawyers hammer it all out.

      We aren’t in Franklin’s day any longer.

  16. Steve says

    I don’t know if the design folks at Harley are just stupid or extremely stubborn when it comes to building a water cooled v-twin. Every major manufacturer has managed to deign a liquid cooled v-twin cruiser with a compact radiator and still maintain the general appearance of an air cooled engine. I own a HD Road King and I hate the engine noise and heat that comes from the air cooled motor.

  17. Tin Man says

    And Harley will continue to be the best selling street bike in the USA, and the most highly coveted bike in the world!! Sorry Haters, look it up… There is really nothing HD can do, or needs to do in order to win over the haters, simply put, the compitition needs to imitate HD to sell any cruisers at all(Yamaha)or continue to try and sell crotch rockets in a dead market.

    • says

      “There is really nothing HD can do, or needs to do in order to win over…”

      That is a very dangerous position for a company to feel they are in. Now I know that is your take on HD but I’m just saying. When a company thinks they can just sit back and coast, a downhill is usually involved.

    • Random says

      “Best selling bike in the USA”. – however, analysts say it’s a small, dwindling market.

      “Most coveted bike in the world” – riiiight, just “show me the data” to support your statement. Cause if we’re just throwing opinions I’d say HD is near the top, right behind BMW, Ducati, KTM, the Big Jap Four and Triumph.

      The great market problem with bikes in developed countries seems to be the increasing rider age (no shortage of young riders in less developed countries). Young guys are still atracted by new Camaros, Shelbys, Chargers – but their tech isn’t based in the sixties. If we focus big displacement bikes, BMW is one of the biggest sellers in Europe, and they are worried about increasing age too. They compete in nearly every bike market, but they abandoned the cruiser niche years ago. They wanted to increase sales in young guys groups – and developed an astounding superbike. On the opposite side, HD’s strategy seemed at least a bit risky, sticking to air-cooled (aesthetic) solutions.

      Don’t get me wrong, I like cruisers, but even if they are highly succesfull in some market it’s hard to suggest it has global relevance. Unless you’re talking China, India… I admire HD’s history and the pride (north) american people have of it, but I think part of the resentment towards it seems to be the belief it could be much more, a motorcycle tech leader, just like it is in some car segments. Not the kind of change this liquid-cooling solution seems to be about.

      • says

        HD vs BMW study is very interesting as they currently trying hard to attract younger riders. Both are having hard days on finding the right path. But the Motor Werke is expanding on its core markets as the Motor Company watches sales declining in the US.
        Maybe that’s why BMW has been able to update its young rider range and marketing : half-faired F800S failed, they went naked with the 800R. After slow debuts, sales are improving driven by the S1000RR reputation (although they we’re unable to compete properly on the track). F650GS and F800GS mostly reach boomers that can afford flat-twins ? Here they try the Ducati Hypermotard way under Husqvarna brand, and so on.

        Since 2008, berliner headquarters as been seeing euros come in when H-D was stopping dollars bleeding. As a wounded beast, it went back in a shadowed corner to heal, focused on its custom-only strategy. Thus 2012 may not be a great year forward. We may have to wait until 2013 and new regulations applied in US and UE to see real new models (with the promised Buell Blast replacement ?)

        Anyway, here in France, I know more young adults interested in buying a Sportster, faithfull to the H-D image we have than a F800R, efficient but funny styled and with no real BMW taste in it.

      • says

        Just hitting reply to your comment since you mentioned Triumph. I just came off a 1k+ trip on my Thruxton and it was weird. I’m not sure I have ever seen so many trikes based on HD for one. For another, I kept meeting HD riders and probably half of them I had to say, “No, Triumph is still in business.”
        One guy went so far as to say, “I thought Harley had run all those others out, except the jap bikes.” (And he wasn’t kidding, he really thought so) I’m starting to wonder how many have an HD because they didn’t know there was anything else around to buy….

    • BobG says

      Tin Man, as usual. you are right on. It doesn’t matter what HD builds now or in the future to these people. They’re all easy chair experts in everything motorcyling. What they have is best, what they say is right regarless of facts.
      What Oldtimer said the other day is so true: “Guess there is good and bad in everything. Just seems more productive to enjoy whatever any bike has to offer rather than just pronouncing how bad it is and how stupid people who ride it must be.”
      These type people will always be around to bash anything and everything, reciting cliches and repeating pure bs over and over instead of taking an honest, unbiased look at something. It’s a shame as there are so many fun bikes to ride out there from many different manufacturers, but these folks will never know that joy because they never bother to look past their own stupidity.

      • rubberdown says

        Sound like most Harley riders to me. How many of them ever ridden something else? Or even researched anything else? To them if it ain’t Harley it it’s just another sewing-machine-crotch-rocket, unless it’s a metric cruiser. That arrogant ignorance you so aptly described happens to run both ways.

  18. mike harris says

    Ok, Here’s my take on this; if you are familiar with H-D’s heads on the “Twin Cam” motor,you are aware that most of what you see is cooling fin, there is not that much mass, so the jackets would not have to be very large. the exhaust port is the hottest part of the head, so it would make sense to start there. The XR1200 already has oil cooling very similar to this, so I would imagine that H-D is applying knowledge gleened from that program. It also makes sense that H-D will move slowly with this to allow the more die-hard customer base to accept the inevitable. I remember when everyone bashed the “Evolution” motor, and look where H-D is today……

  19. FREEMAN says

    Now I’m no engineer but I believe the one thing everyone’s missing when looking at this patent is that it looks relatively easy to remove and convert your emission-compliant water-cooled heads to traditional air-cooled heads and vise-versa if the owner so desires. It seems to me that this setup will help with satisfying emissions while appealing to air-cooled and water-cooled fans alike. Just food for thought.

  20. tim says

    I’ve never ridden an HD tourer, but that rear exhaust port is right near the family jewels, correct? makes sense to keep the temperature down: don’t want to kill off the next generation of the HD Faithful before they get a chance to even be born……

  21. Mister X says

    Harley’s dead, that’s what I said … I’ve wanted to buy an American motorcycle for 50 years that wasn’t a Hog, and the closest Harley ever came was with the XLCR. No, water cooling the heads is merely for emissions, not performance, and nothing can save Harley from a slooow death.

  22. Sick Cylinder says

    I think FREEMAN might have hit the nail on the head!

    A removable water cooling system so you can increase the noise and emissions!

  23. mel says

    HD is in a tough spot. They were able to ride the baby boomer wave because the bikes were just like the ones all those boomers wished they had back in the 60’s and 70’s. Now they are faced with a rapidly shrinking market and where can they go from here. If they stray too far from the gal they brought to the dance they loose their customer base. If they try to get up to speed they have to reinvent the brand and compete with Japan, Italy, England. Moving production to India should pretty much kill their customer base in North America. Makes it even easier to laugh at the guys and gals that got Harley tats. Maybe the best thing they could do is scale back production of the air cooled twins, keep making them in the US and go after the youth market with smallish, inexpensive bikes made in India. That raises the question of what to do about the dealer network that they forced into building mega showrooms at huge expense. Have these guys never considered demographics? They have lots bigger problems than how to cool the engines. Fact is , those big air cooled twins are pretty good as is. The first company that gets young riders invested in the brand will win. Remember Honda in the sixties. Those are the same people that buy Goldwings now. It is time for a standard smallbore that a high school kid can afford that he can comfortably take a girl for a ride on. A 350 Sprint for the millennium.

    • Walt says

      Good and thoughtful analysis, Mel. Harley’s traditional
      “look and feel” (and sound) are essential to their appeal. The liquid-cooled heads would help with power output and emissions control, without being as fake as the Asian bolt-on fins. As to the demographic shift it’s a real problem. Buick, Cadillac and Lincoln have dealt with the same thing. Who would have predicted Caddy would use Led Zeppelin in a commercial, instead of Sinatra?

    • tim says

      Just thinking about that, maybe it will be one of the Chinese brands that will do this? Don’t laugh: in the ’60’s there was a lot of negativity around anything Japanese (“jap crap” as it was called). Till people realised how good the products were. The rest, to quote Drive By Truckers, is history. Look at scooters: brands like PGO, Kymco, Baotian and a bunch of others you’ve (and I’ve) never heard of make really good products at very competitive prices. A few of those brands are starting to produce those small capacity small size motorcycles already (I’ve seen a thing called a SYM “Wolf” (no, really) which is a 250cc small commuter thing. It looks acceptable quality wise (I didnt ride it).

      Short answer: maybe its happening already..?

    • Danny says

      I agree with you Mel, for the most part.
      A few thoughts; Back in the day, the little 165 was styled after the Sportster. My Dad was a H-D guy, some of his friends were Indian fans.
      They tried the single-cyl Buell Blast, it didnt do so well.
      H-D is indeed in a tough sell position. The long-stroke 45deg engine is limited for sure.
      I agree with some of the other posters, why not offer the Revolution motor in different applications?
      I hope H-D succeeds and lives on for a long time to come. I do know a little about their inner workings, some very arrogant individuals/business policies.
      Just my 2 cents.

  24. Steve says

    Watercooling a Harley is not as hard or complicated as it might seem. The best and most efficent way is to ride it off the end of a long pier at about fifty MPH. That will ensure the momentum will carry it into deep water where it is most at home. Not to worry about the rider in the water, he can use the fat girl on the back for a flotation device. Sounds like a win win to me :)

  25. Tin Man says

    Harley sells more Sportsters in a year than BMW sells bikes. In fact HD sells more bikes than BMW, Ducati and Triumph COMBINED. Yes the Asians sell alot of bikes, but that is in the 3rd world countries, In the Coveted US market the Asian sales are in the toilet. The 600cc Crotch rocket market is flooded and sales are down 80%, Why do you think there are so many imitation Harleys flooding the Metric showrooms? It is the Metric makers that are backed into a corner with a dying market, they must copy HD cruisers at a financial loss to try and sell bikes in developed countrys.

    • NLS says

      Wonder… where do you get your statistics?
      Haven’t found ANYTHING like that wherever I looked.
      I wonder how could some company selling outdated well polished motorcycles (not even pure American any more), more than companies actually doing R&D.
      No offense to you or HD owners.

      • powermatic says

        That’s actually probably true, since Harley sold about 300,000 bikes worldwide in 2010, whereas BMW sold about 100,000. Of course, BMW actually made money last year (4.86 million euros), with both revenue and profit up from the year before (19.3% and 11.7 % respectively). Compare that to the huge losses HD has each year. And of course, their sales have plummeted since, say, ’06, when they sold 350,000 bikes in the U.S. alone! The argument could be made that one company is on the rise, and one…..isn’t.

        Plus, they don’t make anything that will replace my GS.

    • Hooligan says

      “Yes the Asians sell a lot of bikes, but that is in the 3rd world countries”
      So the whole of Europe is a 3rd World Country? Tut tut just ignorance about what is happening in the rest of the world.

      • ACXL1K says

        @ Hooligan. Europe will be a 3rd world country soon enough. Tut tut, just ignorance about what is happening in your own backyard.

  26. BigMo says

    Temperature in our part of the world goes up to 55 DegC in summer, some of us just hibernate their bikes till SEP for the beginning of our riding season, and some of us don’t complain about the excessive heat and keep on riding 2-3 times a week, but for sure, the heat from a Harley engine has stopped so many people from riding!! Let’s see how these water cooled engines would changed the perception over here !! it might be our solution for a whole year riding season!

  27. B*A*M*F says

    @ Mel:

    Spot on regarding the entry level bike to get young people hooked on motorcycling. Where I live, I see tons of 1970s and 1980s UJMs being resurrected and ridden as is, or in a rolling transformation to cafe racer. Either way, I’m seeing tons more motorcycles than I used to. That’s wonderful. For the current manufacturers, someone buying a 30+ year old bike does little for their bottom line. So a fun entry new bike would be smart.

    Regarding the HD watercooled head. It makes sense to me. The head is the hottest part of the engine. The lack of coolant passages through the crankcase area, cylinders and such should also mean fewer leaks. Hopefully this allows them to meet emissions standards for a long time to come.

  28. Ed says

    I believe Ken is correct. The air ducts will direct hot air away from the rider in the summer and on to the rider in the winter. It is not a patent on engine cooling, but a patent on a heater for a bike! Just like a car! Honda already has a more efficient system to cool a cylinder head. The complexity of two radiators and blowers is only (in my opinion) to allow both of the riders legs to receive hot air. Notice in the detailed description the vents (64L and 64R) will pivot to allow the rider to adjust them.

  29. says

    DnA said: “I’ve often thought the same thing: Why doesn’t Harley develop a touring bike based on the VROD engine?”

    I started drawing these concept bikes based on the V-Rod when it was first introduced ten years ago, because I knew it could never be a big seller in its original (and current) configuration.

    Ten years later I’m still right. And now I’m seeing people actually trying to build some of the bikes in my drawings.

    You’ll notice that most of my designs require little or no frame or powertrain modifications, meaning Harley could easily produce these without any serious retooling.

    You’ll also notice that some were created just for a laugh.

    http://thp.yuku.com/topic/116/Custom-V-Rods

    • ForzaMan says

      Dude, you just saved the motor co a ton of money.Problem solved. Look great.That said, I’ll never buy another water cooled bike. I like the simplicity of air-cooled.(had a GPZ-900 Kaw).Nightmare with all the hoses ,pumps,o-rings etc. I now have a ’04 HD LowRider and a ’79 Honda CBX. They work fine for me and I’ll probably ride them till I’m done.

    • Bengy says

      Todd8080, Love the pics and the V-Rod concept Dresser. It sounds so simple for HD to realize the concept and have wanted to know the real reason why they dont.. I know now they wont with this new watercooled head patend and to tell the truth im disappointed that the V-Rod concept Dresser may never exist. Im planning on checking out the HD watercooled Dresser (patend) when and if it comes out but might stick with the thought of converting a V-Rod to a Dresser. Ive seen a few of these around and looked very interesting. I ride a 01 Ultra and have been waiting for HD to do the watercooled Dresser.

  30. Tom says

    Harleys are Harleys, period. They are a bike for either an older crowd or a more rebellious group. I’ve ridden them off and on since the ’60s. Have two in the garage. i also have an ’07 Hayabusa that has zero resale value, funky engineering and isn’t much fun to ride.

    I don’t think Harley will ever go under. and if/when the Chinese market opens up, they will sell a gazillion over there. If the bike isn’t for you, no problem. But the mechanical whirring, grunting and just wonderful sounds that comes out of these suckers on a easy ride up the coast works for me every time. Having said that, the straight piped bikes ridden by posers gets old in a hurry, same as the crotch rocket guys speeding through town.

    It’s all good…

  31. Nicolas says

    Doesn’t seem a bad idea at all. The way of the “full liquid” cooling scooted with the V-Rod was not a commercial success for HD, and air-cooled is doomed for emission compliance reasons, so this “lighter” version of water-cooled may be the right compromise.
    I’d really like to know how HD’s marketing folks define their customer target … if their core customers perceive liquid cooling as well a a holy bible with pictures in it, well it sucks, but what can they do ?

    • SD says

      what can they do?

      First step would be to recognize the above is still a water-cooled engine with not one, but 2 radiators. Big deal if they are hidden, it is still a bike with radiators & plumbing, so why not move on legitimately?

      No doubt how much I like air-cooled motors; but the 45-degree design has limits with air-cooling and how large it can be built. The EPA is just one consideration. Heat from these increasingly larger motors will affect rider comfort.

      No matter how clever the above design is, at the end of the ride, it is just a mockery. It is neither air-cooled and it is also not a comprehensively built liquid-cooled motor that has performance.

      Willie G. and the old guard are in a pathetic denial. Step aside. It is a publicly-held company.

  32. Chris R says

    I am sure HD has done their homework on Thermo Dynamincs in regards to the cooling properties. If they make it, I will buy it. I don’t give a rats a** about how expensive or what their rating is. I don’t make comment to people the need to ride less expensive bikes, it is their choice. My choice is a Harley. I ride a Harley, not an imitation. My Harleys (yes, plural) have run flawless and I rack on the miles since I am a rider not a poser or a harda** biker. If you want to own and can afford to ride a Harley (air or liquid cooled), do so, If you can’t afford it, or it doesn’t fit you, admit it and ride what you can afford or like. Making Stupid a** remarks about HD patent, obviously has never gone through the patent process before but proves a making ignorant statements remove all doubt what you are.

  33. Zippy says

    Personally I think they should just close up shop, lay off all the employees and move on. There arr plenty of HDs out there for everyone who wants one. We all know that big government is much better suited to tell folks what products to build then the free market.

    • FREEMAN says

      That’s all we need: more unemployed folk.
      The company makes money and keeps thousands of people employed. Now I can’t share first hand, but I’d wager building bikes for a living is an awesome career. What’s so bad about that?

  34. Chris K says

    I’m a Tech at a Harley dealership. The problem with putting the Revolution motor in a bagger would be the old guys that ride them. I would say 80% of our customers are 55 or older. These guys have a problem with lugging the air cooled v-twins, I can’t imagine them riding a bagger with a Revo in it. Old guys plus 8000 rpm don’t mix.

  35. Bengy says

    Chris K, I disagree with your ” old guy” lugging concept. I fall into that catagory “old guy” with a lot of friends who ride Harleys and we dont lugg. I did a Demo ride on a V-Rod in Sturgis 2003 and the first thing that came to mind was a V-Rod Dresser. Ive been waitng for it to happen since then with no avail and have thought about converting one eventually until last year in Sturgus, I talked to a HD engineer about the watercooled dresser concept and they finally admitted to something in the works.I go to Sturgis every year and track down the HD engineers at the hospitality tent and try to pick there brains about it. Most of the time they blow me off about it as if they have been told not to talk about it. Last year they gave in. lol. Did you see the pics above from Todd8080, what a concept. Unfortunately this Harley Watercooled Head Patend is not what i had in mind but i will checkit out, I ride a 01 Ultra and will keep it till a watercooled Dresser comes out.

  36. davidabl says

    Since performance isn’t really an objective for the MoCo, It seems hard to believe that Guzzi,Triumph, and some of the Ducatis can get away with oil/air cooling and Harley can’t? As far as I’ve heard there’s
    no big push on these mfgr’s to go to h20? Heck, all that even Royal Enfield had to do to get into CA was go from iron barrel to aluminum,, fuel inject. add a cat, and gastank fume recapture..

    As to a new “entry level” H.D. I’d like to see them “revive the forty-five.” Concept: think a smaller and more affordable CrossBones. A mid weight (and weight-conscious!) softail drawing some inspiration from the W-series bikes of the 40’s. Stylish enough tosell for a just a bit of a premium over the Sportster, and incorporating some of the very practical features of it’s ancestors (now almost forgotten) A new feature: Floorboard/foot control mounts that can be moved backwards or forwards somewhat to accomodate the rider And choice of several risers with different degrees of pullback for the same reason.
    Unl;ike the other “haters” I am making suggestions for a bike that I’d actually like to buy.

    • hoyt says

      A small Flathead would be stellar, but what would the development cost total to make it compliant? No doubt it would sell big time.

      The other motors you mentioned are half the size (or close to it) of HD’s 103c.i. or 110 c.i. Every other motor listed is also oil-cooled, except the Royal Enfield. (Might as well include Victory’s 106 c.i. with oil cooling – I haven’t heard that they are under the same EPA time crunch, either.)

      Only Guzzi, Royal Enfield, & Victory are in the same predicament as HD because the other OEMs have the large revenue streams from liquid-cooled engines*. However, even the other 3 remaining air/oil-cooled stalwarts don’t have such an entrenched customer base in the air cooled big motor as does Harley…
      -Guzzi is working on a liquid-cooled motor
      -R.E has their largest revenue in India where air/oil cooling will remain for some time.
      -Victory is capable of anything but they now have Indian to figure out.

      *maybe the Revo platform could sell enough to sustain HD’s current size but the above patent could suggest lack of confidence in that regard. There is quite the interest & potential of the Revo based on the next topic (VRod Glide).

  37. craigj says

    I’ve ridden a HD twice. Once to bump start a buddy’s Dyna, then after he traded the Dyna, a ride last month on the Cherohola Skyway on his Night Rod. The VRod motor is on of the best out there for a bigger bike. I would make a great bagger motor, tho it is slightly thirsty (needs a bigger tank). This new “water cooling” seems better suited to cop bikes that need to sit and idle for hours on end, or Shriners parade bikes. No more having your Big Twin turn into a Big Single With A Fan on a toy parade.

  38. Jeram says

    two things

    1. those side mounted radiator shrouds are HUGE and UGLY !!!!

    2. why on earth dont they water cool their engines AND retain the air cooled fins for aesthetics and to make cooling more efficient.
    Id imagine the engines would look similar on the outside to the early oil cooled gsxr1100 and bandit motors which has small fins

    • FREEMAN says

      Regarding the radiator and their shrounds, you could say the same thing about the Harley VROD. Radiators in general are unsightly. I don’t understand why more manufacturers don’t hide them under the seat out of sight where they belong.

          • Penectomy says

            Umm, you mean a functional design made specifically to get sufficient amounts of air to the under seat radiator? Yes, that would work in that tailored application. How are you going to put a radiator under the seat of a conventionally designed bike – like all cruisers?

  39. glockholiday says

    To Jeram, those side mounted radiator shrouds you hate so much are already on some Electra Glides. They call them “lowers” and they keep the wind off your legs. If you’ve ever seen an Electra Glide Classic or Ultra Classic then you’ve already seen them they’re just putting radiators in them.

  40. Greg says

    An air cooled Harley Big Twin with gobs of power gets better than 52 miles to the gallon in an 850 lb. bike.

    A revolution is lucky to get 30 on a 643lb. bike.

    I ride both on a regular basis, and trust me, you don’t want a v-rod engine in a bagger; it’s a horsepower engine. You want torque.

    The v-rod has a huge fun factor, but it is definitely hard to beat over 100 years of field testing.

    Keep the rubber down people.

  41. Trevor says

    the design is sound , like another poster above said cool the hottest part of the head and you effect the overall temperature of the motor. the exhuast port of the aircooled head is what eventually what will kill it. the heating stresses the aluminum due to heating cycles and evetually it cracks. harleys option not only works but looks good doing it. doesnt look any worse than the tourers out there already. if you wanted to go all out just like another poster said go ahead and add sodium filled valves , VW did this for the type 4 aircooled motor , porsche did it for a many number of the flat 6’s.

    and to answer steves question above yes Porsche did use water cooled heads on some racing and production models, like the 959 , the 80’s uber porsche. aircooling as much as i love it has its drawbacks, why do you think VW got out of the game in the late 70’s , and porsche in the 90’s becuase it became to expensive to find more and more options for a design that is ancient in the motor world.

    Just a thought

  42. Greg Hodge says

    I think its a great idea! Most of the heat generated in an engine winds up in the heads. The head produced conspire against a big displacement air cooled engine. Load up tons of gear on a geezer glide (bagger, ahh’ touring bike), then add ambient temps in the 90’s + and maybe an engine with a few miles on it and we are courting detonation. Pinging and knocking is not a good sound and its highly destructive, caused by the hot spots maybe even glowing carbon in the combustion chambers. Imagine a piston moving at BDC and before it can move the fuel air mix is ignited ! Anyway it appears that the engine will keep its beautiful HD look. All good. I saved the best for last. With the ability to effortlessly cool the engine displacement increases are possible, huge ones, and so is the compression ratio (hopefully the head will be redesigned to take advantage of the cooling). Large HP increases are available by increasing the CC compression ratio to around 12;1 or more! I think with head work, displacment and compression ratio increases a 20>40% gain in HP is not unrealistic. As I said nice!

  43. Greg Hodge says

    That third sentence (above) should have read “The HEAT produced in the head of a large air cooled engine conspire against its efficiency ie HP production….sheesh! Its too early!

    Commenting on another reply I too would like to see a new engine and applications. It seems that HD is doing what HD has done in the past. It got fat with funny money and now they are dragging their feet just when they should be spending every last dime competing! If they don’t they will find themselves again in AMF land again with products that are decades behind the times. (not that AMF was a bad thing). No excuses! Bad economy? Tell BMW that! They took a huge chance with the RR, and won. They are making me envious and a possibly a new customer by the beautiful NEW (in the purest sense of the word) bikes they are creating. Even the smaller companies are coming up with new designs and bikes that are faster and better each generation.

    What do HD guys get? A lower low riding Sportster. Paint and cosmetic changes. Hey I have 1999 HD and have no reason to upgrade unless I go with BMW or Ducati which have the performance figures I wish HD would at least strive for! I mean why should I buy a new HD that has less HP than my 99 (or for that matter my 57 900 XLH Morris magneto DC linkert carbed sporty?). Of course I could buy a new 1200 Sportster and spend at least the half the purchase price to make it almost as fast as duck of the same displacement? A V rod? No thanks! it’s a nice bike but too heavy and typecast ha ha. Heck man even a 1400 to 1600 CI DOCH sportster with the same bottom end and looks sans the dual injected (maybe even direct injected heads, flat tracker styling (among others) a real 6 speed trans? It should equal Ducati’s handling and surpass its speed and quickness, which would not be difficult with the displacement increase. A touring 4 cyl V-rod, or the NOVA Porsche derived motor is needed, the 2 cyl V rod is just barley adequate and pales in comparison to the New BMW 6 cyl or even the goldwing! Lastly if HD does not modernize its product line who wants to buy one of their CVO’s or a high end bike if they appear to go down in flames? …Sorry for the rant HD but you are about to lose a new bike customer. Even if I buy a BMW etc I may come back to HD…maybe.

  44. Greg Hodge says

    I am the grammar assassin! I see again I butchered my post (above) and its almost illegible! Sorry to everyone I hope you guys can make some sense of it, basically I was saying HD needs to get off its butt and developed a DOCH 150+ Hp Sportster with a power plant looks like the current Sportster engine sans the induction and heads. Or as a stop gap measure make avaiable a forced induction option on all bikes, at a reasonable cost!

    While they are building the new Sportster Monster, maybe go nuts and develop an Super bike with near 200 hp, just like BMW did. While they are nuts could we have a touring bike that has a 4 to six to eight cyl engine and goodies on it that is truly comparable to a Gold wing or the new 6 cyl BMW. Please start with the sportster and bring it out in 2012 before I buy a new BMW RR or a 2012 1199 Ducati next year, yes I am serious…. Arrrrah~

  45. says

    Sufficently too small to be of an adequate, effective, efficent system both in the cylinder heads and radiators; more hipe that help! When you have a competitor designing a system for you, do you really think they would have your best interest in mind? Really! Keep the leg fairings as is and install a large capacity radiator between and efficent cylinder cooling jackets. As a Harley owner I gave up the idea to purchasing a Harley Trike do to its lack of performance in the area of standard power and lack of being liquid cooled.

  46. rwhite says

    with the height of Harley engines its hard to imagine it woudl need a waterpump as thermosyphon on such heights ought to be sufficient.
    with the advances in cnc machining and mig welding it might be simpler to just cast a basic head with a few fins for looks and then cnc out the ports and coling spaces adn weld panel sover them to get optimum size and caapicty of spaces

  47. OFFUTT says

    I have always been a metric guy. I have owned just about every brand of motorcycle other than Harley. Two years ago finally destroyed my bank account and bought one. I can honestly say that the Harley bike is really a well built bike. I’ve read some of the garbage on this blog and most of it is obviously from guys that have never owned a Harley or even ridden one. They are not designed to be the fastest, most powerful bikes on the planet. Look elsewhere if that’s what you want. I really hate to see water cooling make it’s way into the Harley lineup, but I’m sure the EPA will leave the MoCo with no choice. A nice clean bike with no radiator, hoses, water pumps and all the other stuff that goes along, that’s what your average Harley guy wants. We appreciate the characteristics that go along with air cooled engines, and we accept that it’s old school. That’s why we like Harley-Davidson.

  48. JHMay says

    All right guys, kinda tired of listening to people that don’t know. Harley is Harley. A torquey beast with a unique design, sound, style that everyone respects and many copy. It is more a lifestyle than a bike. Pull up to a light on a nicely trimmed Harley and someone on a Jap bike pulls up and says “nice bike”, the reply is “thanks”, enough said. The chicks lean out the windows of cages and beg for a ride. It isn’t fast by standards, but it is fun to ride even slowly. The sound of the pipes and the launch when you grab a tall gear. Torque, and lots of it. Your in too
    tall a gear, just feather the clutch and she’s happy, if you don’t she’ll
    shake and pull away. Harley has dropped the ball by playing the big
    displacement game, making the twin- cam, and not making frame changes for smaller riders, for making large cruisers without backing
    assist (reverse), for not going back to basics (front end, gas tank, engine, tranny, etc. Harley should stay with the air-cooled v-twin
    design, improve valve geometry for no noise (engineers why the valve train noise with hydraulics? Because they don’t shim the rockers, probably). Get out of the six speed close ratio crap and utilize torque,
    quit increasing displacement to the point the starters can’t take the pressure without some kinda compression release. As far as water-
    cooling, hell no! Get the engines back to 1100-1200 cc’s and reduce all this heat issue crap. Make it more efficient like they used to be. Anyone that knows engines, knows there is a “best ” displacement for thermal efficiency, reliability, and gas mileage. Best bike I ever had (including
    Kawi’s, Yammies, Honda ain’t been crap since the 60’s (cheap bastards
    like riveted wheels and molded aluminum cam bearings. Look at a 305 super-hawk no cheap there, primary chain and all) was a 1100 evo-sporty. On maiden run from show-room 100 mpg at break-in speed
    if you can trust the pump (had 2.2 gas tank with 100 mi on fill-up and took 1 gallon per the pump). Was disappointed anytime got less than 45 in town, got over 70 mpg on many trip had too, only had 2.2 gallons. Engine ran cool, could rub hands anywhere except exhaust. Put over 90k before got new bike. She would cruise at 100, part throttle and step out boldly if gassed further. Raced Honda shadows and kicked their butts with the old 4-speed delivering the torque and stepping ahead with each progressive shift, wish I had her back, didn’t require premium gas (just wonder how she would do on this ethanol). Sure, she would get hot idling in traffic like coming into Sturgis at the 50th, but she took it. Ran with the big boys, no problem, wished it had rubber mounted engine, but the chicks liked it and made me like it. She was a ’86 Liberty Edition, gun-metal gray, with a $1000 belt drive when it came out. Riding her was like sitting in a swing sideways, great on mountain roads, loved the moan pulling up the steep grades. Harley screwed the pooch when they made it 1200, had to go to a 3.3 tank to leave town and the 1100 went the same mileage on 2.2. Didn’t leak oil (for one thing didn’t have a chain oiler like the big ones), If your Harley leaked oil fix it like I had to fix my Jap bikes. The new Harley’s are losing their
    roots and function. I remember a 60’s stock Electroglide pulling away
    from my Yammie at over 120, sure sounded great, looked good to with that huge white leather seat. Get back to basics, Harley! Work on function, dependability, interchangeability, and make some bikes
    for the light-weights. Don’t need a 180+ cruiser that gets 35mpg with
    hot water spewing all over your keester, for what? Would like to see
    a cruiser built on the sportster platform (accessible belt replacement
    for easier road-side repairs, better ac-generator design to reduce burnt
    stators like on Japs guys, stretched frame somewhat like in the ’70’s not the new crotch rocket handling of the 2000’s, with an electric backing assist if your loaded and in a tight spot, with bags and fairing yet
    lighter kinda like some of the BM’s, with a 300 mi range). Now that would be cool! Get on it Harley!

  49. Conservative Mark says

    I will buy a liquid cooled Ultra Classic Limited when it comes out so long as I get the color I want and they get the bugs out. I have heard complaints about it running hot as an air cooled and heard complaints about the gears slapping somewhere around 4-5-6… mostly 5-6. Have also heard the air ducts in the front cause wind burn on the driver. The lady would like the liquid cools to add heated seats and I would like a control to each seat as I am always hot. I would also like to see something done with the front fender. It is the most ugly part of the bike… well, check that… it is the only ugly part of the bike. Finally, I want the thing to come in some kind of hot orange and black for the 110th and I want a 110 engine for the 110th.

  50. Mick Hodgetts says

    I`m with you JHMAY, spoken like a true Harley man, it`s great to read some sensible comments, instead of some of the rubbish being `spouted` on this forum.
    I too am a Harley rider, but in my heart of hearts, I am a `biker`, and am proud to say that, I have owned bikes, built in my home land, (UK), far east, European mainland, and the U.S.
    I cannot believe that a true `biker` could even contemplate a Harley, not to be the iconic machine of excellence, that many people believe it to be.
    I do feel that, certain people must be deluding themselves, if they think that Harley-Davidson does`nt command the respect it deserves, when it comes to what brought it to where it is in the market place.
    I accept and believe, that other manufacturers, bring some remarkable examples of two
    wheel brilliance to the theatre of riding, but at the end of the day, it`s all about `horses for courses`, and personal choice of everyones style of riding.
    No, I would`nt take my `Ultra Limited` down a drag strip, any more than I would do a `coast to coast` ride across the `States` on a `Fireblade` or the like, but if that`s what turns you on, then so beit.
    I do feel, as a rider that likes his `creature comforts`, we have created this market place, and the modern technology, and all of it`s trappings, and so companies like all of the top manufacturers, are ever under pressure to provide for our demands.
    I do agree somewhat, that perhaps it`s time for them to `backpedal` a little.

  51. William Miller says

    I would have to say that water cooled engines are not actually more emission compliant. So many posts refer to this being more modern technology. Any internal combustion engine needs a cooling system. whether it be air or water. All cooling systems have to function properly to prevent engine overheating. Actually an air cooled engine is more efficient than a water cooled engine. The engines power is produced by heat. Any heat wasted, is lost efficiency. Water cooled engines have certain advantages, but are not more efficient. They can be run at higher operating temps, sitting still in traffic. Which, of couse would make them more emision compliant. But at the same time, air cooled engines could have modifications made to them to make them more emission compliant. Combining internal oil cooling jets, and a forced fan oil cooler would be a good start. Harley has been in the business long enough to know how to stay in the business. My old shovel head has cast iron cylinders, which helps to diplace heat also. I think Harley knows what their customers want, and am quite sure they will provide what will serve the HD motoring community’s needs and desires.

  52. says

    I feel a Water Cooled Engine for the next line-up of Harley Davidson’s would be
    A terriffic improvement for Harley Davidson, a a Harley Owner, the Stop an Go
    Traffic causes my Harley to over heat and can damage the engine, as well as
    Being extremely Hot and uncomfortable to ride.
    I have driven Harley’s for over 53 years and love the Bike, but! if Harley expects
    To keep in compentition with Honda,Kawasaki, and Susuki and get a longer
    Life riding a Bike that will not only surpass the Japanese Bikes then they must
    Set a Change to improve their product.
    At todays prices it is darn expensive when you have to replace a engine after
    It Over heats and blows up………
    I am for the Water Cooled Engine, and Harley has to start thinking of the future…
    So come on Harley get on the Band Wagon and build a better Machine….

  53. Nik says

    Willy G, why are you slowly destroying your granddaddy’s company??
    Harley have been running air cooled for ever. It’s not about emissions as these are bikes aren’t dirty old diesel trucks, they are beautifully engineered pieces of road worthy art that aren’t pumping out tonnes of toxic waste. This is your country’s heritage you’re mucking about with, as strong an icon as the Bald eagle, Uncle Sam and apple pie. You will lose out to the Chinese imports if you’re not careful. Please stand up to the US government and tell ‘em to “Sod off”, just like your forebears would have done:(

  54. HDBreeze says

    Just so all the skeptics know, Harley has been using this same cooling system in the XR1200 Sportster for the last few years. The only difference is that the system on the XR uses oil. The water system will cool even better. I have a 2011 XR1200, and the oil cooled heads work great. Keep in mind that only the heads will be cooled so the cooling fins on the cylinders will still serve a purpose. My 2001 Electra Glide never overheated, but did run very hot at times, even with an oil cooler and electric fan. I believe the new watercooled jacketed heads will be a huge improvement.

  55. BULL says

    THE PROBLEM HERE IS THAT THIS DESIGN IS TOO SIMPLE FOR INTELLICTUAL PEOPLE TO UNDER STAND IT DOESN,T HAVE TO BE ROCKET SCIENCE TOUNDER STAND OR WORK!

  56. Denns In FL says

    Just think how much this lil patented water park will COST those willing to be the test market for the “NEW water cooled Harley buyer” OUCH!!