Harley-Davidson, a Milwaukee-based company, began producing its Sportster line in 1957. This line of bikes included the 1200, a class of the Sportster that featured a 1200-cubic-centimeter engine. These standard motorcycles, in 2011, are available in three trim levels: Nightster, 1200 Low and XR1200X. The former two are, mechanically-speaking, very similar; the XR1200X is more performance-oriented with a higher compression ratio and sportier brakes.
In 2011, these motorcycles feature a 73.3-cubic-inch, air-cooled engine with a bore of 3.5 inches and a stroke of 3.812 inches. Both the Nightster and the 1200 Low have a compression ratio of 9.7:1 and can produce 79 ft-lbs. of torque at 4,000 rpm; the XR1200X has a compression ratio of 10:1 and can produce 73.91 ft-lbs. of torque at 4,000 rpm.
Brakes and Wheels
The Nightster and the 1200 Low feature dual-piston front brakes and single-piston rear brakes. The XR1200X has dual four-piston floating brakes in the front and single-piston floating brakes in the rear. The Nightster and the 1200 Low had 100/90-19 57H tires in the front and 150/80B16 71H tires in the rear; the XR1200X has 120/70ZR18 M/C tires in the front and 180/55ZR17 M/C tires in the rear.
These bikes have an EPA estimated fuel economy that ranges from 38 to 42 mpg in the city and 53 to 57 mpg on the highway. The Nightster, 1200 Low and XR1200X have 3.3-, 4.5- and 3.5-gallon fuel tanks, respectively.
The Nightster has a wheelbase length of 59.8 inches, is 85.8 inches long with a seat height of 25.7 inches and has a dry weight of 545 lbs. The 1200 Low has a wheelbase length of 60.1 inches, is 89.1 inches long with a seat height of 26.3 inches and has a dry weight of 557 lbs. The XR1200X has a wheelbase length of 60.0 inches, is 87.6 inches long with a seat height of 29.2 inches and has a dry weight of 551 lbs.