harley davidson motorcycles

2024 Harley Davidson Road King® Special Specs and Performance Review

2024 Harley Davidson Road King® Special Specs and Performance Review

Riding a motorcycle, feeling the breeze in your hair, and listening to the great noise of a powerful engine as you cruise along the highway is an inimitable experience. The 2024 Harley-Davidson Road King® Special encapsulates this very essence, seamlessly bridging the traditional vibe with contemporary performance. This iconic machine is a descendant of a very long lineage of Harley-Davidson touring bikes, which began in 1994. The Road King Special, in contrast, has its distinctive impression, ditching the classic fairing for a more streamlined design that doesn't sacrifice the signature features that have made Harley-Davidson an icon.

Both the innovation and cultural heritage associated with Harley Davidson have been integrated into the 2024 Road King Special. The blacked-out finish and the bike's bold design add to the brand's legacy. Meanwhile, the Milwaukee-Eight 114 engine, the ultimate power and torque producer, is the most prominent feature of the Road King Special. This motorcycle is much more than an ordinary machine; it is a style icon, a symbol of freedom on the open road, and an invitation to go on a long trip in style and comfort. Let’s dive deeper and explore the various aspects of the 2024 Harley-Davidson Road King Special that make it an ideal choice for riders who are looking for a mix of comfort, power, and iconic American motorcycle design.

1. 2024 Harley Davidson Road King® Special Specs

2024 Harley Davidson Road King® Special Specs
General Info
Maker Harley-Davidson
Model Road King® Special
Series Grand American Touring
Motorcycle Type Touring Bike
Introduced in 2017
Warranty 24 Months Unlimited Mileage Factory Limited Warranty
Base MSRP $24,999
Engine  Milwaukee-Eight® 114
Engine Layout  V-Twin
Displacement  114 cu in / 1,868 cc
Cooling System  Air/Oil-Cooled
Stroke  4.5 in
Bore  4.016 in
Compression Ratio  10.5:1
Engine Stroke  Four Stroke
Valves Per Cylinder  Four Valves Per Cylinder
Valve Configuration  OHV - Pushrod
Fuel Delivery System  Electronic Sequential Port Fuel Injection (ESPFI)
Exhaust  Blacked-Out Two-Into-One-Into-Two Exhaust System
Mufflers  Tapered Mufflers
Starter  Electric
Claimed Engine Torque  122 ft-lb / 165.41 Nm at 2,750 rpm
Claimed Horsepower  95 HP / 71 kW at 5,020 rpm
Fuel Mileage  43 mpg (Estimated)
Drive Train
Gear Box  Six-Speed Cruise Drive®
Final Drive  Belt Drive
Clutch  Mechanically Actuated, 10 Plate Wet, Assist and Slip
Frame  Steel Frame
Front  49 mm Dual Bending Valve Telescopic Forks
Adjustability  Rebound Damping Adjustable
Wheel Travel (Front)  4.6 in / 117 mm
Rear  Twin-Sided Swing Arm
Adjustability  Adjustable Rebound Damping and Spring Preload with Premium Low Height Hand-Adjustability
Wheel Travel (Rear)  2.1 in / 54 mm
Front  Brembo® 300 mm Dual Hydraulic Disc with Four-Piston Fixed Caliper and Dual Floating Rotors
Rear  Brembo® 300 mm Single Hydraulic Disc with Four-Piston Fixed Caliper and Fixed Rotor
Wheels Type  Aluminum Gloss Black Prodigy
Front  3.5 x 19 in
Rear  5.5 x 18 in
Tires Type  Dunlop® Harley-Davidson Series, Bias Blackwall Front and Rear
Front  130/60B19 61H
Rear  180/55B18 80H
Seat Height  26.4 in / 670.56 mm
Dry Weight  774 lbs / 351.08 kg
Wet Weight  807 lbs / 366 kg
Ground Clearance  4.9 in / 124.46 mm
Wheelbase  64 in / 1625.6 mm
Length  95.3 in / 2,420 mm
Height  45.3 in / 1,150 mm
Width  39 in / 990 mm
Rake  26°
Trail  6.9 in / 175.26 mm
Fuel Tank Capacity  6 gal
Oil Capacity  5.2 qt
Storage Capacity  2.5 cu ft
Standard Features
Fairing  X
Windscreen  X
Ride Safety Features
Cruise Control 
Vehicle Hold Control Optional
Cornering ABS  Optional
Electronic Linked Braking (ELB)  Optional
Cornering Enhanced ELB  Optional
Traction Control  Optional
Cornering Enhanced Traction Control  Optional
Drag-Torque Slip Control System (DSCS)  Optional

2. Design and Looks: 2024 Harley Davidson Road King® Special

Design and Looks: 2024 Harley Davidson Road King® Special

The 2024 Harley-Davidson Road King Special captivates the eye with its classic design and imposing presence, elegantly combining the two. This bike is undoubtedly an eye-catcher, so recognizable and unique due to its legendary outline and every detail being painstakingly created.

2.1 A Heritage of Bold Design

The Road King Special has the same authentic style as the standard Road King, along with completely blacked-out features. From the massive headlight nacelle to decent-sized crash bars , it is not just the looks, but also the design that echoes the classic American motorcycle design. The black finish ensures a sophisticated and contemporary look. The high-quality material used to manufacture the Harley Road King Special makes it continue to be an elegant and high-end motorcycle for years to come. The stretched saddlebags contribute to the overall appearance of the motorcycle and add a certain splendor to its design.

The Road King Special features all the modern design elements, including blacked-out mini-ape bars, bold and tough front fork legs, and 6 gallons of gas storage capacity, and tank-mounted gauges that improve both style and function.

The sleek Gloss Black Prodigy 19-inch front and 18-inch rear wheels with black finish are made of aluminum and give a modern vibe to the overall black theme of this bike. Furthermore, the stylish LED lighting at the front placed inside the round headlamp with a protruding binnacle acts as a cherry on top of the cake by adding a touch of elegance and enhancing nighttime visibility.

The 2024 Road King Special also features a two-into-one-into-two blacked-out exhaust system with two tapered mufflers on each side, ensuring a perfectly balanced look.

Despite being branded as a part of the Harley-Davidson Grand American Touring series, the H-D Road King Special is characteristically a cruiser-style bike with a stripped-down look. There is no fairing and windscreen installed on this bike which enables riders to have a comfortable look at the road ahead and makes their journey pleasurable with the views around.

2.2 A Bike for Personalization

A Bike for Personalization
Photo Credit: Bring a Trailer 

The Road King Special isn't just about style that comes from the factory, it is a platform that gives you the ability to show your individuality. There is a wide range of Harley-Davidson Genuine Parts and Accessories for you to make your motorcycle into something unique that reflects your personality. Whether you are more into the aggressive or the touring version, the Road King Special can be modeled as per your preferences.

For those motorcycling enthusiasts who prefer being on motorcycle tours, the 2024 Road King Special’s stretched saddlebags may be inadequate for them. For such touring fans, Viking Bags brings you neatly stitched, superior-quality saddlebags , trunk bags , backpacks , tank bags , tour packs , and numerous other luggage options , along with the luggage racks , tailor-made for your specific make and model.

3. 2024 Harley Davidson Road King® Special Price and Color Options

2024 Harley Davidson Road King® Special Price and Color Options
Paint Scheme Model Price
Billiard Gray with Black Finish  $24,999
Vivid Black with Black Finish $25,499
Red Rock with Black Finish $25,649
White Onyx Pearl with Black Finish $25,699

4. Engine and Performance: 2024 Harley-Davidson Road King® Special

The core of this 2024 Road King Special is a Milwaukee-Eight® 114 engine, a tough beast designed specifically for effortless cruising and ruling the highways. This air-cooled V-twin engine is a 114 cubic inch (1,868 cc) powerhouse that delivers thrilling acceleration and enough torque to rival the aggressive riders on the road.

4.1 Power and Torque Delivery

The Milwaukee-Eight® 114 gives you robust low-end torque, reaching a peak value of 165.41 Nm at 2,750 rpm that is experienced with the twist of the throttle. This means that you will not have to struggle to keep up with the highway speeds, and you will be able to get to your desired speed at a quicker pace. With a strong horsepower of 95 hp at 5,020 rpm, the Milwaukee-Eight 114 engine is known to power the Road King Special with authority.

4.2 A Perfect Touring Companion

The performance attributes of the Road King Special make it a great touring motorcycle. The powerful torque ensures relaxed cruising on highways, and the comfortable ergonomics give a sense of pleasure on long trips. Moreover, the six-speed Cruise Drive transmission allows for a smooth shift and assists in ensuring a smooth ride.

Fundamentally, the 2024 Road King Special’s engine performance is ideal for bikers who are looking for power, torque, and a comfortable touring experience.

4.3 Fuel Mileage

The 2024 Road King Special isn’t programmed to provide an amazing fuel economy. As a large displacement tourer, it values the power and torque over the fuel economy. You should expect to get around 43 mpg in most riding conditions and styles.

5. Handling and Cornering: 2024 Harley Davidson Road King® Special

The 2024 Harley-Davidson Road King® Special features a stability-focused and comfort-conscious design rather than razor-sharp handling. The relaxed steering geometry and long wheelbase allow it to run straight and stable on highway stretches, providing the rider with the confidence to go on long trips.

5.1 Cruising Comfort over Corner Carving

Although it is not meant to be a corner-carving icon, the Road King Special can handle curves quite decently. The riding position, with the mini-ape handlebars , plays a major role in the motorcycle's maneuverability. Further, the suspension creates a good balance of comfort and control, which offers a smooth ride over bumpy roads and stability on corners.

In short, the Road King Special's handling features make the bike a great choice for what it is designed for, which is comfortable touring. The riders who give preference to agility and handling for the twisty roads could be better served with a different Harley-Davidson model, for example, the H-D Sportster S, Low Rider S, and Sport Glide™.

5.2 Confident Touring Handling

However, it does not imply that Road King Special is not able to take a sharp turn. Adopting a conscious riding style and being aware of its limitations, you will be able to ride the windy roads without worrying. The point here is to adjust your speed for the turn and not attempt to do anything aggressive.

6. Ergonomics and Comfort: 2024 Harley-Davidson Road King Special

Ergonomics and Comfort: 2024 Harley-Davidson Road King Special
Photo Credit: Ultimate Motorcycling 

As you can expect from a bulky motorcycle like the H-D Road King Special, it provides a very comfortable and spacious riding position. The upright, wide motorcycle’s build makes it possible to keep a comfortable posture even on longer routes. Though the Road King Special may not be fully equipped for long-distance touring, as it does not have a windscreen and fairing to provide wind protection, the ergonomics still excel at providing superior comfort.

6.1 Rider Triangle

The Road King Special, following Harley-Davidson's design concepts, is all about creating a comfortable rider triangle. This triangle is the interaction between the handlebars, seat, and foot controls which determine the seating position. The 2024 Road King Special model features:

Mid-rise Mini-Ape handlebars

Unlike the traditional ape handlebars that make you lean forward, the mid-rise mini-ape handlebars promote an upright riding posture, minimizing the strain on your back, shoulders, and wrists.

Forward-Set Floorboards

Rider floorboards, which are placed in front, provide a relaxed leg extension that prevents calf cramps when you have to ride for a long duration.

Spacious and Supportive Seat

The seat, which is a decently padded single-piece saddle, provides ample back support and comfort, distributing your weight evenly and, hence, reducing pressure points. The seat is the Road King Special's main feature, making it ideal for riders who plan to cover long distances.

6.2 Upright Posture for Effortless Riding

The feeling of riding the H-D Road King Special on open roads is a real pleasure, and it is all thanks to its well-thought-out shape. The combination of ape-mini handlebars and lower seat height produces a very comfortable upright riding position on the Harley Road King Special. This bike’s design works just great to give you back relief at the end of the ride.

7. Pros and Cons: 2024 Harley-Davidson Road King® Special

Pros and Cons: 2024 Harley-Davidson Road King® Special
Pros Cons
Excellent ergonomics Lack of wind protection
Low seat height Lack of touring capability
Powerful cruising performance Large and heavy
Strong power and torque delivery Expensive
Ensures upright stance Basic tech package considering the high price point
Forward-set floorboards Difficult to maneuver while cornering
Highly customizable Lack agility
Exceptional linear stability Not ideal for stop-and-go-traffic
A perfect blend of modern-classic styling Lacks liquid cooling for better heat management

8. Takeaway

The 2024 Harley-Davidson Road King Special can be described as more than just a motorcycle, but a wheeled work of art that integrates classic design with contemporary features. It's a bike that attracts the attention of everyone on the road and gives you the pleasure of a ride that can also be customized according to your preferences. If you want to experience the thrill of the road, and you need a bike that mixes heritage with innovation, the Road King Special can be your dream motorcycle.

The 2024 Harley-Davidson Road King® Special is an ideal pick for riders who place comfort, power, and a true tourer style first. It has a nice feel to it, and it's great for highway speed and long-distance travel in style. Nevertheless, the downside, like the lack of protection from the wind and the lack of sharp maneuverability, must be taken into account if these are the main concerns for you.

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