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2022 Harley-Davidson Road Glide ST (bike review)

The Harley-Davidson Road Glide is back, bigger and more bad ass than ever. It now comes with added ST goodness too, a thumping 117 cubic inches of power, and an emphasis on performance, the road and rider exhilaration.

Immediately menacing, the Road Glide ST is layered in beautiful gloss Vivid Black. Detailing is tough and sinister with blacked out componentry set off with Bronze Prodigy rims and Bronze highlights on the engine.

If Vivid Black isn’t your thing though, the Road Glide ST is also available in Gunship Grey which is an ex-CVO colour scheme. The iconic signature piece of this bike though remains the frame mounted shark nose fairing that houses the Daymaker LED headlights.

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In fact, most of the standard features that are present on the Road Glide Special are carried over to the ST, with a a few differences. Among them is the solo seat and the removal of the long, sleek, stretched panniers.

The latter have been replaced with a standard offering to give a stripped back demeanour, more ground clearance and improved handling dynamics. The big improvement for us though is the suspension, which now features taller shocks that are pre-load adjustable.

2022 Haley-Davidson Road Glide ST
2022 Haley-Davidson Road Glide ST

As a result, the rear feels a little more planted and stable when pushing hard through sweeping bends, with what feels like a little more clearance between the footboards and the bitumen.

On paper the Harley-Davidson spec sheet claims 32 degrees of lean to the right and 31 to the left, but aiming the big Glide through a corner, the lean performance feels much better than that.

The front of the bike houses a 49mm dual bending valve fork, which offers good road feel via the 19-inch front wheel, soaking up the bumps nicely. As you can imagine, the braking package also needs to be up to scratch when pulling up the Road Glide ST’s 382kg bulk.

Carried over from the Road Glide Special, it features four piston callipers and 300mm rotors on the front. There is also Harley-Davidson’s linked braking ABS system for extra stopping power. Rear braking came with its own set of issues though.

That hot looking Heavy Breather that protrudes from the big donk, as good as it looks, is in the way, and we found ourselves bumping our leg when reaching for the rear brake pedal. It was quite annoying.

2022 Haley-Davidson Road Glide ST
2022 Haley-Davidson Road Glide ST

The Road Glide ST comes fitted with Harley-Davidson’s reflex defensive rider system (RDRS) too, for added safety. RDRS adds advanced chassis control, electronic brake control and power train technology to assist with acceleration and braking.

There’s also the goodness of a Boom Box audio system (with two 5.25-inch speakers), and a full colour 165mm TFT display with navigation, Bluetooth phone connectivity and just about every piece of monitoring and gadgetry you could want on a touring motorcycle.

Tech and snazzy bits aside, the Milwaukee Eight 117 is the showstopper, and the soul of this beast (which until now had only been found in the premium CVO line-up). Considered the pinnacle of torque and displacement, it’s hard to argue with the raw numbers.

On offer is 77kW of American grunt and 168Nm of torque. Engine performance is superb. Smooth throttle response comes with plenty of oomph at the turn of your right wrist. We reckon touring doesn’t get much better than this.

If there’s anything it wants for, it’s a simple exhaust and cam upgrade, which would see the Road Glide ST truly cement itself as the king of the tourers. It can all be yours for a starting price of $45,995 ride away in Vivid Black. Gunship Grey is $405 dearer.

2022 Haley-Davidson Road Glide ST
2022 Haley-Davidson Road Glide ST

Dearer than the standard Road Glide Special but cheaper than the CVO version, the ST offers an angrier choice than the base model, that delivers in spades with its monster powerplant. For that alone, it’s sure to be a popular choice.

While it doesn’t have some of the bling offered on the limited edition CVO, it provides the attitude, persona and touring performance Harley-Davidson buyers crave. And that’s what makes the 2022 Harley-Davidson Road Glide ST worth a look, at the very least.

Our test bike was provided by Harley-Davidson Australia. To find out more about the 2022 Harley-Davidson Road Glide ST, contact your local Harley-Davidson dealer.


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