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Harley Davidson V-ROD Custom Motorbike Review

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Harley-Davidson VRSCA V-Rod motorcycle review - Riding
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MCN overall verdict rating is 3

Harley goes high-tech after decades of just updating their lovable antiques. The Harley-Davidson VRSCA V-Rod was the first of Harley’s VRSC ‘Rod’ family. The Harley-Davidson VRSCA V-Rod's water cooling, loads of power, handling that could embarrass a badly ridden sportsbike and brakes that stop fast were totally novel on a Harley. Diehards refuse to accept them but the Harley-Davidson VRSCA V-Rod's a tempting package.


MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 5

More power than a Ducati 916 or early Fireblade and far smoother than Harleys of old. The Harley-Davidson VRSCA V-Rod's injected V-twin is just chuggy enough but pleasingly torquey at low revs. But as the needle sweeps into the top third of the tacho the exhaust note changes and it lays down some serious power. Tuned Harley-Davidson VRSCA V-Rods are competitive on the drag strip – and the long, low styling echoes that.

Ride and Handling

MCN rating rating is 3
Owners' rating rating is 4

The Harley-Davidson VRSCA V-Rod's modern tyres and modern suspension allied to a modern chassis give … wait for it… modern handling. Which is great on left hand bends. Take a right hander at any pace and the exhaust decks out disappointingly soon. It’s a real shame. The Harley-Davidson VRSCA V-Rod's brakes are very capable and the suspension manages to balance sport and comfort nicely.


MCN rating rating is 2
Owners' rating rating is 3

Few frills on the standard Harley-Davidson VRSCA V-Rod and a small fuel tank. The riding position’s not like any other bike: The seat’s low, as are the bars, and the pegs extremely far forward. It’s not a comfy position for most people but at least you can dip into the enormous range of accessories, both official and unofficial get the Harley-Davidson VRSCA V-Rod's ergonomics closer to what you need.

Harley-Davidson VRSCA V-Rod (2001-current)

Detail Value
New price £11,995
Used price range View Harley Davidson V-ROD bikes for sale to see current asking prices
Engine size 1131 cc
Power 115 bhp
Top speed 130 mph
Insurance group 17 of 17
  MCN ratings Owners' ratings
Overall rating is 3 rating is 4
Engine rating is 4 rating is 5
Ride & Handling rating is 3 rating is 4
Equipment rating is 2 rating is 3
Quality & Reliability rating is 4 rating is 4
Value rating is 4 rating is 3

Quality and Reliability

MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 4

Lots of time’s gone into designing the Harley-Davidson VRSCA V-Rod and there’s no serious glitches in terms of reliability. The finish on the Harley-Davidson VRSCA V-Rod is better than the air cooled Harleys but if you do let it corrode, it’ll not do the second hand value any favours at all – but most Harley-Davidson VRSCA V-Rods are sunny weekend toys not winter sluggers anyway.


MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 3

The Harley-Davidson VRSCA V-Rod is savagely pricey when new compared to similar Japanese capacity cruises – but none of them offer the same experience or such power. Running costs aren’t cheap either but few owners do enormous mileages. Depreciation is low. Harley’s own Street Rod is a grand cheaper and arguably a better bike than the Harley-Davidson VRSCA V-Rod. Find a Harley-Davidson V-Rod for sale.


Insurance group: 17 of 17

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Model History

2001: Original Harley-Davidson VRSCA V-Rod launched.
2006: Harley-Davidson VRSCA V-Rod gets optional 240mm rear tyre.

Other Versions

Harley-Davidson VRSCB V-Rod: launched in 2003 – black frame and rear shocks plus other minor colour changes about £1000 cheaper than the Harley-Davidson VRSCA V-Rod.


Top speed 130 mph
1/4-mile acceleration 11.5 secs
Max power 115 bhp
Max torque 77 ft-lb
Weight 275 kg
Seat height 660 mm
Fuel capacity 14 litres
Average fuel consumption 42 mpg
Tank range 130 miles
Annual road tax
Insurance group 17 of 17
Engine size 1131 cc
Engine specification 8v V-twin, 5 gears
Frame Tubular steel cradle
Front suspension adjustment None
Rear suspension adjustment Preload
Front brakes Twin 300mm discs
Rear brake 300mm disc
Front tyre size 120/70 x 19
Rear tyre size 180/55 x 18

See all Harley Davidson V-ROD motorcycles for sale

Harley Davidson

2115 miles


Harley Davidson

1721 miles


Harley Davidson

1 miles


Harley Davidson

5323 miles


Harley Davidson

2570 miles


Owners' Overall Rating rating is 3.5(1 review)

  • vrscb 04



    Average rating rating is 3.5

    Show Details

    Ride and Handling
    Quality and Reliabilty

    very quick for a cruiser,handles and stops well,strong engine not good value at £12000

    27 June 2007


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