No matter how many anniversaries you celebrate, they all come around just once. Harley-Davidson’s bidecacentennial, or 120th anniversary, is coming up. It seems less important than the 125th anniversary, or quasquicentennial. But The Motor Company hasn’t stuck around this long by passing up reasons to promote itself.
With that in mind, two new Harley-Davidson CVO cruisers are being rolled: the Street Glide CVO and the Road Glide CVO. You already know all about H-D’s Custom Vehicle Operations. But for the benefit of search results, let’s reiterate. The CVOs are the best, most expensive (and limited) motorcycles H-D makes.
The 2023 CVO headline? They get very new fairings and the new Milwaukee-Eight VVT 121ci engine. As you’d expect, they get new suspension, new infotainment systems, and new paint and finish options. But the new motor is the Big Deal. A new, larger 1,982cc Milwaukee-Eight motor now features variable valve timing or “VVT,” as stated on the cam cover. This improves performance and (cough) emissions. This brings the CVO engine concept into line with the new Revolution Max engines featured on the Pan America and Nightsters.
Both also get significantly new fairings. The CVO Street Glide gets a more modern and angular fairing, with turn signals integrated with horizontal “lamp elements” that highlight the batwing fairing. The windshield is more upswept and now has a modern looking “Omega-shaped” headlight.
Likewise, the CVO Road Glide gets revised fairings that update the “sharknose” design and integrate turn signals in the fairing structure. The CVO Road Glide’s single LED headlight seems horizontally split into two, a visual play on the traditional side-by-side headlamps on previous designs.
Both redesigns are significant departures from traditional H-D styling. Some online chatter has implied a visual connection to Indian’s Challenger and Pursuit fairing design, with integrated turn signals. Or the Chieftain, with its extruded horizontal edging. As much as Motorcyclist loves criticizing motorcycle design, there’s not much story here. Vetter fairings from the ‘70s integrated turn signals with the fairing and H-D’s traditional design cues mean any departure from orthodoxy gets lots of scrutiny. It’s your call.
Images provided by H-D were appropriately dark and mysterious. But Motorcyclist helpfully added some light and sharpness to them so you can judge them accordingly.
MSRP has not been announced. Both models will be available for sale on June 7.
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