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Harley-Davidson Reveals the 2020 Softail Standard Officially

Harley-Davidson Softail Standard

A Basic Softail

Not long ago, I reported that Harley-Davidson would put out a Softail Standard based on some new CARB filings, and now the bike is official. The Softail Standard brings the Softail design to the masses for less than other models. It’s an uncomplicated motorcycle that’s ready to roll or ready to be customized. Your call.

The bike is essentially a handsome and simple-looking bobber. It has a solo seat, chopped rear fender, a burly Milwaukee-Eight engine, and two shotgun exhaust pipes. The wheels are a 19-inch up front and a 16-inch in the rear. The rear mono-shock has preload adjustment and the bike gets front and rear brakes with ABS. The fuel tank is a 3.5 gallon and has a handsome shape to it.

The bike is pretty stripped down when it comes to features, though it does have a low oil pressure indicator, engine diagnostics, a security system, and a 2.14-inch LCD display The price? $13,599. That’s more than I was hoping for. I was looking for $12,000 starting price or even $10,000, but HD’s bikes are expensive, and $13,559 is less than any other Softail model. It comes in black only.

Harley also sells packages you can add to the bike for a slightly different flavor (at an up-charge of course). They include Performance, Costal, Day Tripper, and Touring. The performance one adds some minor performance-minded upgrades, and the others go closer and closer towards turning the bike into a nice touring machine. Honestly, I think the bike looks best with the Touring package, but then you’re looking at adding $1,699 to the price.

Overall, I think this is a good move by Harley, but I would like to see the price drop lower. While Harley will without a doubt sell some of these bikes, at $10,000 I think they would fly right off the lots, but HD probably can’t do that and make it profitable.

  1. Seeing the amount of customization HD loyalists put into their machines this is a pretty good idea, especially since it has ABS. I would bet you could get it for $12k if you’re a good negotiator, still on the high end but not horrible.

  2. Author has a serious case of “Not knowing what he’s looking at.”
    This is the 3rd least expensive heavy cruiser/big twin in the market behind the Suzuki C90s.
    Everyone making these large displacement big twin bikes have prices this high.
    The price of this bike is a fantastic deal for what it is.
    You missed a detail in the specs. It has an LED Headlamp stock, Which NONE of the other 3 manufacturers of big twins(Guzzi, Suzuki, Indian) are doing stock below 20K. Harley has LED headlamps stock standard on all of their softails.
    A 6 speed, keyless security, LED headlamp, oil cooled 1750cc bike that puts out 98.5TQ at the rear wheel, with a price tag under 14K is pretty nuts.
    I’m almost wondering if this is harley attempting a loss leader product.

    1. Hi Fran, I actually know Harley’s lineup pretty well. I wrote about the entire lineup in this article:

      This is a good deal. I’m not saying it isn’t, but Harley is hurting and one of the best ways I see for them to get younger folks on a Harley (which is a way to get them on Harley’s for life) is to offer more motorcycles at lower costs. You’re right that $13,599 is an extremely reasonable number, but Harley would sell more of them at a lower price tag. I don’t think $12,000 is outrageous. I don’t think $10,000 is outrageous.

      I do know that HD has to make money and that this bike at the over $13k price tag is a smart move for the company. I said so in the article. I think Harley needs to do something dramatic with its gas bikes to get more people who aren’t Harley fanatics interested in their bikes and if they offered the bike at $10k that would be a shock to the industry.

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