While Harley-Davidson has been catering to motorcycle enthusiasts of all shapes and sizes for 120 years, there is one particular class of bikes that has been carrying the love and passion for the brand for decades, and that is the touring class. Designed with comfort in mind, these bikes allow riders to spend hours and hours on the highway for those coveted cross-country road trips without getting tired or fatigued. Considering that touring bikes are Harley-Davidson’s most popular and best-selling class of motorcycles, it also happens to offer a wide range of diverse models to choose from.
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10/10 Pan America – $17,319
Press Photo of the 2021 Harley-Davidson Pan America
The only non-grand all-American touring bike on this list (and the cheapest here) is the very popular Pan America 1250 adventure touring motorcycle. Usually touring bikes dominate the highway, but for the Pan America, this bike dominates everywhere else. First introduced in 2021, Harley-Davidson raised the bar big time for the off-road adventure bike market by designing a machine that craved dirt and trails so much that it left its competitors very worried. So whether you’re riding down the main street, or through the mud, this bike can do it all.
9/10 Road King – $19,110
Shot of a green 2022 Harley-Davidson Road King Special cruising on the highway
The Road King is the bare-bones foundation of Harley-Davidson’s touring class. Rocking its touring frame, six-gallon fuel tank, six-speed manual transmission, hard saddlebags, touring seat for riding solor or with a passenger, floorboards, and Milwaikee-Eight 107 engine (114 in the Road King Special), the Road King is one of the brand’s most popular models solely because of its simplicity. It has everything a rider needs, and nothing that they don’t. This bike doesn’t need any flashy gadgets or distractions to keep its rider satisfied. Instead, it checks off all the boxes for bare necessities a rider could possibly need right out of the factory. The Road King has been shown to hold up over time that if you compare a 2022 Road King and a Road King from the year 2042, chances are they won’t be much different.
8/10 Electra Glide Standard – $19,429
Stock photo of a 2022 Harley-Davidson Electra Glide Standard
Taking a page out of the Road King’s book in terms of simplicity, the Electra Glide Standard also leans heavily into the concept of “need over want.” With no additional bells or whistles, the Electra Glide Standard has been following the same formula for decades: touring body, floorboards, hard saddlebags, solo touring seat, big V-Twin engine (currently the Milwaukee-Eight 107), engine guard, bat wing fairing, and a paint job in its signature color: vivid black. The bat wing fairing, aside from offering some wind resistance, also houses gauges in the dash like the fuel display, speedometer, rpm tachometer, and battery charge. You might also notice a pair of speakers, but no radio. What’s up with that? That is because the Electra Glide Standard leaves you the option of installing your own radio/infotainment system as an accessory. Why else do you think this motorcycle is so affordable?
7/10 Street Glide – $21,430
Action shot of a 2022 Harley-Davidson Street Glide Special
Now we’re into some of the tasty stuff. For those that require a little more creature comforts, the Street Glide is the next model on the list. Mixing flash with functionality, Street Glides allow their riders a wider selection of colors, a larger touring seat, and a touch-screen stereo system while still providing useful wind protection. Aside from being able to express their individuality more, many Street Glide fans favor the bike simply because its dash is right at their fingertips. In contrast to the Road Glide (which we’ll address later), the Street Glide’s batwing fairing turns with the handlebars, pointing the headlights in the direction the rider is traveling towards. Available in the Standard model, which comes equipped with the Milwaukee-Eight 107 engine, the Street Glide comes in a few other trims with larger engines like the Special with the Milwaukee-Eight 114, and ST and CVO which both come equipped with the upgraded Milwaukee-Eight 117.
6/10 Road Glide – $21,430
Action shot of the 2022 Harley-Davidson Road Glide Special
If sibling rivalry existed among Harley riders, there would be two teams: Street Glide and Road Glide. Although both of these motorcycles are roughly 90-percent the same, there is one key difference that sets the two apart: the Road Glide’s shark-nose fairing. While both modern Road Glides and Street Glides come with the same engines, frames, saddlebags, seats, and even touch-screen infotainment systems, the fairing is what people argue over in the comments. Unlike the mobile bat wing faring that moves in the direction of the rider’s path, the Road Glide’s shark-nose fairing is fixed. Meaning no matter which way the rider turns the bike, the fairing is always facing forward. The Road Glide also houses a pair of headlamps instead of the Street Glide’s single lamp, casting a wider range of light that’ll come in necessary for those dark back roads. But the main reason why Road Glide fans favor the shark nose over the bat wing is how they handle the wind at high speeds. The Street Glide, though fully capable of standing up against the wind, can sometimes send vibrations to the rider’s hands due to the fact that it is fixed to the bike’s forks. Meanwhile, because the Road Glide’s fairing is bound to the engine guard instead of the forks, is able to cut through the wind at higher speeds while not sending down any shakiness. Certainly, a viable reason why the Road Glide is seen to be more popular in some parts of the U.S.
5/10 Freewheeler – $28,499
Press photo of the 2022 Harley-Davidson Freewheeler
A hot rod on three wheels, Harley-Davidson’s Freewheeler keeps the door for adventure open for those that still desire the open road. Trikes are popular among riders that do not have the physical strength to hold up these machines that weigh well over 800 pounds, but still want the sensation of wind in their faces. Other times Trike owners just don’t want to have to deal with the concept of balancing a half-ton bike. Thankfully, the Freewheeler packs enough power and style for anybody to leave all of their worries behind. Plus, the amount of trunk space you can carry your things around in just cannot be ignored!
4/10 Road Glide Limited – $28,729
Stock photo of a 2022 Harley-Davidson Road Glide Limited
With road trip intentions parallel to that of the Ultra Limited, the shark nose/bat wing fairing rivalry spills over onto these long-range bikes as well. Whether you’re a couple, or you’re flying solo, the Road Glide Limited boasts all the extra creature comforts of the Ultra Limited (extra storage, ABS, comfort, etc) while rocking the famous shark nose fairing with an even higher windshield to keep the wind (and bugs) out of your face.
3/10 Ultra Limited – $29,169
Stock photo of a 2022 Harley-Davidson Ultra Limited
While some touring models like the Road King, Road Glide, and Street Glide are well-rounded in terms of riding around town and riding cross-country, larger touring models like the Ultra Limited tend to favor the highway a little bit more. For good reason too. Ultra Limiteds are like the Winnebagos of the Harley world because not only are they more conditioned for longer, more comfortable riding, but also come with a few more goodies than the other models previously mentioned on this list. The first thing is the seating situation. Because a bike like this is meant to be ridden with a passenger for hours on end, the rider is treated to an extra cushy seat that feels like you are riding a couch. Meanwhile, the passenger gets to have their own backrest, armrests, and mini floorboards that put them in such a comfortable position that many have confessed to falling asleep mid-ride! The Ultra Limited also comes with its own Tour-Pak luggage carrier that allows its riders to store helmets, extra clothing, gear, and other necessities that they’ll be needing on their next road trip.
2/10 Tri-Glide Ultra – $35,699
Press photo of the 2022 Harley-Davidson Tri Glide Ultra
A trike loaded up with power, torque, and amenities, the Tri Glide Ultra has everything a longtime rider will need to conquer the freeway. Based on the Freewheeler’s design, the Tri Glide Ultra comes with a few extra creature comforts that will make you want to ride this more than your daily driver. This is evident by the batwing fairing, touch-screen Bluetooth infotainment system, extra-comfy touring seats, additional storage, and cruise control, just to name a short few. It is fair to say that anyone riding in a Tri Glide Ultra will certainly be ruling the road in comfort and style.
1/10 CVO Tri Glide – $49,999
Press photo of the 2022 Harley-Davidson CVO Tri Glide
If you want to talk about the ultimate touring motorcycle, then there is no higher peak than Harley-Davidson’s CVO Tri Glide. Because if you are going to embark on a grand, country-wide road trip, you might as well do it in style. Never mind about hand-picking all the extra parts and add-ons from the dealer. Instead, you can just simply head right on out with additional upgrades like a remote locking system, alarm system, a rare factory-custom paint job, and all the stylings any Harley aficionado could ask for.