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Harley-Davidson Sportster XL 883 reviews

4.9
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Reliability
4.9
Overall quality
5.0
Performance
4.7
Comfort
4.5

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20 ratings and reviews

Voted most helpful review

Rich C.

Houston, Texas

Reviewed on 2014-08-19

Motorcycle reviewed2004 Harley-Davidson Sportster XL 883

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5.0
This was my first Harley. I kept her for a little over a year and over 5,000 miles. I really enjoyed the time we had, but the more I rode the further I wanted to go and the more my wife wanted to ride with me. The sporty was great for me (at 245 pounds). Then you add my wife (at 105) and it was time for a Street Glide.
Reliability
5.0
Quality
5.0
Performance
5.0
Comfort
4.0
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Voted most helpful review

Anonymous

Halifax, North Carolina

Reviewed on 2013-06-29

Motorcycle reviewed2005 Harley-Davidson Sportster XL 883

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5.0
This is a good motorcycle that you will want to keep. It handles narrow country roads excellent, but will do just fine on a major highway. The Fatboy is my favorite, but the Sportster is great for country roads. In other words, do not trade it in if you get a large road bike!
Reliability
5.0
Quality
5.0
Performance
5.0
Comfort
5.0
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Voted most helpful review

Andrew

Escondido, California

Reviewed on 2007-02-02

Motorcycle reviewed2005 Harley-Davidson Sportster XL 883

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5.0
I ride my Sporty 5 or 6 times a week, in all kinds of weather. It has been perfectly reliable. It's a great bike to learn to ride on. I will definitely buy another Harley someday.
Reliability
5.0
Quality
5.0
Performance
5.0
Comfort
4.0
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Voted most helpful review

wjohn1428

Dayton, Ohio

Reviewed on 2006-12-14

Motorcycle reviewed2005 Harley-Davidson Sportster XL 883

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5.0
This is a used Sportster. Makes no dif to me. Nothing as pure motorcycly as a Sportster. I told a friend who has a Road King about my Sporty when I got it, he said that he liked his better than the Road King for day-to-day stuff and he misses his. I've had lots of bikes, this is my first H-D. The quality is amazing. Cold blooded carb, but it fits me fine, plenty of power, good for 75-100 miles at a stretch. Harleys don't cost more. They're just worth more.
Reliability
5.0
Quality
5.0
Performance
5.0
Comfort
5.0
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Voted most helpful review

MHilley

Anna, Texas

Reviewed on 2005-07-21

Motorcycle reviewed2005 Harley-Davidson Sportster XL 883

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5.0
I always wanted a Harley and never thought I could afford one. This Bike is not expensive and for what you pay you get a great bike. Trust me it is plenty fast if that is what you want and handles great. With the rubber mounted motor it does not vibrate at all. These bikes look great and get looks from people. I love this bike I can say no more. I cannot stay off of it. Everytime I turn around I want to get on it and take off. If you're looking for a great bike this is the one for you.
Reliability
5.0
Quality
5.0
Performance
5.0
Comfort
5.0
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Voted most helpful review

Chuck Thiel

Spokane , Washington

Reviewed on 2005-06-06

Motorcycle reviewed2004 Harley-Davidson Sportster XL 883

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5.0
On March 30, 2004 I purchased a 2004 Harley Davidson Sportster XL883. This 883 Sportster is a wonderful motorcycle. I just love it. It remains stock. I use it as an errand bike around town and is serves its purpose fantastically. Super maneuverable in all traffic conditions. It works best in and around parking lots where tight turns and quick maneuvering is required. The TT type handlebars make it great for quick and short throw reactions. Perfect for cruising wherever you want to go!!
Reliability
5.0
Quality
5.0
Performance
5.0
Comfort
5.0
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Voted most helpful review

j mohr

pleasant praie, Wisconsin

Reviewed on 2005-01-24

Motorcycle reviewed2005 Harley-Davidson Sportster XL 883

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5.0
My 2nd 883(first was a 2000-883). The rubber mounted engine is superior by far. The Sportster line in MY opionion is Harley's best even though it is priced at half of the others - simple and basic, very functional-pure fun. Have the dealer go from a #42 idle jet to a #48- it will cost 2mpg, but cold weather riding is much better and safer(no misfiring). Also drilling out the baffles with a hole saw will give it a throaty sound, louder but not too loud.
Reliability
4.0
Quality
5.0
Performance
4.0
Comfort
5.0
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Voted most helpful review

Darren

Lee's Summit, Missouri

Reviewed on 2004-11-13

Motorcycle reviewed2004 Harley-Davidson Sportster XL 883

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4.0
I bought my first Harley an 883XL, I chose the 883 because I could not justify the extra cost of the 1200. I have always had Japanese sportbikes so this was a big change for me. I have noticed the fit and finish is nicer than I expected. At around 200 miles I noticed the oil idiot light on the dash was not lighting up when the ignition was turned on (engine off) the dealer assured me it was no big deal but I persisted and had the sending unit switch replaced and the light worked again. The light stopped working at around 700 miles (engine runs great) I was told that Sportsters do that and that oil is somtimes left around the switch and not to worry about it. So I'm not. The bike runs great and has plenty of power even for two up. Just had my 1000 mile service done and had the Harley synthetic oil put in it, now it shifts much smoother. Let's face it, Harleys aren't as reliable as Japanese bikes, but I must admit there's nothing like riding a real Harley and they now come with a two year warranty.
Reliability
4.0
Quality
4.0
Performance
4.0
Comfort
4.0
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Voted most helpful review

tj emery

Tooele, Utah

Reviewed on 2004-09-21

Motorcycle reviewed2004 Harley-Davidson Sportster XL 883

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5.0
Have now put about 500 miles on my new 883L; no problems with bike at all. Handles good for 883cc cruiser. Gets going with authority. I think it has decent passing power for its cc type. It isn't a bullet bike, but it does pretty good. Belt drive is quite nice... smoother than shaft or chain, better over bumps, without the chain oil all over the place. This is my first Harley, and I'm actually quite impressed. Just hoping it holds up as well as my old rice burners always have.
Reliability
5.0
Quality
5.0
Performance
4.0
Comfort
4.0
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Voted most helpful review

patsue

Leon, Iowa

Reviewed on 2004-07-13

Motorcycle reviewed2004 Harley-Davidson Sportster XL 883

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5.0
Just crossed the 3500 mile mark on my bike I just bought back in April. It is the middle of July now. This bike has been absolutely flawless. No mechanical problems at all. It still rides way smooth with the rubber mounted engine, and I am getting incredible gas mileage. I am getting around 48-50 mpg! I have ridden several times 125 miles without switching to reserve- I don't actually know how far it would go but I bet at least 135 before having to switch. I added passenger pegs, Harley touring seat, forward controls, quick remove mid sissy bar and luggage rack, and Harley sport shield. I also had baffles removed, rejet, and screaming eagle air cleaner. I noticed a definite improvement in power after doing those upgrades. I can cruise up the interstate at speeds between 75-80 mph easy. The revs are a little high but not bad. It has more high speed power after adding the better air breather. I took a 2500 mile trip last year with my then 1500 Vulcan Classic and I can easily see doing that same trip on this sportster. My only complaints are: Sportshield really isn't big enough. I might invest in a bigger removable one. Rear shocks even at full preload easily bottom out with a passenger who wieghs more then 135 lbs. I weigh 185. I have heard that progressive shocks would take care of this. I will wait til next season for that. Side winds do blow it around a little. I just rode a friend's Suzuki LC1500 tonight and it felt like a land yacht compared to my sportster. His bike seemed immovable in the wind. Sometimes I look for a 6th gear that isn't there when I hit about 65 mph. I have had the bike up to 105 and it could have gone faster but I chickened out. I think this high speed is a result of the better breathing since the stage 1 upgrade. After the 1000 mile checkup and service, I changed to synthetic oil at 2500 miles and I noticed the engine running smoother. It may be in my head though. It hasn't used a drop of oil in the last 1000 miles. All in all, I am very happy with this bike for me and the driving I am doing. If my wife wants to really ride with me a lot, I will probably end up with a Vulcan 1600 or something as a Harley big twin just isn't in the budget. I highly recommend this bike.
Reliability
5.0
Quality
5.0
Performance
5.0
Comfort
4.0
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