The Harley-Davidson Softail Fat Bob is another Dyna model that was folded into the Softail series in 2018. As the hooligan of the family, the Harley Fat Bob brings a burly V-twin, triple disc brakes, an inverted fork, and adjustable rear suspension, thus breaking The Motor Company’s ages-old mold of a classic V-twin cruiser. Throwing down a muscular attitude, the Harley Fat Bob is not out to win hearts and minds; this machine came to rumble. Spirited and agile but buff and beefy, the Fat Bob is the bike Harley designers refer to as one for the “zombie apocalypse,” and one look should tell you why.
Chunky tires, a wide, horizontally oriented LED headlight, and distinctive 2-into-1-into-2 bronze upswept exhaust pipes immediately tag the Harley Fat Bob as unique, while the rest of the bike is subdued in dark, menacing finishes. The Milwaukee-Eight 107 mill delivers its power predictably throughout the entire rev range, with a claimed 107 foot-pounds of peak torque at 3,500 rpm, while the 114 engine option claims 118 foot-pounds at 3,500 rpm. An aggressive 28-degree rake and relatively compact 63.6-inch wheelbase lets you bomb corners with authority, while the inverted 43mm Showa Dual Bending Valve fork makes for a more composed ride. Dual brake rotors up front are clamped by four-piston calipers, offering plenty of stopping power. And don’t worry; the Fat Bob has a neutral riding position that can roll with a wide variety of rider types.
With Harley’s complete overhaul of the Softail lineup the new Fat Bob benefits hugely from the different frame, swingarm, engine, and suspension. Underneath the saddle is a hidden, preload-adjustable coilover monoshock which also maintains the illusion of the bike being a hardtail. And it’s not just the suspension; the entire Softail frame is not just stiffer, but also lighter. Blacked out and even more souped up, the Harley-Davidson Softail Fat Bob maintains its aggressive modern-custom vibe with a choice of either 107 or the 114 M-8 engines, for a bike that’s made to leave your buddies in the dust.
Pros: Harley’s power cruiser is lighter and handles better, and has the torque-rich Milwaukee-Eight engine.
Cons: The fat tires occasionally require coaxing in turns.
Harley Softail Fat Bob Specs & Pricing
With its horizontal headlamp, mesmerizing exhaust pipe layout, and torquey M-8 powerplant, along with an inverted fork and dual-disc front brakes, the Fat Bob stands out as perhaps the most distinctive Softail yet.
|Displacement:||107ci / 114ci|
|Transmission:||6-speed Cruise Drive|
|Compression ratio:||10.0:1 / 10.5:1|
|Valve train:||Single-overhead cam; 4 valves/cylinder|
|Overall length:||92.1 in.|
|Seat height:||28.0 in.|
|Ground clearance:||4.7 in.|
|Front suspension:||Nonadjustable Showa Dual Bending Valve fork|
|Rear suspension:||Spring-preload-adjustable monoshock|
|Wheel size, front:||16 in.|
|Wheel size, rear:||16 in.|
|Front brakes:||Dual discs w/ fixed 4-piston caliper|
|Rear brake:||Disc w/ floating 2-piston caliper|
|Fuel capacity:||3.6 gal.|
|Running weight:||673 lb.|
The 2019 Harley-Davidson Fat Bob (in black) costs $17,049, while color options cost $17,449. The H-D Factory Security System comes standard on the 107, but ABS is a $795 option. The 114 engine option adds $1,800 to the base price, but ABS and the Security System come standard on the 114 model.
Fat Bob Customs
We’ve seen the Harley Fat Bob get customized in all kinds of different ways over the years: Just look at some of these ideas.
Softail Fat Bob Parts & Accessories
The Harley Fat Bob’s stock stance is pretty impressive out of the box, but because it’s an aggressively designed machine, you know you’ll eventually want to dial it up, and there are countless ways to make the Fat Bob even more radical. Access hundreds of Softail Fat Bob parts and accessories straight from Harley-Davidson itself, or dig into the vast number of aftermarket companies offering custom bits.
Predictably, the parts on the Harley Fat Bob that get changed out the most are the exhaust, intake and ECU components. Just take a look at some of the upgrades we installed on the 2018 Fat Bob when we had it. Of course, there are plenty of other exhaust pipe options for this model as well.