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Turbo Sportster 2007

2007 Turbo Sportster

Thanks to
Jerry Whitmore
for providing
the motorcycle

Turbo Sportster 2007
2007 Can Am Spyder
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The New Thinner Carbon Fiber Belt and the new 150 MM Rear tire
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Click to enlarge
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I installed an oil cooler for those hot summer rides.

Motorcycle Test
2007 Modified Harley-Davidson Sportster XL1200R
 A Sportster with an attitude!
 V-Rod eater

With enormous thanks to Jerry Whitmore
for providing this awesome ride!

by Kirk Johnson
June 2007

About the Bike

The Sportster turned 50 this year, how cool is that.  It has come a long way from 1957 when they introduced the first XL with a 55 ci Ironhead engine and a list price of only $1,103.00. 

It was in 2004 that the Sportster transformed with some major changes.  That was the year they finally rubber mounted the engine and changed the rear tire from the 130 mm tire to the bigger 150 mm tire.  And on the Custom model they changed the fuel tank to a more rounded and custom looking tank with a 4.5-gallon capacity.  The tank on the 1200R remains unchanged and is still 3.3-gallon tank.  Whether you were a mechanic or a www.poker.dk champ with a taste for machines like the Sportster, the difference was noticeable the moment you got out on the road. There were a few other changes, mainly cosmetic in nature. There were a few other changes, mainly cosmetic in nature.

Then in 2007, they introduced Electronic Sequential Port Fuel Injection (ESPFI), Carbon Fiber Final Drive Belt and redesigned the gauges with enhanced features: electronic speedometer with odometer, time-of-day clock on odometer, dual resettable tripmeter, speedometer with low fuel warning light, low oil pressure indicator light, diagnostics readout, LED lights.  Notice – no more reserve valve for the fuel system.  The Sportster is now a lot more like the big boys, only much faster.  For braking, they have free-floating calipers on the front and back brake systems.

Bike Model

2007 Harley-Davidson Sportster 1200R


73.2 ci or 1200 cc Evolution with Turbo*

Engine HP

113.3 @ 6,200 RPM*

Engine Torque

102.3 @ 4,500 RPM*



Fuel System

Electronic Sequential Port Fuel Injection

Primary Drive


Final Drive

The New Carbon Fiber Belt


Front - 2 dual-piston
Back - single piston

Tire Size Front

100/90-19 57H

Tire Size Rear

150/80B16 71H


26 degrees

Dry Weight

565 lbs.

Seat Height

28.1 in

*Turbo installed and tuned by Nick from Trask Performance
Click here for Dyno Chart

More info on the
Sportster Turbo Kit

A Sportster with an Attitude!

How could I be so lucky having a brand new shiny black XL 1200R Sportster in my possession!  After the 500 mile break in period, Nick installed the turbo system.  This was not an easy job.  I am sure that this is the only turbo Sportster that is fuel injected in the world.  Nick has installed turbos on many Harley's including Sportster's.  This was the first fuel injected Sportster! 

First thing they had to do was examine the engine’s EFI system so they would know how to go about adapting the Turbo.  Luckily Harley used a similar Delphi system that is found on the Baggers and V-rods.  Next, they had to figure out what injectors to use because the stock Sportster injectors would not cut it.  They found that the V-rod injectors were well suited for this application.

Then they had to fabricate the complete exhaust system and plenum and modify the GT22 Garrett Turbo for the Sportster.  They were able to use the existing O2 sensors from the original exhaust.  Next after fabrication and installation was done, they had to build a one off map for this original beast.  They spent hours on the dyno with the Screaming Eagle Race tuner to create the map.  In the end, they were able to get over 113 HP and over 100 ft lbs of torque out of the stock Evo engine. 

Nick also installed an AIM Clutch system to make sure there is no clutch slippage.  Not only does this eliminate the clutch slip concerns, it also makes the clutch lever pull much easier.

Test Ride

WOW, what a great bike.  I have been riding a 2001 Sportster, sport model for over 7 years, have over 35,000 miles on it, and it still runs like the day I got it.  Now I sit on this V-rod eater and marvel at the sheer HP and torque that this beast has.  Besides having the rubber-mounted engine and the turbo, this new Sportster handles great.  It still has the old style feel of what a motorcycle is supposed to feel like without all of the vibration and it is quick, very quick.  Not only does it scream whenever you request the happy juice, it gets between 48 and 54 mpg.  More on that later.

The recent changes, rubber mounted engine and fuel injection, are very welcome and long overdue.  I remember the days, after a long run, when I would remove my hands from the handlebars and they would tingle from the vibration.  Those days are gone.  But to say the new Sportster is vibration free would be a stretch.  This is not a Road King or a Dyna.  It is much more.  With the Sportster, you are more in tune with the road and it is a much sportier bike.

The throttle response in amazing.  The lightest twist and the bike just leaps ahead.  If you ever get serious about getting down the road or you can not resist a little adrenalin rush on the on-ramps, the bike just smokes.  Very smooth and very fast the boost rushes to 9 pounds and the bike launches in the direction that it is pointed.  The only trouble with this kind of power is the 6 grand rev limiter.  Thank God for that rev limiter though.  Once you commit to the go juice you find that getting to 6 grand is so fast it makes you head spin.  If the bike did not have a rev. limiter, I don’t even want to think what would happen. 

Talk about torque, check this out.  I tried a passing test while next to a V-rod and with the deep pockets of torque, you find your self a good 2 bike lengths ahead just by twisting the grip.  WOW,  take that all of you hi rpm wet heads.  Don’t get me wrong, I like V-rods, they are also a great bike and I love seeing them in my  mirrors.

The next day I took the Sportster on a trip to Prescott by way of Wickenburg and Yarnell.  I could not wait to get to the Yarnell hill and see how the new Sportster handled on the curves.  On the way to the hill, I was again surprised at how smooth the new Sportster was.  Getting to any speed you want is just a quick twist of the throttle.  Then you can settle back and cruise at any double-digit speed that you want with ease.  I found a great sweet spot at 90 mph.  It was as though the bike was tuned for that speed.  Even at 90, when you twist the grip the front-end rises up to almost full extension.  Not bad for a little Sporty. 

After spending time on Yarnell hill going into Prescott on Highway 89, I was impressed with the handling of the new Sportster.  It feels tight and is very solid on the turns.  Even the stock suspension is solid and dependable.  It follows the dips and bumps on the curves with ease and stays planted without ever getting that ugly high-speed wobble that you get from some bikes. 

43 mpg! 54 mpg!

I was in for a great treat the very first time that I stopped to refuel.  Remember, the bike only has about 700 miles in it and I am not very easy on equipment or the throttle.  To my surprise, I was getting a little over 48 mpg. The very best fuel mileage that I got from my 01 Sportster was about 43 mpg.  I felt good if I got 40 mpg.  Understand though, that bike was jetted on a dyno at full throttle for max HP.

Two weeks after that ride, it took a 1,800-mile trip up to Durango and southern Utah.  On that trip, I was able to get 50 to 54 mpg.  It just kept getting better and better.  It did not seem to make any difference if I road 50-60 cruising or pushed it, the mileage just keep getting better and better.  Anyone that has a Sportster knows what a great deal that is.  Having only a 3.3-gallon tank, the need for frequent refueling is not an option.  In the past, about every 100 miles I would have to refuel.  If I went on reserve, I had to slow to 50 mph to make sure I had 15 mile left to find fuel.  Several times, I had that happen to me in isolated areas like Northern Arizona and Utah.  Now, I can go over 120 miles before the low fuel indicator light comes on.  Then I still have 8/10 of a gallon left.  Estimated range for a tank is now around 150+ miles.  That 50% increase in real estate in the mirror is greatly appreciated and it makes that little tank seem a lot bigger.


The Sportster has always been one of my favorite bikes.  With the changes in 04 and 07, it just got a lot better.  Put on a sissy bar for a passenger and saddle bags or a big T-bag for storage and you have a bike that you can easily spend the day on for trips.  Put the Turbo on and you have a bike that is faster than any American made stock bike, even the V-rod.  Add to that the 100 lbs of torque at about 3,000 rpm and you have one really sweet bike that just plain disappears with the twist of the grip without having to grab a couple of gears.  The Sportster has come a long way and I am sure it will be around for a long time.  It’s a great motorcycle.

Ride safe,


© 2005 phoenixbikers.com; This material may not be published, reproduced or linked to in part or whole
without the permission of Kirk at phoenixbikers.com.