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Harley-Davidson Softail Cross Bones

Harley-Davidson’s latest: the 2008 Softail Cross Bones, a bike that spins back the hands of time to an era when Harleys weren’t ridden by dentists. -- Susan Carpenter (Harley-Davidson)
The Cross Bones cross-breeds Harley-Davidson’s history with the company’s recent embrace of modern technology and its new focus on younger buyers -- Susan Carpenter (Harley-Davidson)
The 30-inch-tall solo seat is mounted with a pair of coils. And it’s adjustable by an inch, so shorter-legged riders can slide it forward -- the better to reach the old-school, half-round foot boards. -- Susan Carpenter (Harley-Davidson)
Though inspired by Harley’s earliest overhead-valve engines -- the 1930s knuckle head and ‘40s pan head -- the Cross Bones uses the same fuel-injected 96B twin cam that Harley introduced for the 2007 model year. -- Susan Carpenter (Harley-Davidson)
The swingarm only mimics the lines of a rigid. There are coil-over rear shock absorbers to stop fragile spines from taking the impact; they’re just hidden below the powertrain. -- Susan Carpenter (Harley-Davidson)
Other retro touches that give this bike some edge without making it unrideable: a front fender that’s chopped to an inch of its functional life, baby ape-hanger handlebars that won’t solicit tickets from the authorities, and a pair of straight slash-cut pipes. -- Susan Carpenter (Harley Davidson)