Harley Davidson XL 883 Sportster




Make Model

Harley Davidson XL 883 Sportster


1997 - 99


Four stroke, 45° V-Twin, OHV, 2 valves per cylinder.


883 cc / 53.9 cub in.
Bore x Stroke 76.2 x 96.8 mm
Cooling System Air cooled
Compression Ratio 8.8:1


Carburetion (40 mm constant velocity with enrichener and accelerator pump)  Air Cleaner/Filter Oval “racetrack”;


Digital CDI
Starting Electric

Max Torque

69 Nm 52 lb-ft @ 4300 rpm

Clutch Multi-plate clutch with diaphragm spring in oil bath


5 Speed
Final Drive Belt
Gear Ratio 1st 10.944 9.792 9.467
2nd 7.542 6.732 6.663
3rd 5.834 5.220 5.143
4th 4.806 4.301 4.278
5th 4.071 3.643 3.643
Frame Mild steel, tubular frame; circularsections; cast junctions
Swingarm Mild steel, rectangular tube sections, stamped junctions; MIG welded

Front Suspension

39mm Conventional cartridge forks

Rear Suspension

Dual shocks Coil-over; preload dual-adjustable

Front Brakes

Single 292mm disc 2 piston calipers

Rear Brakes

Single 292mm disc 1 piston calipers

Front Tyre


Rear Tyre

Rake  29.6°
Fork Angle  30.1°
Trail 117 mm / 4.6 in
Dimensions Length 2237 mm / 88.3 in
Wheelbase 1522 mm / 60 in
Seat Height 711.2 mm / 28 in
Ground Clearance 112 mm / 4.4 om

Dry Weight

222 kg / 489.0 lbs
Wet Weight 263 kg / 579 lbs

Fuel Capacity

17 Litres / 4.5 US gal

The 883 Sportster is Harley's entry-level machine. A stripped-down, street-styled roadster, it has a narrow, lean look, unlike many of its larger siblings due to its simplicity. There is little to this bike apart from a narrow V-twin engine, a simple steel-tube frame and straightforward suspension components. The engine is a pushrod overhead valve design, first introduced in 1986. As standard, it is rather underpowered and restricted, but readily-available performance parts can easily increase power and torque. The chassis has limited sporting ability, at least in the traditional sense. It does have reasonable ground clearance though, and uprated suspension and brake components allow the owner to customize performance to suit.