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I've been shopping for my first street bike (rode MX 125cc most of my life) and decided upon the Ninja 300 for many reasons. But there is a tribe of Harley riding friends pushing that brand. I've only sat on each bike so I have no real knowledge of performance for either one.

I selected the Kawa300 because I like light nimble performance motorcycles and current technology. Something I feel HD is lacking. I feel HD is overpriced with dated technology and mostly selling a brand lifestyle.

Any of you have experience with Harleys and a Ninja 300? How do the characteristic compare and differ?

Thanks
Bill
 

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If you have an ounce of racer blood in your body, the Sportster will disappoint you on every level. :cool:

On top of that, all your "biker" friends will bust on you for having a Sportster anyway. Ride what you like.
 

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Depends on what you're really looking for sportsters are awesome the 883 and the forty eight are two of my favorite bikes but with the 300 you get almost 20more mpg on average a bigger gas tank a smoother rider especially at higher speeds the forty eight really shakes a lot and feels not quite stable however they both have way more power than the 300 idk about the dude who made the if ur a racer comment you'll want the 300 cause the forty eight hauls ass also keep in mind a Harley's maintenance cost will be way higher not to mention 4700$ for the 300 vs the 7500 and 10500 sportster cost


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If, like myself, the OP races 125cc MX, the Sportster is a turd compared to the 300. Heavy, slow for its size and lumbering with crap suspension, ergos and steering.

It might be faster than the 300 in a straight line, might be equal, and that will be close. On a good road it will be blown away with riders of equal skill. :cool:
 

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The sporter's pegs are lower as well so the 300, on top of the size difference, gets even better maneuverability. The sportster will have much better straight line performance. Power will come in at a much lower RPM although it wont have nearly the same top end. I see cruisers more like trucks and sport bikes more like cars. Cruisers are made for down low power and torque but don't have the top end performance. Sport bikes have relatively poor down low performance but it's much higher RPM band allows them to get much better performance up high. One's geared for grunt and low down acceleration, while the other is more for higher speed efficiency.

The sportster will hit it's power band much sooner than you but will be shifting towards the beginning of the 300s power band.
 

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People who claim Harleys are "old tech" don't really know what they're talking about. Yes, their engines us "old technology", but so what? Corvette's use pushrods, too, and nobody complains about it. Heck, I could claim the 300 uses "old tech" (internal combustion engines are sooo last century). Harley haters are the same as any other.

That being said, the only real similarities between a Sportster and a Ninja 300 are the facts that both are motorcycles and both are the smallest displacement models offered by their respective manufacturers. Not much of a comparison to be made.
 

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Sure, but I also don't buy a Morgan expecting to beat Porsches off the line (sorry, best analogy I could come up with).

Cruisers != high-performance machines. Cruisers = style and character (not implying that sportbikes lack either).
 

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I selected the Kawa300 because I like light nimble performance motorcycles and current technology. Something I feel HD is lacking. I feel HD is overpriced with dated technology and mostly selling a brand lifestyle.

Any of you have experience with Harleys and a Ninja 300? How do the characteristic compare and differ?
A HD compared to pretty much any bike now days is chalk and cheese, HD seems to be stuck using technology thats years old, if your into "living in the past", then HD is for you.

I have ridden a number of HD's and im yet to find any that get me excited or even remotely past boredom while riding.

The 300 is using current technology, something HD enjoys avoiding like the plague and is based on a sport bike frame , very light, extremely good on fuel economy (unlike any HD you care to think of) , optional ABS ( i have this on mine, and its sensational even in the rain) plus parts are quite inexpensive & reasonably easy to obtain & the 300 has a list of aftermarket parts a mile long to customise it to what ever you heart desires
 

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There was a V-Rod advertized near me with 2800 miles for $7500. 100th aniversary 2003 model. Looking at fuelly it gets mid 30s for mileage and does 0-60 a lot faster than a Ninja 300.

My 97 ranger can get that gas mileage. The Fiesta does mid 40s and my bike mid 70s. I'll take my 300 anytime.

regards
Mech
 

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My 2006 Harley sportster 1200 compared to my Ninja 300:

Harley dislikes:
Vibrates bad
Is heavy (top heavy 580lbs)
Not very maneuverable at low speed (compared to the 300)
Only takes 93 octane
Only has 5 gears........needs taller gearing for running above 60mph (increases vibration)
No top end
Expensive to maintain (every 5000 miles)


Harley Likes:
Its a Harley
Looks good
Low maintenance belt
50mpg (although not as good as the 300)
Accessory options
Low insurance

The 300 handles like a dream compared to a Harley sportster. It vibrates less and gets better gas mileage.
 

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HD avoids using more recent tech due to its majority buyer base not wanting it. They are still flipping out over the "half" water cooled V.

Sit on both bikes and ride if you can to test them. Don't let friend choose your bike. Take their advice into consideration but choose the bike you want to ride.
 

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We had a ride day last week! Couple of older guys on their Norton's and a hd sportster thought they were awesome overtaking us on the way to the twisties as we were sitting on the speed limit, once we hit the twisties we caught the sportster in no time and had to sit behind him frustrated at half pace for some time!
 

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We had a ride day last week! Couple of older guys on their Norton's and a hd sportster thought they were awesome overtaking us on the way to the twisties as we were sitting on the speed limit, once we hit the twisties we caught the sportster in no time and had to sit behind him frustrated at half pace for some time!
i wish i had a dollar for every-time i read this on a forum somewhere, i have lost count the time its happened to me as well
 
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