Home / Dyna vs Softail Motorcycles: 5 Key Differences

Motorcycle enthusiasts love appreciating a Harley-Davidson, as it’s one of the leading motorcycle brands in the world, but not every big motorcycle fan knows the differences between Dyna vs. Softail or what makes the models unique. Due to the popularity of both, you will definitely need to know the key differences between both kinds of motorcycles.

Over the years, Dyna and Softail models have garnered a level of fame and love from riders. Harley-Davidson dealerships offer both for those looking to purchase a new motorcycle, each with its pros and cons. However, just because they are Harley-Davidson motorcycles does not make them the same model, and they have a number of key differences that make them stand out.

Are you aware of the differences between Dyna vs. Softail motorcycles? Want to know the benefits of riding either one? Continue reading to learn about Harley Softail vs Dyna motorcycles in this brief overview.

Physical Differences of Dyna Vs. Softail

Both Dyna and Softail motorcycles are part of the cruiser category of Harley-Davidson motorbikes, but their specifications and capabilities make them both unique from one another. The frames of both motorcycles are different, which also affects their overall performance.

A Harley Dyna is a few inches longer and higher-seated than a Harley Softail. A Dyna can also seat up to two people on it, while the Softail is only made for one rider. The frame structures of both bikes are different from one another as well, with a mild tubular steel frame on a Dyna and a carbon steel frame on a Softail.

Engine Type of Harley Dyna vs Softail

Each variation of the motorcycle has a different engine. The Harley Dyna has a High Output Twin Cam 103 Pushrod V-twin engine, while the Softail has a Milwaukee Eight 107 V-twin engine.

The engines of both motorcycles are about 96-cubic-inches, but the Softail is a little different. It produces around 1.7 pounds more torque than the Dyna engine. The Softail offers a smoother ride, but the Dyna will have more power behind it.

They each have a 6-speed transmission and other similar specifications. However, the Softail engine uses both air and oil for its cooling. The Dyna, on the other hand, only uses air for engine cooling.

Speed Differences of Softail vs Dyna

In addition to the above differences, a Dyna can also go slightly faster in speed, hitting a max speed of 115 miles per hour. On the other hand, the Softail reaches a speed of 110 miles per hour, despite it having a similar engine and transmission. A factor that makes a difference with this, however, is the weight of a Softail, which can be around 687 pounds.

The torque volume between motorbikes is also mildly different, despite the overall torque of both being the same. A Harley Dyna has 119 ft./lbs. of torque volume, while Harley Softail has only 110 ft./lbs. Despite all of this, both Harley-Davidson motorcycles are similar in their fuel economy and capacity.

Harley-Davidson Dyna

Overall Comfort and Design

When it comes to having a sleek-looking motorcycle that is also comfortable to ride, both Harley-Davidson models are great for both. There are a few differences that distinguish the Dyna from the Softail, even though both are considered cruiser-style motorcycles.

The Dyna is designed to look sporty and leave a big impression. Many other models of Harley-Davidson bikes are often based on the design of the Dyna, especially high-performance motorbikes.

The Softail has a more old-style look that is designed with longer trips in mind. There’s less vibration from the engine mounts that allow you to cruise in comfort for much longer over a greater distance of travel.

A Difference in Price

Different models will have varying price points at nearly every Harley-Davidson dealership you visit. There is a difference in the price of buying a Dyna vs Softail.

A newly released 2022 Harley Softail can cost you around $14,000 or more, depending on the kind you aim to buy. The Softail model is still being produced and has yet to be discontinued. On average, you can also find an older 2020 model for around $13,000.

The Dyna model, however, has been discontinued and can be seen on sale as a used motorcycle. On average, a used Harley Dyna from 2017 can cost around $14,000 to $17,000. These can be harder to find because of the discontinuation of the model, but you can still find them at various Harley-Davidson dealerships.

With the price between Softail vs Dyna, the Softail is the more affordable newer model of the two. You may have to factor fuel costs into the price once you start driving, but both motorcycles already have similar fuel economies for their performance.

Harley Davidson Softail motorcycle

Deciding Between Dyna or Softail

With our overview of the big differences between Dyna and Softail, you’ll be better informed to choose between both models of Harley-Davidson motorcycle. Whether you’re looking for a stylish ride or a fast way to get around, knowing the key differences can help you pick the right motorcycle for you.

Looking to purchase a motorcycle soon and need options to browse through? Visit the Harley-Davidson of The Woodlands website or come to the dealership for plenty of great choices for Harley-Davidson motorcycles. We can help you find the best quality products and provide services for all of your motorcycle needs.


Harley Davidson of The Woodlands

Harley-Davidson of The Woodlands has been serving Southeast Texas for more than 20 years. We provide the Greater Houston area with new and pre-owned motorcycles, riding apparel, parts, maintenance service, and more at our state-of-the-art dealership. Whether you’re a new rider or a seasoned Harley vet, our friendly team of Harley-Davidson experts is ready to help you find the perfect bike today. Stop by and visit the Harley-Davidson of The Woodlands Showroom off of I-45 North in The Woodlands, TX.