Home / Is the Harley Iron 883 Good as a First Bike?

When it comes to getting into Harley-Davidson motorcycles, there’s no single right way to do it. Everybody’s first bike is different, and all riders are going to have a slightly different preference regarding which style fits them the best. However, there have been some clear-cut winners over time that beginners seem to have a preference for. Some of the Harley models that beginners are always understandably curious about are the 883 models. While the Iron 883 as your first bike may be the right choice for many beginners, there are a few things that riders looking to start out on one should keep in mind.

The Harley-Davidson Iron 883 as first bike may be a good choice

Is the Iron 883 a Good Beginner’s Bike?

For the most part, you aren’t liable to find a much better beginner Harley than an 883. The difficulty comes in determining whether or not you should be starting out on a Harley in the first place. Harley-Davidson makes bikes that look intimidating, and that intimidating appearance comes from both the size of the bike and the size of its engine. Harley-Davidson makes big bikes, and even their smallest models might be too much for an amateur.

A close up of the engine and size of the Harley-Davidson Iron 883

How Big Is the Iron 883?

When it comes to Harleys, the 883 models are certainly on the smaller side. The current Iron model weighs in at over 550 pounds, with a length of 86 inches and a seat height of 25.7 inches. Comparably, the 2021 Harley Davidson CVO Road Glide weighs in at over 850 pounds, with a length of 96.9 inches and a seat height of 25.9 inches. Although riders of the same height may be able to ride both comfortably, the heavier Road Glide is going to be much more difficult to control once you’re out on the road. However, to truly get the idea of just how comparatively heavy even the lightest Harley bikes can be for someone who has never ridden a motorcycle, consider that the Iron 883 is upwards of 100 pounds heavier than many other street-legal bikes.

How Big is an 883cc Engine?

The “883” in the model name refers to the size of the bike’s engine, which is 883 cubic centimeters, or 883cc. While this is certainly a far cry from the 1,923cc engine that is found in the CVO Road Glide, it’s still a good deal bigger than the smaller engines found in other street-legal bikes. Common smaller engine sizes that can be found in motorcycles are 250cc and 500cc. The bigger the engine, the heavier the machine, and the faster it can generally go. So while the Iron 883 as a first bike is definitely not going to be as heavy-duty as some of its big brothers, it’s still a heavy-duty machine.

At half the size of most Harley-Davidson, the Iron 883 gives new riders great safety features.


How Fast Can an 883 Go?

Given that an 883cc engine is less than half of the size of many of its brothers, 883 models certainly aren’t going to be the fastest Harleys that you can get. This is one of the reasons that 883 models have become so popular with beginners. The Iron has a top speed of around 118 mph. One nifty feature that beginners may enjoy about the 883 models is the optional ABS system, which senses varying wheel speed in order to increase rider stability.

What Is the Difference Between the Iron and the Superlow?

Both the Iron and the Superlow Harley models have the same 883cc engine size. Where the two differ is in minor attributes, such as appearance and wheel size. The Superlow was incredibly popular with beginners because of its low height to the ground, which is also where the model got its name. In many respects, the Iron has taken the place of the Superlow, offering the same general size and weight, as well as a comparable engine.

Ready to ride a Harley-Davidson? Head to your local dealership

Stop by Harley-Davidson of The Woodlands

Harley-Davidson of The Woodlands offers a vast selection of both new and used Harleys, including the 2021 Iron 883. Whether you’re looking for a new or used ride or simply need some service work done to get your current bike back out on the road, we’ve got you covered! Serving Southeast Texas since 1999, we take pride in offering the ultimate Harley-Davidson experience to riders of all caliber.

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.