Comparison of some properties of Harley-Davidson motors

Here will take a look at some of the properties of Harley-Davidson motors from a data perspective. We want to find models with desirable characteristics according to our own criteria. In this case, we will formulate the criteria as low displacement, high fuel and oil capacities, low weight in running order, high engine torque, high fuel economy and low price. We will consider gear ratios only for the overall relative comparison.

We start with the following compact data, obtained via script from the Harley-Davidson website:

model,price (color/custom) ($),displacement (cc),fuel capacity (gal),oil capacity (w/filter) (qt),weight in running order (lb),engine torque (rpm),fuel economy (mpg),gear ratios (overall) 1st,gear ratios (overall) 2nd,gear ratios (overall) 3rd,gear ratios (overall) 4th,gear ratios (overall) 5th,gear ratios (overall) 6th 2019 HARLEY-DAVIDSON STREET® 500,7194,494,3.5,3.3,514,3750,64,14.272,10.074,7.446,6.006,5.037,4.533 2019 HARLEY-DAVIDSON STREET® 750,7894,749,3.5,3.3,514,4000,55,14.272,10.074,7.446,6.006,5.037,4.533 2019 STREET ROD®,8994,749,3.5,3.3,525,4000,54,14.272,10.074,7.446,6.006,5.037,4.533 2019 SUPERLOW®,9049,883,4.5,2.8,569,3750,51,10.41,7.436,5.531,4.584,3.931,- 2019 IRON 883™,8999,883,3.3,2.8,564,3750,51,10.41,7.436,5.531,4.584,3.931,- 2019 IRON 1200™,10349,1202,3.3,2.8,564,3500,48,9.315,6.653,4.948,4.102,3.517,- 2019 1200 CUSTOM,10999,1202,4.5,2.8,591,3750,48,9.315,6.653,4.948,4.102,3.517,- 2019 FORTY-EIGHT®,11649,1202,2.1,2.8,556,3500,48,9.315,6.653,4.948,4.102,3.517,- 2019 FORTY-EIGHT® SPECIAL,11649,1202,2.1,2.8,564,3500,48,9.315,6.653,4.948,4.102,3.517,- 2019 ROADSTER™,11649,1202,3.3,2.8,571,3750,48,9.315,6.653,4.948,4.102,3.517,- 2019 STREET BOB®,14949,1746,3.5,5,653,3000,47,9.311,6.454,4.793,3.882,3.307,2.79 2019 LOW RIDER®,15449,1746,5,5,661,3000,47,9.311,6.454,4.793,3.882,3.307,2.79 2019 SOFTAIL SLIM®,16349,1746,5,5,671,3000,47,9.311,6.454,4.793,3.882,3.307,2.79 2019 FAT BOB®,17449,1746,3.6,5,673,3500,47,9.311,6.454,4.793,3.882,3.307,2.79 2019 DELUXE,18449,1746,5,5,697,3000,47,9.311,6.454,4.793,3.882,3.307,2.79 2019 SPORT GLIDE®,19049,1746,5,5,699,2750,47,9.311,6.454,4.793,3.882,3.307,2.79 2019 FAT BOY®,19449,1746,5,5,699,3000,47,9.311,6.454,4.793,3.882,3.307,2.79 2019 HERITAGE CLASSIC,19449,1746,5,5,723,3000,47,9.311,6.454,4.793,3.882,3.307,2.79 2019 BREAKOUT®,19449,1746,3.5,5,672,3000,47,9.311,6.454,4.793,3.882,3.307,2.79 2019 FXDR™ 114,21749,1868,4.4,5,668,3500,46,9.311,6.454,4.793,3.882,3.307,2.79 2019 ELECTRA GLIDE® STANDARD,18999,1746,6,5.2,820,3250,43,9.593,6.65,4.938,4,3.407,2.875 2019 ROAD KING®,19739,1746,6,5.2,836,3250,43,9.593,6.65,4.938,4,3.407,2.875 2019 STREET GLIDE®,21789,1746,6,5.2,829,3250,43,9.593,6.65,4.938,4,3.407,2.875 2019 ROAD GLIDE®,22089,1746,6,5.2,855,3250,43,9.593,6.65,4.938,4,3.407,2.875 2019 ROAD KING® SPECIAL,23539,1868,6,5.2,820,3000,43,9.593,6.65,4.938,4,3.407,2.875 2019 ELECTRA GLIDE® ULTRA CLASSIC®,25189,1746,6,5.2,904,3250,43,9.593,6.65,4.938,4,3.407,2.875 2019 STREET GLIDE® SPECIAL,27589,1868,6,5.2,836,3000,43,9.593,6.65,4.938,4,3.407,2.875 2019 ROAD GLIDE® SPECIAL,27989,1868,6,5.2,855,3000,43,9.593,6.65,4.938,4,3.407,2.875 2019 ROAD GLIDE® ULTRA,28289,1868,6,5,937,3000,43,9.593,6.65,4.938,4,3.407,2.875 2019 ULTRA LIMITED LOW,28689,1868,6,5,908,3000,43,9.593,6.65,4.938,4,3.407,2.875 2019 ULTRA LIMITED,28689,1868,6,5,910,3000,43,9.593,6.65,4.938,4,3.407,2.875 2019 FREEWHEELER®,28599,1868,6,5.2,1118,2250,43,10.534,7.302,5.423,4.392,3.741,3.157 2019 TRI GLIDE® ULTRA,36949,1868,6,5,1243.41,3250,42,10.534,7.302,5.423,4.392,3.741,3.157 2019 CVO™ STREET GLIDE®,40889,1923,6,5.2,877,3500,41,9.593,6.65,4.938,4,3.407,2.875 2019 CVO™ ROAD GLIDE®,42339,1923,6,5.2,884,3500,41,9.593,6.65,4.938,4,3.407,2.875 2019 CVO™ LIMITED,43889,1923,6,5,939,3500,41,9.593,6.65,4.938,4,3.407,2.875

These properties are only a small selection of the entire list available on the website. Since we are not immediately interested in information related to aesthetics or data which does not add much when converted from label to a quantity, we narrow down the information to only what we need.

We can then write additional code to arrive at the following diagram (click to enlarge and then come back):

Comparison of Harley-Davidson motors (several characteristics)

Here we are able to see some interesting details like similarities in the production method among several different models. Many appear close together, which means that they have similar technological characteristics (only among those we've chosen here). Three models appear away from the rest, which hints that they are most dissimilar to the overall group.

As a next step we will create a scoring function which favors the characteristics we would like to have. We feed the data to it and receive our scores. Sorting in descending order we obtain:

2019 Harley-Davidson Street® 500
2019 Harley-Davidson Street® 750
2019 Street Rod®
2019 Low Rider®
2019 Softail Slim®
2019 Fat Bob®
2019 Deluxe
2019 Street Bob®
2019 Fxdr™ 114
2019 Fat Boy®
2019 Heritage Classic
2019 Sport Glide®
2019 Breakout®
2019 Electra Glide® Standard
2019 Road King®
2019 Street Glide®
2019 Road Glide®
2019 Electra Glide® Ultra Classic®
2019 Road King® Special
2019 Street Glide® Special
2019 Road Glide® Special
2019 Ultra Limited Low
2019 Ultra Limited
2019 Road Glide® Ultra
2019 Tri Glide® Ultra
2019 Superlow®
2019 Iron 883™
2019 1200 Custom
2019 Iron 1200™
2019 Roadster™
2019 Cvo™ Street Glide®
2019 Cvo™ Road Glide®
2019 Cvo™ Limited
2019 Freewheeler®
2019 Forty-Eight®
2019 Forty-Eight® Special

The first 3 models here appear to be the same as the ones another algorithm was able to separate in the previous diagram. They also appear first on the list of all models on the manufacturer's website—perhaps not by coincidence. Further, the scores from the model "Fat Bob" to "Tri Glide Ultra" change comparatively little similarly to those between "Superflow" and "Freewheeler". The last two models seem to deviate most from the characteristics we wanted to have. In the diagram, these are the two topmost overlapping labels.

The correlations among the properties look like this:

Correlations among the selected properties of the Harley-Davidson motors

Here we see 3 strong relationships: between oil capacity and displacement (0.89), between weight in running order and price (0.85) and between fuel capacity and weight in running order (0.82). Further, we see how by switching from gear 1 to gear 5, the correlation with the engine torque (rpm) grows from 0.49 to 0.58 and the correlation with fuel economy (mpg) grows from 0.71 to 0.77.