Review by Reg Kittrelle
[This H-D Brawler vs. Mustang Vintage motorcycle seat comparison was originally published in American Rider magazine]
To many, maybe most, motorcycle riding is a two-up activity. The big touring rigs from both Harley-Davidson and Victory have outfitted the passenger area with all manner of comfort and convenience items giving your pillion partner every excuse to join in the fun.
There are other riders, though, who prefer the solitude of riding alone. For this group most of the saddle manufacturers offer solo saddles. We recently looked at two of the best for the H-D FL; Harley-Davidson’s Brawler, and the Vintage from Mustang. Design and build quality of these two are excellent, but they are not necessarily competitors as each is aimed at a different rider; more correctly, a different-sized rider.
Harley’s Brawler is a stylish piece of work that hugs the frame rails as if it were melted to them. It’s low seating area gives the FLs a slammed look, but it does so with decent comfort. This is not just a style seat; you can put in long days aboard it without serious discomfort. With an overall length of 22 inches, and only a minimal kick-up at about 17 inches, this is a saddle for a long-legged rider. With my munchkin-like 30-inch inseam I found the Brawler too long, as it did not provide any lower-back support. I loved the look, and appreciated the quality, but this seat is for those too-tall riders like Clement Salvadori and Terry Roorda. Of particular note with the Brawler is its carpeted underside. This nice touch protects the frame’s paint from scratching by the saddle.
The Mustang Vintage saddle was a perfect fit for me. With its 20-inch overall length and a very pronounced kick-up at 15 inches, it cradled me like a newborn. Clem and Terry would probably feel cramped a bit on the Vintage. It is also a plush saddle with noticeably thicker padding than that of the Brawler. This is an all-day, multi-day saddle. While not quite as integrated into the motorcycle’s design as is the Harley saddle, the Vintage is still quite stylish. I was particularly impressed by the subtle braid that snakes around the seat’s aft end. Another nice thing about the Vintage is that Mustang offers a passenger seat that matches nicely.
Installation of both the Brawler and the Vintage is very simple, requiring only a couple of tools probably found in your onboard tool kit. If you’ll keep in mind the respective dimensions of these two saddles you’ll be more than happy with the one that fits you the best.
Both the Harley-Davidson Brawler and the Mustang Vintage have an MSRP of $299.
For more information on the Harley-Davidson Brawler visit www.harley-davidson.com.
For more information on the Mustang Vintage, 800-243-1392, or visit www.mustangseats.com.