I like the Heritage for the simple fact that you can take the bags off and
it looks super clean. With a Road King, you gotta leave those bags on
otherwise you see those rear shocks! The road king is sweet though.
That's just my personal opinion.
I bought a used '00 RKC off of ebay, even though I originally wanted the Softail Heritage (Love the studded seats and bags). The Heritage just wasn't as available or as cheap at the time I bought it. I bought a Mustang seat with studs and conchos for the King Classic and now most people mistake it for the Heritage. The single best thing I like about the King Classic over the Heritage is the chrome nacelle on the King Classic. That chrome monster headlamp is intoxicating to look at when you're riding.
JFScheck, why is the heritage more comfortable for passangers? I just got the RK and thought it would be more comfortable. I love both bikes, but I could only get the RK. I think I will be very satisfied with the RK. Just wondering. J.T.
I share Nickp's thoughts, with a different result. Due to the variable weather conditions in Socal (it can be 30-40 degerees cooler on the ocean versus the valley, 30-40 miles) that I usually like to carry several layers of clothes. To me, the Heritage does not look good with the bags on, whereas the Road King was designed for them. With the windsheild off the King looks awesome, as does the Heritage w/o the bags. Probably depends on your ouw riding style and habits.
I bought a RC after renting a couple of Heritages. The last rental was in SoCal and my wife got a bruised tailbone after we bottomed out across a rough bridge joint on the LA freeways (their diamond lanes are what used to be the shoulder and pretty rough travel). My wife's comfort and the King's air shocks were the deciding factor for me. All in all, my impression has been the King has a smoother ride for highway cruising but the Heritage is smoother in close city traffic. YMMV
The King..cause I bought one..quicker steering, better suspension a less complicated motor..I just like the rubbermounts, I had a FXR when you couldn't give them away....had to get rid of it a while ago, the RK reminds me a little of the FXR.
I had the same tough decisions to make this past spring. Do I buy a Road King, Heritage Softail Classic or a Fatboy. After looking and riding and talking with friends. I decided to buy a Heritage Softail Classic. I figured from Day One I would detach the bags and windshield but after riding with them on. I found that they were quite functional. But I do like having the option of taking all the accessories off to change the appearence of the bike.
Since when is a softail frame more comfortable than a touring frame? I think you must have gotten the two switched around. The HD touring frames are made for comfort and long riding, the softail frame is made to look like a hardtail, with hardly any more suspension.
I would say that you could answer your own question by what you want the bike for. Local cruising, Heritage, long distance touring, Road King. The best part about the Road King is that it can do both, while the Heritage my not be so great over the long haul.
On a side note, its a good thing that the Heritage bags come off, because I think they look like **** after awhile. They seem to tend to sag and droop after a year or so.