One big difference between the road star and the VS1300: the road star is an "old school" bike, with a single carb, push rods, air cooling. It wont get as many miles per gallon as the water cooled fuel injected over head cam 1300
if its well maintained the road star will be incredibly reliable, esp on long road trips: there is no fuel injection system to suddenly quit, no sensors to fail that will leave you stranded, no water pump or coolant to leak.
Not that the VS1300 is prone to failures, its more of a design philosophy thing: an overhead valve timing chain cannot break or skip a tooth if the bike doenst have one (pushrods).
After typing all this I just realized the 2008 road star is fuel injected, so that reduces the differences down to air vs water cooling, and push rods vs a timing chain. I dont remember which year they stopped using the single carb on the road star.
Both bikes will easily put 100k on the odo without ever opening the engine case - and its hard to say that one is better than the other. Yamaha liked to give us lots of options.
Last edited by KCW; 12-30-2018 at 08:19 AM.