I know what you are saying, with the make it what you want it bit, but i read every issue of Hot Bike, American Iron, and Cruiser magazine, in addition to PB, Bike, Superbike, Motorcyclist, Sportrider, CycleWorld.
It seems to me the cruiser world is getting stale. Smae thing, different paint. Maybe a few different lines, but cookie cutter bikes none-the-less. I do notice the details on the cruisers (i think the european customs are the only innovative ones), but they do not seem to raise any kind of bar, performance wise, value wise, or visually. I think everything that can be built, has been built. Why else would people like Arlen Ness turn an eye towards sportbikes? Because they offer the chance to make something actually different. What you get is pretty much what you pay for. You dont need to upgrade the motor, suspension, brakes, and chassis to make a well balanced motorcycle. A few cosmetic bits and you are there. Likewise, the ability to do extreme stuff is there, as well. To me, sportbikes just offer more diversity than cruisers.