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Old 07-29-2004, 10:26 AM   #81
seruzawa
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Default Re: The V-Four Harley You Never Saw

It was the overweening postwar arrogance of the victors of WWII that did themselves in. The Americans and Brits thought they could sell 30's technology powerplants and chassis forever.



American, Brits, Japanese, Germans.. all are capable of first rate engineering. It simply takes the will to do so. While the Americans and Brits were sitting on their laurels selling the same 30's tech they always had - and using planned obsolesence in an attempt to force consumers to turn over their junk vehicles even more often - the Japanese came on the scene with inexpensive vehicles that would run without breaking. And they began to incorporate the technological changes that were sidetracked for a couple of decades by WWII.



If anyone showed how not to maintain market domination in a changing economy it was the American and Brit auto and bike industries. I still remember how shocked everyone in my family was when my aunt bought a 1970 Datsun 510 and it ran an entire year without once needing a single repair. Unheard of!
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Old 07-29-2004, 10:28 AM   #82
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Default Re: The V-Four Harley You Never Saw

Actually, Kook reminds me of a Jack Vance fantasy universe... without any of the humor.
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Old 07-29-2004, 10:29 AM   #83
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Default Re: The V-Four Harley You Never Saw

Abe's still pouting over losing that sportsbybrooks contest.
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Old 07-30-2004, 04:39 AM   #84
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Default Re: The V-Four Harley You Never Saw

Frenchie Kerry rode BMW's - probably a buddy of the self styled "Editor in Chief" of BMW OTL...the ever overblown Hellmann (oops, I mean Hellman .



Kook can't even get the bike stuff right on his "Man".
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Old 07-30-2004, 04:45 AM   #85
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Default Re: The V-Four Harley You Never Saw

I was probably a little too critical of The Motor Company, which is a weird name. They should be The Chassis Company.



As the article shows, and as we all know, Harley clearly was at the forefront a while back, a point I'm not disputing. I'm just disappointed that their engineering efforts since that time have largely been limited to a very interesting chassis development project (Buell line), the V-Rod and the now cold VR1000 racing project.



All of those things are cool. The VR1000 and the Buell line show that Harley is capable of both innovation and refinement of existing ideas. They just haven't developed a relatively great motor since, apparently, 1979. The V-Rod motor is good, not great, for its application, and the base VR1000 motor was fine in 1994, but by the time they got the chassis sorted, the engine was lagging.



My ultimate point is that they should find a way to allow themselves to build a kick-ass engine. I would have bought an XB-12R if it had a real engine instead of a CBR1000RR, for example, at anything close to a similar price, just for the neatness. But the engine's only about one place removed from useless, so my choices were limited by what appears to be some sort of weird corporate Ludditism towards advanced engine technology, which is irritating.



cdg



p.s. longride, I think that the better analogy is that Harley could sell semi-exotic sportbikes and then compete with Ducati to buy Aprilia.



p.p.s. "You can't use the power of superbike replica blah blah blah I could outride you on my kid's tricycle harumph harumph d*#@ squids."
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Old 07-30-2004, 06:45 AM   #86
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Default Re: The V-Four Briggs & Stratton

That Nova engine (Spanish for no-go) looks like a Briggs & Stratton V-4 industrial engine, with water jackets. Even had the generator in the same place.



Coincidence?

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Old 07-30-2004, 12:11 PM   #87
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Default Re: The V-Four Harley You Never Saw

That's no surprise. Many people voted for Kennedy over Nixon simply because he looked better on a televised debate.
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Old 07-30-2004, 02:42 PM   #88
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Default Re: The V-Four Harley You Never Saw

It was a Porsche engine before and a Porsche engine again (V-Rod). Can't Harley design a new engine on their own?
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