First Ride: Polaris Victory Vegas
Calvin Wins a Trip to Vegas! (which turns out to be in Minnesota or some Godforsaken place)
Victory did a good job keeping the center of gravity as low as possible, a thing that makes the bike feel a lot lighter than its listed 615-pound dry weight would lead you to believe. While 33.1-degrees rake and 134mm trail aren't going to win any sportbike performance contests, for a cruiser the Vegas handles very nimbly and tracks nicely through corners. Dragging hard parts is again too easy, and if there is anything that can be said against the handling of the bike, it's that it's too confidence inspiring for its own ground clearance. The chassis gives a lot of feedback, and seems content to lean much farther. Must remember it's a Cruuuuuiser... maybe a performance footpeg mount should also be in the list of accessories?
Victory by Design
-- meanwhile, back in OsceolaIf the R&D and engine facility is any indication as to how serious Victory is about its motorcycles, all I can say is that these guy're extremely serious. Victory personnel highlighted numerous points during our tour of these facilities. For example, rods and cranks are "matched" by tolerance. Nothing manufactured is perfect, so upon receipt of connecting rods and cranks, each is measured and matched--looser big ends with bigger crank journals, etc. This keeps tolerances between these two critical parts as tight as possible. To aid in construction, tolerances are split into three ranges and color-coded.
So what happens if, heaven forbid, you throw a rod or need a new crank? Well, just by knowing your engine case number, Victory can print out a specification sheet that lists all the vitals about your particular engine. Want to know how much torque the third case bolt from the right was tightened to? They have it. In fact, all of the tools utilized in construction of the
Freedom engines are monitored by a central data control system. At each engine build station, there is a bar code reader that scans the engine before any work gets done to it. From there the computer is kept apprised of what is going on with each engine, step by step at each and every station.
Engine: Oil/air cooled, 50° Freedom V-twin Bore x Stroke: 97x102mm Displacement: 92cu. in. (1507cc) Compression Ratio: 9.2:1 Vavle Train: SOHC, 4 valves per cylinder, self-adjusting cam chains hydraulic lifters Fuel Delivery: EFI/44mm throttle bodies Fuel Capacity: 4.5 gal./17.0 l Oil Capacity: 6.0 qts/5.7 l Charging System: 38 amps Primary Drive: Gear drive with torque compensator Clutch: Wet/multi-plate Transmission: 5-speed constant mesh Final Drive: Fiberglass reinforced belt drive Front Brake: Brembo 300mm floating rotor with 4-piston caliper Rear Brake: Brembo 300mm floating rotor with 2-piston caliper Length: 96.3 in/2445mm Wheelbase: 66.5 in/1690mm Seat Height: 26.5 in/673mm Ground Clearance: 5.8 in/148mm Rake-Trail: 33.1°-5.28 in/134mm Dry Weight: 615 lbs/280kg Front Suspension: 43mm diameter, 5.1 in/130mm travel Rear Suspension: Triangulated swing arm, 3.9 in/100mm travel, single shock prelad adjustable Front Wheel: 21.0x2.15 in/40-spoke laced aluminum Rear Wheel: 18.0x4.5 in/40-spoke laced aluminum Front Tire: 80-90/21 Dunlop Cruisemax Rear Tire: 170-60VB/18 Dunlop K591 Elite SP Colors: Vogue Silver, Sonic Blue, Black, Solar Red, Flame Yellow