Indian Motorcycle is preparing to give the Pursuit the Elite treatment, adding a new limited edition version of the PowerPlus-engined tourer for 2023. The Indian Pursuit Elite will join the Challenger Elite and the Chieftain Elite in getting custom paint schemes and finishes and select upgrades.
Five years on from the 2018 launch of its first ever twin-cylinder models to be made in India, since when over 400,000 examples of the Interceptor 650 and Continental GT 650 have been sold around the world, Royal Enfield has now added the first of a much-anticipated series of spinoff models to its range.
We’re just a few days into the new year, and Harley-Davidson has already started shipping 2023 models to dealerships. These are mainly carry-over models, returning for 2023 with new colors, which should prepare dealers ahead of Harley-Davidson’s launch event on Jan. 18.
Harley-Davidson turns 120 next year, which naturally means we’re getting some special Anniversary Edition models. Thanks to new vehicle certification data from Australia, we can confirm that the Heritage Classic 114 and the Fat Boy 114 will be receiving 120th Anniversary Editions.
BMW Motorrad is commemorating its 100th anniversary with the release of Special Heritage editions of the R nineT and R18. BMW will produce 1,923 units of each model, recognizing the debut of the brand’s first motorcycle, the R 32, in September 1923 at the German Motor Show in Berlin.
As we reported last month, Honda is introducing a new bagger version of the Rebel 1100. The 2023 Honda Rebel 1100T adds a fork-mounted fairing and color-matched hard panniers. For the U.S., the bagger model will only be offered with DCT, while some markets may offer a manual transmission option.
Twenty-five years ago, every Harley-Davidson review was laced with phrases like “for respectable older folks” and “aimed squarely at Harley’s newest riders: wealthy men over forty”… also, “not a bike for most women or smaller men.” Maybe all that was accurate in 1997, but now that we’re all respectable old gender-neutral weaklings, it’s quaint to look back and wonder how we ever got along with a tiny 1340 cc H-D? Egads man… and when will H-D bring back the Springer front end?
Last Sunday’s outpouring of love for the old Kawasaki Vulcan 800 was so unexpected and heartwarming, why not let’s revisit, for this Church of MO, the equally lovable yet completely forgettable 2002 Suzuki Intruder Volusia 800. Nine out of ten of them are probably still on the road, parked next to an old F-150 under a dusty carport in Palmdale. And the other one’s still on the Suzuki showroom floor, now known as Boulevard C50.
Lighten up. Twenty years ago, MO was a wobbly start-up with no money, and a part-time job for most of us. Which doesn’t explain the brief haphazardness of some of the old content, but may excuse part of it. Do the Japanese even make cruisers anymore? Some of them weren’t so bad, including this 2002 Kawasaki Vulcan 800. I apologize for being so rude to it (probably because I was secretly attracted). Oh look, they DO still make a Vulcan 900; doesn’t look half bad really.
Today a Motorcycle.com photo shoot is at least a half-day affair involving thousands of dollars worth of Canon’s finest gear and millions of pixels. Twenty years ago, it was a 10-minute errand on the way to lunch at the FlatCat on Normandie, with Clavin’s clapped-out Olympus and half a roll of film. And let’s not forget to stock up on Sparks on the way back to the office. I had completely forgotten about the Triumph Bonneville America, but it feels like we liked it.
The Sportster hasn’t been all that sporty for some time now – that is aside from the 2021 Sportster S that the Nightster shares more than a handful of tricks with. It’s been 65 years since Harley-Davidson introduced the Sportster as America’s answer to the British invasion of bikes that had begun to increase in popularity Stateside around that time. Back then, folks used their motorcycles for everything – drags, trials, enduros, scrambles, hare and hounds, road runs, and Sunday cruising. You could do it all on a Harley according to the 1958 ad for the Sportster CH and C models below. The market wasn’t so segmented.
The US motojournalist/influencer corps doesn’t look much at all like the people in the ads for Indian’s new Scout Rogue and Rogue Sixty. Carey Hart did meet us for lunch in Ojai during our ride, and he’d fit right in. The former MXer/freestyler not only looks the part, he actually builds custom motorcycles in his own big shop.
After a brief teaser campaign, Harley-Davidson officially revealed the Nightster, a new Sportster model powered by a 975cc version of the liquid-cooled Revolution Max engine. Arriving in dealerships this month, the 2022 Harley-Davidson Sportster is priced at $13,499 for Vivid Black and $13,899 for the Gunship Grey or Redline Red color options.
Harley-Davidson will announce its next Revolution Max-powered Sportster model on April 12. The Motor Company dropped a short music-themed teaser video titled “Instrument of Expression,” to promote the announcement, and offer a few tantalizing glimpses of the new model.
Bombardier Recreational Products announced Can-Am is returning to the motorcycle business with a new range of electric two-wheelers. A teaser video suggests at least four different models are in the works, with BRP expecting to reveal the full lineup in mid-2024.
Ducati revealed a new limited edition XDiavel produced in conjunction with Italian furniture and interior design house Poltrona Frau. The 2022 Ducati XDiavel Nera will be available in a numbered run of 500 units, priced at US$29,795. That’s a hefty $4,200 premium over the XDiavel S.
What’s going on with the 2022 Indian Scout Rogues is this: blacked-out trim, a quarter fairing, mini ape-hanger handlebars, a “sport-style” seat, and a 19-inch front wheel. We were big fans of the Scout when it got here, enough so that we made it our 2015 Motorcycle of the Year. At the time, we liked the portent Indian had established with a few new bikes in as many years, as well as the Scout being a direct shot across the Sportster’s bow: No doubt the new Sportster competitor was one of the factors that motivated H-D to get off its, ah, laurels.
A quarter-century ago, we all squinted a lot since the world was so lo-res, pixellated and buzzy. Harley’s 883 Sportster was still the best-selling motorcycle in the US – $5,345 with laced spoke wheels – and all the other players badly wanted a piece of that middleweight cruiser action. Only one of them could beat the 883, though, and it wasn’t the Suzuki. Sad. But kinda fun in a dull, processional sort of way.
Last week, Harley-Davidson announced its first batch of 2022 models, listing several models that are returning mostly unchanged, except for new paint and graphic options. A few models were conspicuously absent from the announcement; most of them, like the Iron 1200, were discontinued. The lone exception was the Low Rider S, which we reported would be announced on Jan. 26 with some updates.
Today, Harley-Davidson announced its first batch of 2022 motorcycles, with models already arriving at dealerships across the U.S. These models return mostly unchanged from 2021, save for updated colors and, for some, new wheel designs. If you’re looking for any new models, CVO models, or motorcycles getting more significant changes, you’ll have to wait until Jan. 26, for Harley-Davidson’s “Further, Faster” world premiere event.
Suzuki launched this cruise missile in 2006, right when the US housing market was experiencing a little froth, and every new three-car garage in the land needed a big custom cruiser. Can we get stucco? O how you can get stucco! A liquid-cooled 1783cc V-twin (109 ci) in a 764-pound package was the recipe, and in 2011 this Limited Edition baby was even badder to the bone. Suzuki will still sell you a brand new one for $15,299. Take it away, Joshua Placa…
I actually didn’t mind being seen on this “custom cruiser” ten years ago. Yamaha’s answer to the Honda Fury had the chopper look and sound, but offset triple clamps and a revvable, oversquare 1312cc V-twin with four-valve heads made it also a functional, fun-to-ride motorcycle. America must’ve agreed; a quick run through Cycle Trader finds prices about twice what I would’ve expected for a ten-year old Japanese cruiser. Or maybe Yamaha’s marketing ploy worked? It’s a STAR, man!
Few readers know that MO’s own Troy “Trizzle” Siahaan began his motorcycle career as a hard-core cruiser guy/’do-rag model before forming a successful boy band, then later becoming MO’s superbike specialist. Maybe even fewer remember Triumph’s foray into the big-inch cruiser market ten years ago. The Thunderbird and the Thunderbird Storm have left the building, but you never know when they might be back.
I learned about a new-to-me thing this week in a fun Facebook discussion: Oppositional Defiance Disorder. This affects lots of kids who are so fed up and angry about being criticized for a thing, that they keep on doing that thing just to own the criticizer, even though they know the thing they’re doing is wrong and bad for them. Before psychology, ODD was probably best expressed as cutting off your nose to spite your face.
With the official launch of the 2021 Harley-Davidson Sportster S, we now have an understanding of where The Motor Company is taking the Sportster family. Powered by the liquid-cooled Revolution Max 1250T engine, the Sportster S offers a significant step forward, claiming 121 hp, or nearly twice the horsepower of the air-cooled Evolution engine.
The new 2021 Harley-Davidson Sportster S that was unveiled this morning looks so much like the earlier prototype we dubbed Custom 1250 and already closely examined, most of the conjecture is already over except for the how much and when. And that’s $14,999 and this fall.
Earlier this week, Harley-Davidson teased a new Revolution Max-powered model that will be revealed July 13. The announcement called it a new model for the “sport segment,” and included a glimpse of the bike, which bears a striking resemblance to the Custom 1250 concept first shown in 2018.
Has it really been six years since the Shoei GT-Air helmet was released? Well, it has, and that means the lid was due for an update – even though, when Troy tested it back in 2017, he said, “[T]he Shoei GT-Air really impresses when it comes to all-day touring comfort. It’s got all the features you’d want from a helmet, with the fit to match.” Using the previous generation as the starting point, Shoei’s designers set out to improve on the already top-notch lid. The result is the brand new Shoei GT-Air II, which ups the ante when it comes to premium touring/sport-touring helmet comfort and utility. To make the helmet even more enticing, Shoei partnered with Sena, as with the Shoei Neotec II, to create a fully-integrated Bluetooth communication system, the Sena SRL2.
Twenty years ago, MO sometimes read more like Calvin & Hobbes as it attempted to find its way in the print-dominated moto-media world, except it was often Calvin (Kim) & Minime (Brent Avis): Two lads with various friends, real and imagined, wandering around the LA landscape on motorcycles, attempting to make sense of the world with very little in the way of adult supervision, and even less in the way of budget. It wasn’t a bad way to go there for a while. Then again, a lot of it wouldn’t fly in the modern world. This week’s Church of MO: Softail Deuce vs. BMW R1200C Phoenix.
Harley-Davidson‘s Q1 2021 financial report revealed more details about the mysterious “Revival” model and showed a photo of a near production version of the Custom 1250 liquid-cooled cruiser. We’ll have more on the quarterly report elsewhere, but let’s examine what we’ve learned about these two upcoming models.
It’s all about the SPT says Brandon Kraemer, who’s spent the last three years of his life working on the new 2022 Indian Chiefs as Senior Product Director. People want Style, they want Performance, and they want Technology (even if many of them don’t quite realize they want that last one).
Harley-Davidson announced its 2021 Softail lineup, highlighted by a new Street Bob 114 and a slightly refreshed Fat Boy 114. Joining them for 2021 are the Softail Slim, Softail Standard, Fat Bob 114, Heritage Classic, Heritage Classic 114, Low Rider S and Sport Glide. Confirming our earlier reporting, the Softail models being dropped for 2021 include the Low Rider (non-S version), Deluxe and FXDR 114, while the Breakout 114 will only be offered in some markets (but not the U.S.). We also expected the Street Bob to be discontinued, but that turned out to be half-true, with the Street Bob 114 replacing it.
We may not be allowed to bodyshame motorcycles or each other anymore with the F word, brethren, but 25 years ago we had not yet evolved into the empathetic creatures we are today. Besides, all these motorcycles’ heirs have only added avoirdupois over the years, which seems to be a trend with us humans, too, so why bring it up and risk being trampled? We blame the agricultural industrial complex. At least the least guilty party here is the only bike of the five that’s still in production; our specs indicate it’s gone from 631 pounds dry in 1996 to 671 today – which isn’t bad, as its engine has also gone from 1.3 liters to nearly 1.9. Let us now read, then ride out and find something to eat, amen.
In a cross-branding exercise with its Emilia-Romagna neighbor (and technically, it’s parent company), Ducati revealed a new Lamborghini edition version of the Diavel 1260. The limited edition Ducati Diavel 1260 Lamborghini is styled after the automaker’s Siàn FKP 37 supercar, sporting the same Gea Green and Electrum Gold color scheme, similar-looking wheels and lightweight carbon fiber elements.
Ducati has updated its XDiavel range to meet Euro 5, adding two new variants for 2021: XDiavel Dark and XDiavel Black Star (pictured above). The good news: the Euro 5 update adds 8 hp to the XDiavel’s claimed power figures. The bad news: only countries where the emission standard is in place will get the update, meaning countries like the U.S. will not see a performance increase.
Further bad news: the XDiavel Black Star will not be offered in North America.
Yea, they are greedy dogs which can never have enough, and they are shepherds that cannot understand: they all look to their own way, every one for his gain, from his quarter. Later Vulcan V-twins would grow to 125 cubic inches (2053 cc) before dying off from their own voraciousness, but in 1995, the Kawasaki Vulcan 88 (four years before the H-D Twin Cam 88) was just right. A reading from the book of Tom Fortune, who wrote well if not long. Amen.
BMW announced it will reveal five new motorcycles on Oct. 22 at noon EST/9 am PST across its social media channels. BMW only offered two clues about the five models: they will all be what BMW calls its “Heritage world”, and at least one will be an R18 model based on the engine photo accompanying the news.
In the previous century, the manufacturers didn’t want us to call their motorcycles “cruisers,” because they were afraid to be associated with the 1980 Al Pacino film “Cruising,” which was about a serial killer preying on gay men cruising for sex. Today, that plotline could be a selling point, who knows? Things change. Anyway, as you know, cruisers in the motorcycle idiom refers to laid-back American style bikes which tend to be ridden less aggressively than sportbikes, which sort of lessens the need for titanium toe sliders, calf pucks, and Crayon-box color schemes. In other words, these are the kind of boots plenty of normal motorcyclists on cruisers, touring bikes, sport-tourers and standards, don’t mind wearing every day, on the bike and off. We selected a few of the Best Cruiser Motorcycle Boots.
And in those days, ten years ago, there was a pestilence upon the land in the form of the custom chopper. That pestilence was exterminated by the implosion of the Housing Bubble and the sudden drought of Home Equity, but Honda’s new custom chopper was already years in the making by then, and what’re ya gonna do? Not a huge hit for Honda, the Fury is still scattered thin upon the land – maybe because few chopper enthusiasts thought “Honda” when shopping for a new motorcycle. And that is a shame, brethren, because like all Hondas the Fury was in fact a perfectly pleasant and reliable conveyance. Radical though it may have appeared, a trail figure of 3.6 inches meant this raked-out chopper handled perfectly normally, and a curb weight of 663 pounds isn’t bad at all when your hindquarters are just 26.9 inches from the earth. Yea verily, Honda will sell you a brand new 2020 Fury, in Pearl Hawkseye Blue, for $10,599. That’s $2400 less than the original, and probably about what you’d pay for a used Craigslist chopper with “over $60k invested.” Crazy, goofy world without end, amen.
BMW has been teasing us for quite a while, and now that we have it in our hands, the 2021 BMW R18 truly is a thing of beauty. Rolling motorcycle art, if you will. Just walking around the bike slowly taking in the detail work that this embodiment of BMW’s past heritage wrapped in modern technology is a visual feast. From the exposed shaft drive to the polarizing fishtail exhaust to the chromed-out master cylinders of the First Edition trim to the modern headlight in a vintage shell, the R18 exudes quality. Starting the 1802cc oil/air-cooled boxer Twin sets the whole bike rocking side-to-side at the 950 rpm idle speed, pulsing like it’s alive.
Indian announced it initial batch of 2021 models including its touring, bagger and Scout models. Along with new color options for several motorcycles, the 2021 model year includes a new Roadmaster Limited, a new Vintage Dark Horse and a restyled Roadmaster Dark Horse. Not included in the announcement were the FTR 1200 and the Chief cruiser, but we expect further news from Indian in the weeks ahead.
As motorcycles become more reliable and maintenance intervals get more spread out, one consumable remains on a fairly frequent interval for motorcycles. Tires have made tremendous advances in the last decade, but they are still the most frequent maintenance items for motorcyclists. With the rates for mounting and balancing tires going through the roof (My local shop charges $60 for a pair of tires with the wheels off the bike.), buying a tire changer makes a lot of sense. I’d been eyeing No-Mar Tire Changers for quite a while before pulling the trigger and installing one in my garage. In less than a month and after changing a dozen tires, we’d have already spent about 35% of the cost of the No-Mar Classic HD Motorcycle Tire Changer at our local motorcycle shop, but what’s most important is how convenient it is having a tire changer in my garage available when I need it. I no longer have to load my wheels into my truck, drive to my local shop, wait an hour (or more) for them to be ready, and finally take them home to reinstall on my bike.
Our pal Chrissy Rogers was excited and jumped at the chance to get her riding permit last year at Honda’s rider training center, but slightly bummed to learn that she’d been assigned a PCX150 scooter when the fateful training weekend came. It only made sense, as that’s what we were “testing” at the time. She was jealous of all the other students, mostly all on Rebel 300s. A large dog could learn to ride the full-auto PCX in about a minute, if it had thumbs, and Chrissy had really wanted to learn to use a clutch and shift gears.
Since May of last year, we’ve been anxiously awaiting the official reveal of the BMW R18. We’ve had hints from BMW. We’ve had spy photos. But we haven’t had anything for sure. Well, that time is at hand. Today, BMW officially unveiled the 2021BMW R18. What does it have other than the “Big Boxer” engine? Read on and find out.
Harley-Davidson appears set to add another cruiser model to its lineup, with the addition of a new Softail Standard. This development comes to us thanks to an updated executive order from the California Air Resources Board which certifies a 1746cc 2020 Harley-Davidson Softail Standard, along with a Stage 1 upgrade.
Indian is preparing to release a 1000cc version of the Scout Bobber, or, to look at it another way, a bobber version of the Scout Sixty. The new variant was recently certified by both the California Air Resources Board and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency as the 2020 Indian Scout Bobber Sixty, which, as if it weren’t confusing enough, will have a smaller version of the engine powering the anniversary edition Indian Scout Bobber Twenty.
You read the review, now see the movie! Filmed in an exotic location in full Technicolor last November, and featuring an all-star cast of one, it shouldn’t be too painful to watch because it’s only barely four minutes long. No animals were harmed, though my right ankle still hurts from being yanked off the Triumph Rocket 3 GT’s forward-set footpeg.
Indian Motorcycle has announced its 2020 Scout lineup, including an array of new touring accessories and two special edition models celebrating 100 years of the Scout’s debut in 1920. Confirming our report from last week, the two models are the Indian Scout 100th Anniversary and the Indian Scout Bobber Twenty.
One look around the proverbial Motorcycle.com office and it’s hard not to notice one thing: everyone on staff is a guy. Of course, this isn’t surprising considering the male domination of this sport, but women represent one of the fastest growing segments in motorcycling, and it’s only right we get a woman’s voice – and opinion – on our digital pages. Our friend Christina Orris is just the person to help. An excellent rider, both on- and off-road, she’s in-tune with the wants and needs of the female motorcyclist, and best of all, she’s not afraid to speak her mind. When we were thinking of the perfect candidate to review the Kawasaki Vulcan S and its unique Ergo-Fit system, we knew she was the right person for the job. Follow along as she gives her thoughts. —TS
We all know that the world shown in motorcycle advertisements isn’t real. As much as we’d like it, the sun doesn’t always shine, and we aren’t the only vehicle on the road. We can always dream, though. When it comes to bad weather, we all have to deal with it sometime – even those of us who reside in sunny SoCal. When the rain starts to fall, the best thing we can do is have proper rain gear to keep us dry. Touring and adventure touring riders will often make their stand against the elements with waterproof riding suits, which we’ve covered here. For the rest of us, a rain suit over our regular riding gear gets carried along when the weather looks like it could turn wet.
As the world’s tech companies gather in Las Vegas for the annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Harley-Davidson has announced that the 2020 Livewire is now available for pre-order. Additionally, Harley has tossed out a few more tidbits about the company’s first electric motorcycle. First, the retail price will be $29,799 in the U.S. Second, we finally get some specifics about power delivery and range.
It’s on rainy, cold nights like this one that I’m glad I have a garage. Looking at your motorcycle parked outside as it’s pelted with rain, sleet, hail, mud and other unpleasantness can make you weep with impotent rage. Cover it? Motorcycle covers are a hassle to put on and remove. First, you have to wait until the bike cools to avoid melting the cover to the exhaust. Plus, they can blow off your bike, get shredded and messy-looking, and trap moisture underneath, which can cause rust and mold. Nasty!
Like me, you probably know Aerostich as the company making funky one-piece motorcycle oversuits that go over your regular clothing. Well, that suit is called the Roadcrafter, there are many derivations of it, and it’s basically the class uniform for veteran moto-journalists. However, many people don’t know Aerostich also makes much, much more. Like this, the Protekt jeans.
Render unto Miller what is Miller’s, and to MO what is MO’s. Yea, though that recently retired roadracing Long Beachian was much more at home on a sportbike, in those days we got him to review a Yamaha V-Star 650 – a bike that’s also only recently retired. Why not? There is nothing new under the sun, what goes around comes around; twenty years later, Miller wrote one of the most epic MO features in recent memory.