Lots of commuting on our long-term Cross Country, since our new offices in Irvine, California, present some staffers with longer trips to and from work. The big white Victory handles those chores quite nicely, thank you. Its spacious ergonomics are as relaxing as an easy chair, and the wind/weather protection is excellent, thanks largely to the 3-inch-taller windshield and vinyl lower block-outs, both from Victory’s accessory catalog. So, although the CC’s stated mission is touring, it’s also an enjoyable everyday ride.
Most of those recent miles have been on SoCal’s endless superslab, causing the original Dunlop Elite 3 tires to start flattening around the center by the 7800-mile mark. That wear pattern amplified the mild straight-line weaving we reported in our previous update, prompting us to spoon on new rubber. We decided to try a different brand, settling on a pair of Bridgestone Exedras—a G709 front and G850 rear.
After being hosed for $184 by a local bike shop for mounting tires we hadn’t bought there, we were disappointed to find that the weaving was a little worse with the Bridgestones. Overall, those tires are excellent, offering solid traction, superb cornering grip and good feel; but the front tire has a center groove around its circumference that the Vic’s odd steering geometry doesn’t like, most noticeably in a straight line on rain-grooved roads. The resulting weave isn’t dangerous, but it can be annoying.
Otherwise, the CC has functioned flawlessly so far. It hasn’t burned or leaked a single drop of oil, and nothing has broken, loosened or fallen off. We only have about 2000 miles to go to our 10,000-mile goal, but that’s still enough time for a couple of modifications we’ll report on next time.
|Maintenance costs (including tires):||$648.12|
|Average fuel mileage:||39 mpg|
|Price as tested (2011):||$20,499|