In consulting one of my ancient Cycle World Buyer’s Guides from the last century—yes, these sacred texts have survived five moves and two trips across the U.S. in Mayflower trucks—I can’t help but notice that there are almost no bikes depicted that would now be considered “large.” Middleweights and lightweights rule the universe, and really [...]Read Full Post | Comments(1)
Photographer : Cycle World Archives, Lindsay Brooke
Why Adventure-Touring Bikes Are So Popular When the going gets tough..or we hope that someday it might…
A few years back, when SUVs suddenly seemed to be taking over the world, a friend of mine said, “Why are people buying those big, tall things instead of a normal car?” I thought about it a minute and said, “Maybe they want to carry a canoe on the roof. Or carry five people in [...]Read Full Post | Comments(5)
So, what exactly constitutes “character” in a motorcycle? It’s an old debate and probably has as many answers as there are riders, but I’ll try to put in my two cents because Editor Hoyer has asked me to. He probably figured that, as a serial owner and restorer of British and Italian motorcycles—not to mention [...]Read Full Post | Comments(1)
When I got my first modern Triumph Scrambler a few years back, it had almost too much character—in the same traditional English sense that led to the original Meriden firm’s extinction in 1983. I rode the new bike home from the dealership and discovered it had two serious oil leaks (missing seal behind the starter [...]Read Full Post | Comments(0)
2011 Cycle World Rolling Concours The CW Rolling Concours returns. Who knew what great bikes lurked in the shadow of the Speedway?
Register for the 2012 Cycle World Rolling Concours brought to you by BikeBandit.com. Well, Editor Mark Hoyer and I were a fine pair at our own Rolling Concours at the Indy MotoGP this year, what with no vintage bikes to ride. Mark had planned to ship his 1958 Triumph out from California, but the magneto [...]Read Full Post | Comments(0)
If somebody had told me a couple of years ago that the Catalina Grand Prix would ever be brought back to life, I wouldn’t have believed it possible. The original race, which ran from 1951 to 1958, was a colorful and legendary event, but that was in the Fifties, when people knew how to have [...]Read Full Post | Comments(0)
CW Comparison: Big Baggers Eight heavyweight cruisers with windshields and saddlebags through 1400 miles of the great Southwest.
Photography by Jeff Allen Ah, high summer in the Mojave desert, when the Gila monsters are in bloom, sand swirls across the highway like something from the Red Planet and the toothpaste out of your saddlebag is hotter than the reading lamp in your blessedly air-conditioned motel room. Most folks go to the seashore during [...]Read Full Post | Comments(0)
Who’d have thought the day would come when a Harley FLH would find itself among the three smallest and most compact bikes in a comparison test? Compared with the gargantuan Rocket III and our four Japanese baggers, the Harley feels positively weightless and delicate. The Guzzi and Victory are both lighter, but the Road King’s [...]Read Full Post | Comments(0)
Every group of bikes has one all-rounder that generates few complaints, irritates least and earns the sober respect of our test riders for its thorough engineering and general competence in all things. And in this group that bike was the Honda. Its big, uncannily smooth, three-valve 1795cc V-Twin—with 101.8 peak ft.-lb. of torque on tap [...]Read Full Post | Comments(0)
Photography by Jeff Allen What we have here is a big motor in a big bike, from, as Editor Edwards put it, the “add-leather, add-windscreen school.” The Kawasaki is an 850-pound bike (but only third heaviest here) with a 2-liter motor that kicks out major torque and the best 0–60 time in this group, and [...]Read Full Post | Comments(0)