2009 Buell 1125CR - First Look

Buell’s 21st-century café racer.

2009 Buell 1125CR - First Look

Harley-Davidson sportbike-subsidiary Buell has expanded its liquid-cooled 1125 line with the 2009 1125CR. This latest model is a streetfighter-style machine with aggressive lines, a slightly altered riding position and significant upgrades (also applied to the '09 1125R) to the Rotax-built, claimed-146-horsepower, liquid-cooled V-Twin.

Buell's engineers and product planners have built a genuine sporting café racer, as opposed to more common reduced-output, "tuned-for-torque" standards with non-track-oriented chassis. Big ergonomic difference is a black-anodized clubman-style handlebar that appears to be mounted farther forward than the clip-ons on the 1125R. An angry-looking headlamp/flyscreen assembly completes the café-racer aesthetic. Shorter final-drive gearing—76/27 versus 70/27—should boost off-the-line acceleration. The rest of the components—brakes, frame, wheels, suspension, engine and tires—remain the same as on the latest 1125R. Curiously, the 375-pound claimed dry weight is identical, too.

The 2009 Buell 1125R gets a gear-position indicator and swingarm spools. Black-out frame treatment and Racing Red body color are new, too.

Powertrain upgrades were aimed at improving engine response and performance, nits we picked with the original 1125R (CW, June, 2008). The injectors are now "targeted"—with a directional spray pattern aimed at the intake valves—oxygen sensors are relocated, and mapping for the injection and ignition have been updated (new maps are available for the '08 1125R). These changes, says Buell, result in "improved drivability below 6000 rpm, crisper throttle response, improved heat management and significantly improved fuel economy."

Retail for the 2009 1125CR is $11,695, $300 less than the 1125R. Production begins in August.