2018 reviews

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2015 - 2022 Kawasaki Vulcan 1700 Vaquero / Vulcan 1700 Voyager

2015 - 2022 Kawasaki Vulcan 1700 Vaquero / Vulcan 1700 Voyager

Each has a muscular V-Twin with plenty of roll-on

Kawasaki’s Vulcan 1700 line is well established with the Vaquero and the Voyager — a bagger and full dresser, respectively — both come with ABS and, as the name suggests, the 1700 cc engine in the V-twin configuration with liquid cooling and a six-speed transmission. Ready for a cruise around town or hitting the open road, the Vulcan 1700s are well fitted and all-around solid.

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2017 - 2021 Harley-Davidson Road Glide

2017 - 2021 Harley-Davidson Road Glide

It’s the smooth throttle response and stump-pulling torque you expect from a premium bagger

Harley-Davidson updated its sharknosed Road Glide in 2017 and replaced the little-loved Twin Cam engine with its new Milwaukee-Eight powerplant, a combination that persists into model-year 2021. There were a handful of aesthetic adjustments made over that span, but the model remains pretty much as it was when it hit the showroom floors in MY17. On the current-year model, top-shelf infotainment capabilities join with a plush suspension system and premium paint packages to deliver the comfort and style H-D riders expect, and the Mil-8 107 engine turns out the torque that we demand.

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2015 - 2021 Kawasaki Concours 14 ABS

2015 - 2021 Kawasaki Concours 14 ABS

It’s a supersport tourer with real supersport DNA

Kawasaki delivered the 2015 Concours 14 ABS with a whole slew of improvements over the prior year — some cosmetic and some for performance — and carried that over to 2021. At the core, the Kawasaki kept the 1,352 cc engine derived from the Ninja® ZX™-14R in a chassis tuned for touring. The sportbike DNA is quite evident in the overall styling, so whether you love it or hate it, you don’t ignore the Concours 14 ABS.

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2018 - 2021 Yamaha XMAX

2018 - 2021 Yamaha XMAX

It’s quite sophisticated for surprisingly low price

Yamaha brought the XMAX to the U.S. market with a 27.6-horsepower mill that promises enough speed to be safe, even comfortable, at highway velocities, and that’s muy importante in the American market. This performance comes bundled with a decidedly modern and mature look that just screams metro-commuter.

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2015 - 2021 Honda XR650L

2015 - 2021 Honda XR650L

It’s the "I wanna have fun" bike you’ll hang on to

Honda carries its venerable XR650L line into 2021, but to be honest, it’s almost completely unchanged from the original version unleashed on the world back in 1993. Before you scoff, I would point out that sharks haven’t changed in millions of years, having evolved long ago into creatures perfectly suited to their environments, and apparently, so it is with the XR650L. The Red Riders got it right out of the gate with this one, and popular support keeps the bike on Honda’s showroom floors even after nearly a quarter-century.

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2016 - 2021 Yamaha Bolt R-Spec / Bolt C-Spec

2016 - 2021 Yamaha Bolt R-Spec / Bolt C-Spec

The performance bobber with an attitude

The Bolt from Yamaha’s Star cruiser line is a cool little bobber-style bike with its high tank, short wheelbase, and solo seat. It’s a nice around town bike — lightweight and agile — and naked with real-steel sheet metal, so it just begs you to customize it. What could be better? Enter the Bolt’s siblings, the dressier Bolt R-Spec and the café racer Bolt C-Spec. The Spec duo are every bit as snappy and fun to ride as the Bolt, but with some upgrades, both hardware and cosmetic. Powered by the air-cooled 942 cc V-twin engine, the Specs are in the same size slot as the Bolt: not too small that you’ll outgrow it right away and not so big to be overwhelming for new riders. At just a few bills more than the Bolt, they’re worth a look.

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2017 - 2021 Yamaha Raptor 700

2017 - 2021 Yamaha Raptor 700

The best‑selling sport ATV of all time offers superior style, comfort and unmatched big bore performance.

Conquering dunes and trails with ease, the Raptor 700 lineup from Yamaha offers superior style, comfort, and unmatched big-bore performance, adding up to the ultimate sport ATV for thrill-seekers and weekend warriors. A potent and proven 686 cc liquid-cooled, fuel-injected engine delivers enormous torque right off idle, transitioning into a potent mid-range and monstrous top-end.

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2018 - 2021 Harley-Davidson Fat Bob

2018 - 2021 Harley-Davidson Fat Bob

Ride it again for the first time

Heavily bobbed and blacked-out, the Harley-Davidson Fat Bob came with a choice of engine — the 107-inch Milwaukee-Eight or the 114-inch version – up until 2020 when only the 114 was carried forward. These grunty powerplants, along with a (relatively) sporty new suspension system from the redesign in 2018 give the Fat Bob an aggressive bent meant to appeal to a younger generation of rider. The Fat Bob saw a complete do-over in 2018, so if you rode it before and weren’t impressed, know that you haven’t ridden this Fat Bob.

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Yamaha Kodiak 700

Yamaha Kodiak 700

Proven off‑road capability and comfort during all‑day rides

The Yamaha Kodiak 700 delivers proven off-road performance and durability through its real world tech features, including Yamaha’s Ultramatic transmission with natural-feeling, all-wheel engine braking. On select models, get on-command four-wheel drive with full differential lock and Yamaha’s speed and torque-sensitive eps, all combining to make the Kodiak 700 the most powerful and capable ATV in its pricing category.

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Honda FourTrax Rancher

Honda FourTrax Rancher

Work or fun, Rancher’s got you covered

Honda continues to sell more multipurpose ATVs than any other manufacturer, thanks in large part to the FourTrax Rancher, which has long been a mainstay in the lineup. Whether getting work done on the farm or having fun on the trail, the Rancher is up to the task. Featuring eight different versions, the Rancher family offers the choice between Independent Rear Suspension or a swingarm-style rear end. Versions with Honda’s Dual Clutch Transmission or Electric Shifting feature Honda’s reverse-engagement lever, which makes the shift into and out of reverse a hassle-free affair. For storing work or play essentials, the Rancher comes standard with a front utility box that can be reached from the riding position when parked, and it accepts accessories from Honda’s Pro-Connect system, which makes installing and removing luggage boxes a breeze.

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2016 - 2022 Kawasaki Vulcan S / S Cafe / S SE

2016 - 2022 Kawasaki Vulcan S / S Cafe / S SE

Ninja-derived power in a mid-displacement cruiser

As the lightest bike in the Kawasaki cruiser lineup, the Vulcan S appeals to a variety of riders with adjustable footpegs and options for seat height and handlebar position. Carrying the same low and lean profile of the bigger Vulcan cruisers, the S stable combines Ninja-derived power and handling with the comfort and personalization capabilities of Kawasaki’s Ergo-Fit components.

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2016 - 2020 Harley-Davidson Street 500 / Street 750

2016 - 2020 Harley-Davidson Street 500 / Street 750

It’s a no-nonsense approach to a bar-hopping café racer

Powered by a Revolution V-twin engine, the Street 500 and 750 are premium Harley-Davidson even though they’re geared toward the budget-minded, entry-level crowd. Just because the price is low doesn’t mean they skimped on quality. The Street siblings come with a steel teardrop tank and fenders covered in the deep, rich color, and flawless finish that long ago made Harley-Davidson the benchmark for premium paint on a motorcycle. The cherry on top is the chrome tank badge — not a decal, as you might expect in an economy-priced bike, but a three-dimensional tank medallion — as Harley’s pledge to you that you are riding a premium quality machine.

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2018 - 2022 Kawasaki Z900RS CAFE

2018 - 2022 Kawasaki Z900RS CAFE

It’s more than just a Z900RS with a bullet fairing

Kawasaki maintains the momentum it garnered in 2018 by rolling its popular Z900RS CAFE straight over into MY2022. And, why not? It’s hard to argue with success, and the retro-tastic looks and modern performance make excellent bedfellows, especially with the Seventies-fabulous graphics as the icing on the proverbial cake. The “CAFE” falls at the southern edge of liter-bike territory, which could potentially be dangerous for a new rider, but it carries all the requisite safety equipment needed to keep it dirty-side down.

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