2015 - 2019 Kawasaki Vulcan 1700 Vaquero / Vulcan 1700 Voyager
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.
Continue reading for my review of the Kawasaki Vulcan 1700 Vaquero and Vulcan 1700 Voyager.
2019 Triumph Scrambler 1200 XC
Triumph Motorcycles bills its new Scrambler 1200 XC as an “all-road” machine that’s got what it takes to tackle everything you throw at it. Not quite as off-road-tastic as its sibling, the 1200 XE, it nevertheless delivers top-shelf performance by anyone’s standards. Adjustable, long-stroke suspension components join a “scrambler-tuned” engine and wire wheels for the brown-top work, and for the blacktop, there’s a whole slew of electronic safety goodies that give the “XC” its split-personality. Bonneville power and classic looks come together in the XC, so today I want to dive into the details of this Gemini ride.
Continue reading for my review of the Triumph Scrambler 1200 XC.
2019 Ducati Multistrada 1260 Enduro
Ducati refined its dual-surface game ahead of 2019 with a new, larger engine for its largest Multistrada adventure platform. The result is the souped-up 1260 “Enduro” that necessarily brings more power to the table along with an even greater affinity for off-road work to deliver an almost rally-style package. Of course, the factory backs it up with a robust accessories line that lets you gear up according to taste and needs. It isn’t all about the brown; the electronics suite makes sure that the Enduro retains its road-friendly mien so it can continue to serve as Ducati’s primary globetrotter. Today I want to check out the new Enduro to see what all makes it tick, and see how it compares to another proper dual-purpose ride.
Continue reading for my review of the Ducati Multistrada 1260 Enduro.
2019 Triumph Scrambler 1200 XE
Triumph brings classic scrambler looks and modern performance together with its new-for-MY2019 Scrambler 1200 XE. The “XE” carries itself with plenty of the old-school standard DNA on display and an off-road bias that leaves no doubt as to how it’s meant to be used. Proper “any-road” hoops deliver the goods on just about any surface, but it’s the top-shelf safety electronics that really sell this Bonneville-powered ride. Triumph promises a machine with a true dual-identity, so today I want to test that claim and see how it stacks up against one or two prominent competitors.
Continue reading for my review of the Triumph Scrambler 1200 XE.
2019 Triumph Tiger 1200 XCx
Triumph polished its off-road chops ahead of MY2018 with a new Tiger 1200 XCx that rocks more of what you want and less of what you don’t in an adventure bike. The “XCx” is looking trim at the scale after a Summer at fat-camp, and that trickles down to turn in improved handling and performance from the improved chassis and significantly upgraded powerplant. Adjustable ride-quality controls ride alongside layered electronic safety features to make this XCx quite flexible and capable of fitting a variety of roles and riders. The Tiger moniker has always set a high bar, so today let’s see how Trumpet measures up against its own yardstick and check out the likely competition.
Continue reading for my review of the Triumph Tiger 1200 XCx.
2016 - 2019 Suzuki Hayabusa
It’s a Hayabusa. Is there really anything more to be said? It’s Suzuki’s Gixxer 1,340 cc monster speed machine back again for 2019. The ’Busa is one of the biggest sportbikes out there, so yeah, big and heavy; you don’t want to go slow very long. Once at speed, the bike is in its element. If you look up ’Stupidfast’ in the dictionary and you’ll find a picture of a Hayabusa.
(Continue reading for my review of the Suzuki Hayabusa.}
2018 - 2019 Harley-Davidson Fat Boy
Harley-Davidson’s Fat Boy survived the Great Purge of 2017 that saw so many models eliminated from the Softail and Dyna lineups as the former absorbed the latter. The FLSTF joins the rest of the all-new-in-2018 Softail range with a completely reworked frame and a choice between the 107-inch and 114-inch Milwaukee-Eight powerplant. New design features add to the aesthetics and clearly mark these Fat Boys as members of the New Guard.
Continue reading for my review of the Harley-Davidson Fat Boy.
2018 - 2019 Harley-Davidson Softail Deluxe
With the Softail Deluxe, Harley-Davidson brings a strong dose of nostalgia and antique design and with it comes H-D’s Big-Twin powerplant — the Milwaukee-Eight 107 — and its 109 pound-feet of stump-pulling torque that turned in a stronger top-gear roll-on than any previous engine family before it with the same 45-degree V-Twin. The charm and engine lope that even the oldest fans of the brand would recognize wasn’t lost and ABS, security and oodles of laid-back, classic vibes are included in the standard equipment package, so this is truly a melding of two technologically-distinct eras.
Continue reading for my review of the Harley-Davidson Softail Deluxe.
2016 - 2019 Suzuki Boulevard C90 B.O.S.S.
There can be no doubt that the American cruiser market is heating up, and Suzuki looks to capitalize on that class popularity with its Boulevard C90 Blacked-Out Special Suzuki (B.O.S.S.) model. Powered by a 1,462 cc V-twin engine, the C90 B.O.S.S. lives up to its name with black-out styling and agile handling for that sinister boulevard-bruiser look and feel. Let’s take a look at what Suzuki is doing to maintain a foothold with buyers in the U.S. cruiser market.
Continue reading for my review of the Suzuki Boulevard C90 B.O.S.S.
2018 - 2019 Harley-Davidson Low Rider
Powered by the Milwaukee-Eight engine with a total of 110 pound-feet of torque, the agile Softail frame brings heretofore unseen performance to the Low Rider. Harley-Davidson is digging deep to give us better handling and more power and the Low Rider is a prime example.
Continue reading for my review of the Harley-Davidson Low Rider.
2019 KTM 1290 Super Duke GT
KTM has proven itself capable of producing competitive dirtbikes and popular streetbikes, and 2019 sees a next-gen Gran Turismo that targets the sport-tour genre for domination. Sure, the previous model set a pretty high standard, especially if you like your sport-tour machines heavy on the sport, but our Austrian friends managed to raise the bar even more with a handful of improvements this year in the 1290 Super Duke GT. Comfort and convenience were buffed along with the instrumentation, all with even more race-tacular tendencies due to the revised V-Twin powerplant and improved electronic aids. It’s a hotly-contested market that the “GT” looks to compete within, so today, I’m going to dissect this “spawn-of-Beast” and see how it stacks up.
Continue reading for my review of the KTM 1290 Super Duke GT.
2019 Harley-Davidson Ultra Limited / Ultra Limited Low
Lots of Harley-Davidson’s lineup hit the cutting room floor this year, but the top-shelf Ultra Limited and Ultra Limited Low remains a constant, at least through the 2019 model year. This pair represents the pinnacle of the MoCo’s standard, non-CVO tourbike development, and they come with all the bells and whistles you’d expect on top of the largest, most powerful Big Twin powerplant ever to see the full-dresser lineup. As its ingeniously clever name suggests, the “Low” comes slammed to the max, and that opens it up for use by inseams that are a skosh short for the regular “Ultra.” I expect a full spectrum of comfort-related geegaws on these bikes, and it seems as though Milwaukee, once again, does not disappoint.
Continue reading for my review of the Harley-Davidson Ultra Limited and Ultra Limited Low.
2016 - 2019 Yamaha VMAX
The 1,679 cc engine in the Yamaha VMAX houses mad performance with more than adequate power and torque to give the VMAX plenty of ’go’ and the big, dual six-piston calipers up front give it plenty of ’stop.’ The 2019 VMAX comes dressed to impress, so let’s take a look at what the Tuning-Fork company has in store for us this year.
Continue reading for my review of the Yamaha VMAX.
2019 Indian Motorcycle FTR 1200 S
Indian Motorcycle, under the Polaris umbrella (ella, ella), looks to capitalize on its success (nay...domination) of the American Flat Track circuit last year with the race-bike inspired FTR 1200 S. The “S” builds on the vanilla FTR 1200 base model with a number of race-tastic features that elevate it to a higher shelf/bracket/whatever, to include upgraded suspension components, better safety equipment and advanced engine-control electronics. All of that is on top of the all-new, punched-out engine and inherent curb appeal. If you’re into the flat-track thing, or just fancy yourself a fiery-eyed pegdragger, this may be the American-style racer you’ve been looking for. Let’s find out.
Continue reading for my review of the Indian FTR 1200 S.
2019 Indian Chieftain Limited
Indian Motorcycle brushed up its baggers ahead of the 2019 model year, and the Chieftain Limited is one of the models that benefits from the revamp. It’s a multi-pronged effort that starts with a sleek new look meant to convey the impression of great performance. Custom touches lend it something of a homegrown air with plenty of classic references that show off the marque’s deep roots, but the factory gives due consideration to progression with some new ride-quality electronics. The infotainment system is upgraded, as well, with increased audial performance and a few adjustments to improve sound quality along with the volume. This is as good as it gets in Indian’s bagger lineup, and should make a dandy competitor for Harley-Davidson’s own Street Glide Special, so let’s go ahead and delve right into this special ride and see how Indian is coming along under the Polaris umbrella.
Continue reading for my review of the Indian Motorcycle Chieftain Limited.
2019 BMW R 1250 RT
BMW Motorrad hits MY2019 with the R 1250 RT as its spanky new super-tour bike. Why “super?” Well, it carries a newly refined boxer-twin that brings more mechanical yummy-goodness to the table, to include variable cam timing and staggered intake timing meant to broaden the powerband; and a combined engine/transmission case that eliminates some unnecessary weight from the assembly. As you’d expect, the electronics suite is pulled from the top shelf for the stock package, and unsurprisingly, the factory has optional packages available that introduce even more fandanglery to the situation and make the “RT” a proper technological marvel. It all comes together on an undeniably progressive machine with clear Euro-sport roots. Interest piqued yet? Mine too, so let’s get to it.
Continue reading for my review of the BMW R 1250 RT.