Top 5 new Cruisers coming in 2020
Being the closest thing to flying without leaving the ground, Cruisers have been the incarnation of the ‘30s to ‘60s American lifestyles. Large motors with plenty of low-end torque, forward set footpegs, and a laid-back reclined riding position define any modern-day cruisers. Traditionally, large V-twins ran under the hoods, but inline engines have become more common these days.
Here is our list of new cruiser motorcycles coming in hot in 2020 that gets us to simply cruise, at one with our bike, taking in the sights and smells, the cool air washing over, and supposedly cleansing the soul.
2017 - 2020 Honda Rebel 300 / Rebel 500
Honda brought one of its most recognized model families into the 21st century with a complete overhaul of the much celebrated Rebel range in 2017. Available as the Rebel 300 and 500, this reworked line features water-cooled mills and fuel-injection induction control to meet modern and near-future emissions standards. A sportier look greets the eye this time around, though the Rebel still targets the same small-[cruiser-mot392], entry-level market.
2017 - 2020 Yamaha YZF-R6
If you’ve ever wanted to own a bona fide racing machine but didn’t have the money or vanity to go for one of the $100K-plus literbikes on the market right now, I’ve got good news for you; Yamaha updated its mid-size YZF-R6 in MY2017, and it can be had without selling a kidney or your firstborn. At just over the $12K mark, the R6 claims over 120 horsepower with a host of features to help riders manage the tremendous forces this thoroughbred generates. The 600 cc-ish bracket has been getting a little stale as of late between competition from the liter category and the burgeoning interest in the 300 cc bikes, so the updated version of a proven mid-size racetrack champ is exciting news indeed.
2019 KTM 450 Rally Replica
For almost two decades, KTM has been a fixture at the top of the field in the Paris-to-Dakar Rally, and the 450 Rally Factory Replica is meant to pay homage to the bike that carried Sam Sunderland to victory in the 2019 Silk Way Rally. That’s right sports fans, the actual factory rally bike just dominated a race that traverses the Gobi Desert and crosses the borders of Russia, Mongolia, and China, and this is the public model made in its image. It’s not a machine for the casual off-road rider, but rather, it’s built with would-be rally racers in mind, and toward that end, the “Rally FR” doesn’t waste any weight on superfluous equipment.
2019 - 2020 Honda CRF450L
If you’re all about that trail-life, but aren’t necessarily feeling the trailer-life aspect of it, then Honda’s new CRF450L was built with you in mind. The “L” is based on the CRF450R, and was designed as a sister-bike to the 450X of the same family. It’s a street-legal machine with mirrors and lights that’ll let you connect the dots between your favorite trails via blacktop. As for the brown top, a 449 cc plant generates the power with a light-pull clutch and knobbies to keep it under control.
2018 - 2019 Husqvarna Svartpilen 401
Husqvarna Motorcycles, long known for its off-road prowess, continues the plunge into the sort-of streetbike market with its Svartpilen 410. Set up like an urban scrambler, Husky bills the Svartpilen as an entry-level commuter/explorer with an easy-to-ride and fun nature. A 375 cc thumper drives the “Black Arrow” with 43 horsepower waiting to be unleashed under the control of a ride-by-wire throttle and slipper clutch that couples engine power to the six-speed gearbox. Suspension and rolling gear reflect a certain amount of off-road capability, useful for crossing medians and cruising down the beach (check local laws first) or other soft surfaces, the Svartpilen has a certain amount of ’everybike’ in its DNA.
2019 Piaggio MP3 Sport 500 hpe
Piaggio Group continues to expand its Delta-scooter program with an all-new High Performance Engine that falls in the 500 cc range to bring even more power and fuel economy to the MP3 family. The MP3 Sport 500 hpe boasts top-shelf shocks and front brakes along with four distinct and dedicated paint and trim packages, but the real gem here is the “Sport Advanced” model that adds even more value with LED tech and even a reverse gear. Of course, all of this is on top of its general design that is already a shot of Pure-D awesomesauce that puts it in a league almost all its own.
2019 Honda CBR500R
Honda spruced up its CBR500R ahead of MY2018, and in an unusual move, buffed it up yet again for MY2019. The new model dips further into race-tastic territory with aerodynamics and ergonomics as the main front-burner considerations for an effort far beyond the BNL treatment, and the factory also tweaked the drivetrain to give it a bit more go to match the sporty new show.
2019 Honda CB500X
Honda brushed up its CB500X ahead of MY2019 with a number of improvements that come hot on the heels of the buffs it got just last year. There’s a number of engine tweaks that net a small gain in torque with a larger front wheel to better tackle road bumps and light terrain. The ’stop’ was boosted right along with the ’go’ in the form of a few refinements in the electronics department, as well as the hardware. Improvements in the suspension and rider’s triangle do their bit to increase rideability and comfort too, so without further ado, let’s dig into Honda’s new smallish-displacement adventure bike to see what else the Red Riders have going on over there.
2019 Honda CB500F
Honda gives its CB500F the ’BNL-plus’ treatment ahead of MY2019 with a number of aesthetic improvements and a four-percent boost in power over the previous gen. Naked as ever, the “F” brings its usual sense of style and practicality to the table to serve as a lower-midrange “all-rounder,” as the factory succinctly puts it. Today I’d like to take a deeper look at this model and see how it stacks up against an equally-raw domestic competitor.
Top 10 Classics/Standards of 2018
Timeless designs that take you back to the pre-’60s era, heightened feeling of riding free-spirited machines and the sense of freedom. This is what a modern-day classic motorcycle offers without that knuckle bending fixes and ghastly scenes of oil dripping everywhere. Here are our top ten standard/classic motorcycles of 2018 that take us back to the time from the ’60s.
Recalling the past glories, these neo-classic motorcycles have still managed to retain the charm and posterity of minimalistic elegance along with providing modern day mechanicals and the bits. They run on efficient high output engines that are both reliable and powerful and are equipped with state of the art suspension and brake setups that will bring the bike to a halt not far from their point of application unlike the yesteryears.
Top 10 Street Motorcycles of 2018
Although not an official segment of motorcycles, our lifestyle for daily transportation in urban communities have given rise to street motorcycles that are lightweight and nimble for the concrete jungle. Being an agile handler while looking the part is how we need our commute through the asphalt.
This is our list of the machines we think can handle those demands better than any other. A motorcycle with an upright riding position, lacking plastic fairings for that narrow lane splitting ability and a lightweight construction for the ease of flickability is what we are looking for, and here are our top ten:
2019 Can-Am Ryker
Can-Am announced the newest addition to its funny-backwards-trike lineup with the all-new Ryker model that BRP hopes will open up a whole new market for prospective entry-level trike riders. (Trikers?) The Ryker comes with all the electronic fandanglery that you’ll find on its large-displacement siblings, but comes with a choice in powerplants between a mid-size mill and one that falls closer to a liter. An automatic transmission delivers twist-and-go operation for the ultimate in rider friendliness, even for folks who are complete strangers to having their fists in the wind. Could this be BRP’s new big shoo-in? Only time will tell, but meanwhile, we can certainly dissect this most-interesting machine, so let’s get to it.
Continue reading for my review of the Can-Am Ryker.
2014 - 2019 Honda CBR600RR
Honda’s latest generation of 600 cc, CBR supersports toes the family line with its race-winning blend of power and maneuverability all packed onto a MotoGP-inspired chassis. Much like the original CBR600RR that hit the streets back in ’03 and was built as a racebike replica, the current model features a strong engine along with a front suspension featuring Honda’s 41mm Big Piston Fork for superb handling and snappy action, plus MotoGP-inspired bodywork in a race-tested aerodynamic supersport design.
Continue reading for more my review of the Honda CBR600RR.