IT’S A GREAT TIME TO BE A MOTORCYCLIST. JUST LOOK AT the variety of bikes on our cover. BMW’s new water-cooled R1200GS has earned the primary spot; as the latest iteration of the motorcycle that essentially created the adventure-touring genre in 1980, it carries a heavy burden—improving upon a bike with legendary, almost cult-like status among two-wheel adventurers worldwide.
Will we still love them tomorrow? CW's Ten Best motorcycles from 2012
[BEST MIDDLEWEIGHT STREETBIKE]
[BEST SPORT-TOURING BIKE]
[BEST OPEN-CLASS STREETBIKE]
[BEST TOURING BIKE]
[BEST ADVENTURE BIKE]
Tuono V4 R
"Nakedizing" the World Superbike Championshipwinning RSV4 by ditching most of the fairing and adding a handlebar in place of the clip-ons resulted in a streetable beast that blew our socks off. Aprilia softened its V-Four slightly in this application, but 150 horses or so were still more than enough to get the Tuono up on plane instantly, and the comfy ergonomics of the thing made it even easier to take matters into one's own hands. Last year, though, there was no BMW HP4 and no rumored KTM 1290 Super Duke R hovering off-stage—worthy contenders for the 2013 title. And a new Honda bearing the RC designation will likely fall to earth sometime this year, too.
The new Ducati 848 Streetfighter wrassled the title away from the Kawasaki ZX-6R last year, which had reigned supreme since 2009. This Duc is a genuine Italian exotic with all the looks and performance you deserve for not much more money than you can easily justify to your S.O. or self. But there are some significant players in the category this year that might render it a lame Duc. Triumph's super-sporty Daytona 675R is redone, and the redesigned Street Triple is a hellaciously tasty (and affordable) machine in the same naked-bike mold as the Streetfighter. Also, a revamped, 37cc-bigger ZX-6R for 2013 is a seriously strong threat to retake the position. Plus, many Honda 500cc Twins are on the way, although they'll likely compete for Best Standard.
The Germans are on an amazing roll, and one of the most amazing motos BMW rolled out was the mouthwatering Six-cylinder K1600 GT/GTL. Inline Sixes are known for having perfect primary and secondary balance (translation: smooooth). And the Bavarians even packaged the thing so it's no wider than a typical four-banger. Along with all that smooth power, there's advanced electronics, an optional headlight that peers around corners and a level of ride, handling and sophistication without compare. You will, however, pay a BMW premium for all that—over $21K base for 2013. If you're happy to live a slightly simpler existence, there's a new Triumph Trophy SE for around $19K and a redesigned Yamaha FJR1300 for under $ 16K. Both are fantastic motorcycles for getting anywhere in the lower 48 in a big hurry and in complete comfort.
Continuing the tradition it began in 1973 with the original Z1 900, Kawasaki last year released the latest in a long line of large-caliber multipurpose weapons designed to end the arms race once and for all. With 192 horses at the rear contact patch, a top speed electronically limited to 185 mph and running gear designed to stay one step ahead of its beastly engine, the 14R is simply the highest-performing, high-performance production motorcycle of all time. The neat part is how nice and perfectly civilized it is to ride around the corner for coffee or to your knitting circle. With the arms race winding down slightly in recent years as manufacturers scramble for new riders by building more affordable machines, might the ZX-14R become the SR-71 Blackbird of motorcycling, the high-water mark never to be surpassed? Heaven forbid. Besides, this class is flexible enough to encompass a wide diversity of bikes. Maybe something will surprise us?
It's been the yellow bike for the last two years in this most com petitive of categories, but the en gineers behind these things never rest, not even for a minute. The Honda CRF450R and Kawasaki KX450F have both gone to a pneumatic fork looking for the edge, the RM's gone for a single front spring fork... but don't rule out the orange bikes from Austria in 2013. KTM has been going crazy, and its 2013 450 SX-F is a clean-sheet design. If you have the dollars or factory backing, there's also the 450 SX-F Factory Edition on which Ryan Dungey won KTM's first Outdoor National Championship last season.
The Honda Gold Wing owned this class since before recorded history. Then, BMW's six-banger GTL got here last year, bringing with it electronic suspension and a level of performance the Honda just couldn't match. As with the K1600GT, you will pay to play: Base price is $23,650. That's actually a bargain for everything this bike comes with. Crank up the stereo, adjust the electric windshield, set suspension to Comfort, engage cruise control, treat the old prostate to a little heated seat and behold: There's nothing on the rapidly approach ing horizon to touch this thing's luxurious performance.
This is another category with potential winners from all over the map, but for 2012 the new NC stole our hearts and minds with its rational design, convenient storage compartment, available dual-clutch auto transmission and ability to travel over 60 miles on a gallon of regular. For 2013, the DCT (Dual Clutch Transmission) ABS version gets a price cut to $8499, but will face stiff competition from itself: Cruiserized versions of the NC, designated CTX (for Comfort, Technology and eXperience) have just been launched, using the same drivetrain but with seat heights of just 28.3 inches. We Americans love our cruisers. Then, there's the whole new line of 500cc Twins Honda launched last November, including the $5499 CB500F. The excellent new Ninja 300 is impossible to ignore, and rumors sugest a very reasonably priced KTM 390 Duke is on its way. This one could go off in several uncharted directions in 2013.
It was heresy when we picked this groundbreaking Italian bike (the base model) as Best Cruiser two years ago, a category heretofore owned by Harley-Davidson and lower-revving V-Twins of the laid-back ilk. But we'd do it all over again if we had to, because this radical 1198cc departure turns urban trawling on its head. Modern engine control systems mean you can dawdle around town with ease in a slightly supine position that doesn't interfere with your beer belly or foul your ZZ Top beard. But when you need to be somewhere in a hurry, twisting the throttle brings forth the Superbike World Championship operatic racket Ducati is famous for. And the chassis, including the fat, 240-section rear tire, is up to the challenge. Harley's CVO Breakout is nice if you've got $27K, and there's a new Indian on the way from Polaris mid-year. It'll have to be a really good motorcycle to take down the Diavel.
Big ADV bikes are hot, and why not? You get to sit up straight on a comfortable seat behind a reasonably sized windshield on a powerful machine that laughs at the nastiest pavement, while great features like heated grips, spacious saddlebags and even cruise control are just a mouse click away on the long list of options. Best part is you can spatter on a little mud, buy a swashbuckling jacket and ride around the galleria like you just blew in from Dakar. In 2012, the new Yamaha Super Ténéré was the best compromise of all the things a great Adventure bike needs to be. This year it faces formidable opposition: a liquid-cooled BMW R1200G5, a heavily revised Ducati Multistrada, a brand-spanking-new KTM 1190 Adventure, a Triumph Explorer XC... Before this thing's settled, there will be mud.
You almost needed a chest protector and goggles to defend against all the praise our panel of off-road experts were slinging at this motorcycle last year, a bike we all agreed is the best street-legal enduro ever. And the street-legal part's not damning with faint praise, either. It's really good even by competition-only standards, with bottomless power, light handling and a laser-accurate-yet-forgiving chassis. Husqvarna's got nothing to challenge this EXC (and may not in the future, either, now that Husky is owned by the guy who owns 51 percent of KTM, Stefan Pierer), and it'll be a big surprise if one of the Big Four steps up with anything comparable. Beta? Close but no cigar. The $4499 Honda CRF250L is an awesome motorcycle for the money, but, as an entry-level machine, it would have a hard time toppling the KTM. The 500EXC raised the bar, and nothing we've seen thus far this year is going to jump it.
You got your Ten Commandments. Your Ten Pillars of Islam, your Bill of Rights (10 of them). And your Cycle World Ten Best motorcycles. We’ve been at it every year since 1976, picking the best bikes of the year in 10 different categories that bend with the times to capture whatever era we happen to be in.
The original adventure bike gets water cooling and lots of new technology
YOU WANT AUTHENTIC? There was no adventure-touring class before the first BMW R80G/S rolled out of Munich as a 1981 model. Since then, the Germans have refined and expanded what a big adventure-tourer is. And 2013 might be the most important year of all, because BMW finally added liquid cooling to the 90-year-old flat-Twin that, in its various forms, has been powering BMW’s bikes since the R32 of 1923.
THE COMBINATION OF a stagnant economy and high prices at the pump has driven demand for affordable, fuel-efficient motorcycles. Kawasaki’s Ninja 250 sportbike has been a leader in the segment for decades, only recently coming under fire from Honda’s CBR250R. Team Green has answered Big Red’s challenge and reshaped the class with an all-new Ninja 300.
Call it what you like, but you’ll like what you call it
Gold Wing F6B
YOU WOULDN’T THINK that simply removing the top trunk from a behemoth of a motorcycle like a Honda GL1800 Gold Wing would have much effect. After all, a fully gassed GL tips the Toledo right around 900 pounds, so how much difference could hacking off that trunk possibly make?
Big new adventure-tourer embraces electronics without losing its soul
KTM'S 1190 ADVENture marks a real turning point for the Austrian company. Never before has KTM had a bike so mainstream, so capable of going head-to-head with all of the players in the adventure-touring market. This includes bikes like BMW’s new water-pumper, the R1200GS, as well as the market-share-hungry Triumph Tiger Explorer, Ducati Multistrada 1200 and Yamaha Super Ténéré.
For uncompromising track purists, the Factory SE version of Aprilia’s V-Four superbike uses a fork, shock and adjustable steering damper all from Öhlins, along with forged aluminum rims and a Special Edition paint scheme. The SE is also equipped with an APRC (Aprilia Performance Ride Control) System that features traction control, wheelie control, launch control and the Aprilia Quick Shift system, all of which can be configured and deactivated independently. No wonder Max Biaggi won the 2010 and 2012 World Superbike Championships on an Aprilia.
RSV 4 R
Whether you’re grinding knee sliders on the racetrack or tearing up your favorite backroad, the razor-sharp Aprilia is the right tool for the job. This track-bred racer-replica has an incredibly compact stature, competitive power output and unmatched liter-class agility, all while possessing Italian style that is candy for the eyes and a V-Four exhaust song that is music to the ears. As with the Factory SE model, the R edition also includes the APRC system and its cutting-edge electronic aids that provide enhanced performance and rider safety.
Tuono V 4 R
Based on the championship-winning RSV 4 superbike, the Tuono delivers hardcore engine and chassis performance in an ergonomically friendly layout that places its rider in an upright, sporting posture. The Tuono is more than a naked superbike, however, as its engine tuning emphasizes increased torque and smoother delivery coupled with greater crankshaft inertia and shortened ratios in the first three gears. As with its V-Four superbike siblings, the Tuono features APRC, as well as track-quality suspension, brakes and tires.
Mana 850 GT ABS
Featuring a GT-style half-fairing with an adjustable windshield, the rider-friendly Mana 850 is a highly versatile machine that’s equally adept at daily use as a commuter or for light touring duty. Adding to its convenience and safety is Continental’s latest-generation two-channel ABS and Aprilia’s fully automatic Sportgear electronically controlled automatic CVT transmission that also has a push-button sequential-shift mode. The result is a motorcycle certain to appeal to riders of practically all ability levels.
Dorsoduro 750 ABS
Following a year hiatus, the Dorsoduro 750 returns to Aprilia’s stateside lineup as an early release 2014 model, now equipped with anti-lock brakes. While sharing the same basic powertrain, modular frame and advanced ride-by-wire Tri-Map selectable performance modes of the Shiver 750, the Dorsoduro package is wrapped in aggressive supermoto-inspired trim. Longer-travel suspension, strong brakes, sticky tires and cutting-edge styling set this bike apart, no matter if it’s tackling the twisties or pounding the urban beat.
Naked bikes are versatile by nature, and the sporty Shiver shakes up the recipe with a mix of Italian style and broad-range usability. The daily commute just doesn’t get any more enjoyable, while weekend back-road work is a boldfaced bullet-point of the Shiver’s resume. Residing in the engine bay is a liquid-cooled, 749cc, 90-degree V-Twin featuring a ride-by-wire throttle that allows a choice of three rider-selectable delivery profiles. The chassis, a tubular-steel trellis arrangement with aluminum pieces, is fitted with a single-shock rear suspension and an inverted fork that carries a pair of powerful radial-mounted brake calipers.
If you’ve attended a World Superbike event in recent years, you’ve surely noticed Max Biaggi and his Aprilia RSV 4 on track. Chances are, you may have also spotted the multi-time World Champion zipping about the paddock aboard an SR50 in factory livery. Who says scooters have to be economy-minded commuting machines? Well, Max knows they can also be wicked fun. The two-stroke SR50 breathes clean and green, thanks to fuel-injection, and yet it has a sporty feel with its analog tach and digital instrument cluster.
With its 450 dual-purpose model already street-legal in all 50 states, Beta found it easy to produce a line of supermoto bikes. The 450 SM is powered by the company's own Italian-made, electric-start, twin-cam four-valve engine. The engine and transmission each have separate oil supplies with individual pumps. A 45mm Marzocchi inverted fork and a Sachs shock offer 11.4 inches of travel at both ends. Pirelli rubber is mounted to 17-inch wire-spoked rims front and rear. Also available: The 520 SM, the same bike but with a different displacement.
Exclusive to the U.S., Beta's RS models are serious dual-purpose bikes that are street-legal in all 50 states. An updated chrome-moly-steel, doublecradle frame surrounds the 450 RS's liquid-cooled, twin-cam, four-valve four-stroke engine, which is now built in-house. Despite all of its street-legal equipment, however, the 450 is a very capable off-roader, thanks in part to its 45mm Marzocchi fork, fully adjustable Sachs shock and the rest of its enduro-proven chassis. Also available: The 400 RS and 520 RS, the same machines as the 450 but with different displacements.
Beta’s competition-ready enduro lineup was the first to feature the engine designed and built in-house at the company’s factory just outside Florence, Italy. The quieter-running motor has four-valve heads, magnesium engine covers, vibration-reducing counterbalancers, separate oil reservoirs for engine and transmission, and electric starting. The chassis consists of a heavily gusseted steel frame, an aluminum swingarm, a 48mm Sachs fork, an aluminum-bodied Sachs shock, solid-mounted wave discs and Nissin calipers. Also available: The 350 RR, 400 RR and 498 RR, the very same motorcycles with varying levels of displacement.
Beta’s new electric-start two-stroke enduro model represents more than two years of research and development. Designed to balance smooth, low-end power delivery with top speed, the liquid-cooled cylinder is fitted with an adjustable BPV (Beta Progressive Valve) that opens independently of the main exhaust port to broaden power delivery. The lightweight chrome-moly-steel frame is unique to this model, while the bodywork, disc brakes, swingarm and wheels are sourced from Beta’s four-stroke enduro range. Also available: The 250 RR, the same machine but with a smaller engine displacement.
EVO 4-Stroke 300
One by one, manufacturers of trials bikes have developed four-stroke machines, and Beta’s latest is the EVO 300 4-Stroke. It’s powered by an extremely light and compact, single-overhead-cam, liquidcooled four-valve motor. The ultra-light chassis involves a slim aluminum frame with a backbone that doubles as a fuel tank. Also available: The EVO 4-Stroke 250, essentially the very same observedtrials motorcycle but with a 47cc-smaller engine. Amazingly, both the 250 and the 300 are comparable in weight to their EVO two-stroke siblings.
As it does with its four-stroke trials models, Beta calls its top-of-the-line two-stroke trialers EVO. Boasting the largest engine displacement of the four models, the EVO 300 has a new hydroformed, fuel-bearing, big-backbone aluminum frame, and the swingarm is strong and light. The 300 showcases Beta’s expertise in building high-quality trials machines that have won numerous world championships. Also available: The EVO 250, 200 and 125, all of which are virtually identical to the 290 in every way except for displacement.
EVO 80 Senior
Trials riding is a great way to get kids started in motorcycling, as it teaches the fine points of balance and control at low speeds in a controlled environment. Beta’s EVO 80 Senior is a great learning bike for young folk up to about 150 pounds, ideal for those “tweeners” in the family. It has all the features of the bigger machines, including a six-speed gearbox, full-size (21 -inch front, 18-inch rear) wheels and disc brakes at both ends. Also available: The EVO 80 Junior, which is slightly smaller than the 80 Senior to better suit 9-to-11-year-olds. The liquid-cooled, disc-braked 72cc Minitrial 75LC is aimed at 5-to-8-year-olds.
Cycle World summed up BMW’s flagship K1600GTL in three words: “luxury, poise, power.” The fully faired, hard-luggage-equipped GTL, with its neatly packaged and incredibly smooth inline-Six-cylinder engine, is clearly designed for long-distance touring. But with this long-hauler’s claimed peak output of 160 hp and a whopping 129 ft.-lb. of torque, its get-up-and-go is impressive, too. Standard amenities include a full-coverage windshield, a rear top case and a sound system with iPod compatibility and Bluetooth interface for cell phone use with optional speaker-equipped helmets.
This magnificent mile-eater is fitted with the same smooth, forward-angled inline-Six that powers BMW’s K1600GTL luxury-tourer. Anti-lock brakes are standard, as is a xenon headlight and a ride-by-wire system with three user-selectable throttle-response settings: Rain, Road and Dynamic. Among available options: ESA II electrically adjustable suspension, GPS and an HID low-beam headlight, whose servo-motorcontrolled beam follows curves while the motorcycle is banked over rather than shining blindly into space as with a conventional headlight. New this year are optional LED fog lights.
Few motorcycles can go head-to-head with the Kawasaki ZX-14R and Suzuki Hayabusa; one exception is the K1300S. This faired four-banger puts out a claimed 175 hp and 103-ft.-lb. of torque, more than enough go-juice to run with the class-leading Japanese bikes. The S model handles well, too, thanks in part to Duolever front suspension and a Paralever rear end that eliminates up-and-down chassis movement during acceleration and deceleration. The optional “Dynamic” package includes ESA II, HP Gearshift Assistant, heated handgrips and other goodies.
BMW’s new adventure-tourer arrives in March, now powered by a new wet-clutch opposed-Twin that uses water—as opposed to the previous combination of air and oil—to cool elements of the engine that are subject to the greatest thermal stresses. Claimed output of 125 hp and 92 ft.-lb. of torque is delivered through a left-side-mounted shaft to a 17-inch rear wheel. Smoothly transferring this power to the ground in all types of conditions is Dynamic ESA, semi-active electronic suspension with five modes: Rain, Road, Dynamic, Enduro and Enduro Pro. Automatic Stability Control and Integral ABS are standard.
Looking for a touring bike but want a torquey Twin built in Bavaria? Well, here’s BMW’s largest Boxer-Twin tourer, the R1200RT. Lockable, color-matched hard saddlebags, adjustable windscreen and seat, ABS and a luggage rack round out the list of standard equipment. If that’s not sufficient for your long-distance needs, electronically adjustable suspension, heated grips and seat, cruise control, tire-pressure monitoring system, Automatic Stability Control and a Bluetooth-capable AM/FM/CD sound system with satellite radio are just some of the other available options.
BMW’s exploration-friendly R1200GS may have its roots in off-road races, such as the famous Paris-toDakar Rally, but it’s also capable of embarrassing many sportbikes on a tight, twisty backroad. The air-/oil-cooled flat-Twin makes great power over a broad rpm range and transmits that performance to the rear wheel through a precise-shifting transmission. Also available: The R1200GS Adventure, which is ready for serious global exploration with its crash bars, long-travel suspension, wire-spoke wheels and enormous 8.7-gallon gas tank that offers a theoretical range of more than 400 miles.
At first glance, the R1200R looks like a typical standard bike, but it's fitted with a dohc Boxer motor with a smooth power curve and high rev ceiling, plus ABS and active stability control. Throw in the right accessories and the R can be many things. Optional electronic suspension adjustment, an onboard computer and a tire pressure monitor, for example, make the R a techno tour de force. No matter how you equip it, the R is ready and willing to do whatever you need it to do. Also available: The R1200R Classic, the same bike sprayed with special two-tone paint and fitted with a chromed pipe and wire-spoke wheels.
In BMW-speak, HP stands for “high performance,” and that’s exactly what you get with the S1000RR-based HP4. This track-day-ready sportbike has many trick features, with Dynamic Damping Control semi-active suspension topping the list. Offered in just one color scheme—Light White/Racing Blue Metallic/ Sapphire Black Metallic—the HP4 is available in two trims: Standard or Competition. The latter is the pricier of the two and includes heated grips, folding brake and clutch levers, adjustable rider footpegs, Racing Blue Metallic wheels, a sponsor decal kit, plus carbon-fiber bits and pieces.
Last year, BMW’s ultra-powerful alternative to the best Open-class racer-replicas from Japan and Italy got some big updates. A new aluminum frame with revised steering geometry and a slightly shorter wheelbase, which, in conjunction with updated fork internals, a more precisely damped shock and a 10-position steering damper, provided better handling. Already excellent electronics were simplified: Engine response in Rain mode became mellower, but more direct in Sport, Race and Slick. This year, Race ABS is standard and Dynamic Traction Control is a stand-alone option.
This smaller version of BMW’s big-bore adventure model, the R1200GS, has been a real home run for the Bavarian bike maker. Using the parallel-Twin-powered F800 streetbike as a starting point, BMW created a GS for the masses, one that isn’t so, well, massive. A tubular steel frame combined with suspension that offers nearly 9 inches of travel at both ends promises the go-anywhere, do-anything capability that GS owners expect. This year, there are new options, special packages and colors, including Cordoba Blue, Kalamata Metallic Matte and Alpine White.
If you’re attracted to the idea of mid-size motorcycle that can cover long distances without tying your torso in knots, look no farther than the F800GT. Based on the discontinued F800ST, this brand-new sport-touring model has a full-coverage fairing and an upright riding position. Behind the crisply styled bodywork is BMW’s excellent liquid-cooled parallel-Twin, now producing 90 horsepower at 8000 rpm, an increase of 5 hp. Automatic Stability Control (ASC), Electronic Suspension Adjustment (ESA), an onboard computer, heated grips and quick-release hard luggage are among the available options.
The F800R is a recent and popular addition to BMW’s U.S. F-series line, which also includes the off-road-capable F800GS. Like that model, this middleweight, anti-lock-brake-equipped streetfighter is powered by a quick-revving, powerful and surprisingly smooth-running, liquid-cooled twin-cylinder engine. Claimed output for the R model is 87 hp at 8000 rpm and 63 ft.-lb. of torque at 6000 rpm. A lower seat with a height of 30.5 inches is available for no extra charge. A new $595 Touring Package includes saddlebag mounts, heated grips, a centerstand, luggage grid, an onboard computer and a power socket.
The F700GS has the same twin-cylinder engine and, inexplicably, displacement as the F800GS, and they even share certain styling cues, but the two bikes differ greatly in their missions. The 800 is more capable off-road, whereas the 700 targets the urban sprawl. To appeal to the widest possible range of riders, the 700 makes a bit less horsepower and torque, has a lower seat height and shorter-travel suspension and, as a direct result, costs much less. Standard ABS can be disengaged with the push of a button. Options include Comfort and Low Suspension Plus Packages, the latter dropping seat height by 2 inches.
One of the most popular dual-purpose Singles in the 250cc-plus displacement category, the G650GS is BMW’s least-expensive model. It was updated a couple of years ago with a torquier, more-fuel-efficient engine. Current claimed output is 48 hp at 6500 rpm and 44 ft.-lb. of torque at 5000 rpm. A compact, flat instrument panel has an analog speedometer and a liquid-crystal display featuring a digital tachometer. Also available: The Sertão is a more off-road-oriented version of the GS with 8.2 inches of travel front and rear, compared to 6.7 and 6.5, for the standard GS.
Take on the urban sprawl or escape it altogether. Manage appointments in-town or hit the highway. Pick up groceries on your way home or load up for a week on the road. You can do it all on BMW’s new twin-cylinder maxi-scooter, the C650GT. This powerful machine comes with many standard features, including ABS, an electrically adjustable windshield, central locking, an auto-deploying parking brake cleverly integrated into the sidestand and the most storage capacity in its class. The optional $605 Highline Package includes heated handgrips and seat, plus tire pressure monitors.
As its name suggests, the C600 Sport is styled for scooter buyers with sporting preferences. Like the bigger, slightly heavier, more touring-oriented C650GT, the Sport is powered by a liquid-cooled twin-cylinder engine that produces a claimed 60 hp at 7500 rpm and 48.7 ft.-lb. of torque at 6000. Transferring power to the rear wheel is a CVT transmission with an automatic centrifugal clutch and a maintenance-free chain running in an oil bath. Both machines also use the same steel-tube/die-cast aluminum frame. The Sport has an adjustable windshield and a large, variable-capacity storage compartment under the seat.
If you believe bigger is always better, here’s the bike for you: the LS445, a two-wheeled musclecar powered by a 376-cubic-inch, 445-hp Chevy V-Eight. Standard features include chromed valve covers, 11/4-inch handlebars and triple-disc brakes with stainless-steel lines. Boss Hoss can build a bike to suit with various available paint schemes and accessory options that include saddlebags, luggage racks, a fairing and even a hotter camshaft. Also available: The LS300, the very same machine but with a 293-cu.-in. V-Eight engine that makes “only" 295 hp.
Boss Hoss also makes three-wheelers, and the company’s latest is the Gangsta Trike, a long, stylish machine with sweeping rear fenders and a four-speed automatic transmission with overdrive. Like its two-wheel brethren, the Gangsta is available with either a 293-in., 295-hp or 376-in., 445-hp Chevrolet V-Eight engine. Also available: The '32 Low Boy Coupe, which is mechanically identical to the Gangsta but with rear-end styling that emulates that of the famous '32 Ford Deuce Coupe.
Ready? Set.. .Go! Even when sitting still, Brammo’s all-electric Empulse R looks like it’s ready to leap out of a track sprinter’s starting blocks. This high-performance plug-in sportbike uses the same liquid-cooled motor and “E-Beam” twin-spar aluminum frame as the Empulse, but it differs from that standard model by the use of carbon fiber rather than plastic for its headlight shroud, taillight housing and fenders. Also available: The standard Empulse, which has a 100-mile range and a specially developed clutch and gearshift that enable the bike to accelerate hard from a dead stop all the way to its high top speed.
Because range has been and remains the number-one concern for anyone thinking about buying an electric motorcycle, Brammo created the enhanced-performance Enertia Plus. Its Power lithium-ion battery has a claimed range of up to 80 miles, which is double that of the unit found in the standard Enertia. Also, a tighter turning radius makes the Plus easier to handle in close quarters, and charging with the supplied battery cord has been simplified. Also available: The standard Enertia, a commuter-friendly two-wheeler with a top speed of 60 mph and a claimed range of 42 miles.
T is for touring: Can-Am’s three RT machines are outfitted for the open road with 155 liters of cargo space, electrically adjustable windshields, plush touring saddles and even an optional travel trailer. The RT-S model gets sportier, 15-inch wheels, air-adjustable rear suspension, special trim and your choice of a 5-speed manual or paddle-shift gearbox. The RT Limited is the full-boat version, complete with Garmin zumo 660 GPS, a custom seat and plenty of chrome. All three get Can-Am’s Vehicle Stability System, cruise control and onboard audio.
Two wheels good, three wheels better? That’s what Bombardier Recreational Products, producer of the Can-Am brand, believes. After riding this threewheeler, you may agree. A 100-hp Rotax engine makes it fast, while ABS, traction control and dynamic stability systems make the Spyder almost impossible to crash. The 44-liter trunk up front makes it almost as practical as a car. Also available: The Spyder RS-S, with Fox shocks up front, cool black wheels and advanced paint/graphics options. Both models can be had with either pushbuttonelectric or manual-shift five-speed gearboxes.
How about something in a three-wheeler that splits the difference between the touring RT and the sporty RS? For 2013, Can-Am’s created exactly that. The new ST combines the light chassis and quick handling of the RS with the more comfortable ergonomics and greater wind protection of the RT to produce a three-wheeled sport-tourer. In addition to the base ST, there is an ST-S model with black 15-inch wheels, special trim and cruise control, and an ST-S Limited that has additional saddlebag storage, heated grips, Garmin navigation and special trim.
Until recently, Christini has focused its production on converting select off-road machines into two-wheel-drive bikes, and it will continue to build frame kits for those customers. But its proprietary machines offer its technology at a more affordable price. The AWD 450 features a sohc, liquid-cooled engine with a wide-ratio five-speed transmission, all built specifically for Christini. And as with all the company’s models, the 450’s AWD system can be switched on or off. Also available: The AWD 450 E with electric start, AWD 450 DS dualsport and AWD 450 SM are essentially the same bikes but in slightly different configurations.
When it comes to super gnarly terrain, wouldn’t two-wheel drive be better than one? That’s the philosophy behind the Christini. Its patented mechanical all-wheel-drive system uses chains and flexible shafts (no hydraulics involved) driven by the transmission countershaft to send power to the front wheel. The front wheel is driven at a slightly slower ratio than the rear so that when traction is ideal, the front is effectively passive; but when the rear wheel slips, power transfers to the front until rear traction is regained. The AWD 300 is powered by a liquid-cooled Gas Gas two-stroke engine and rides on a twin-spar aluminum frame. Also available: The AWD 250 is the same bike but with a 250cc Gas Gas two-stroke engine.
Cleveland Cycle Werks’ newest release houses that proven LIFAN Honda-derived 229cc Single in a package inspired by the swingin’ 1960s. The Ace Standard, with its wire-spoke wheels (19-in. front/18-in. rear), skinny fork tubes (with optional gaiters) and small front disc brake, looks like some sort of throwback scrambler. Also available: The Ace Deluxe, which has an inverted fork, larger brake disc and 17-in. wheels with dual-purpose tires. This bike harkens back to a motorcycle that perhaps never existed... but maybe should have.
Yes, the Heist is made in China, but it’s designed in Cleveland, Ohio. Power flows from an air-cooled knock-off of the CG125 Single Honda began building in the early ’70s. It has grown to 229cc and gained a counterbalancer and an electric starter, and it’s built to keep slogging out a claimed 14.1 horsepower at 7000 rpm through thick and thin. That’s not much power, but then 253 claimed pounds dry isn’t much motorcycle. It’s a hardtail, but mountain bike shocks suspending the seat give it a better ride than you’d expect, along with more moto-fun than you deserve for the money.
“Tha Misfit” is a café-style bike built to bring home the bacon in a ’60s sort of style. Steel main tube frames mate up to a boxed section that supports the counterbalanced motor, which acts as a stressed member for great rigidity, says Cleveland. An inverted fork, piggyback-reservoir shocks, disc brakes and a weight of less than 300 pounds should make this bike even more fun that the Heist, which we have to admit is pretty fun. And 65 mpg looks very doable on this affordable machine.
Cobra, builder of championship-winning minibikes, is fully committed to continued development of its flagship CX65 motocrosser. The CX’s liquid-cooled, two-stroke engine features the world’s first direct-acting, fully electronic powervalve working in concert with its Pro Circuit race-tuned pipe and silencer. A hydraulic clutch mated to a six-speed gearbox gives the rider full authority when trying to put all of the engine’s power to the ground. A CARD Smart-Leg 37mm inverted fork and CARD-shock rear suspension provide enough travel to help the rider maintain control over the biggest jumps and bumps that the racetrack is likely to throw at it.
The Cobra CX50 Senior (aka The King) is designed and built to withstand the rigors of serious mini off-road racing. Its liquid-cooled 50cc two-stroke engine delivers class-leading performance while the rugged twin-spar frame and 30mm Cobra fork and fully adjustable CARD shock provide ample suspension travel to take on the off-road obstacles. Also available: The CX50 Junior offers a smaller, lighter version of the Senior that uses a 10-inch-diameter wheel size and has less suspension travel for a lower seat height.
Alabama-based Confederate builds muscle-cruisers like no other. The X132 Hellcat is about the closest thing you can get to piloting a low-flying hot-rod engine with landing gear deployed! Its massive 132 cubic-inch, fuel-injected motor is claimed to produce a whopping 150 foot-pounds of torque. Top-shelf race-spec suspension, wheels and brakes ensure that the Hellcat’s fury remains on a proper flight path. Also available: The X132 Hellcat Combat offers more power and a longer wheelbase. The R131 Fighter, a 10-bike limited run with an engine and chassis machined almost entirely from aircraft-grade billet aluminum, is also offered.
1199 Panigale R ABS
Ducati continues to expand its Panigale sportbike line, and the latest addition is the princely 1199 R. The R model’s claimed 195-horsepower, 90degree V-Twin is fitted with lightweight titanium connecting rods that reduce reciprocating mass and help the engine spin as high as 12,000 rpm, 500 more than any other Panigale. Also available: The Panigale S Tricolore has a stylish red, white and green paint job reminiscent of the Ital-ian national flag, plus a new-generation Ducati Data Analyzer + with GPS lap-timer function and a lightweight titanium racing muffler.
Multistrada 1200 S Pikes Peak
Cycle World's Ten Best-winning 1200 S is the basis for Ducati’s top-of-the-line Multistrada, the bucks-up Pikes Peak special edition. You get all of the standard high-tech goodies—eight-stage traction control, electronically adjustable Ducati Skyhook Suspension and anti-lock brakes—plus red, white and black Ducati Corse paint, a cut-down “racing” windscreen, lightweight wheels and various carbon-fiber accessories that further jazz up the bike’s appearance. Even the seat cover, with its sporty red stitching, is special. Like all current Ducatis, the 1200 S Pikes Peak comes with a 24-month, unlimited-mileage warranty.
Many cruisers look comfortable sitting on the showroom floor, but few are as proficient at piling on the miles as their laid-back ergonomics suggest. But the tire-scorching Diavel Strada is a bit different. Four key components distinguish the Strada from the standard Diavel and give it long-ride potential: 1) a broad, protective windshield; 2) removable saddlebags that incorporate passenger grab rails; 3) taller handlebars fitted with heated grips; and 4) a deeply padded stepped seat mated to a supportive backrest. Passengers further benefit from permanently fixed pegs that offer more substantial footholds.
Think of the muscular Diavel as an Italian Yamaha VMax—minus the weight. Styled to look like a track sprinter about to explode from the starting blocks, the Diavel tips the scales at just 463 pounds. Yet Ducati claims a whopping 162 hp and 94 ft.-lb. of torque delivered to the ground through a 240mm-wide rear tire. Standard features include ABS, Ducati Traction Control and Ducati Riding Modes. Also available: The Diavel Dark, a stealth version of the same bike; and the Diavel Chromo and Diavel Carbon, which are fitted with either a chrome-plated gas tank or carbon-fiber bodywork and forged aluminum wheels.
Ducati’s championship-winning performance in the Superbike World Championship paved the way for the 1199 Panigale. This clean-sheet design is powered by a big-bore, short-stroke “Superquadra” engine that makes a claimed 195 crankshaft hp and redlines at 11,500 rpm. “Framing” this performance is a monocoque aluminum steering-head bracket that doubles as an airbox. A single-sided swingarm bolts to the rear of the engine cases. ABS is a $1000 option. Also available: The 1199 Panigale S, the same sportbike fitted with LED headlights, electronically adjustable Öhlins suspension and forged three-spoke wheels. Add $1000 for ABS.
The Multistrada 1200 is all about versatility, a bike designed to satisfy the demands of practically all riders. The newly updated “Testastretta 11 degrees” engine is based on the liquid-cooled V-Twin that powered Ducati’s previous-generation 1198 Superbike and features three electronically controlled modes— Sport, Touring, and City and Enduro—that vary output from as little as 100 peak horsepower to as much as 150. There are three available packages: Standard, S Touring or S Granturismo. S models come with ABS, eight-stage traction control and electronically adjustable “Skyhook” suspension.
Monster 1100 EVO ABS
A couple of years ago, Ducati thinned out the Monster line, combining the 1100 with the 1100 S to create the current 1100 EVO. This higher-performing model is powered by a retuned version of the air-cooled V-Twin and produces 100 hp and 76 ft.-lb. of torque. The exhaust is inspired by the Diavel’s two-can setup. An oil-bath clutch is said to reduce lever effort. Ducati Traction Control and ABS are standard. Also available: The Monster 1100 EVO 20th Anniversary which has special paint and graphics, and the matte-green Monster Diesel, a collaborative effort with the Italian clothing designer:
848 EVO Corse SE
Looking for rip-snorting V-Twin engine performance? Razor-sharp cornering? Stop-on-a-dime brakes? Well, you’re looking at all of that and more in the 848 EVO Corse SE. This trackday-ready sportbike starts with the 848 EVO engine in a race-proven chassis fitted with larger (330mm) front brake rotors and a fully adjustable Öhlins shock. This Corse Test Team-graphics model also comes with traction control and a quick shifter. Also available: The standard 848 EVO, which is the same basic bike but with 320mm front-brake rotors, a Sachs shock and no traction control or quick shifter.
Who doesn’t love the laser-like handling of a no-holds-barred racer-replica? But man, those bikes can be uncomfortable if you’re not ripping around a racetrack. Based in large part on the 848 EVO, the 848 Streetfighter is fitted with a high-rise, tapered aluminum handlebar and lowered footpegs that give long legs a break. Ducati also ash-canned the full-wrap fairing found on the 848, exposing the steel trellis frame and wet-clutch-equipped, claimed 132hp V-Twin. Traction control is standard on this naked middleweight, which is available this year in Ducati Red, Fighter Yellow or Dark Stealth.
As its name and appearance suggest, the HyperStrada is a sport-touring-oriented offshoot of the latest Hypermotard. Both models have technically identical chassis and engines, the latter producing a claimed 110 hp and 66 ft.-lb. of torque, but the ’Strada comes with a small windshield, semi-rigid saddlebags boasting a combined total capacity of 50 liters, a more thickly padded passenger seat, two 12-volt power outlets and a centerstand. Bosch’s latest anti-lock braking system and eight-level Ducati Traction Control (DTC) are included in the standard Ducati Safety Pack (DSP).
Hypermotard 1100 EVO SP? Gone. Ditto the Hypermotard 796. Taking their places is a next-gen urban terror with nearly a gallon more fuel capacity and a clean-sheet, liquid-cooled Testastretta 11-degree V-Twin that makes a claimed 110 hp—15 more than the previous air-cooler. ABS and traction control are standard. Options include an alarm, heated grips and a satellite navigation system. Also available: The Hypermotard SP, which is the same motorcycle but equipped with a fully adjustable 50mm Marchesini fork, an Öhlins shock and forged three-spoke Marchesini wheels shod with Pirelli Supercorsa SP tires.
Monster 796 ABS
Building on the entry-level Monster 696, this 803cc version is a little taller, a little heavier and a little more powerful. The Monster 796 ABS comes with a micro-bikini fairing, a matching passenger seat cover and anti-lock brakes. In addition, as with all of the other Monster models, there are eight “Monster Art” decal-and-paint options that pay tribute to famous Ducati logos and color schemes from the iconic Italian brand’s more than five decades of bike production. Also available: The Monster 796 20th Anniversary, the same bike with special paint and graphics, plus mirrors from the first-year Monster.
Monster 696 ABS
When it debuted half a decade ago, the Monster 696 represented the beginning of the new Monster line, featuring a major styling and technical makeover. The frame is a hybrid cast-aluminum and steel-trellis unit, while power comes from an 80-hp air-cooled V-Twin. More recent updates include four-way-adjustable brake/ clutch levers, a larger heat shield for the high-mounted mufflers and engine cases that use weight-saving vacural casting technology. Also available: The Monster 696 20th Anniversary, the same bike painted Ducati Red with a bronze-colored frame, early graphics and fitted with original “wing ” mirrors.
The 1190RS returns with an available new red/white/black paint scheme celebrating the Hero/AMSOIL-sponsored AMA Pro Racing superbikes’ on-track success in ’ 12. These American-designed, Wisconsin-built exotic streetbikes are fitted with the finest components from the likes of AIM, Carrillo, CP, Del West and Öhlins. Essentially a racebike with lights, the 1190R impressed during CW's track testing, providing excellent power, precise steering, a highly effective “inside out” front brake (with eight-piston caliper) and superbly set up suspension. The previous-year black version is available for $2500 less.
Spanish company Gas Gas continues to fine-tune its two-stroke enduro models, and the XC300 continues to blend the weight and agility of a 250 with near-Open class power. This makes it a top choice for off-road enthusiasts, especially East Coasters and GNCC competitors who ride in the tight woods. The chassis uses a chrome-moly steel frame, which is now lighter and more rigid than the previous model’s and uses a polymer subframe to reduce weight. Also available: The XC250, whose 249cc two-stroke engine is fed by a 38mm Keihin carb, and the XC200, which has 50cc less displacement.
TXT 300 Pro Racing
The TXT Pro 300 Racing observed-trials bike features a 294cc two-stroke engine with a revised titanium header pipe that is said to improve engine response in the midand upper rev range. Revisions to the bike’s packaging include a new fuel tank that makes better use of the space around the engine, a new narrower radiator and multiple ignition mapping options. The chassis has a revised shock linkage, which, combined with the revised shock, improves rebound damping. Also available: The TXT 280 Pro Racing and TXT 125 Pro Racing, which are virtually identical to the 300 except for having less displacement.
TXT 300 Pro
As in most other forms of motorcycle competition, four-strokes are becoming dominant in observed trials, but two-strokes aren’t dead yet. Want conclusive proof? Former Outdoor and Indoor World Trials Champion, Adam Raga, continues to compete on two-stroke Gas Gas machines. The TXT Pro bikes are the standard versions of the company’s line of full-size trailers, and the 300 is the largest. This is a 297cc, world-class bike that only weighs a mere 148 pounds. Also available: Three other TXT Pro models in 272cc (the 280), 248cc and 125cc versions of essentially the same motorcycle.
The name says it all, because this loaded-to-the-gills H-D touring rig has it all—and then some, including electronic cruise control, an 80-watt sound system, air-adjustable suspension, gallons of storage, heated grips and much chrome. It’s available in special 110th Anniversary Vintage Bronze and Black livery complete with assorted “Living Art” styling touches. Propulsion comes from a 103-cubic inch, fuel-injected Twin Cam engine rated at 100 ft.-lb. of torque at 3250 rpm. ABS and a Smart Security System are part of the package.
FLTRU Road Glide Ultra
A new model just two seasons ago, the Road Glide Ultra combines all of Fl-D’s finest touring ingredients and experience to create a true rolling feast. Its features include an air-adjustable FL chassis; a shark-nose, frame-mount fairing (packing an 80-watt, four-speaker sound system); vented fairing lowers with adjustable wind deflectors;, a luxurious/low seat; a King Tour-Pak with liners and backrest; electronic cruise control; ABS; and a Smart Security System, all propelled by Twin Cam 103 power. It all works together to make short work of long miles. Available in four colors with black, 28-spoke cast aluminum wheels.
FLHTCU Ultra Classic Electra Glide
Combining classic H-D style with all the amenities expected on a modern touring machine—including cruise control, vented fairing lowers and a super-comfortable seat—the Ultra eats miles with the best of them. There’s plenty of room for your stuff, along with lots of comfort for your passenger thanks to the Tour-Pak’s broad fore/aft adjustment range. A Twin Cam 103 rated at 100-ft.-lb. of torque, routed through a smooth-shifting six-speed transmission, moves it all down the road. Available in three solid colors and a pair of two-tones, with black cast wheels.
FLHRC Road King Classic
The Road King was an instant classic for H-D from the start, and the version wearing the Classic name is a natural progression from the original. On top of the baseline Road King, you get leather-wrapped hard saddlebags with a matching two-up seat, a detailed chromed tank console and chromed laced wheels wrapped in wide-stripe whitewall tires. In addition to black or white, a couple of two-tone paint jobs are available. And while you’re at it, you might want to go for the optional cruise control and Smart Security System.
FLHX Street Glide
If everyday competence and comfort are more important to you than glitter and glitz, have a look at the FLHX. The Street Glide offers full touring capability with its traditional fork-mounted fairing and hard bags. A deep-breathing Twin Cam 103 exhaling through a pair of chrome duals is standard issue, and the Security Package—which includes a hands-free key fob and ABS—is available. Cruise control is another option, the better to appreciate the slammed, 27.1-inch seat height, 40-watt Harman/Kardon audio system and air-adjustable rear suspension. Choose from five color options including black.
FLHTC Electra Glide Classic
This bike’s got all the important features you need for touring—including a standard Tour-Pak and two-speaker sound system—but it leaves the door wide-open for personalization. A good place to start would be checking the cruise control and Smart Security System boxes on the build sheet. After that, you’re looking at pure, undistilled, batwing-faired Electra Glide, a classic American form if ever there was one, but packed with completely modern running gear that includes a powerful, sequential-port fuel-injected Twin Cam 103 V-Twin.
FLTRX Road Glide Custom
Know this iconic Harley bagger by its frame-mount fairing—a good thing for steering and wind protection—and by its long, low, no-junk/no-trunk looks. Lowered suspension puts the sculpted saddle a mere 27.1 inches from the pavement, and a cool 18-in. front five-spoke cast wheel leads the way; tubeless chromed aluminum spoked wheels are one option. For 2013, the Smart Security System is standard, complete with ABS and hands-free key fob. And so is that rumbly Twin Cam 103 engine. What more do you need?
FLHR Road King
The Road King has been a huge hit for H-D since its debut nearly 20 years ago, and The Motor Company celebrates this model’s success with special 110th Anniversary Vintage Bronze/Black paint and trim. The King got the powerful Twin Cam 103 V-Twin last year and the 100 ft.-lb. of torque at 3250 rpm it brings along for the ride. Weather-resistant, locking hard-shell saddlebags and a detachable windshield let you dress the bike for cruising or traveling. A low seat, air-adjustable rear suspension and vibration-damping footboards enhance comfort on all-day sorties.
FLSTC Heritage Softail Classic
Last year, the FLSTC got the bigger, more-powerful Twin Cam 103B in its engine bay (that “B” means “counterbalanced” in H-D parlance, since the engine bolts solidly into the Softail frame). This year, the Classic gets special 110th Anniversary Vintage Bronze/ Black paint and trim as one of six paint options. The Classic’s “classic” dresser styling includes a big copbike windshield, studded leather saddlebags with matching seat and backrest, and deeply valanced fenders laid over fat, 16-inch wire-spoked wheels (tubeless chromed aluminum ones are optional).]
FLSTN Softail Deluxe
How can you improve on this beloved Harley? Maybe the best way is not to even try. All The Motor Company did for ’ 13 is make it available in even cooler paint. The Deluxe is one of just five 2013 Hogs offered with a Hard Candy Custom paint option— Lucky Green Flake, in this case. Beyond that, this blast from the past gets a super-low seat and a wide handlebar on pullback risers that combine with full-length floorboards to provide an easy-going ride. Wide whitewalls, tombstone taillight, luggage rack, ball headlamp and horseshoe oil tank all dipped in lustrous chrome carry on the period look.
FLSTFB Fat Boy Lo
The Fat Boy Lo is one of 10 lucky 2013 Harleys that are available in 110th Anniversary commemorative Vintage Bronze/Black paint, along with a special tank medallion, a solid bronze air-cleaner trim ring and a derby cover with a forged bronze trim ring. The Twin Cam 103B engine is powdercoated black, and its over/ under shotgun exhaust gets flat-black heat shields. Bullet Hole Disc cast wheels feature black centers, and the rear rim wears a fat, 200mm tire. A dished-out seat and lowered suspension give this bike one of the lowest seats in the H-D range.
FLSTF Fat Boy
Fat tires, fat bars, fat fender and a big Twin Cam 103B engine that’s powerful, powdercoated black and counterbalanced—this must be the Fat Boy. One of the true classics in the Softail lineup, this long-standing model also gets the same seat as the Fat Boy Lo, which drops the rider’s posterior to within 27.1 inches of the pavement. The optional Security Package includes ABS and Smart Security System. What’s your choice, brushed or polished aluminum “bullet-hole” disc wheels? The Fat Boy is available in three solid colors and a pair of two-tones.
The Blackline was the new Harley on the block two years ago, a bike pared to the bone with classic bobbed looks, the lowest seat in the H-D pantheon and one of the lowest price tags, too. A wide FX front end straddling a 21-in front wheel leads the way, and things like H-D’s Split Drag internally wired bar mounts keep the Black-line’s unencumbered lines flowing. This year, the B-line’s one of 10 Harleys available in Hard Candy paint— Coloma Gold Flake for this model.
FLS Softail Slim
What we have here is a custom-style, back-to-basics Twin Cam 103 stripped to the essentials. From its bobbed fenders to its tall, 16-inch tires to its cross-braced “Hollywood” handlebar to its way low solo seat and blacked-out wheels and cylinders, the Slim is about as elemental as a production motorcycle can get. A black “cat’s eye” console continues the old-school theme with a retro speedometer face; so do half-moon footboards and the leather strap that covers the seam down the middle of the 5-gallon fuel tank. It’s the 1950s all over again but with modem mechanicals.
An all-new model last year, the Switchback combines the dual-shock Dyna chassis, Twin Cam 103 power, a quick-detach windshield and hard saddlebags to create an effective touring rig that’s around 10 percent lighter than the other FL tourers in Fl-D’s lineup. Pop the bags and shield off (by hand; no tools are necessary), you’re cruising; pop them back on, and you’re out of town for the weekend or commuting to work in style. A 4.7-gallon Street Bob tank is right in scale with those full fenders, color-matched saddlebags and five-spoke blacked-out wheels.
FXDF Dyna Fat Bob
The Fat Bob is a twin-headlight, wide-forked, triple-discbraked, muscled-up eye-catcher of a boulevard beast packing Twin Cam 103 heat. That’s fat, as in a fat, 130mm-wide front tire and a 180mm out back, both mounted on cool, 16-inch slotted cast aluminum wheels. As is the norm on all Dyna models, the Fat Bob’s rear end is suspended by a pair of adjustable shocks that, in this case, offer 2.1 inches of wheel travel beneath a seat hovering a mere 27.2 inches off the pavement.
FXDWG Dyna Wide Glide
Leading with its namesake wide fork, the Wide Glide rolls with an authentic old-school flaming chopper vibe. It’s long and low, with a raked-out (34-degree) front end, low seat, internally wired drag-style handlebar and forward foot controls. The bobbed rear fender gets a “wire” sissybar, integrated LED taillight/turnsignals and a side-mounted, foldaway license-plate holder. The rubber-mounted, black powdercoated engine exhales through Tommy Gun pipes. Blacked-out 40-spoke laced wheels wear a 180mm-wide tire out back and a 21-inch pizzacutter up front.
FXDC Dyna Super Glide
Just your basic Big Twin, folks. Nothing too radical, just a tasteful combo platter of traditional H-D building blocks set off with the right amount of chrome in all the right places—and this one’s available in 110th Anniversary Vintage colors. A pullback handlebar rests above a Fat Bob fuel tank with the speedometer and ignition console perched on top. Mid-mount foot controls complete the comfy ergonomic package. The Super Glide is powered by a Twin Cam 96 engine linked to a six-speed Cruise Drive transmission. A Smart Security System is just one of many available options.
FXDB Dyna Street Bob
Let your inner ape out. This minimally styled, post-World War II “bobber”/’70s chopper is one of the most affordable Big Twins. You’ll fly solo on this one, with neither seat nor pegs for a passenger, sitting way down in a 26.7-inch-high seat and resting your dogs on mid-mount controls. For 2013, blacked out triple-clamps and powertrain, as well as a chopped rear fender with side-mount license plate and lights, join the fray. The Twin Cam 96 engine expels its burned gases through chromed staggered shorty dual exhausts.
XL1200X Sportster Forty-Eight
The hunkered-down, low-riding Sportster Forty-Eight harkens back to the start of the hot-rod era more than 60 years ago—as in 1948, which is, H-D tells us, the year this bike’s “peanut” gas tank debuted. For 2013, you can have that tank done up in Hard Candy Colorama Gold Flake. The solo saddle, bobbed fenders and fat Michelin Scorcher tires on black-rimmed wire wheels offer a raw, elemental appearance. Slash-cut “twice pipes” and mirrors hung under the low-rise, drag-style handlebar further the period look, while its injected, 73-inch motor runs as nicely as any modern engine should.
XL1200C Sportster 1200 Custom
A wide front end and a fat, 16-inch front tire give the 1200 Custom a look like no other Sportster. So does the 110th Anniversary Vintage Bronze/Black you can get as one of five paint options for 2013. While you’re at it, use the H-D 1 customization program to pick out your wheels, handlebars, seat, foot controls, security system and engine finish from a list of available options. Standard equipment includes a pullback handlebar up front and a smaller, brighter LED taillight out back, along with suspension tuned to work with the Michelin Scorcher 31 tires.
Harley-Davidson described the new-last-year Seventy-Two as “A trip back to the days when the cool kids rode a Sting-Ray and the big boys parked choppers in a row on the curb.” With its 21-inch front wheel, whitewall tires, ape-hanger handlebar and traditional 2.1-gallon “peanut” gas tank, this sparkling Sportster pays homage to the legendary cruising route in East Los Angeles, Route 72, more commonly known as Whittier Boulevard. This year, go crazy with your choice of three big flake Hard Candy colors or three solids.
XL883N Sportster Iron 883
For those who like their Sportster straight up, no chaser, the Iron 883 is as elemental as it gets. A low solo saddle, drag handlebar, chopped rear fender, fat tires on black cast wheels and a blacked-out engine mean this one’s more for riding than profiling. At the same time, electronic fuel injection, rubber engine mounting, five speeds in the transmission and disc brakes mean the Iron starts, stops and goes like no ’60s Harley could dream of. And at $7999, it’s the most affordable new Harley in the showroom.
XL883L Sportster SuperLow
The SuperLow is billed as the easiest-to-handle, most confidence-inspiring H-D ever. Custom Michelin radial tires and rethought steering geometry give the bike benign handling, while the tires’ low profile helps reduce seat height to just 26.8 inches. Special rear suspension provides more wheel travel than the Iron 883’s without causing the bucket-style seat to be any higher. A pullback handlebar and mid-mount foot controls make it easy for beginners to grab the SuperLow by the horns. Beware sharp curves, though: The downside to all that lowness is compromised cornering clearance.
VRSCDX Night Rod Special
The raciest bike in the H-D lineup, the Night Rod extracts a claimed 125 hp and 85 ft.-lb. of torque from its special 8-valve, liquid-cooled V-Twin, then sends it rearward to a fat, 240-section Michelin Scorcher rear tire. A pullback handlebar meets the rider halfway, the foot controls are likewise closer-set, and a low bucket seat keeps the pilot securely in place. There are acres of matte black on the hydroformed frame, raked-out inverted fork and lightweight wheels that are fitted with triple-disc brakes. This is a Harley that will definitely get your blood pumping.
VRSCF V-Rod Muscle
With this V-Rod’s wide stance and angular bodywork, you won’t confuse it with any other Harley. A fat, 240mm rear tire sits under a clipped rear fender with LED stop/turn/taillights tucked under the trailing edge. A raked-out inverted fork gives the bike a dragsterish look, and a deeply stepped seat, forward foot controls and a cast aluminum handlebar plant the rider in a comfortable, laid-back position. Meanwhile, double overhead cams in a liquid-cooled V-Twin pumping out 122 eye-opening horsepower set this Hog even farther apart.
FLHTCUSE CVO Ultra CLassic Electra Glide
CVO means “Custom Vehicle Operations,” which produces Hogs for the über-consumer, and this one is about as über as a touring bike can get. With its Twin Cam 110 engine rated at 115 ft.-lb. of torque, the FLHTCUSE truly does “Glide” the highway, with a custom Tour-Pak, cruise control, LED wrap-around brake/taillights, super-comfy dual-control heated seat, four-speaker Harman/Kardon BOOM! AM/ FM/XM sound, sat-nav system, power bag locks, custom Chisel wheels, Smart Security System, and four over-the-top paint schemes including 110th Anniversary Diamond Dust/Obsidian with Palladium graphics.
FLTRXSE CVO Road Guide Custom
Maybe the ultimate bagger, this machine stuffs a 110inch Screamin’ Eagle engine into Harley’s excellent FL chassis, adds a frame-mounted fairing (packing an incredible new Daymaker headlight) and doesn’t stop until the thing is festooned with options and covered in opulent paint and chrome—including special 110th Anniversary graphics. It’s packed to the rafters with a heated seat and grips, cruise control, ABS, 100watt BOOM! audio with satellite radio and iPod, GPS, Smart Security with built-in siren and automatic bike lock. You can add more from the H-D accessories catalog, but not much more.
FLHRSE CVO Road King
Here’s a Road King that’s more like Road Dictator for Life. Powered by a 110-inch Screamin’ Eagle engine, this CVO special packs a 118 ft.-lb. torque punch beneath your choice of three beautiful custom paint jobs (including Anniversary Diamond Dust/Obsidian) and rolls regally upon Chrome Agitator wheels. It’s the first Road King with an audio system, and it gets Smart Security along with electronic cruise control. It even comes with a new wind-tunnel-tested Vented Wind Splitter windshield that reduces buffeting for cooler, quieter cruising.
FXSBSE CVO Breakout
Probably the sweetest factory Softail ever, the chopperesque Breakout packs Twin Cam 110B power into a motorcycle that looks like it just crashed through a jewelry store. Everything on the bike is highly detailed and chromed, including the Mirror Chrome Turbine wheels, the rear of which packs a 240mm tire. And the bits not chromed are covered in three of the most amazing paint jobs ever to roll out of any factory. The bike comes with the Smart Security System (which includes ABS), a beautiful faux-gator leather seat and electronic cruise control. H-D says only 1900 will be produced.
FLHTCUTG Tri Glide Ultra Classic
What you’re looking at is an Ultra Classic Electra Glide with a modified rear section incorporating dual rear wheels and a large trunk, with special front-end geometry that provides optimal steering behavior. Power flows from a Twin Cam 103 engine, and electric reverse, cruise control and a four-speaker sound system are all standard equipment. The Tri Glide—sold and serviced by the H-D dealer network—carries a two-year limited warranty.
Last year, Honda updated its perennial open-road favorite, the Gold Wing. The torquey flat-Six engine, aluminum frame and single-sided swingarm went unchanged, and only small tweaks to the suspension and a switch from Dunlop to Bridgestone tires affected the handling. There’s also a more protective fairing and bigger saddlebags with 7 liters of additional capacity, plus upgraded GPS and stereo systems. This year, the Gold Wing is offered in four colors: Light Silver Metallic, Grey Metallic, Ultra Blue Metallic or Candy Red. Also available: An ABS version with anti-lock brakes; and an airbag-equipped model.
Gold Wing F6B
Hallelujah! Honda built a bagger! This bad boy is based on the Ten-Best-winning Gold Wing luxury-tourer, with a blacked-out styling treatment applied to the aluminum frame, six-cylinder engine and radial-shod wheels. Long, low lines capped with locking, large-capacity saddlebags further enhance the machine’s aggressive appearance. A deeply dished, gunfighter-style seat and a premium audio system guarantee both pilot and passenger will enjoy the ride regardless if the destination is across the state or just around the corner. Also available: The F6B Deluxe adds a centerstand, a backrest and heated grips for an extra $1000.
When it thundered onto the cruiser scene as an early-release 2010 model, the Fury broke new ground, offering buyers chopper styling with the performance, quality and reliability they’d come to expect from Honda. Power is via a liquid-cooled, single-crankpin V-Twin. The Fury has a low seat height, shaft drive and the longest wheelbase of any production Honda. For 2013, the Fury is available in two colors: Red or Black. Accessories run the gamut, from billet covers to grips, saddles, lights and windscreens. Also available: The Fury ABS, the same bike but with anti-lock brakes and only available in black.
“Baggers” are popular among cruiser buyers these days for good reason: A windscreen and saddlebags make longer rides more pleasant and offer a secure place to store and access your stuff. Honda recognized the widespread interest in this category and equipped its V-Twin Interstate with a large, fork-mounted windscreen and sleek, leather-covered hard bags. A hidden latch system on the bags adds to the bike’s uncluttered appearance. This year, the Interstate is available in a new Light Silver Metallic color. Also available: The Interstate ABS, the same bike fitted with anti-lock brakes.
Like big V-Twins? Long, sleek, raked-out and powerful, the Sabre combines eye-catching pro-street styling with strong low-end and midrange torque for responsive acceleration, smooth highway cruising and great fun in just about any riding environment. Minimalism is the primary theme here, as electrical wires, brake cables and coolant lines are either hidden completely or routed as cleanly as possible to ensure an attractive, uncluttered appearance, especially in all-new Black. Also available: The Sabre ABS, the very same motorcycle but equipped with anti-lock brakes.
In simple terms, the Stateline is an Interstate minus the windscreen and saddlebags, and with rider footpegs instead of footboards. Otherwise, both Honda cruisers are pretty much identical, sharing heavily raked-out front ends, pullback handlebars, chromed tank-top speedometer housings, blacked-out engines, curved-downtube frames, one-piece seats with deep rider cutouts and long, flowing fenders. Where this bike and the Interstate differ the most is in price: The Stateline lists for $1090 less. Also available: The Stateline ABS, the same bike fitted with anti-lock brakes and also offered in black.
Honda’s VFR series has enjoyed a long, successful run, and the latest model, introduced in 2010, is the VFR1200F. Heart and soul of this ABS-equipped sport-tourer is its V-Four engine, which now makes more torque between 2000 and 4000 rpm. Honda Traction Control helps smoothly put that power down to the ground by reducing wheelspin in slippery conditions. A slightly larger fuel tank and a more comfortable seat were introduced last year. Also available: The VFR1200F with Dual Clutch Transmission has handlebar-mounted, paddle-style shifters. Shift points are optimized relative to throttle inputs for user-friendly operation.
Honda describes the CB1100 as “a fresh take on the timeless, air-cooled four-cylinder performance machine.” With its across-the-frame engine, chromed steel fenders, twin-shock rear suspension, diving-board-flat saddle and relatively narrow 18-inch wheels, the CB1100 certainly resembles the Universal Japanese Motorcycles that were so popular in the mid-to-late 1970s and early ’80s. But advanced metallurgy, electronic fuel injection, modern triple-disc brakes and even the latest seat foam ensure modern performance and reliability. Also available: The CB1100 ABS, the same bike equipped with anti-lock brakes.
Twenty years have passed since Honda introduced the groundbreaking CBR900RR, and as powerful and technically advanced as that sportbike was, the latest CBR1000RR is better in every area. Aerodynamic “layered” bodywork, a Showa 43mm Big Piston Fork and “balance-free” shock, feature-rich instrumentation and rigid 17-inch wheels with Y-shaped spokes are just a few of the significant components that help make this an outstanding Open-class racer-replica. Also available: The CBR1000RR C-ABS is the very same sportbike but fitted with Honda's excellent anti-lock braking system.
In essence, the CB1000R engine is an older version of the CBR1000RR reworked to produce more midrange power and perform comfortably as a sit-up naked bike. Sidedraft 36mm throttle bodies and 11.2:1 compression result in an engine said to be good for 123 hp and 74 ft.-lb. of torque. A thin-wall, gravity-die-cast mono-backbone aluminum frame is strong yet light, and the bike’s distinctive single-sided swingarm is controlled by a single shock with spring preload and rebound-damping adjustability. A fully adjustable 43mm inverted cartridge fork carries the front wheel and dual radial-mount 310mm disc brakes. New for 2013: a Cool Pearl White color.
In the cruiser market, it’s easy to be overwhelmed with manufacturers that have taken the bigger-is-better concept to extremes. That’s why the more moderate size of the Shadow Aero appeals to so many riders. The Aero weighs just 560 pounds with a full tank, has a low seat height and handles well. The fuel-injected, 745cc V-Twin runs smoothly, and its ample cylinder finning hides the fact that it is liquidcooled. Wire-spoked wheels and fat fenders give a traditional look. The Aero is available this year in two colors: Metallic Silver/Pearl White or Black. Also available: The Shadow Aero ABS, the same bike fitted with anti-lock brakes.
Popular among entry-level cruiser buyers for its clean, back-to-basics appearance highlighted by an extensive blackout treatment and a “bobbed” rear fender, the Shadow Phantom returns unchanged for 2013. This liquid-cooled V-Twin-powered boulevard bike has a matte-black finish on the bodywork and engine, complemented by a matte-silver treatment on the fork, tank-top instrument housing, rear fender braces and even the engine’s cam covers. Seat height is just 25.8 inches, making the Phantom an ideal choice for shorter and/ or less-experienced riders.
Because it is a simple, straightforward, all-around-use streetbike, the Shadow RS falls under the heading, “What you see is what you get.” Returning for 2013 mechanically unchanged, this affordably priced, retro-style roadster competes head-to-head with popular American and European models, such as the Harley-Davidson Sportster and Triumph Bonneville. The RS is powered by a liquid-cooled V-Twin engine and benefits from Honda’s sophisticated Programmed Fuel Injection. The Shadow RS is available in any color you want this year so long as it is black.
Tame enough to be a good entry-level machine, the Shadow Spirit 750 C2 is also cool enough that no one will suspect you just got your first big bike. The cut-down-style seat, 21-inch front wheel and smoothly integrated taillight all work together to lend the bike a distinct street-rod look, especially in Ultra Blue Metallic Flame paint (Black is also available). Mechanically, the most significant recent change came last year with the addition of fuel injection, which uses a single 34mm-diameter throttle body for smooth engine response regardless of where the road takes you. Also available: The Shadow Spirit C2 ABS, the same bike with anti-lock brakes.
Honda is back in the adventure-bike business with the NC700X, a motorcycle that really is more on-road explorer than off-road trekker. It’s powered by an all-new, 670cc parallel-Twin engine and has more suspension travel than your average streetbike. Fuel is carried under the seat, and a watertight, locking storage compartment is located where the gas tank is normally found. A long list of accessories includes both hard and soft luggage, a taller windscreen, an FED foglight kit and a centerstand. Also available: The very same versatile bike but with Honda's automatic Dual Clutch Transmission and combined ABS.
The popular CBR600RR was revised for 2013, and the upgrades it received—stronger engine performance, MotoGP-inspired bodywork and an updated inverted 41mm fork—are sure to keep the bike at or near the top of the middleweight sportbike class. Available colors for the CBR-RR are white/blue/ red, red or Repsol Edition. Also available: The CBR600RR C-ABS, the very same sportbike but fitted with Honda's patented Combined ABS, which delivers the benefits of both the Combined Braking System (CBS) and anti-lock braking. This model is only available in red.
If you’re in the market for a fully faired Honda sportbike but your pockets aren’t deep enough to bankroll the four-cylinder CBR600RR or CBR10000RR, you might want to check out the CBR500R. This brand-new midsize parallel-Twin rides on a steel tube frame and is spec’d with a 41mm conventional fork, Honda Pro-Link single-shock rear suspension and front and rear disc brakes. Choose from three colors: black, red or Pearl White/blue/red. Also available: The CBR500R ABS, the same machine equipped with anti-lock brakes.
Honda introduced three entry-level motorcycles for 2013—the CBR500F, CB500X and this machine, the CB500F—and they all are powered by the same brand-new, liquid-cooled parallel-Twin engine. Notable for its slim profile and comfortable, neutral riding position, the F-model has a stylish bikini fairing and a racy-looking tailsection fitted with a well-padded passenger seat. The CB500F is available in two colors: black or Pearl White. Also available: The CB500 F ABS, the same machine equipped with anti-lock brakes. Available only in black.
“Adventure” styling is hot these days, and Honda has taken advantage of that popularity by adding a sharp, beak-nosed treatment to the new rider-friendly CB500X. Despite its wide handlebar and relatively long-travel suspension, this midsize Twin is better suited to soaking up potholes in an urban setting than bouncing along a trail through the desert or woods. Available accessories include heated hand-grips, saddlebags and a top case. The CB500X is currently offered in just one color: Matte Black Metallic. Also available: The CB500X ABS, the very same machine equipped with anti-lock brakes.
Looks great, performs well, priced right! When Honda introduced this entry-level sportbike two years ago, the company was taking direct aim at Kawasaki’s popular Ninja 250R. Although the CBR250R is styled like a sportbike, even to the point of mimicking Honda’s own V-Four VFR1200F sport-tourer, it’s an excellent all-around motorcycle, especially for riders who are either new or small of stature—or both. For 2013, the CBR250R is offered in four colors: Repsol, Pearl White/Red/Blue, Red or Black. Also available: The CBR250R ABS, the same great little machine fitted with anti-lock brakes.
New to the sport of motorcycling? Then you’re probably too young to recall that in 1985, Honda’s best-selling model was the Rebel 250. Well, guess what? Available in Black or Candy Red, the 2013 Rebel is the very same machine. While this air-cooled, entry-level mini-cruiser has more than doubled in price over the past three decades, it still represents a great new-bike value by today’s standards. Classic cruiser styling—pull-back handlebar, teardrop gas tank and lots of chrome—will turn heads around town, and if you’re pinching pennies, 80-mpg fuel economy will put a smile on your face.
Go anywhere? You bet. Do anything? Absolutely. Over the past two decades, this big, electric-start dual-sport bike has earned the reputation of being practically unstoppable. Even on the steepest hills, the air-cooled Single just chugs right along, cranking out loads of easily controlled torque. And on the road, the counterbalanced engine is reasonably smooth, while the adjustable, long-travel suspension and thickly padded saddle provide the kind of comfort that commuters look for in a motorcycle. Frame-mounted passenger footpegs allow two-up capability, so you can share your adventure with a friend.
Affordable. Fun to ride. Easy to maintain. Those are the basic tenets of the new-for-’ 13 CRF250L. This small-bore dual-purpose bike borrows its electric-start, liquid-cooled, single-cylinder engine from Honda’s popular entry-level sportbike, the CBR250R. That smooth-running engine is housed in a steel frame with more than 9 inches of suspension travel front and rear. Aluminum wire-spoke wheels in 21-inch front and 18-inch rear sizes allow fitment of real off-road tires. While the steel gas tank holds just 2 gallons of fuel, Honda claims the CRF250L returns up to 73 mpg. Now, that’s what we call affordable adventure!
Silver Wing ABS
The “Wing” name means something in the Honda lineup. Is it comfort? Acres of contoured plastic? Sure, that and the utmost luxury available on two wheels—a scooter, in this case. The Silver Wing’s big, fuel-injected, twin-cylinder engine cranks out 50 horsepower, more than enough to shoot this no-shift machine off the line and out in front of most four-wheeled vehicles and many a motorcycle. There’s room for two on the comfy stepped seat, and plenty of storage on board, as well. There’s even an aluminum spoiler at the rear! The Silver Wing even comes standard with anti-lock brakes.
Twist and go! Around-town errands and short-distance commutes on city streets or even freeways are a snap on Honda’s sporty PCX 150. Thanks to the wonders of fuel injection, this freshly styled, solid-performing scooter starts immediately cold or hot with a push of a handlebar-mounted button and is roomy enough for six-footers (plus a passenger). For 2013, cushier seat-padding material enhances the PCX’s comfort factor. Choose from either Metallic Black or Candy Red. Honda accessories include a rear trunk, a windscreen and a cover.
If the Metropolitan looks familiar, that’s because it is. After a three-year absence, this iconic scooter is back in the lineup, restyled and fitted with a new fuel-injected four-stroke engine. Highlights of the revised styling include a new headlight and dash display, a different handlebar and an updated taillight assembly. There’s enough space under the seat to stow a helmet, and a locking bin located in front of the rider’s knees can hold a 1-liter bottle. You can even secure a small bag of groceries with the convenience hook. The Metropolitan is available in three colors: Pearl White, Pearl Black or Pearl Black/Red.
In all of motorcycling, there is probably no better example of the old saying, “What you see is what you get” than the simple Ruckus. This fun scooter is made of metal tubes and wears its machinery on its sleeve—no superfluous, plastic, wedgeshaped bodywork here. The engine is a low-maintenance, electric-start, 50cc four-stroke Single, and there are no gears to select. This renders the Ruckus incredibly easy to ride, just as the very low seat height and light weight make it ultra-easy to handle on the road. For 2013, the Ruckus is available in black or a white/red combination.
If you’re looking for an excellent, all-around off-road motorcycle, the electric-start CRF450X is one of the best. Power from the titanium-intake-valve-equipped engine is broad and snappy. Built around a twin-spar aluminum frame, the CRF-X is fitted with a 47mm fork and a Pro-Link shock, both of which offer myriad adjustments that allow you to tailor the ride to the conditions. The 450X is also equipped with a compact, lightweight Honda Progressive Steering Damper (HPSD) that’s similar in appearance to the one used on the CRF450R motocrosser but tuned for off-road riding.
The CRF250X is one of the lightest-handling and most-agile off-road bikes you can buy, making it pure magic out on the trail. Like its 450cc bigger brother, the 250 has benefited from many improvements over the years, including works-type front and rear disc brakes, a narrower gas tank and an easier-turning front tire. The 250X returns unchanged for 2013, remaining the same lightweight, capable package with a twin-spar aluminum frame, a headand taillight, a Renthal bar and an off-road-oriented 18-inch rear wheel.
With the exception of the CRF250L, any CRFs bigger than the 230 in Honda’s 2013 lineup are production racebikes just about ready to hit the local motocross circuit and be fully able to win right out of the crate. Otherwise, CRFs are all about off-road playing. So, this mid-size fun bike gets a dead-reliable, electric-start, air-cooled engine, simple, conventional suspension and a lower seat height than those on the more competitionoriented models. The styling is racy-looking, though, so you will look the part when out busting berms at your favorite riding area.
Playbikes have always been popular, and so Honda, like most other manufacturers, wants every piece of that pie it can get its hands on. Plus, kids and adults come in all sizes and with all skill levels, so it makes sense to build smaller off-roaders in practically every reasonable displacement and seat-height increment. The CRF150F is a fun mount for both kids and adults, because it very well splits the size difference between big and little people. Electric starting greatly broadens the appeal, plus the 150 is also CARB-legal, making it public-trail-friendly out West.
Honda’s family of fun, low-maintenance, entry-level trailbikes has an exciting new addition: the CRF110F. Like the CRF70F that it replaces, the 110 has a low seat height, a manual transmission with an automatic clutch, plus push-button electric starting with kickstart backup. The new air-cooled, four-stroke powerplant is tuned to meet the needs of off-road newbies; a throttlelimiter screw lets mom and pop dial-in the power level based on riding experience and skill level. Styling is inspired by the new CRF450R motocrosser that younger riders may one day grow up to race.
Meet the classic minibike. Backyard supercross began with modified versions of these bulletproof four-strokes, while professional dirt-track racers have known for years the virtues of training on short ovals while riding what used to be known as the XR100. This is the same great bike it has always been, and it’s not just for backyard racers or pros who need to train. Also available: The CRF80F, a very similar bike with a bit less power, suspension travel and weight. The CRF50F with its small wheels and 3-speed automatic, is perfect for beginning kids.
Finishing on the podium in an outdoor motocross national isn’t easy, which is why Honda continues to make significant annual changes to the CRF450R. For 2013, an all-new aluminum frame, swingarm and subframe are joined by a KYB Pneumatic Spring Fork, which is lighter than a conventional cartridge fork because the metal springs have been replaced with air, saving space for a larger, more-sophisticated damper piston. Updates don’t stop there: The Unicam engine now has even higher compression, and fuel capacity has been increased by nearly two-tenths of a gallon.
You don’t have to be a Supercross Lites champion like Justin Barcia to appreciate the third-generation Unicam engine that powers the 2013 Honda CRF250R, but it doesn’t hurt. This year, revised fuel-injection settings have given the responsive powerplant even more bottom-end and midrange grunt, further broadening an already-wide torque curve. As for the chassis, while the twin-beam aluminum frame and swingarm are the same as before, new damping circuitry front and rear, plus stiffer fork springs, have improved suspension action for more precise handling.
For many years, all serious mini-motocross racebikes had been two-strokes. Honda has since led the little-Thumper revolution with the CRF150R, a full-spec, knob-shredding, four-stroke racer. As with the bigger CRF-Rs, the 150R has a four-valve Unicam head sitting atop an alloy cylinder. A 32mm Keihin FCR carburetor is standard, as is a slippertype piston and plenty of other big-bike features. Suspension is fully adjustable front and rear, too. Also available: The CRF150R Expert, the same bike but with 19/17-inch wheels rather than the standard models 16/14 combination.
Back in Husaberg’s lineup are the four-stroke enduros, redesigned for 2013. Gone is the former “upside-down” engine, replaced by a conventionally mounted 5 10cc counter-balanced unit with a sohc cylinder head. Die-cast engine cases are lightweight and durable. Fueling is provided by a Keihin engine management system and a 42mm throttle body. An electric starter is standard, and the WP suspension features a PDS shock and a 48mm closed-cartridge fork. Brembo brakes, DID rims and billet-aluminum hubs ensure excellent off-road performance. Also available: The FE350, which promises better handling than an Open-class bike, and the FE250, the same motorcycle but with a 249cc engine.
Riders looking for potent two-stroke power delivery in an ultra-lightweight package for off-road and woods riding surely need to take a look at the Husaberg TE300. The electricstart engine features a Keihin flat-slide carburetor, while a V-Force 4 reed block finishes ingestion of mixture. A chrome-moly steel doublecradle frame with an aluminum swingarm is complemented by a WP PDS shock and a 48mm closed-cartridge fork. Brembo brakes with wave discs are fitted at both ends. Also available: The TE250 is just like its TE300 sibling, but with less displacement.
Versatility is an important trait with today’s motorcyclists, but bikes must also be affordable. With its new 650 Terra, Husqvarna addresses both of these concerns. This dualsport model puts more emphasis on paved and dirt roads than the company’s enduro-biased TE 1' yet it comes with off-road-ready 21-in. front and 18-in. rear wheels that allow a wide selection of dirt-worthy rubber for those days when you want to explore. The 652cc Single, based on BMW’s G650GS engine, puts out a claimed 58 hp. A relatively low, 34.4-inch seat height welcomes riders of all sizes and skill levels.
Unlike the TR650 Terra, which is at home exploring dirt roads and light off-road terrain, the Strada (Italian for “street”) is designed for riders who have little intention of heading off-highway. Its styling is very supermotolike, with 19-in. front and 17-in. rear cast-aluminum wheels emphasizing the point. Power is provided by the 652cc Single borrowed from the G650GS built by Husqvarna’s former parent company, BMW. Other items confirming the Strada’s asphalt intentions are a low seat height and switchable ABS for the Brembo brakes. The Strada is easy to identify with its low-mount, street-oriented front fender.
Positioned as a practical enduro machine that can be ridden on road or off in all 50 U.S. states, the TE511 (which actually displaces Alice) provides fuel-injected, big-bore punch in a near-competition-ready package. A chromemoly steel frame utilizes CTS (Coaxial Traction System), which puts the countershaft sprocket and swingarm pivot on the same axis to effectively eliminate chain pull on the rear suspension. A 48mm, compressionand rebound-adjustable inverted fork and fully adjustable shock, both by Kayaba, provide almost 12 inches of travel at each end. Also available: The TE449, the very same bike but with 28cc less displacement.
A little bit of Formula 1 technology never hurts when you want to add more performance to an engine, and that is precisely what Husqvarna has done with its new cylinder-head design. The “Red Head” has larger-diameter valves, which are actuated by F1 -style finger followers for improved efficiency and more power. A 42mm Keihin throttle body is an upgrade over the unit on the previous TE310. The magic of this mid-size enduro is that the 303cc engine is stuffed into a 250-size chassis, which allows the bike to be very agile but with more power than a 250. Bonus: The TE310R is street-legal in all 50 states.
The TXC model lineup is based on the street-legal TEs but tuned to a higher level of performance, making these off-road-only racers virtually ready for competition. Husqvarna sells only two TXC models in the U.S., the largest of which is the 303cc 310R. Its dohc “Red Head” is infused with F1 technology such as finger-follower valve actuation and an ultra-lightweight piston. A 42mm Keihin throttle body delivers fuel mixture through enlarged valves, and a 48mm Kayaba fork, along with a shock of the same make, help keep the chassis in check. Also available: The TXC250R, basically the same bike but with a smaller engine.
It is hard to argue against a very light and powerful two-stroke for the type of tight-woods riding that makes up most of the National Enduro Series events. Case in point: the Husky WR300, whose 293 cc engine is fed by a 38mm Mikuni TMX carburetor and features an exhaust power valve for broad delivery. Suspension is handled by a 48mm Kayaba fork and a fully adjustable Sachs shock. A tapered aluminum Magura handlebar and aluminum Excel rims round out chassis highlights. Also available: The WR250, the very same bike but with a 5.6mm-smaller bore.
Think of this as a dirtbike with a big future. That’s because included with the purchase of a WR125 is a 144cc top-end rebuild kit, including the cylinder and piston. So, if you want to take advantage of rules that allow 125s to be bored out to 144cc by most racing organizations or just want to save the kit to freshen up the top-end down the road, the parts will be ready and waiting. This is the lightest enduro in Husky’s range, and there is nothing more responsive or better handling for tight trail riding. A 48mm Kayaba closed-cartridge fork and a fully adjustable Sachs shock handle suspension chores, while a Magura handlebar and Excel rims give the WR a high-quality look and feel.
Competition in the 450cc motocross category is fierce—actually, make that brutal. To win outdoor motocross and/or indoor Supercross races is a tall order in this cutthroat sport, but Husqvarna feels it can compete and continues to move forward with the TC449. The / bike’s 450cc engine is equipped with dual overhead cams, four titanium valves, a DLC-coated piston and a Keihin EFI system with a 46mm throttle body. A dual-map-ignition switch on the handlebar provides settings for hard or soft terrain. The Kayaba suspension is valved specifically for U.S.-style tracks and is fully adjustable front and rear.
Husqvarna’s association with former parent company BMW continues to pay off, because the TC250 still uses some technology from the German firm’s Formula 1 program. The ultra-lightweight engine’s cylinder head is fitted with four titanium valves actuated by dual overhead cams via DLC-coated finger-style followers. A lightweight, F1 -inspired piston and a 13.5:1 compression ratio help the engine produce exceptional power for its size. A battery-less Keihin EFI system includes a 42mm throttle body. An Akrapovic exhaust uses a power-boosting resonance chamber on the header to optimize output.
For kids moving up from minis to “big bikes,” there is no better next step than a 125. And in the case of the Husqvarna CR125, the bike can grow with the young racer, because a complete 144cc top-end rebuild kit— including the cylinder and piston—is included with the purchase of the motorcycle. Not only does this give young racers the chance for another intermediate step up with the same bike, it lets them take advantage of most racing organization rules that allow two-strokes as large as 144cc to compete against 250cc four-strokes. Chassis highlights include Brembo brakes and highquality 48mm Kayaba front and Sachs rear suspension.
A lightweight touring cruiser equipped with passenger backrest, saddlebags and windscreen is about as rare as a happy hen in a fox den. But Hyosung has just such an animal in its ST7 Deluxe, an affordable, classically styled bagger powered by a stroked version of its 647cc, liquidcooled, 90-degree V-Twin. A tank-mounted speedo, slash-cut exhaust and full, swoopy fenders give the ST7 a traditional appearance, while the muscular front end with a four-piston caliper biting a 300mm brake rotor make it look much like a power cruiser. Also available: the ST7, the same bike without the touring bits and pieces.
Here’s a muscle cruiser that doesn’t require a lot of muscle to manage, thanks to its low saddle, relatively light weight and plentiful steering leverage through its wide handlebar. The GV650 also leverages a dollar as well as any bargain bike out there by offering premium features such as an adjustable upside-down fork, digital instrumentation and bright LED taillight. Its maintenance-free belt final drive keeps the rear wheel looking clean, and the three-spoke cast front wheel carries dual disc brakes that provide the kind of stopping muscle that many bigger cruisers don’t even offer.
Looking for a reasonably priced, fully faired middleweight sportbike? The GT650R has never looked better, now getting a sleek new upper fairing and KYB front and rear suspension. Its 90-degree, 8-valve, fuel-injected V-Twin engine also benefits from a new Delphi ECU that’s featured throughout the Korean bike builder’s model line. True to its sporting intent, the GT650R has clip-on handlebars and a truly thoughtful touch in the form of adjustable footpegs. Also available: The standard GT650, an upright naked bike with the same chassis and suspension.
Budget-conscious buyers with an eye for sporting style and an appreciation for lightweight performance might do well to check out the GT250R. The GT is powered by an air/oil-cooled V-Twin engine that delivers a good balance of power and fuel efficiency. It also offers a host of appealing features including dual projector-beam headlights, adjustable footpegs, dual front disc brakes, clip-on handlebars, a combination digital/analog instrument cluster and an inverted fork. Also available: The GT250, a lighter and more affordably priced naked version of the R that offers a more upright riding position.
Riders who are about to jump into the wonderful world of motorcycling have plenty to sort out, since there is no shortage of stylish entry-level machines offered in today’s market. But for beginners who have a soft spot for the classic cruiser look, the GV250 could be the ideal place to start looking. The GV’s petite physical dimensions, low-slung saddle and light weight make it easy to manage while riding or simply wheeling it around the garage. The alloy wheels and two-tone paint are unique for a bike in this price range. Fat tires and full fenders help the GV250 look much bigger than it really is.
Looking for a convenient mode of urban transportation for those short hops around town? If so, you might be an ideal candidate for Hyosung’s ST-E3 EVA electric scooter. It’s powered by a brushless DC motor that produces 1.5 kW of power and has a range said to be around 62 miles (at a constant speed of 22 mph), with a claimed top speed just under 40 mph. The compact scoot has a 28.5-inch seat height that should accommodate a large variety of riders. Rolling gear consists of 12-inch wheels front and rear, with drum brakes at both ends. A wide range of colors is available, from plain white to hot pink.
Polaris Industries, owner of Indian, is taking good care of the brand. As we await a revamped bike with an all-new V-Twin engine to arrive for 2014, the Indian lineup remains the same for now, with the Chief Vintage still at the top. The Vintage’s fringed solo saddle looks like the sprung seats on hardtail baggers from long ago, and the fringed leather bags and wide whitewall tires also hark back to the post-WWII era. Also available: The Chief Vintage Final Edition, a limited-run model with a 1939 World’s Fair-inspired paint scheme, black saddlebags and a numbered frame plate.
Chief Dark Horse
The Dark Horse is an appropriately named model, since just about everything but its engine covers, rocker boxes, pushrod tubes, brake rotors and Indian headdress tank graphic is matte black. That sea of black gives this big, 105-inch V-Twin cruiser a strikingly different retro-style appearance reminiscent of WWII military bikes. Like all 2013 Indians, the Dark Horse is American-made, built in Polaris’ manufacturing plant in Spirit Lake, Iowa. Also available: The Chief Classic, a mechanically identical model but with a glossy paint finish and chrome in all of the usual places.
Full-dress tourers need to have it all, and Kawasaki’s Voyager certainly doesn’t leave much in the way of creature comforts back home in the garage. Classic cruiser styling, a 52-degree, liquid-cooled, single-overhead-cam, four-valve-per-cylinder V-Twin, frame-mounted fairing and windshield, couch-like seats for rider and passenger, and tons of storage are long-haul necessities. But details like cruise control, an iPod-compatible audio system and Advanced Coactive Braking Technology (K-ACT II) ABS are standard, too.
Vulcan 1700 Vaquero
Baggers like the Vaquero are the go-to bikes of the cruiser world. Nice styling and comfort combined with the practicality of saddlebags makes sense. It doesn’t matter if you want to use it as a commuter, a weekend warrior or a long-distance traveler, this big Vulcan can pull it off. Fifth and sixth gears in the 52-degree, liquid-cooled V-Twin’s transmission are overdrives for a relaxed ride and excellent fuel economy. Adding to the bike’s versatility are twin 10-gallon-capacity hard cases, a frame-mounted fairing and shorty windscreen. An iPod-compatible, XM-ready audio system can also be paired with select GPS units.
Vulcan 1700 Nomad
Want to travel but don’t want to spend big bucks on a full-dresser? The Nomad nicely fills the gap between Kawasaki’s top-of-the-line luxury liner and its classic cruisers. A handlebar-mounted windscreen, lockable, color-matched hard saddlebags, passenger floorboards, luxury backrest and cruise control give the Nomad substantial touring potential. The same torque-rich, technology-packed, 1700cc V-Twin engine found in the rest of the Vulcan 1700 range is used here, as well. Air shocks and an adjustable fork allow the rider to tailor the ride to the load. No wonder this bike is called the Nomad.
All we can say after spending significant time aboard the 14R is: Wow! This monster posted Cycle World's quickestever production-bike E.T. with a 9.47-sec./152.83-mph pass. Just 2.6 seconds tick by for 0 to 60, and 100 arrives in just under 5. Not a surprise, really, since the 14R is the most powerful production motorcycle we’ve ever tested, making 192 hp and 113.2 ft.-lb. of peak torque at the rear wheel. What is a surprise is how good the ZX-14R handles. Intimidated? Don’t be. Traction control and selectable power modes help keep everything in check. Also available: The same bike but with ABS.
Concours 14 ABS
Winning Cycle World's Best Sport-Touring Bike award for three straight years (2008-10) proves what a great motorcycle the Concours is. Despite finally facing strong competition from BMW’s K1600GT, the Kawasaki has only improved as the years have quickly ticked by. Its engine utilizes variable valve timing for broad power, and traction control tames the rear tire when grip is compromised. When you need to shed all that speed, the 14’s ABS gets it done quickly and safely. An electronically adjustable windscreen, heated grips and a keyless ignition fob are amenities that make the C14 as comfortable and convenient as it is fast.
Kawasaki was the first of the Japanese Big Four to embrace the electronic revolution. Taming the powerful inline-Four is a traction-control system that offers three levels of intervention, and the rider also can select from three power-output modes to suit the riding conditions. A slipper clutch keeps the rear wheel from hopping during downshifts at corner entry. The chassis uses a 43 mm Showa Big Piston Fork and a lay-down shock, while an Öhlins electronic steering damper communicates with the ECU for optimal damping. Also available: The ZX-1 OR ABS, the same machine but with anti-lock braking.
Looking for an Open-class sportbike without the racetrack riding position? That’s exactly what this new Ninja is all about. Take the torquey, liquid-cooled inline-Four from the Z1000 naked, wrap it in attractive bodywork, give it an upright seating position and end up with this result. The short-stroke engine offers awesome real-world performance smoothed out by a crankshaft-driven balance shaft. The aluminum frame sweeps over the engine, affording the bike a narrow width between the rider’s legs. Also available: The Ninja 1000 ABS, the same bike but with a lightweight and compact anti-lock braking system.
There is no question that this Cycle World Best-Standard-winning naked is fun, powerful and radical. From its acutely angled front cowl to its full-length fork covers to its wild-looking mufflers, the Z1000 will not be mistaken for anything else. Borrowing technology from its cousin, the ZX-1 OR, the Z uses an aluminum frame with beams that curve over the engine to keep the bike narrow between the rider’s knees. The 16-valve engine emphasizes midrange torque, and radial-mount brakes, a fully adjustable 41mm inverted fork and lightweight five-spoke wheels contribute to the Z’s capable handling.
Vulcan 900 Classic LT
In cruiser circles, a 903cc engine is now considered a middleweight, and there’s nothing wrong with that at all. For one thing, the Kawasaki 900 Classic LT weighs significantly less than its cousins in the 1700 line, ft’s powered by a liquid-cooled, rubber-mounted, fuel-injected V-Twin with belt final drive, ft’s ready to hit the road with its cowhide saddlebags, comfortable seats for two, a padded passenger backrest and an adjustable, optically correct copbike-style windshield. The low seat height combined with that relatively light curb weight makes it a great choice for a wide range of riders.
Vulcan 900 Custom
The proportions of the 900 Custom make the bike look longer and lower than it actually is. A stout rear end is fitted with a fat, 180mm tire, but that image is countered at the front with a skinny, 21-inch “pizza-cutter” wheel. This middleweight cruiser is quite affordable yet offers a V-Twin engine with electronic fuel injection, liquid cooling and rubber engine mounting for smooth and reliable performance. Twin-piston calipers at both ends clamp on 300mm front and 270mm rear brake rotors for sure stopping power. Also available: The Classic SE model, with wire-spoke wheels and a lower price of entry.
If you want a fun and good-performing motorcycle that can fulfill many different riding needs, the Versys is hard to ignore. Powered by the same parallel-Twin found in the Ninja 650 sportbike, the Versys has enough thrust for the stoplight-to-stoplight drags of the morning commute or apex-to-apex carving on weekend jaunts. Long-travel suspension includes an inverted 41mm fork, a gull-wing swingarm, a fully adjustable shock and lightweight, sportbike-inspired wheels, all of which help give the Versys nimble, easily controlled handling. An adjustable-height windscreen adds to the versatility of this asphalt ☺adventurer.
The Ninja 650 is a no-B.S. sportbike, but with moreupright seating than a repli-racer and more-comfortable ergonomics. It's sporty and modern, featuring a liquidcooled, fuel-injected parallel-Twin with plenty of usable low-rpm grunt and strong midrange performance, making it a great commuter, twisty-road carver or whatever you want it to be. A conventional 41mm fork and a preload-adjustable shock provide a sporting yet plush ride. Dual 300mm petal-shaped front brake discs and twin-piston calipers provide good stopping power for spirited riding. Also available: The ABS model costs an extra $500.
Kawasaki decided that the super-sized-600 formula is too good to leave on the shelf, so the engineers stroked the previous 6R's 599cc engine to increase displacement to 636cc. They then added the middleweight supersport category's most sophisticated electronics package with traction control and three ride modes. So, more torque and power are on tap throughout the rev range, allowing the ZX-6R to be one of the most street-friendly middleweights on the road. And top-shelf chassis components make the 636 the best 6R ever. Also available: The ZX-6R ABS, the same bike with anti-lock brakes.
Kawasaki's motto must read, "bigger is better," because the Green team definitely likes to upsize its sportbikes: The new Ninja 300 replaces the massively successful Ninja 250. Power is provided by a liquid-cooled, 296cc parallel-Twin that, like its 636cc big brother, had its displacement increased via a longer stroke. An F.C.C. clutch offers slipper functions while also reducing effort at the lever by 25 percent. A new frame, sporty suspension and powerful brakes add up to a chassis that can satisfy riders of all levels. Also available: The Ninja 300 ABS, the same bike with anti-lock brakes.
The term "jack-of-all-trades" can certainly be applied to the KLR650. For more than two decades, this do-anything, goanywhere dual-sport has provided a great platform for riders who want huge amounts of versatility. A bulletproof, 651cc Single provides enough user-friendly power to get you through almost any terrain. A 41mm fork with 7.9 inches of travel and a Uni-Trak rear suspension with 7.3 in. on a preloadand rebound-adjustable shock are plush on the road and can tackle all but the gnarliest off-road conditions. A large, protective fairing, a comfortable seat and a 6.1-gallon fuel tank mean you can take big bites out of the landscape without the need to stop.
This lightweight single-cylinder dual-sport offers a lot of versatility for riders seeking a great commuter that can double as a trailbike or fun canyon-carver on the weekends. An electric-start, 249cc engine meets California emissions requirements, which means it's street-legal in all 50 states. The steel perimeter frame is durable and rigid enough for off-road duty. A 43mm inverted cartridge fork provides 10 inches of travel, while a single shock has 9 inches of dampingand preload-adjustable travel. With its in 21-in. front and 18-in, rear wheel, the 250 can be fitted with more-aggressive knobby tires for riders who want to spend more time in the dirt.
Here's a mini that fills a lot of roles for the family that rides off-road. Its 140cc engine perfectly bridges the gap between the smaller KLX110 and larger playbikes, providing just the right kind of power that new riders and kids—as well as adults who like to act like kids— will enjoy. Electric starting means more time is spent riding than kicking. For newbies just getting the hang of shifting, the clutch has a clever two-stage engagement feature that helps learners feel more in control at low speeds. Also available: The bigger-wheeled 140L, the same bike but with a fully adjustable shock and a larger-diameter fork.
The KLX110 is supposed to be a kids' bike, so why can't adults stay off it? Here's why: It's fun! No matter the rider's age, this 111cc four-stroke Single delivers user-friendly power that just about anyone can find amusing. Recent updates include electric starting and a fourth gear in the transmission. A screw-type adjustable throttle limiter allows parents to control the amount of power that's available for youngsters while they're just learning to ride, then gradually back it off as skills improve. Also available: The KLX110L, an otherwise identical machine except for its taller seat and additional suspension travel.
The KX450F continues to win races and championships year after year, mostly because Kawasaki continues to refine and update the bike every year. The engine uses a sophisticated EFI system that provides the basis for the bike's Launch Control Mode and three pre-programmed ignition modes that can be selected with interchangeable couplers. The 48mm KYB Pneumatic Spring Fork (PSF) uses air pressure instead of the main fork springs for greater adjustability and reduced weight. A four-position-adjustable handlebar and footpegs that can be set in two different positions provide almost any rider with an ideal cockpit.
The KX250F already had some industry-first electronic features, but this time, it has benefitted from some trickle-down technology passed on from its big bro, the KX450F. The dual-injector EFI system now receives the plug-in ignition couplers that provide three different ride maps for standard, hard and soft terrain. Plus, custom maps can be created by utilizing the accessory KX FI Calibration Kit. The chassis received updates including a revised 48mm Showa Separate Function Fork (SFF) and a narrower frame that helps make the KX250F feel slimmer and easier to handle.
With the KX125 two-stroke no longer in Kawasaki's lineup, the traditional next step from the minis has gone with it, but the leap up to a 250cc four-stroke is too big for many younger riders hoping to make such a move. That's where the KX100 fits in. As a two-stroke with a 19-in, front wheel and a 16-in, rear, it's an ideal step up for adolescent racers who need to further refine their motocross techniques. Also available: The slightly smaller KX85, a full-on racetrack weapon with a 17-in, front wheel and a 14 in. back.
Although this is the smallest model in Kawasaki's five-bike KX motocross family, it is perfect as either a step up from the 50cc, automatic-transmission minis or as a mount for a first-time MX racer who already has a bit of riding experience under his or her belt. Its high-performance two-stroke engine is combined with a six-speed, manual-shift gearbox stuffed into a full-race chassis outfitted with long-travel suspension and disc brakes. As such, the KX65 is an ideal choice for young racers hoping to emulate their Supercross and motocross heroes.
KTM's brand-new adventure-touring bike, the 1190 Adventure, arrives in the U.S. later this year as a 2014 model. Replacing the current and final edition of the 990 Adventure (the Baja special edition) the 1190 promises to take the Austrian company into new territory. At its heart is a version of the 1199cc RC8 R engine, with output rated at over 150 horsepower. To tame all of that oomph in different conditions, a complex and complete electronics package is used. Made possible in part by the use of a ride-by-wire throttle, the 1190 features four riding modes, three levels of traction control and two ABS modes with a full-off setting. Another option: electronically adjustable WP suspension. Also available: the R model features 21-inch-front/18-in.-rear wheels and better off-road geometry.
Riders looking for something unique in a superbike might consider the RC8 R, a more potent version of the original RC8 that was powered by an 1148cc engine. Now the only available KTM superbike model, the R displaces 1195cc, has a higher, 13.5:1 compression ratio, stronger connecting rods, different pistons and adjustable camshaft sprockets, all contributing to a claimed 175 hp and 94 ft.-lb. of torque. At either end of the chrome-moly-steel frame hangs fully adjustable WP suspension, while four-piston, radial-mount Brembo Monoblocs handle braking up front.
990 Adventure Baja
While the rest of the world gets the brand-new 1190 Adventure in 2013, U.S. buyers will have to wait until later in the year. But as a placeholder, we get this final edition of the 990 Adventure outfitted with a host of accessories that make this bike ready to tackle off-road exploring right off the showroom floor. Standard features on the Baja include crash bars, GPS mount, radiator protector, auxiliary LED lights, Supersprox 42T rear sprocket, Dunlop 908RR knobby tires, rear luggage rack, tank bag and waterproof rear duffle bag. At $14,999, the bike is one of the best values in the adventure-touring market.
990 SM T
Combine one part supermoto and one part urban adventurer, and the result is the 990 SM T. This upright asphalt adventure bike is equipped for extended-range comfort and fitted with standard detachable soft lug gage. Long-travel suspension and an upright seating position make it suitable for a wide variety of riding needs. The fairing and flyscreen provide wind protection that adds to the time you can comfortably spend in the saddle, and there's power aplenty available : from the 999cc, 75-degree V-Twin. The SM T is a bike that will make you search for destinations rather than for the quickest way home.
The 690cc single-cylinder Duke returns to KTM's line up new and improved. Key to the bike is the updated counter-balanced LC4 engine, which features many improvements over the previous version. Ride-by-wire throttle control ensures good fueling and excellent fuel economy, while a slipper clutch tames the rear wheel during quick downshifts on spirited rides. A chrome moly steel frame and die-cast aluminum swingarm are mated to a 43mm inverted WP fork and shock of the same make. Lightweight die-cast aluminum wheels and Brembo brakes with ABS aid handling and provide good stopping power.
690 Enduro R
Big-bore, single-cylinder dual-sport bikes like this one can nicely fill the gap between those large, liter-plus adventure bikes and the smaller, 450-class street-legal enduros. At 690cc, the Enduro R's engine now has the displacement (formerly just 654cc) indicated in its name, with a claimed output of 67 hp and 49 ft-lb. of torque. Engine service intervals have been increased to 6200 miles. Three different mapping settings can be selected for different riding conditions. The 690 boasts new springing and damping rates front and rear, and seat height has been lowered by 0.75 in. to a tick below 36.
KTM's 500 EXC won a Ten Best award from Cycle World in its first year on the market. It has a lighter (by 5.5 pounds) counterbalanced engine than the 525 EXC it replaces that helps make the 500 a better-handling motor cycle. The sohc mill is a true brute pumping out serious power from its 510cc. A chrome-moly frame, aluminum swingarm, revised PDS shock, 48mm WP fork and Giant rims are key chassis updates. Refinements that will get the attention of dual-sporters and off-road riders alike are the translucent 2.5-gallon fuel tank, the improved electric starting system (with kickstart backup) and a more durable taillight/license-plate holder.
After proving that its 350cc MXer can hang with the big boys of motocross, KTM has expanded the formula and last year introduced the street-legal 350 EXC-F, an enduro version of this inbetweener. Though based on the same fuel-injected, twin-cam powerplant as in the MXer, the engine had its camshaft, valve springs, crankshaft, piston and counterbalancer revised to work in its new role, along with a different clutch. The chassis has a tubular steel frame with a cast aluminum swingarm working a single PDS shock. In essence, the 350 EXC-F promises performance close to that of a 450 but with the handling of a 250.
The 500 XC-W is the true off-road version of the 500 EXC. The engine in this competitionquality enduro has been improved with lighterweight internals and slightly revised tuning, and the engine cases are die-cast for improved strength and reduced weight. A more-powerful stator aids an improved electric-start system (with kickstart backup). A new frame and a one-piece aluminum swingarm highlight chassis updates. Also available: The 450 XC-W, an identical bike with the same updates and 61cc less displacement.
The 450 XC-F features the lighter die-cast aluminum powerplant of the 450 SX-F, which is a full 4.4 pounds lighter than before. Not only is it lighter but it's stronger, too. The cylinder head features a single overhead cam and four titanium valves that allow the engine to rev to 11,500 rpm. Fuel-injection and electric starting make it reliable and easy to start in any environment, hot or cold. The lightweight chrome-moly steel frame is mated to an aluminum swingarm and a linked WP shock. Up front is a 48mm upside-down WP fork. Also available: the 350 XC-F is a similarly equipped off-road racer but with a dohc 350cc engine.
KTM's quest to make an impact in the off-road world with its 350cc formula (just like it did in motocross) shouldn't be that difficult now that it has released a cross-country race version to compete against the 450s of the world. The winning SX platform was retuned for enduro com petition, and it was given a wide-ratio six-speed transmission that's ideal for cross-country riding. ) A clutch with a billet-steel basket is used for reliability. The frame is fitted with a one-piece cast aluminum swingarm, a PDS shock and a 48mm, upside-down WP fork.
There was little need for KTM to improve the potent engine of this enduro/cross-country racebike, but the company recently updated the chassis with its latest frame and suspension technology. Out back is a new one-piece cast-aluminum swingarm, while up front is a 48mm WP inverted fork with improved oil and dust seals. Plus, the valving on the fork and the shock also was updated for improved handling. Both the XC and wide-ratio-transmission-equipped W models now come with electric starting. Also available: The 250 XC and 250 XC-W, smaller-bore versions of the same respective motorcycles.
Want a dirtbike that is just as competent for serious offroad riding as it is on a motocross track? The 250 XC-F is born of the same DNA as KTM's 250 MXer but features a few details that make it ideal for enduro riding. The fuel-injected four-stroke engine has twin cams and four valves, helping the revvy mill be powerful and flexible. The chassis is fitted with a 48mm WP fork and a single shock that both feature reworked valving for improved damping. Full-wrap handguards protect levers from tip-overs and crashes. Dunlop Geomax MX5 1 tires are fitted on the 21-in, front and 18-in, rear wheels.
You don't always need a big motor to conquer offroad challenges, and the 200 XC-W is orange-andblack proof. This capable two-stroke cross-country! enduro bike is so perfectly tuned and balanced that it always seems to have what it takes to cope with even the most difficult trail obstacles. Its updated chassis features a new rising-rate, linkage-type rear-suspension system with a longer WP shock and cast-aluminum swingarm for better performance on rough terrain. An upside-down, 48mm WP closed-cartridge fork has Teflon coating on the bushings for greater bump sensitivity.
Teens looking for rocks and roots to conquer rather than berms and double-jumps will be happy to know there is an off-road-ready 144cc KTM. Whether it's desert, cross-country or enduro fun, or even serious competition in one of the many youth classes that accompany national off-road racing series, this bike is built to take the abuse. Like the rest of the XC two-stroke line, the 150 now sports a linkage-type, rising-rate rear suspension with a cast aluminum swingarm. Since this bike was designed for off-road riding, it comes with an 18-in, rear wheel and a 21-in, front.
KTM has made an amazing transformation in recent years by securing its first-ever AMA National Motocross championship in the premier class. Part of that success is due to a great team and Ryan Dungey, but much credit should go to KTM's totally new machine. At the bike's heart is a 449cc engine that now features a single cam actuating titanium valves via finger followers. Broad power is the claimed result. Gone is the carburetor, replaced by a Keihin EFI system with a 44mm throttle body. Top-of-the-line WP suspension including a linked rear shock enables the chassis to perform as well as the potent engine.
With multiple world championships to its credit, the 350 SX-F can no longer be considered a novelty; it's a proven formula. The concept is to provide a lighter, better-handling machine that can still hang with the big 450s of motocross. The engine now features die-cast cases and titanium valves. Despite monster power, civility comes in the form of electric starting and very refined fuel injection. A linked WP shock and closed-cartridge 48mm inverted fork provide excellent chassis control. Also available: the 250 SX-F, whose 249cc engine now has a shorter stroke and a new cylinder head.
Need proof that there is still a demand for two-stroke moto cross bikes? The fact that KTM reworked the chassis on its 250 SX just a year ago should confirm that two-strokes are alive and well. The 250 rides on a chrome-moly frame with a linkage-type, rising-rate suspension system that uses a WP shock and a one-piece cast-aluminum swingarm. The two-stroke Single is a wickedly powerful and exceptionally lightweight engine that helps keep the - bike's overall weight down to a scant 214 pounds. - The airbox provides no-tools access to the high performance Twin-Air filter, which is a convenient feature for between-moto maintenance.
Falling neatly between 125cc two-strokes and 250cc four-strokes is KTM's 150 SX, which features an AMA-legal 144cc engine. For the upcoming racer the 150 is a potent learning tool, with mechanical simplicity and ease of main tenance not commonly associated with modem four-strokes. WP suspension front and rear, Brembo brakes and a tapered aluminum Renthal handlebar provides the rider with the best means of controlling this ultra-lightweight racer. Also available: The 125 SX is the very same machine with a 125cc engine.
There's a reason KTM calls its minis Sportminicycles and not playbikes: These are very serious racetrack weapons, especially the 85 SX. Packing a potent twostroke engine and six-speed gearbox, this bike is all about teaching young racers the skills they need before moving up the competition ladder. A 43mm inverted fork gives the bike a front end that is very rigid and tracks accurately, and a Brembo four-piston caliper provides awesome stopping power up front. Also available: The 65 SX is a smaller version of essentially the same machine but with smaller wheels, a lower seat height and a less powerful 65cc engine.
With the youth motorcycle industry back on its feet, it is fitting that KTM has brought back the Junior Supercross Challenge (KJSC). The motorcycle that those kids participate on is the liquid-cooled 50 SX two-stroke. A centrifugally controlled, multi-plate automatic clutch allows simple operation. Long-travel suspension with an inverted 35mm WP fork, as well as front and rear disc brakes, keep the chassis in check. An optional restrictor kit allows parents to tame the engine until your little Dungey gets up to speed. Also available: The 50 SX Mini, the same bike but with smaller wheels, a lower seat and a milder state of tune.
No gas, no oil, no hot exhaust pipe, no kickstarter, very little maintenance and, maybe best of all, no noise. That's a pretty good description of the Cross, Kuberg's largest, most-powerful, all-electric motocross bike. Intended for younger riders who already have a little bit of two-wheel experience under their kidney belts, the Cross delivers instant torque for quick acceleration out of tight corners and up dirt hillsides. Also available: The Trial E, a trials bike for kids, and the Start, which is ideal for preschoolers eager to learn how to ride a motorcycle. All Kubergs are built in the Czech Republic.
Kymco is a Taiwanese company with a full line of scooters in all shapes and sizes. The flagship is the Xciting 500 Ri ABS, a full-sized touring scooter that packs as many comfort and convenience features as one is likely to find on a bike of this type. That's pretty exciting stuff for a rider who likes to travel while pinching the petrol costs along the way. The Xciting offers stable handling, fast acceleration and even an illuminated storage compartment under the seat, complete with a cell-phone charging port.
Headed downtown, uptown or parts in between? Kymco's Downtown 300i combines the acceleration and convenience of a maxi-scooter with the agility and light weight of a sportbike. The underseat storage area is lighted and large enough to hold two helmets. Up front, a watertight compartment features a 12-volt accessory outlet for charging your phone, iPod or other electric items. The 200i is a smaller-displacement version. Also available: The popular People GT 300i and GT 200i models, powered by the same respective engines as the Downtown models but with stability enhancing 16-inch wheels and different styling.
Following in the wheel tracks of its successful Like 50, Taiwanese scooter-manufacturer Kymco dreamed up the larger-displacement, two-up-capable Like 200i. And, really, what's not to, um, "like?" This moderately sized, stylish-looking, fuel-sipping fourstroke-available in Blue-Black, Ivory or Red-rolls on 12-inch wheels and is ideal for around-town commuting and errands. Got stuff? Then you'll truly appreciate the convenient storage solution offered by the standard color-matched top box. Also available: The Like 200i LX features a two-tone color scheme and chrome trim package.
As the newest addition to Kymco's broad model line, the Movie 150 looks as tasty as a bucket of buttered popcorn. Even when parked, the stylish 50 will catch your eyes with its great lines, but at heart it's a handy urban commuter for anybody needing economical transportation. The built-in rear luggage rack incorporates passenger grab handles, while underneath the large, well-padded seat is a locking storage compartment. This Movie may qualify as a "new release," but, as with every scooter in Kymco's line, it comes with a two-year, limited factory warranty that offers peace of mind.
Super 8 150
While the Super 8 150 has the sportiest styling in Kymco's lineup, its good handling and stability uphold the bike's race-inspired theme, thanks to its use of 14-inch wheels and comparatively sticky, low-profile tires. Designed first and foremost as a fun mode of inner-city transport, the 150 has all of the typical scooter convenience features, including an underseat storage compartment big enough to swallow a helmet. Also available: The Super 8 50 2T is sized and styled nearly identically to the Super 8 150 but is powered by a 49cc, two-stroke engine.
Bargain shoppers often begin their search for economical transportation with a 50cc scooter, which is fine, so long as they don't overlook one of the most affordable 125cc two-wheelers on the market. The Agility 125 backs up its sharp modern appearance with a fuel-efficient engine capable of delivering a level of performance you don't often see in its price range. And despite its amazingly low price, it even is equipped with a front disc brake and a fuel gauge! Also available: The Agility 50 retains the modern styling and features of the 125 but adds a unique passenger seat that flips up and becomes a rider's backrest.
With its classic European styling, the new Compagno 110 will make even diehard Vespa aficionados take a closer look at its fairing-encased, handlebar-mounted headlight. Fuel efficiency and quiet operation are highlights of its air-cooled fourstroke motor, while underseat storage and a glove compartment deliver the sort of versatility that make scooters so ideal for scootin' around town. The 50i is a two-stroke version. Also available: The twostroke Like 50 and Like 50 LX models have classic Euro-inspired styling, plus a well-padded seat for two and a large, color-matched top case.
Moto Guzzi's commitment to keeping pace with modern times is clearly evident in the Norge GT 8V. This longitudinal V-Twin sport-tourer is the most luxurious motorcycle the legendary Italian company has ever produced, arriving fully equipped with everything the long-distance traveler requires. Plus, you're not likely to get lost in the Norge experience while trying to find the best backroads where you can put the bike's highly capable chassis to good use. Why? Because an onboard TomTom GPS receiver is just one of several options.
Stelvio 1200 NTX
As the adventure-touring segment continues soaring to new heights in popularity, the Stelvio 1200 spreads its wings with 30-liter aluminum panniers and a selectable traction-control system as standard features. Its fairing and adjustable windshield provide superb protection from the elements, and its saddle height can be lowered a full inch for added confidence. Perhaps the biggest asset for long-distance travelers is the Stelvio's 8.5-gallon tank, an industry record for production-bike fuel capacity The 105-hp, eight-valve V-Twin engine and basic chassis have been lifted from the Griso.
Griso 8V SE
The Griso is Moto Guzzi's take on the popular naked sport-standard theme but livened up with a large dose of classic Italian flair. The SE's (Special Edition) matte-black/silver paint scheme melds nicely with the black frame, wheels, fork and saddle. The 108-hp, fuel-injected, eight valve version of Guzzi's trademark longitudinal 90-degree V-Twin produces bone-stirring torque throughout its rev range. Sporting suspension and powerful brakes allow the Griso rider to exploit the chassis' solid handling and excellent cornering clearance.
Paying homage to the racing career of Guzzi's V7 Sport, the V7 Racer captures the spirit of those glory days of four decades past. If its chromed tank with leather fastener strap along its centerline, suede solo saddle and various drilled, brushed aluminum brackets and sidecovers are not a strong enough visual cue, then the race number panels integrated into the tail and the headlight flyscreen should drive the message home even more clearly. Sporting suspension, Brembo calipers and sticky Pirelli Demon Sport tires ensure that the ride lives up to the classic racer looks.
As with the retro-styled V7 Racer, the Special shares a newly engineered and more powerful 744cc, 90-degree V-Twin motor that keeps this Italian throwback machine in step with modern standards of performance and reliability while maintaining the iconic look of the '60s' original. Attractive red or black paint with gold trim, dual shocks and wire-spoke aluminum wheels add to the visual cues. Also available: The V7 Stone is the affordable version of this chassis, painted matte black and fitted with split-spoke alloy wheels and riser bars.
One of the preeminent makers of exotic bikes, Italy's MV Agusta has taken its flagship F4 superbike to a new level of technical sophistication. The 195-horsepower inline-Four now features Motor & Vehicle Integrated Control System (MVICS), an advanced ride-by-wire electronics package. An electronically assisted shifter ) with an auto-blip function allows clutch-less down-) shifting. Also available: The uprated F4 RR version boasts 201 horsepower, an electronically adjustable Öhlins NIX fork and TTX 36 shock, Brembo M50 calipers and a lighter frame with an adjustable steering head and swingarm pivot position.
The Brutale naked bikes have always been long on style and loaded with performance while providing just enough practicality and comfort from their upright ergonomics to make them the "rational" choice in the Italian bike-maker's line. Over the years, the displacement has grown and refinements have resulted in a far less temperamental thoroughbred. The addition of eight-level traction control also aids rideability. Also available: The 1090 RR, much the same bike but with better suspension, nicer finishes and different wheels.
Triumph's 675 Street Triple naked bike is one of the most fun motorcycles on the market, so it bodes well that the new MV Agusta Brutale 800 is also a Triple, its engine based on that of its F3 supersport brother. It will be hard to find anything wrong with the 125-claimed-hp engine featuring ride-by-wire, multiple power maps and traction control. The chassis is taken from the F3, but the absence of bodywork drops claimed dry weight to a feathery 368 pounds. Also available: The Brutale 675, the same basic bike with a shortened stroke (reducing displacement to 675cc) and a non-adjustable fork
Meet MV's long-awaited entry into the middleweight supersport market. Styling is instantly recognizable as that of an MV and at its core is the 675cc three-cylinder engine producing a claimed 126 hp at 14,400 rpm. Mikuni throttle bodies are ride-by-wire taking full advantage of MVICS (Motor & Vehicle Integrated Control System ) with its multiple power maps, traction control and EAS (Electronically Assisted Shift). The chassis is modeled on those of the larger bikes but sized to suit. A fully adjustable Marzocchi fork and Sachs shock are complemented by Brembo calipers front and rear.
Brit-bike fans have been hoping to see reborn Nortons on American roads since new bikes were promised for the 2011 model year, but, so far, the latest resurrection by the storied marque's British owners has yet to yield production machines in the U.S. English road tests have been positive, so the anticipation for these neo-classic, canted-forward, air-cooled, counterbalanced parallel-Twins is very high. Fuel injection, sport-oriented tire sizes, Brembo brakes and fully adjustable Öhlins suspension ensure modern performance. Dual-seat versions are expected in summer. Also available: The Café Racer has clip-on bars and a flyscreen.
If it's a freeway-legal urban commuter you're looking for, the BV 350 meets that criterion with performance headroom to spare. The BY's liquid-cooled, four-stroke Single provides fuel-efficient, low-maintenance power for this new Piaggio scooter. The chassis features a beefy 35mm conventional fork and a 16-inch wheel up front matched with a 14-inch rear and a twin-shock rear suspension. A smoked windscreen adds a touch of style and protection from the elements, and the spacious storage compartment beneath the seat can swallow two half-helmets or a single full-face helmet.
This fuel-efficient, 124cc four-stroke Single is an excellent and affordable choice for riders new to two-wheel motorized transportation. The sleek and stylish Typhoon is light, agile and—perhaps of greatest importance to entry-level riders—has a 30-inch-tall step-through saddle that allows easy footing at stops. Whether negotiating inner-city traffic or getting across campus to your next class, the Typhoon provides a fun and easy-to-manage means of scooting to your next destination. Also available: The Typhoon 50, a nearly identical scooter powered by a 49cc four-stroke engine for even greater savings.
Although unchanged for 2013, the XP4R remains the biggest model in Polini's mini-MX line. It's a 107cc air-cooled four-stroke that is just as at home on a motocross track as it is playing on dirt trails. A reasonably serious racebike, the XP4R is available with either a 12/10-inch front/rear wheel combination or with 14/12-inchers for bigger and faster riders. A wide selection of hop-up equipment is available for the XP4R, including Marzocchi forks, öhlins shocks, four-valve cylinder heads and a whole lot more.
The XP65R is the most serious motocross model from the Italian Polini firm. It's a true competition machine for young riders. Its six-speed, liquid-cooled, reed-valve two-stroke motor is tuned for quick laps under a fast rider. The rugged frame, long-travel Marzocchi inverted fork and öhlins piggyback-reservoir shock work with the 14/12-inch wheel combination to handle the roughest tracks. How good is the 65R, you ask? Good enough to have earned podium finishes at races all across the country ever since its introduction four years ago. Like the XP4R, the XP65R is unchanged for 2013.
The X3R is the top 50cc motocrosser in Polini's lineup. Powered by a liquid-cooled, reed-valve-intake two-stroke, the X3R is AMA-approved for mini-MX racing. This little hot-rod has all the requisite equipment-12-inch front/l0-inch rear alloy wheels for competition in the more advanced mini classes, hydraulic disc brakes, a rugged double-cradle steel frame with a detachable rear subframe, a beefy aluminum swingarm and a reservoir shock. Also available: The X1R is very similar to the X3R, but it has 10-inch wheels, a wee bit less horsepower and a lower seat. Like the X3R, the X1R is unchanged for 2013.
Though the Classic Chrome harks back to the post-WWII era with a solo, sprung seat, period "toolbox" side covers and headlight nacelle, its unit-construction engine is intended to carry the brand into a new era. Despite its retro styling, the Chrome has electronic fuel injection, a catalyst-equipped exhaust, electric starting and a front disc brake. And all the bikes in the Royal Enfield line are legal in California. Also available: The Desert Storm and Battle Green are the same machines painted in military colors ("sand" and "olive drab," respectively); the Classic 500 is the base model available in three "civilian" colors.
Royal Enfield's recent steps to modernize its mechanical platform have meant big changes for the company's line of single-cylinder, classically styled motorcycles. While the Classic series represents a distinctly retro take on a machine that dates back to the 1930s, the Bullet Electra Deluxe offers a slightly more modern appearance with a dual seat and different side covers on the unit-construction Single. Also available: The Bullet Electra EFI and Bullet 500 are the very same bikes but each with a difference in their seats, graphics and several other styling touches. -
Although Sherco's trials bikes are built in Spain, the company's enduros come from France. And the SE300i now sold in the U.S. is quite a nice bike, a lightweight, beautifully finished four-stroke Single that relishes tight and technical forest trails. The 304cc engine, which mounts in a chrome-moly steel frame, boasts Magneti-Marelli fuel injection and a stainless-steel exhaust with an aluminum muffler. A Sachs fork is complemented by a WP shock, and large Brembo brakes are found front and rear. Moreover, a compact radiator helps the 300i have a very tight turning radius.
Sherco, famous for making trials bikes, is now making the X-Ride 290, a bike that defies categorization. In a sense, it is a trials bike, thanks to Sherco's 290cc two-stroke engine and light-weight, agile chassis that can take you just about anywhere. But on the other hand, it's a far more comfortable machine that can be ridden more like a traditional off-road bike, one that's fitted with a 40mm Marzocchi fork and a Sachs shock. The tank is plastic, and although the X-Ride 290 has a headlight and directional signals, it is not street-legal in the U.S.
Sherco's trials bikes have switched to a largely yellow appearance for 2013, and the lightweight machines are now available with two-stroke engines displacing 305, 272, 250 or 125cc. The powerplants, all carbureted, benefit from a more ergonomic kickstarter, and the right sidecase, along with the skidplate, has been strengthened to better protect the engine against big impacts. Additionally, Sherco says thermodynamic changes to the cylinder have resulted in better engine performance in all conditions. Aided by its light and narrow chrome-moly steel chassis, the Sherco ST2013 is ideal for club riders and world-class trials competitors alike.
When it's time to put the hammer down and ripple some pavement, the Boulevard M109R's massive torque output and fat, 240/40R-18 rear tire drive the point home. Despite its musclebound, brutish, sleeves-rolled-up appearance, this big V-Twin offers a level of refinement and modern GSX-R-derived technology that lends it a civil side for daily use. Also available: The Boulevard M109R Limited Edition has a unique paint scheme that includes a wide racing stripe, a digital tachometer~ a clear taillight lens with red LEDs and a textured seat.
Suzuki's new-for-2013 Boulevard C90T is a bagger based on the proven Boulevard M90 powertrain and chassis, offering rider comfort and convenience features geared for a relaxed, extended ride. Its full-coverage windscreen protects the rider from the elements while the stylish, water-resistant hard bags keep your cargo safe and dry. A 90-cubic-inch V-Twin churns out mountainous torque from low down in the rev range and runs extremely smooth at highway speed. Also available: The Boulevard C90T B.O.S.S., which stands for Blacked Out Special Suzuki. It's the same model given the dark treatment.
If the swooping form of the M109 family of muscle cruisers flexes your fancy but you value the handling traits of a narrower rear tire, the M90 is your ticket. Its 200-series rear radial ensures that no concessions have been made for fashion's sake, and the liquidcooled, long-stroke V-Twin delivers more than enough low-end torque to hold its rightful place on the boulevard. The M90 also features Suzuki's advanced digital fuel-injection and enginemanagement systems that are designed to improve throttle response while also getting the most out of every drop of fuel.
An icon of two-wheel performance, the Hayabusa melds distinctive aerodynamic styling and a wickedly powerful engine to produce mind-blowing acceleration on the road and the strip. The 'Busa has fully adjustable suspension, including an inverted fork with DLC (Diamond-Like Coating) on its inner tubes for supple action. The ultra-stable chassis commands a sporting posture, but the ergonomics are roomy enough and the ride smooth enough for the Hayabusa to serve as a sporting grand-touring mount. Also available: The Hayabusa Limited Edition, the same bike but in a yellow color treatment.
More than a million GSX-R sportbikes have been produced since the original GSX-R750 in 1985. The current GSX-R1000 presides at the head of the Gixxer family for all the right reasons such as torque on demand, standout stability and agility among its class peers, and an impressive war chest of AMA superbike titles no other model can touch. Also available: The GSX-R1000 1 Million Commemorative Edition features a number of cosmetic touches and wears a serial plate on the upper triple-clamp numbering its place among the 1000 units (of 1985 shipped worldwide) slated for the US.
The C50T is a touring-oriented cruiser with several features geared for extended riding on the open road. It combines modern engineering with traditional styling and tried-and-true equipment that includes textured leather saddlebags, a height-adjustable windshield, a broad, low saddle with a pivoting passenger backrest, and stylish whitewall tires. The riding position, handlebar bend and forward-mount foot controls help make this touring cruiser an enjoyable ride no - matter how far off the boulevard your travels may take you.
Aggressive muscle-cruiser styling doesn't also have to mean massive engine displacement. For proof, look no further than the 50-cubic-inch Boulevard M50, a lighter and more affordable middleweight alternative to the M109R. Just as with its big brother, there's a dose of sportbike influence at play on the M50, evident in its cast aluminum wheels, inverted cartridge fork, large-diameter front brake rotor and GSX-R-derived fuel-injection system. Shaft drive reduces maintenance requirements while helping to keep the rear wheel devoid of sticky chain lube.
What we have here is a no-nonsense, mid-displacement cruiser that combines modern engineering with traditional styling. The C50's liquid-cooled V-Twin engine is fed dead dinosaurs via a sophisticated, dual-throttle-valve electronic fuel-injection system, and its meaty torque is channeled to the wire-spoke rear wheel through low-maintenance shaft drive. A kicked-out (33 degrees of rake) front end looks cool and provides good stability. Also available: The Boulevard C50 Special Edition, which the very same cruiser but with an attractive two-tone paint job and cast alloy wheels.
Liter-class sportbikes are best known for their engine performance, while their middleweight counterparts are more about compact size and agile handling. The GSX R750 offers the best of both worlds with almost-telepathic handling and almost-liter-class acceleration. That's why some consider it the most all-around-competent sportbike in the business. S-DMS (Suzuki Drive Mode Selector) lets the rider choose from three power settings via a handlebar switch. An electronically controlled steering damper, lighter-than-ever wheels and up-to-date styling help to keep the 750 Gixxer at the head of the pack.
Beginners and budget-minded buyers alike will find a lot to like about this classic-looking Single. The S40 not only packs plenty of style and chrome for its $5699 asking price, its ultra-low saddle and thoughtful handlebar bend are aimed at increasing rider comfort, confidence and control for anyone who throws a leg over this versatile little cruiser. Another of the S40's attractive traits is the ease of maintenance offered by the air-cooled, sohc, single-cylinder, electric-start four-stroke engine and lube-free belt drive. Light and low, the S40 is a natural first step for beginning riders.
V-Strom 650 ABS Adventure
Adventure bikes usually are tall, gangly and heavy but not this one. The middleweight V-Strom offers exceptional versatility that's well suited to a daily commute, a trip to the wilds of Alaska and anything in between. Its torquey V-Twin engine, agile chassis and roomy ergonomics lend the 'Strom the sort of comfort you normally would get only with a liter-class machine. Plus, the Adventure comes standard with big, top-loading aluminum side cases, rugged engine guards and an adjustable windscreen. Also available: The V-Strom 650 ABS, the same machine without the bags, crash guards and adjustable windscreen.
If the silhouette of this new Metallic Thunder Gray/Glass Sparkle Black naked looks more than a little familiar, it should: The SFV650 is the very same machine previously known as the Gladius. It's now back in black after a four-year absence and lending this V-Twin a more menacing streetfighter image than the blue-and white original. What hasn't changed is the novice-friendly nature of this sporty naked, even though seasoned experts find it a hoot to ride, as well. Its low saddle height, nimble handling and smooth power delivery all add up to a fun, easy-to ride machine with a price to help keep you out of the red.
Essentially a 151cc-smaller clone of the GSX-R750, this middleweight Gixxer has superbike-bred performance and handling DNA in spades. The 600 shares its race-quality fully adjustable 41mm Showa Big Piston Fork with the 750 and also uses the same Brembo Monobloc front brake calipers and eye-catching bodywork, all providing a boost in performance with fresh new looks. The inline four-cylinder motor is narrow and lightweight, with a stacked transmission layout that shortens the engine front-to-rear, allowing a longer swingarm that benefits rear-wheel traction and overall handling.
In today's tough economic climate, an affordable, user-friendly standard model with high-quality features and traditional style is just the ticket for many people looking to get into motorcycling, and the TU250X meets those needs quite nicely. Its fuel-efficient, air-cooled four-stroke Single produces low-rpm torque ideally suited for city use. Up-to-date technologies include electronic fuel injection and an exhaust with catalytic converter and 02 feedback system for cleaner emissions. Its lightweight chassis, responsive steering and low seat make the TU a perfect platform for new riders just learning the ropes.
Entry-level buyers have more choices than ever, including the GW250, an affordable, lightweight Twin that looks and feels bigger than many other bikes in its class. The roomy, upright ergonomics are a positive for anyone wanting an easy-to-handle bike they will not quickly outgrow as their riding skills develop. The GW draws much of its modern styling from the Hayabusa-based Suzuki B-King that once graced the model line. One of the GW's slickest features is its instrument cluster, which has a large tachometer flanked by an LCD display that includes a digital speedometer, a fuel gauge and a gear-position indicator.
Adventure bikes have enjoyed a growth spurt in the past few years. But although larger-displacement Twins have garnered most of the attention, you shouldn't overlook the attributes of a lightweight, single-cylinder and low-priced bike like the DR650SE. The dual-sport DR can take on trails and fireroads yet provide surefooted stability at street speeds. Its spacious riding position, comfortable saddle and fuel-efficient counterbalanced engine effectively extend its range of use. And if you find this dual-sport to be a bit tall, the DR can be lowered 1.6 inches with dealer-supplied suspension modifications.
Here essentially is an enduro bike fitted with enough equipment to make it street-legal in all 50 states. Its high-quality suspension and lightweight, sharp-handling chassis are up to the task of tackling everything from tight, technical trails, fiat-out fireroads, bump-strewn backroads and pot-hole-pitted city streets, and it can even cruise the superslab with reasonable aplomb. Also available: The Supermoto-inspired DRZ400SM, the same bike but with shorter suspension, an inverted fork, a larger front brake, and sportbike wheels and tires.
Good advice for an any rider just starting out is to gain a bit of dirt-riding experience prior to hitting the street. The DR200SE is an ideal learning tool for that task, allowing a beginning rider to develop skills and make the transition from terra firma to tarmac aboard the same familiar, user-friendly machine. The 200's light weight, nimble handling and low seat height help a newcomer establish confidence in his or her riding. Even if the street remains a distant goal, the DR's rugged frame, long-travel suspension and off-road tires will keep a newbie entertained on rough terrain and tight trails for many rides to come.
Burgman 650 ABS
Burgman riders get the VIP treatment thanks to this scooter's continuously variable, electronically controlled transmission. The rider may choose from two automatic-shift modes (Normal and Power) or one button-actuated manual mode. An ultra-plush, sofa-like seat contributes to the 650's comfy ride and opens to reveal a cavernous storage area big enough to accept two full-face helmets. Also available: The more fuel-efficient Burgman 400 ABS, which has a 400cc Single, a stepped dual seat with an adjustable rider backrest, spacious under-seat storage and a trio of convenient gloveboxes.
The basic lightweight trailbike is a staple around campgrounds, paddocks and just about any offroad park were you'll find riders just starting out. The compact, kick-start, four-stroke DR-Z 125 is a prime example of this with its light clutch and five-speed gearbox easing the challenge for beginners learning to shift. The bonus is that even experts will find the smallest DR'S playful character too much fun to resist. Also available: The DR-Z125L,fitted with 19/16-inch wheels and a disc front brake rather than the standard model's 17/14-inchers and drum front brake.
The RM-Z450 is a proven winner with AMA Supercross and Outdoor Motocross championships to its credit. A battery-less electronic fuel-injection system, a twin-spar alloy frame, race-quality Showa suspension (now featuring the new SFF fork) and top-notch brakes are just a few of the key ingredients that work together to make this ripping yellow motocross racebike a prime choice for pro and amateur riders alike. As with the RM-Z250, riders can now track engine-operating time to help manage maintenance intervals using the optional FI indicator.
Although the days of manufacturers producing all-new MX bikes every year are a distant memory, the 2013 RM-Z250 includes a host of engine and chassis updates to help national Lites-class and regional amateur motocross racers stay in contention. Topping the list is an all-new Showa Separate Function Fork (SFF) that separates spring and damping functions. The spring is in the right leg and the cartridge damper in the left, resulting in reduced weight and smoother performance. The fuelinjected four-stroke delivers competitive power and provides a quick and easy means of switching between a trio of fuel-map options.
TM may not sell many supermoto motorcycles in the U.S., but the Italian company has had great success in the sport, as evidenced by its recent Manufacturer's title in the FIM 2012 Supermoto World Championship. The 530SMX's dry sump, liquid-cooled Single breathes through a 41mm Keihin carburetor, and a slipper clutch is but one of several options available on this seriously sporty machine that wears sticky race slicks. Also available: The 450SMX and 250SMX smaller-displacement versions of basically the same bike. -
TM produces some very exotic off-road motorcycles that are hand-built one at a time. The 450EN is a fuel-injected, four-stroke, electric-start, enduro that now rides on a KYB fork instead of last year's Marzocchi. What's more, a new wiring harness is said to improve reliability, while fresh ECU settings are claimed to increase power. Power is via a dohc, four-valve, 449cc Single equipped with a spark arrestor. Also available: The 250EN is identical to the 450, but with a smaller engine that benefits from a new piston and rod, plus an enhanced oil pump, stronger clutch discs and a six-speed gearbox.
The 450MX 4t is a light and fast four-stroke racebike designed for motocrossand Supercross-class competition. It's hand-assembled in Italy and ouffitted with highquality equipment that includes a KYB inverted fork, a TM Racing shock and Brembo brakes complementing TM'S own home-built 449cc, four-valve powerplant that boasts modified ECU tuning for increased power and a new wiring loom for better reliability. Also available: The MX250, whose 4 engine has a new piston and rod, plus fresh ECU mapping, a new wiring harness and an improved oil pump.
Despite the growing popularity of four-stroke dirtbikes, two-stroke enduros are still in demand, and TM'S 300EN 2t is a fantastic one. It combines practically unstoppable torque and sheer power with top-grade suspension and superb handling for an unforgettable off-road experience. As is the case with all TM models, the 300EN 2t is hand-assembled. Also available: The 250EN 2t and new 144EN 2t are identical in virtually every respect to the 300 except for displacement. The 144 all-new engine benefits from an electronic power valve.
Motocross riders have fully embraced the four-stroke revolution, but that hasn't left two-stroke MX bikes on the wayside. Atop TM'S two-stroke motocross line is the 300MX 2t, which has a user-friendly powerband with enough oomph to pull through deep sand and sticky mud, and easily launch you over the tallest, longest jumps. An aluminum frame fitted with a TM Racing shock and a 48mm KYB fork will handle the roughest terrain, whether man-made or natural. Also available: The 250MX and the new 144MX, which runs a lot stronger than last year's 125, thanks to its extra displacement and electronic power valve.
TM re-introduces the MX85 this year, but it's now based on an all-new aluminum frame supported by a Formula 39 fork and an Extreme-tech shock. The liquid-cooled two-stroke engine is also new, fed by a 28mm Mikuni carburetor and breathing through an electronic power valve. Yes, this little Italian motocross bike is big fun, and its 14-inch rear wheel is complemented by a 17-inch front that's slowed by a Brembo disc brake. Also available: the MX100, basically the same small roost machine but fitted with a 100cc engine and a 19-in/16-in. wheel combination.
It's got the world's biggest production motorcycle engine, so why shouldn't it make 163 ft. -lb. of torque at a mere 2750 rpm and 146 hp just 3000 rpm later? No other production bike comes close! All that power flows smoothly from the 2294cc longitudinal Triple to the Roadster's 240-section rear tire through a five-speed trans and shaft final drive. This flagship beast also sports a 43mm inverted fork, standard Nissin ABS brakes and comprehensive instrumentation. Also available: The Rocket III Touring, with a re-tuned, 105-hp/]50-fl.-lb. engine, different fork and the addition of saddlebags and a windscreen to make it more suitable for long-distance travel.
The Storm is the "black" sheep of the Thunderbird family, since it is available in your choice of Jet, Matte or Matte Graphite, with blacked-out engine cases and trim to match. At 1699cc, it's 102cc bigger than the regular T-Bird, 12 horses stronger and 7 ft.-lb. torquier. With a fiat, drag-style handlebar and a low, 27.5-inch seat, the Storm thunders along on custom Metzeler Marathon tires, fivespoke wheels, a 47mm fork and five-way preload-adjustable shocks. Along with the bike, Triumph offers more than 80 factory accessories for the big T-bird.
Lovers of big Twins looking for something different in a cruiser-including one we voted Best Cruiser in our 2009 and 2010 Ten Best balloting—might find exactly what they're after with the Thunderbird power cruiser. The 1597cc parallel-Twin churns out a claimed 85 hp and 108 ft-lb. of torque, and that big engine is counterbalanced for smooth running and fuel-injected for precise fueling. Thanks to its 5.8-gallon fuel capacity, you can cruise for a good long time, too. Triple disc brakes with standard ABS ensure that you can bring this big musclebike to a halt.
Packing a powerful, ride-by-wire, 12 15cc Triple in a tough steel frame, and passing that power to the rear wheel via a single-sided swingarm and shaft drive, the Tiger Explorer is taking the large-displacement adventure-bike fight straight to BMW Cruise control, traction control and switch-offable ABS are all standard equipment. The package bristles with high-tech touches that include a comprehensive onboard computer and a high-output alternator to power all sorts of accessories. Also available: The Explorer XC, which comes with wire-spoke wheels, handguards, crash bars, foglights and special Khaki Green paint.
Triumph's new luxury sport-tourer hangs a roaring, 1215cc inline-Triple from an alloy frame and is equipped with all the things it needs to compete with the class-leading BMW R1200RT—then adds a few more. An electric-adjust windshield, cruise control, optional heated seat and grips, state-of-the-art sound system, hard bags—it's all here. With 6.9-gallon fuel capacity, it's not a small motorcycle, but well-sorted electronically adjustable suspension and a claimed 89 ft.-lb. of torque at 6450 rpm help the Trophy ride like something far smaller and sportier.
Simple recipes are best: 133 horses worth of fuel-in jected Triple stuffed in an aluminum-tube frame with nothing to hide, upright ergonomics, wide-handlebar leverage and banquet seating for you and a guest. The Speed Triple carries on in the finest bad-boy street-fighter tradition it instigated back in 1994. For 2013, standard ABS on its powerful triple-disc brakes adds a bit more safety. Also available: The Speed Triple R takes fun to the next level with custom öhlins suspension front and rear; Brembo Monobloc front brake calipers, lightweight PVM wheels and a few other style upgrades.
The Thruxton is a faithful replica of the home-built roadracers that stormed across the English countryside from one pub to the next during the Sixties. A low handlebar with bar-end mirrors, preload-adjustable front and rear suspension, cut-down fenders, wire-spoked aluminum rims and a floating front disc brake separate this EFI-equipped parallel-Twin from the other similarly powered models that Triumph produces. Best of all, the Thruxton runs and rides as fine as it looks, its classic mill producing a claimed 68 easy-to-use horsepower.
If this bike doesn't conjure up images of exploring roads long forgotten by the rest of society or of sneaking out on a starry night just to feel the wind in your face, maybe you should crawl back into bed, close your eyes and dream of the hereafter. Based on the Bonneville, as its EFI-fed parallel-Twin and basic shape suggest, the Scrambler is equipped with a 270-degree crank that produces an almost-V-Twin-like rumble through dual high-mount exhausts. Semi-knobby tires further hark back to Triumph's storied desert-racing heritage. The result is a fun streetbike that doesn't mind wandering up a dirt road, too.
The T100 plays the authentic British Twin roadster to the bone, with real 1960s' details like peashooter silencers, classic two-tone color options with a big chromed Triumph badge and wire-spoked steel wheels. Not to mention rubber fork gaiters, knee pads and a classically styled, handlebar-mounted speedo and rev counter, as well as white piping on that throwback seat. Like all the other Twins in Triumph's Bonneville lineup, engine capacity is 865cc, and the T100 gets the 360-degree crank for that classic burly exhaust note. Two-tone paint adds $500 to the MSRP.
The Speedmaster is a drag-style take on the classic Triumph chopper of the '60s, distinguishing itself with a 19-in, raked-out front wheel, blacked-out engine cases and a rumbly, 270-degree-crank-equipped version of Triumph's excellent Twin that's rated at 60 hp at 6800 rpm. Stripped down and ready for action, the Speedmaster has a way low seat height—just 27.1 inches—that makes it accessible to riders of all sizes. And unlike many cruisers, the Speedmaster has a fuel tank that holds a generous 5.1 gallons, meaning you can actually cruise somewhere. Choose Matte Black or Sapphire Blue/Jet Black.
This classically styled cruiser gets a 16-/15-inch cast-wheel/fattire combo for that long, low look, and its 27.1-in. seat height means you don't have to be NBA material to ride it. A pullback handlebar and footpegs not too far forward further the "Easy Rider" theme, along with a raked-out shrouded fork and straight dual exhausts. Belowdecks, an air/ oil-cooled, blacked-out (with chromed covers and polished cooling fins), fuel-injected parallel-Twin—270-degree crank version—gives this bike the guttural rumble it deserves. Feel free to customize it with a slew of Triumph windscreens, saddlebags, etc.
Which came first, the chicken or the Bonneville? That's a joke. Though it looks like it's been around since the '50s, this incarnation is barely a decade old. Up-to-date technology cleverly concealed gives this "classic" the best of both worlds. Though its air/oil-cooled engine starts and runs instantly thanks to fuel injection, the throttle bodies look just like carburetors. Modern, 17-inch tires inhabit those vintage-looking cast wheels, and the fastback-style seat serves up a comfortable, sporting ride thanks to current KYB suspension. Dual megaphone mufflers, classic chromed-trimmed gauges and a big chromed headlight complete the picture.
Like all good manufacturers, Triumph recognizes that while adventure riders sometimes want a street-oriented ride, sometimes they want the full Monty, so to speak. Call in the Tiger 800XC. Based on the Tiger 800, the XC features more dirt-oriented tire sizes (21-in. front, 17 rear) with longer-travel suspension (8.7 in. front, 8.5 rear, compared with 7.1/6.7). The XC'S three-cylinder engine is identical to the Tiger 800's, including electronic fuel injection and a high-capacity, 500-watt generator. ABS is standard equipment, but you can switch it off for goat-track forays.
Practicality has many faces, and the Tiger 800 shows at least two. First, the very nature of an adventure bike is as a do-anything, wide-focus machine; the Tiger 800 complies, with a fully upright riding position, an adjustable-height seat (and an optional lower saddle), standard windshield and practical racks out back. Second, the 800 tosses aside the idea that adventure comes in liter-sized doses only; the liquid-cooled Triple provides ample horsepower (94 at 9300 rpm) without the heft of Triumph's bigger adventure bikes. Also available: The same bike with switch-offable ABS.
The Daytona 675 has an all-new, higher-revving engine in a redesigned frame, along with a raft of other improvements. Triumph says power is up by just 2 horses, to 126, and peaks earlier, at 12,600 rpm, but a wider bore and a shorter stroke allow the Triple to howl on to 14,400 rpm. Titanium valves (a first for Triumph) shaped for optimum flow aid fueling accuracy and efficiency. A low-mount exhaust system replaces the old undertail cans, centralizing mass. Also available: The sportier Daytona 675R, which is equipped with an öhlins TTX shock, a NIX30 inverted fork and Brembo Monobloc brake calipers.
Street Triple R
The redesigned-for-' 13 Street Triple is already an awesome bike, and the R version is slightly awesomer, with a three-way-adjustable 41mm inverted fork and a shock that's adjustable for preload and rebound damping. Instead of the base bike's two-piston front calipers, the R's 310mm rotors are clamped by more-powerful four-piston Nissin radial calipers. Slightly quicker steering geometry—23.4 degrees of rake and 95mm of trail—provides the R with quicker handling characteristics. A red subframe, red pinstriped rims and a big "R" on the radiator shroud tell the world this bike is special.
Big changes to one of our favorite middleweight projectiles for 2013: an all-new aluminum frame, 13 pounds less weight, standard ABS and a 105-hp 675cc Triple exhaling through a new low-mount exhaust are just a few of the more-significant differences. Rake has been steepened a smidgen, from 24.3 to 24.1 degrees, while trail is 0.5mm longer at 99.6mm. A two-piece, high-pressure, die-cast rear subframe bolts onto the main frame, and a lighter rear wheel and brake work with the new exhaust to shift more weight onto the bike's front wheel for even sportier handling.
These Russian reproductions of a WWII BMW sidecar rig all were improved several years ago with modern lighting, ignition, electronics and switches, along with Keihin carburetors and Brembo front disc brakes. The big news this year is the new Yamal, a limited-edition model that, like the Forest Fog, has on-demand two-wheel drive and leading-link front suspension. The Yamal, though, also boasts a rider fairing, a passenger windshield and its own oar. Yes, an oar. Also available: The Patrol, Patrol T and Tourist, and the one-wheel-drive T, a no-frills sidecar rig that costs only $10,499.
This sidecar rig pays homage to the M72, a copy of a BMW R71 that Ural first built in 1942. It was used by Russian troops in the Battle of Stalingrad and was considered a rugged, all-terrain vehicle capable of carrying heavy loads. The two-wheel-drive M70 has a telescopic fork and an M72-replica tonneau cover plus it comes with a spare tire and a shovel, and it even has a machine-gun mount. These bikes are unchanged for 2013. Also available: The Retro is the same basic machine but with gloss black paint instead of olive drab and a bit less military-style hardware.
Ural's sidecar rigs are driven by a motorcycle, so it makes sense that the company would also offer a single-track model. The Solo sT, unchanged for 2013, is essentially the same bike as attached to Ural's Retro and M70 sidecar models, both of which have a Marzocchi telescopic fork instead of the leading-link front suspension on the Yamal and Gear Up models. But the sT gets all of the same engine and electronic upgrades - as the sidecar line, along with Brembo disc brakes and Sachs shocks fitted with progressive springs. The standard model is fiat black with a solo seat. Numerous upgrades are available.
For dyed-in-the-wool scooter aficionados, the GTV 300 is the benchmark of classically styled scooters. The modern, GTS-based chassis and fuel-injected four-stroke engine deliver the performance and reliability today's riders absolutely demand, while its Portofino Green or Siena Ivory paint schemes hark back to the early Vespas. Completing the retro look and timeless functionality are a hand-stitched, two-piece leather saddle, chromed handlebars, front and rear racks, and a low, fender-mounted headlamp like that of the original 1946 Vespas. Who says you can't go home again?
Although the GTS 300's outward appearance projects an unmistakable retro style, beneath that classic skin resides a thoroughly modern powertrain based upon a liquid-cooled, fuel-injected four-stroke engine that is quite capable of propelling this scooter to more than 80 mph. Also available: The GTS 300 Super (photo), which has a few added styling touches such as black alloy wheels, a red front-suspension spring and a black sport saddle that opens to reveal a spacious storage bin. The priciest GTS 300, the Super Sport SE, is finished in matte-black paint, has white piping around the seat and "Super" graphics on the rear cowling.
LX 150 i.e.
Vespa's LX (the Roman numeral for 60) models date back to 2006, the year the Italian scooter builder celebrated its 60th year in business. Seven years later, the festivities continue to roll as the wasp-shaped two-wheelers still provide an economical mode of transportation that is rich in both heritage and style. The LX models—like all the Vespas—have fuel injection and the LX 150 will nudge 60 mph and should deliver 72 mpg when ridden with a frugal throttle hand. Also available:A vintage-look LXV version of the 150 can be had for $900 more; the LX 50 is fundamentally the same scooter but powered by a 49cc engine and $1200 less expensive.
S 150 i.e.
Yell "Vespa" near an Italian schoolyard, and kids will likely scatter in fear of getting stung. Vespa means "Wasp" in Italian, and the distinctive shape these scooters share is all that's needed to understand the origin of their name. On the flip side, park a modern Vespa in front of a coffee house, and a few caffeinated cats are certain to swarm, drawn in by the Vespa's legendary status and nostalgic appeal. The funky rectangular mirrors and headlamps are a reflection of the more recent past. Also available: The S 150 Sport SE, S 50 Sport SV, S 50 4V and LX 50 4V are all basically the same scoot but the last three have a 49cc four-stroke engine.
Victory's top-line touring bike, the Cross Country Tour, has the most storage capacity (41.1 gallons) of any motorcycle, along with all the other equipment you need to transport two people and their gear over vast distances in comfort-a powerful 106-inch V-Twin, a batwing fairing, cruise control and an iPod-ready sound system. Also available: The individually numbered and signed Gory Ness (son of famed custom builder Arlen) version ups the ante with beautiful Gold Digger Pearl paint incorporating Ness graphics, a custom heated suede seat, custom ventilation, diamond-cut cooling fins and more.
Victory's futuristic over-the-road touring rig features 29.2 gallons of storage capacity, cruise control, four-speaker sound system, electric windscreen, dual-zone heated seat and grips, and ABS. Power for this semi-classic-looking American touring bike is provided by a 106-inch, 8-valve V-Twin. Also available: The Arlen Ness version bristles with custom Ness touches from stem to stern, including a Havasu Red flame paintjob, Ness hot-rod billet wheels, diamond-cut cooling fins on that big Freedom V-Twin, a stitched leather seat and an Arlen Ness windshield graphic.
Zach Ness Cross Country
There's nothing wrong with the standard Cross Country that a little customization by Zach Ness (grandson of Arlen, son of Cory) can't fix. Actually, there's nothing wrong with it at all, including its cruise control and powerful audio system. But adding Suede Titanium Metallic paint and special graphics, a blacked-out engine and exhaust, black wheels, a custom-bent black handlebar and custom Zach highway bars makes this one special. Each limited-edition bike will have a special signed badge to authenticate its provenance to posterity.
Victory's take on the classic American bagger wears a frame-mounted batwing fairing and saddlebags—good for 21 gallons of gear—and the optional Lock and Ride trunk is there for you if you need more. The trunk locks into place in seconds and comes with a backrest and a pair of speakers. There's an MP3-compatible stereo system in the CC's fairing, and the bike also rolls out with cruise control and ABS. A 97-hp Freedom V-Twin working through a six-speed overdrive gearbox keeps things relaxed, while air-adjustable rear suspension with 4.7 inches of wheel travel cushions the blows.
The Hard-Ball is built on Victory's excellent castaluminum Vision touring platform. And though it may look hardcore, the bike sits atop 4.7 inches of comfortable, air-adjustable suspension out back and 5.1 inches in front, and it rolls on 40-spoke laced wheels, an 18-incher up front and a 16-in. hoop at the rear. With a dual seat, 21 gallons of lockable storage in those hard bags, 5.8 gallons of fuel capacity and handlebars that you can leave all the way up or rotate partway down, the Hard-Ball tempts you to look cool while visiting exotic locales close or far.
Victory's upscale cruiser bids the pot way up, with Orange Madness paint for 2013 covering everything including the double-downtube steel frame. Custom billet wheels mounting a 250mm-wide 18-inch tire out back and a skinny 21-incher up front on a raked-out fork give it that cocky cruiser swagger, while a 25.7-inch-high seat makes everybody look like a big player. Victory rates the 106-inch Freedom V-Twin at 110 ft.-lb. of torque. And tough though the Jackpot may look, there's 3 inches of rear-wheel travel tucked under that low seat.
Cross Roads Classic
Victory's classic bagger looks like it'll take you on a ride back in time, with Burgundy/Khaki paint on the big tank and steel fenders, 17.4 gallons of leather saddlebag storage, chromed 60-spoke laced wheels and a plethora of chrome trim. But the Classic's inverted fork, ABS-equipped triple-disc brakes and plenty of room for two are also part of the package, along with a completely modern, fuel-injected, 8-valve engine hooked to an overdrive six-speed transmission with helical-cut gears and low-maintenance belt final drive.
Here's a bike that offers a modem interpretation of the classic cruiser lifestyle. The wide-whitewall tires, swept-back beach handlebar and relaxed, laid-back riding position hark back to the post-WWII glory days while the wraparound fenders, 60-spoke chromed laced wheels, bullet-shaped headlight and acres of chrome say "custom" loud and clear. And driving it all down the road—and keeping it there—is a collection of modern technology that includes a torquey, fuel-injected, 106-inch V-Twin engine and a well-damped suspension system.
The Hammer 8-Ball gets right down to business. It's turned out in basic gloss black and packing 106 cubic inches of V-Twin that exhales through a blacked-out, 2-into-2 exhaust system and "Hammers" out 97 horses and 110 ft-lb. of torque. The double-downtube, single-shock steel frame gets an inverted fork up front and a fat, 250-section radial tire out back. Meanwhile, a single disc brake per wheel keeps the price down, while a super-low seat keeps your rear end down to a mere 26 inches from the pavement.
Muscle cars were an American phenomenon of the 1960s and '70s, and one of the most famous was the Pontiac GTO. The Judge (non coincidentally, also the name of a special 1969 GTO model) captures the spirit of those four-wheelers with its muscle-car-inspired styling, the most noticeable being the cast 16-inch wheels and fat, raised-white-letter tires. Even the available orange paint (in addition to either red or black) is close to that of the original Judge. And muscle? The 106-in, engine thunders -out 113 ft.-lb. of V-Twin torque that easily answers that question. Muscle cars were an American phenomenon of the 1960s
Raise your hands if you like apehangers and then keep 'em up there—no problem on the High-Ball. This distinctive Victory makes a statement with its gymnastic-style handlebar, low solo seat, Suede Black paint and 1 6-inch whitewalls on chromed spoked wheels—a proclamation its fuel-injected, 106-inch V-Twin is happy to back up. And if you like the bike but aren't so crazy about the height of the bars, you can fold them down closer to your body. Alternative bars also are available, along with a plethora of pipes, mirrors and bags. Because one size does not fit all.
This is Victory's lowest-priced model, but it brings a lot to the table anyway, including the stout, 106-inch, 50-degree V-Twin engine the company says produces 97 hp and 113 ft.-lb. of torque. With its way-low solo seat and pullback handlebars, the gloss-black 8-Ball has a comfortable riding position and an easy reach to the ground, even for the inseam-challenged. The black Stingray wheels make their own statement, especially the 21-in, front; the rear is an 18-incher. Options include heated grips and electronic cruise control.
The FJR1300 has been around since 2002, but Yamaha has upgraded it in many areas for 2013. A new ride-by-wire throttle system for the torquey inline-Four features two power-delivery modes—Touring and Sport— that can be switched on the fly. Traction control is now standard, as is cruise control. Revised suspension, a redesigned electrically adjustable wind screen that provides improved wind protection, better heat management via adjustable side vents in the fairing, all-new instrumentation and crisper styling help bring this sporty sport-tourer up to date.
There's been a growing demand for big-inch adventure-tourers in recent years, and the Super Ténéré is Yamaha's response. It tackles the new BMW R1200GS and KTM 1190 Adventure head-on with an 1199cc engine featuring throttle-by-wire, a two-position "D-Mode" engine-response selector and traction control. Using a dry-sump design to reduce engine height, the parallel-Twin has a 270-degree crank for improved tractability and balance shafts for smooth running. Linked brakes and ABS are standard, and street-biased tires ride on 19-inch front and 17-in. rear hoops. Two new colors are offered: Matte Gray or Pearl White.
Thanks to the crossplane-crankshaft technology derived from Yamaha's YZR-M1 MotoGP racebike, the R1 has one of the smoothest power deliveries of all the one-liter sportbikes, along with a traction-control system that offers seven levels of intervention for controlled acceleration anytime, anywhere. Variable length intake funnels and a ride-by-wire throttle system help optimize power delivery in the lower and middle rpm ranges. The aluminum chassis is fitted with a fully adjustable fork and shock, plus an electronic steering damper. The R1 is available in Team Yamaha blue/white, Matte Gray or Rapid Red/Raven.
We call street standards with sportbike roots streetfighters, and Yamaha has been brawling with its FZ1 in one form or another for a long time. Its engine is from an older-generation YZF-R1—no slouch, in other words, with 150 claimed hp on tap and injection mapping designed for crisp low-end and midrange throttle response. The bike has a genuine tubular handlebar that puts the grips in a rational position, and the other two parts of the ergonomic trilogy—seat and footpeg location—are situated with comfort in mind. Its half-fairing provides good wind protection and is filled with a comprehensive instrument array.
Filling the gap between middleweight and literclass naked bikes is Yamaha's FZ8. Its engine, heavily based on the pre-crossplane YZF-R1/FZ1 motor, is essentially a sleeved-down version with a redesigned cylinder head, forged pistons and revised electronic fuel injection. The goal? Steady, torque-biased power to reside between the highrevving push of a 600 and the often-intimidating rush of a 1000cc machine. For 2013, rebound and compression damping adjusters have been added to the fork along with rebound adjustability for the preload-adjustable shock.
$7790 to $7890
Achieving sportbike spec at the budget end of the spectrum is a difficult compromise, but the FZ6R balances the books well. A 600cc inline-Four based on a previous generation of the vaunted YZF-R6's engine resides in a steel-tube frame with near-sportbike-caliber geometry. But more important in this category are value (check), utility (full fairing, other amenities; check) and performance (double check!). The FZ6R's suspension and brakes are close enough to the latest items to delight most buyers, especially the new riders that Yamaha is clearly targeting.
$10,990 to $11,190
Yamaha's legendary YZF-R6 is one of the most potent sportbikes on or off the racetrack, never mind that it's a 600. Its high-revving inline-Four enjoys ride-by-wire throttle, variable-length velocity stacks and engineering measures to reduce internal friction-and that's horsepower in your back pocket. A slipper clutch and close-ratio, six-speed gearbox get that power to the ground efficiently. High-quality suspension is fully adjustable. It may be a hard-edged, track-focused machine, but the R6 is a fun street ride, too. An extra $200 gets you Team Yamaha blue-and-white graphics.
The lightweight dual-sport market offers a lot of versatility at a reasonable price, and the WR250R is no exception. Not only is it at home in the dirt, it's a great suburban runabout, too. The electric-start-only, dohc Single uses titanium intake valves and electronic fuel injection and an EXUP exhaust valve for a broader powerband, so it's no technological back-marker, either. True to its off-road pretensions, the WR250R has a 21/18-inch front/rear wheel combination so you can spoon on your favorite pure-dirt tires.
Anyone looking for an affordable dual-purpose bike in the 250cc class might want to take a hard look at the XT250. This mild-spec, budgetfriendly machine is clearly up to the task, thanks in no small part to its peppy, 249cc engine and wide-ratio five-speed transmission. Rims that will accept real dirt-oriented tires make the XT worthy of more than just a campground buzz, too; with its reasonable suspension travel and dual disc brakes, the XT has the goods to be a fine entry-level dirt trainer as well as a useful, street-legal runabout.
Iconoclasts are everywhere, and sooner or later, you'll probably see one riding a TW200. This fattired wonder has been the darling of campgrounds from Bar Harbor to Pismo Beach. Few street-legal dual-purpose machines are as easy to manage in sand as the TW, yet it remains a fine, versatile streetbike as long as you don't envision a lot of highway miles or triple-digit speeds (downhill, with a tailwind, maybe...). The built-in luggage rack is handy, the headlight shroud actually deflects some wind at speed and the TW can boast some terrific fuel mileage in everyday riding.
Several years back, a 250 was as big a scooter as you could buy. But like everything else in America, we've super-sized the concept, leading to 400cc and even 650cc models. Makes sense: the convenience of a scooter, the power of a motorcycle, able to leave city limits and even tour two-up. The Majesty is powered by a liquid-cooled, fuel-injected, four-valve Single that spins to 8000 rpm and is smooth in the process, thanks to a counterbalancer. And frat rats take note: Under Her Majesty's flip-up seat is 16 gallons of storage space, almost exactly a keg's worth!
Imagine a Baja Bug on two wheels, a free-spirited, small and slightly wild-looking scooter that purportedly gets 89 miles per gallon and (unlike the Baja Bug) comes fully assembled. You've just described the Zuma 125. Its 125cc four-stroke Single features fuel injection and electric starting, four valves per cylinder and a V-belt automatic transmission. (You were expecting a seven-speed shift-your-own?) The Zuma 125 is light enough that you might just be able to sling it over your shoulder, yet it seats two with a modicum of under-cushion storage. Shouldn't every garage have one?
The name is almost the same, but the former Zuma 50 two-stroke was reborn last year as the Zuma 50F four stroke. It's powered by a liquid-cooled, 3-valve, fuel injected, electric-start engine that Yamaha says is capable of achieving up to 132 mpg. If that claim is true, it means that despite its small, 1.2-gallon fuel capacity, the Zuma might be able to go almost 160 miles between fill-ups! One of the best features of most scooters is under-seat storage, and the 50F offers 23 liters of it despite the machine's diminutive size. The fat tires are great around town, and if you take your Zuma camping, they're good on dirt roads, too.
Like the look of the classic scooter silhouette but in a pint-sized package? Yamaha brings back its inter pretation of that concept in the Vino Classic, a small scoot powered by a liquid-cooled, fuel-injected engine with electric starting and a kickstart backup. Power is delivered to the rear tire by a fully automatic V-belt transmission for simple operation; just twist and go. The Vino's light weight makes it very maneuverable on campus, around town or wherever a short-hop vehicle prowls. Its engine is identical to the Zuma 50F's, so fuel economy should be well over 100 miles per gallon!
Here's an off-road hot-rod that's up for almost any kind of dirt work—enduro, cross-country or just good ol' fun playriding. Thanks to electronic fuel injection, the 449cc Thumper delivers smooth, stumble-free throttle response at any altitude or temperature. Electric starting simplifies refiring the motor when you are literally stalled between a rock and a hard place. The chassis is now based on that of the YZ250F motocrosser, providing light, agile handling. Suspension con sists of a 48mm fork and a fully adjustable shock, both by KYB. Tool-less airbox access, Excel rims and a ProTaper handlebar are bonuses.
Enduro riders wish for competition-grade motocross machines to use on the trail, but the reality is often a long way from the fantasy. Not so for the WR250. Heavily based on the YZ250F motocrosser, the WR provides strong, hard-hitting low-end and midrange power. The WR's close-ratio transmission has small steps between third, fourth and fifth gears to keep the high-revving, twin-cam, five-valve engine on the boil. Like the 450F, the 250 has both electric and kick starters, and it's green-sticker-approved in California. A KYB air/ oil-separate, 48mm fork and shock of the same make provide excellent damping off-road.
Looking for a serious playbike and not an off-road racer? The 230 might just be a perfect fit. It's got an electric starter for the beginners (and the lazy experts) but also has considerable suspension travel and a foot of ground clearance (for the not-so-lazy experts). Yamaha describes the 230's dohc, fourvalve Single as "super reliable" with "widespread power," both desirable traits for the nascent dirt donk. The generously padded seat doesn't hurt long-range capabilities, either. Winning enduros isn't in the TT-R's bag of tricks, but just about everything else is.
The TT-R125 is a fun off-roader that can be a lot of things to almost everyone in the family. At least that's the mission of the TT-R125LE, a crossover trailbike. Yamaha sized the TT-R to fit in between full-maturity enduro/trail models and small-tire minis. With a 19/16-inch wheel combination and a modest 31.7-inch seat height, the TT-R is manageable for the startup riders but won't make dad look like he's riding a Dartmoor Pony. A 1.6-gallon fuel tank keeps the fun going for hours on end. Our advice: Earn a buck and buy your own.
Here is your basic tweener, a muscle mini with enough oomph never to be tail-end Charlie but small and light enough to give youthful confidence a much-needed boost after moving up from a 50cc bike. The 110 features styling inspired by the famous YZ line—right down to the Team Yamaha blue/white color scheme. It's also easy to manage, weighing less than 160 pounds even though equipped with an electric starter and an automatic clutch between the four-speed transmission and the air-cooled Single. A low, 26.4-inch seat is allied with 7.1 inches of ground clearance. Go get 'em, boy!
Here's a cool little fun machine powered by a 49cc four-stroke engine that drives through a three-speed transmission. It has an automatic clutch and electric starting, which means your young one will be able to spend more productive time riding the bike instead of wasting time trying to kickstart it and learning how to manage a clutch. Though the inverted fork and single shock don't provide a huge amount of travel, they can tackle the bumps very well for a bike of this size, while drum brakes front and rear do a good job of getting it stopped. The low seat height invites young riders of all sizes to jump on and start having fun.
The PW50 makes learning to ride a motorcycle about as easy as possible. It has a fully automatic transmission, so no shifting is required; just twist and go. Final drive is by shaft, so no chain adjustment or messy lubing is necessary. Seat height is just a tad over 19 inches, so even if they're short for their age, kids fit and their boots will touch the ground at stops, a great confidence-booster for first-timers. The throttle has an adjustable stop screw that allows parents to gradually increase the amount of power as the rider's skills improve. It's even got a centerstand so that at night, your little guy or gal can sneak out into the garage and sit on the PW, feet up, and make vroom-vroom sounds.
In 2010, the YZ450F flew in the face of traditional motocross design by using a reversed cylinder-head layout that located the intake at the front and the exhaust at the rear, with the cylinder leaning to the rear; it all was intended to centralize mass for improved handling. Since then, refinements to that package continue to improve what already was an impressive machine. The fuel-injection mapping has been recalibrated for improved low-end and midrange throttle response, and the long exhaust silencer helps the big YZ-F meet the strict sound requirements imposed by many racing organizations.
Lites-class four-stroke motocrossers may be the best all-around MX machines for experts and novices alike, and the YZ250F is one of the better ones. It also is one of the last bikes in the class to have its fuel delivered by a carburetor, a 39mm Keihin, in this case. Yamaha feels that significant revisions made a year ago will carry the bike for one more year. Those improvements include better throttle response in the middle and high rpm ranges, and a longer muffler to reduce sound. The 250's aluminum frame is quite rigid, with a KYB speed-sensitive fork hung at one end and a fully adjustable KYB shock at the other.
Yamaha's winning four-stroke motocrossers might receive the company's latest engineering, but there are still great options for two-stroke fanatics, including the YZ250. A reed-valve smoker, the YZ250 benefits from Yamaha's YPVS exhaust power valve and carbon-fiber reed valves to produce a remarkably broad spread of power. The frame and swingarm are aluminum structures fitted with long-travel KYB suspension. A gripper seat cover and an adjustable-mount ProTaper aluminum handlebar keep the rider in control. The titanium footpegs are a nice touch, too.
Maybe you thought that 250cc four-stroke motocrossers would render the 125 two-strokes extinct? Don't get ahead of yourself, Darwin. As a natural steppingstone from the 85cc class to the big leagues, the YZ125 is a valuable teaching tool. It combines low weight and a potent two-stroke, reed-valve Single with an aluminum frame for incredible agility and impressive acceleration—yet it's not such a handful that moving-up riders will feel intimidated. Fully adjustable suspension (of course) is allied with YZ250F-spec brakes, all for a price tag that neatly undercuts the YZ250 and the four-strokes.
The day your offspring finishes the chores early and looks at you with that "Gee, can I have a" stare is the day you start shopping 85cc motocross bikes. And here's a good one. Yamaha's mini-moto fits comfortably between small-wheeled minibikes (and the sort) and full-fledged, adult-sized motocrossers. Its 85cc, liquid-cooled, reed-valve two-stroke Single is tuned for "hard-hitting, moto-winning power," yet the bike's compact dimensions and low weight give developing riders a shot of confidence. It also features a fully adjustable, long-travel Kayaba inverted fork and a link-type shock.
A Yamaha has jumped into the factory custom arena with the Raider SCL, the first model of what the company calls the Star Custom Line. Only 500 of these special editions will be produced this year. The Raider SCL stands out from the crowd with Crimson Red and Intense Black paint and chromed five-spoke custom wheels developed in collaboration with Performance Machine—as were the matching belt-drive pulley and guard. The two-tone leather seat is a work of art in itself. Beyond all the flashy paint and chrome is the same powerful, 48-degree V-Twin and smart-handling - cruiser chassis found in the other Raider models.
Here's a classically styled, art-deco inspired cruiser fitted with a copbike windshield, leather-covered, locking hard saddlebags and a removable passenger backrest. A 48-degree, air-cooled, four-valve-per-cylinder, pushrod V-Twin engine with electronic fuel injection sends torque-laden power through a belt drive to the rear wheel. The aluminum frame is light, stiff and provides great handling for such a large motorcycle. Even better is the fact that the Stratoliner S is a convertible: The windshield and bags detach quickly and easily when touring isn't on the agenda.
This former winner of Cycle World's Best Cruiser award is a classic with all the bells and whistles. Its 48-degree, four-valve-per-cylinder, pushrod V-Twin engine provides exceptional power and torque, and its electronic fuel injection is efficient and responsive in any riding situation. A good-handling chassis is anchored by an aluminum frame at its core. Art-deco styling, what seems like acres of chrome and Raven black paint make it a feast for the eyes. An extensive Star accessory catalog gives -. the owner almost endless possibilities for personalizing the Roadliner S.
Cruisers continue to push to the extreme ends of the genre, and that's why there's a Raider. It takes the Star line across the tracks to the chopper side of town, and it has the stuff to back up the visual swagger. Fork tubes raked to 40 degrees, beefy 46mm fork tubes, turned-down exhaust pipes and some out-there angular styling all add up to a distinctive ride. Power comes via the same excellent 1854cc ohv V-Twin used in the Roadliner. A 2 10/40-18 rear tire completes the custom look. Also available: The Raider S, the same bike but with added chrome.
Back in 1985, the original VMax created a new category, although no one knew it at the time, and the muscle cruiser was born. A lot more muscle has been added since then. This iteration is built around a 65-degree, 1679cc V-Four that blasts out a claimed 199 hp—enough to peel your eyelids back in the lower gears. Thankfully, electronic intake control and ride-by-wire e-throttles deliver smooth response and a stout, linear and easily manageable power curve. A fully modern chassis with a 52mm fork and a beefy single shock keep all that power under control on the street or strip.
Road Star Silverado S
In Yamaha-speak, Silverado means touring, as in saddlebags, a handlebar-mounted windshield and a backrest/sissybar applied to an otherwise naked cruiser. And in this instance, the Road Star Silverado S uses a 102-cubic-inch V-Twin powerplant and belt final drive. Cast wheels shod with 16-inch tires are at the ends of a bridge-like, 66.5-in. wheelbase. It's long, low and handsome, and ready to hit the road. Also available: The Road Star S is the same motorcycle minus the saddlebags, windshield and passenger backrest.
V Star 1300 Deluxe
An engine displacing over 1.3 liters may not sound midsized, but in the cruiser world, where "bigger is better" has become the mantra, it's just that. So, the new-for-2013 V Star 1300 Deluxe proves you don't have to be big to be a badass bagger. Power comes from a liquid-cooled, sohc, 60-degree V-Twin with four valves per cylinder. Features like the standard GPS and an iPod-compatible stereo system give the classically streamlined bike plenty of modem conveniences. Also available: The 1300 Tourer has a cop-style windscreen and leather-covered handbags, while the standard 1300 has a handlebar that places grips closer to the rider.
Choppers are hot, especially if they're practical and functional turn-key motorcycles with chopperesque styling at an affordable price-like the Star Stryker. Using a version of the V Star 1300's liquid-cooled, 60-degree V-Twin engine, the Stryker is built on a steel-tube frame that combines a radical, 40-degree fork rake with a more-rational 36-degree steering-head angle. The result is chopper looks with no bar-flop. And both fenders are—no kidding—steel. All for just a bit more than 11 thou. Yep, that's definitely hot. Available in Raven, Candy Red or Pearl White.
Royal Star Venture S
This full-dress tourer comes equipped to take you and your passenger almost anywhere you want to go in comfort and style. With more than 30 gallons of storage space in the locking saddlebags and top trunk, you can hit the road for days or weeks on end. The big V-Four engine cranks out a claimed 89 ft.-lb. of torque, providing the grunt you need when the bike is fully loaded. Front and rear suspension is air-adjustable for versatility in ride quality. Extras include a Star-branded iPod Touch to play through its four-speaker sound system. Star provides a 5-year, unlimited-mileage warranty and 24-hour roadside assistance.
V Star 950
It's difficult to build a middleweight cruiser with breakout styling, exemplary fit and finish, and a high degree of what you might call "moto tech"—and to have a low sticker price at the end. Yamaha manages this trapeze act brilliantly with the V Star 950, which is powered by a 942cc V-Twin. Sure, there's one front disc instead of two, and the suspension isn't adjustable, but the rider Yamaha is courting likely won't miss a thing. Also available: The 950 Tourer, based on the same great powerplant and chassis, but with saddlebags and a cop-style windscreen.
V Star 650 Custom
Do you want to cruise but are intimidated by the myriad of larger offerings in the Star lineup yet still want more oomph than the V Star 250 can provide? If so, check out the 650 Custom, a lightweight cruiser with a low seat height, manageable weight and a torquey, 649cc V-Twin engine. What's more, Yamaha estimates 49 mpg, which means you won't be filling the 4.2-gallon gas tank that frequently. A kicked-out front end, wire-spoke wheels, dual exhausts and forward foot controls provide a custom-cruiser wrapper over a practical and affordable machine.
V Star 250
Don't get offended when that cute co-ed admires your V Star 250 and blurts out, "Oh, it's sooo cute!" This is not a jab; it's a compliment. Really. Yamaha's smallest cruiser has for years been the bike of choice for the beginning rider and the frugal commuter alike. The carbureted, 249cc V-Twin looks the part and provides ample thrust to keep you ahead of traffic. But the heart of the matter are three items on the spec sheet—a seat height of 27 inches, a wet I weight of 326 pounds and a hang-tag with a mere $4290 printed on it. Now you can use the money you didn't spend to take that co-ed to a movie.
Zero is committed to offering a full line of useful electric motorcycles. Big gest news in 2013 is the purpose-built, internally designed Z-Force directdrive brushless motor. Power and efficiency are both up dramatically across the range. The S model leads the lineup with 54 hp and 68 ft. -lb. of torque. Two new, 25-percent-faster-charging battery packs are available, and account for price, range and weight differences. The 11.4 kW-h version gives an EPA range of 137 miles in town. You can even connect to the bike with your smartphone via Bluetooth to monitor battery power and customize power delivery. Also available: The DS, a dualpurpose version of same machine.
Zero calls the new, street-legal FX its "Stealth Fighter." It's based on the MX motocrosser's chassis, but offers 44 hp and a whopping 70 ft.-lb. of torque from its new Z-Force motor when used with the larger available battery pack. Claimed weight is just 275 pounds in configuration. Think of it as a lightweight, hot-rod urban dual-sport. Also available: The Zero XU, a more commuter-oriented version of the FX with less power and shorter-travel suspension, and the MX dirtbike for track or trail that delivers as much as 54 hp and 68 ft.-lb. of torque.