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Cruiser Motorcycle Reviews

2015 Triumph Thunderbird Nightstorm Special Edition – First Look Review

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Triumph’s Thunderbird cruiser, powered by a convention-bucking parallel twin displacing 1,597cc, debuted for 2009, slotting between the Bonneville-based America and Speedmaster (both have a 865cc parallel twin) and the super-sized Rocket III (with its 2,294cc in-line triple). The Thunderbird’s accessory 1,699cc big-bore kit became standard equipment on spin-off models, including the blacked-out Thunderbird Storm, the muscle-cruiser Thunderbird Commander and touring-ready ...

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2015 Star Motorcycles Bolt C-Spec, Raider and Stryker Bullet Cowl – First Look Review

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Today at the American International Motorcycle Expo (AIMExpo) in Orlando, Florida, Star Motorcycles announced new and updated models for 2015. Building on the runaway success of Star’s Bolt/R-Spec “performance bobber” cruisers and the current popularity of café racers, Star introduced the Bolt C-Spec. This new variant has clip-on handlebars, fork gaiters, a removable passenger seat cowl and sport café paint ...

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Honda Announces 40th Anniversary Gold Wing and Other 2015 Models

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Hot on the heels of its summer introductions of three new 2015 models—the CBR300R, CB300F and NM4—Honda has announced the return of several cruiser, touring and dual-sport models. The 2015 model year marks the 40th anniversary of the Gold Wing, and Honda is celebrating with a commemorative 40th Anniversary Edition as well as unique 40th Anniversary emblems on all 2015 ...

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2014 Cutting-Edge Cruisers – Snapshot Reviews

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There was a time, not that long ago, when in motorcycle terms cruisers were considered something less—simpler machines that were somewhat inferior to other bikes in terms of function. After all, a touring bike’s function is to deliver many miles of comfort while hauling riders and luggage, a sportbike excels in terms of power and handling reined in by great ...

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2014 Indian Chief Classic Review

2014 Indian Chief Classic

The original Indian motorcycle company began in 1901, but then faded away in the early 1950s. Two recent attempts to revamp the brand failed in the early 2000s, then Polaris Industries, which manufactures snowmobiles, watercraft, ATVs and the Victory motorcycle brand in Minnesota and Iowa, purchased the Indian name and trademark. With the backing of this major company, Indian has ...

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2014 Moto Guzzi California 1400 Custom ABS Review

2014 Moto Guzzi California 1400 Custom ABS

You immediately realize there’s something different about this bike when you notice its more aggressive, almost sporty stance. At 708 pounds, it’s the lightest in our test and it’s also the only one of these machines that was based upon a sportier touring bike—an Italian machine designed for use in the Alps and environs rather than America’s more wide-open roads. ...

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2014 Harley-Davidson Softail Deluxe Review

2014 Harley-Davidson Softail Deluxe

With its classic style and air-cooled, 45-degree V-twin motor, the Harley-Davidson has served as the iconic American-made motorcycle for more than 110 years. In its current form, the motor displaces 1,690cc (103 cubic inches) and offers two valves per cylinder. In the Softail models, the engine is counterbalanced for smoothness. The model gets its name from the fact that it ...

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2014 Victory Boardwalk Review

2014 Victory Boardwalk

The Victory brand was started by Polaris Industries in 1998 as a means of addressing the lucrative big-inch V-twin market that Harley-Davidson largely had to itself. The bikes are built in Minnesota and Iowa, as are the Indians. From the start, Victory wanted to position its bikes as more performance-oriented V-twins than Harleys and, as a result, they utilize an ...

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2015 Indian Scout – First Ride Review

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Before the Chief there was the Scout. The Chief may have been Indian’s stylistic high-water mark, but the Scout was its engineering masterpiece. Designed by racer-turned-engineer Charles B. Franklin and introduced in 1920, the Scout was powered by a 600cc (37ci) side-valve, semi-unit V-twin with twin cams and a gear-driven primary bathed in oil (enlarged to 61ci, the engine went ...

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2015 Victory Magnum – First Ride Review

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With a significant share of Polaris Industries’ motorcycle R&D focused on the Indian branch of the family tree, Victory’s new-for-2015 models are stylistic spin-offs rather than all-new platforms. We tested the Gunner, a stripped-down bobber based on the Judge, in our June issue, and I saddled up on the Magnum, a factory custom “big wheel bagger” based on the Cross ...

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