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Road Tests

2015 Victory Gunner—First Ride Review

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From its gray matte paint to its straight dual exhaust and solo seat, Victory Motorcycles’ new Gunner is brazenly targeting Harley-Davidson’s Softail Slim. Victory’s press information even uses the catty tagline, “Slim chance you’ll find another bobber like it.” Me-ow. I had the opportunity to run the Gunner up and down the backroads on a bright Daytona Bike Week morning. ...

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2014 Moto Guzzi California 1400 Touring – Road Test Review

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Flashback to 1970. Richard Nixon is in the White House, American troops are in Vietnam and the AMC Gremlin is in dealerships. Little known in the U.S. at the time, Moto Guzzi captures a slice of the lucrative police market with a full-dress version of the Eldorado 850, which was more powerful, more maneuverable, lighter and less expensive than the ...

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2013 Star V Star 1300 Deluxe – Road Test Review

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Got your eye on a custom dresser, a “bagger,” eh? Can’t say I blame you. Stripped and slammed cruisers are so five years ago. They may have a wicked minimalist look, but actually riding one is another story—us baby boomers are gettin’ too old for narrow seats and suspension with one lousy inch of travel. Crikey, my back! And if ...

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Ridden & Rated: 2014 Star Bolt

Yamaha calls its Star Bolt an "urban performance bobber." It’s a stripped-down version of Star’s highly successful V Star 950 cruiser. (Photography by Riles & Nelson)

It’s a smart company that studies the market, conducts research and builds its products based upon what the data indicate will be successful. In the case of Yamaha, its Star Motorcycles division (which builds its cruisers) is a very smart company indeed. While noting that cruisers compose about 49 percent of the overall street market, the folks at Star also ...

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Comparison Test: 2013 BMW C 650 GT vs. 2013 Honda NC700X

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We aren’t normally a shiftless bunch except for an hour or two after lunch, but we recently spent the last two weeks swapping between two new “automatics”—BMW’s C 650 GT maxi-scooter, and Honda’s NC700X with dual-clutch transmission—in an effort to see which type of shiftless two-wheeler rules the urban no-man’s land between home, work and other mundane daily destinations. You ...

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2012 Honda NC700X DCT ABS Road Test

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Motorcycles are not appliances. Even if your main goal in buying one is to accomplish a daily task like commuting with the lowest possible vehicle and fuel costs, few riders would be satisfied with a motorcycle that is as dull as a dishwasher. We still want performance that excites us, looks that fuel our passions and make the right statement, ...

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Ridden & Rated: Triumph T100 Steve McQueen Edition

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We all recall Steve McQueen’s character Virgil Hilts jumping a motorcycle over a fence in the iconic 1963 WWII movie The Great Escape. And it doesn’t matter that, for insurance reasons, the jump was actually performed by McQueen’s friend and fellow racer Bud Ekins. McQueen was the real deal. He rode his modified 1963 Triumph Bonneville in the California dunes ...

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Road Test: 2012 Triumph Tiger Explorer

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After my exhilarating but brief ride on the all-new Triumph Tiger Explorer at its press launch in Spain (Rider, May 2012, and on ridermag.wpengine.com), I waited impatiently for the Explorer to arrive in the U.S., eager to spend quality time together and see if we had the chemistry for a longer-term relationship. The attraction was still there—the tall, robust Triumph’s ...

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Comparison: 2012 Triumph Tiger Explorer vs. 2012 Yamaha Super Ténéré

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The open-class adventure touring segment has grown from a class of one—the BMW R 1200 GS/Adventure—to a class of five in recent years, with the introduction of the Ducati Multistrada 1200, Moto Guzzi Stelvio, Yamaha Super Ténéré and Triumph Tiger Explorer. We compared the BMW R 1200 GS Adventure and Yamaha Super Ténéré in January (also available on ridermag.wpengine.com). The ...

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Road Test: 2012 Moto Guzzi Stelvio NTX

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If there are any stretches of paved road left in the U.S. with more than 200 miles between gas stations, I’d sure like to know about them. Highway 140 from Winnemucca, Nevada, to Lakeview, Oregon (part of the historic Winnemucca to the Sea Highway), used to be one, but now there’s gas after about 130 miles at Denio Junction. These ...

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