Harley finally made a bike that will bring me to the fold. I'd change a few things, but all in all I think it's a pretty good effort. I may have to park my Hellcat and try a newer more refined version. It will be interesting to see how the loyalists react to a bike that will finally go head to head with some of the best technology on the market (Jap bikes).
well it looks like things have come full circle and i like it, but if a jap cruiser is an imitation of a harley ,what is it when harley imitates the jap cruisers imitation of an american cruiser but uses a motor designed by germans .and who will wave to the owner of this bike? this could lead to some problems , like the porsche 944 being water cooled was never accepted by "true" porsche owners. but who cares the bike looks kinda cool. but lets make sure to play the harley davidson dealer game ,ya know the factory lists for $16,999 but sells for $21,999 because they hold their value and theyre made in the usa ,and theyre really hard to get, let me tell you youre a sucker if you pay more than list for anything .tell harley to play with real numbers or youll buy a real jap bike , not their imitation.
I guess Harley Davidson has created a better Japanese-style motorcycle than anybody else. The "War of the Worlds" inspired gauge cluster is a nice touch.
Yet, I remember reading how Honda had to go with a SHAFT final drive for their VTX... because they "couldn't find a belt to handle all of that tourque & power". Harley seems to be demonstrating superiority.. in belts.
What a great looking, great sounding, (and from what you say) great performing motorcycle. There is little in this world better, at least to myself, than seeing the newest, fastest, most innovative, etc, etc, motorcycles available. I'm sure Harley-Davidson already has all 11,000 sold at the time of my posting. I just hope the don't get in the way of me ordering the new Buell Firebolt.
I have NEVER seen anyone ride the twisties like that with the kicked out riding position...it just doesn't look possible in the videos. It shouldn't BE possible at all, according to Newton, but it is. Sheesh.
I would also like to thank you guys for staying honest. Minime, I think you made the right decision, not just ethically but from a business standpoint as well. Let it be known that honor, respect, etiquitte, and politeness are very important to some of us. I will not be reading MCN again. Besides, their site layout sucks.
By the way, I can see you smiling behind that tinted screen in Video One, thinking in a sing-song 2nd grade playground voice, "I've got something you don't got!"
If was possible to get one even close to list price, it would definately get my vote for Bike of the Year. But, I fear they will all be scalped for WAY over $20,000. And that, really does put it in a category of one!
You can just about guarantee the bike will sell for as much as twice MSRP with only 11K of them made the first year.
So what does that make this bike? Just a show bike to look at and think "hrm, nice" then you go get on your real-world bike that you paid about 25% of what the V-Rod would go for if you got lucky.
What gets me more than anything is the press will go on about the price not being bad and yadda blah, when owning one is impossible. With their incredible popularity, I just don't see how H-D hasn't figured out how to keep up with demand.
Oh, and they will also go on about how well it competes with the VTX, Warrior, etc. So what? The R1 beats them all, and REAL WORLD market wise is as close to the V-Rod as the VTX is.
I also don't buy the "holds its value" line. Yeah, so some other damned fool will also overpay for it. So what? I buy a bike to RIDE it, not as an investment.
All that said, I like it. Next year when they show up for rent I think I'll go take a spin on one.
My hope is that Buell will announce a bike with that same engine (not the Firebolt) and nobody will want it just like the other Buells and average folk can go pick one up for a reasonable price.
Great article guys! As a test rider for the motor company with over 50,000 durabilty miles logged on the VR product alone, I can assure your readers that the VR is every bit as exciting as you have described. It's quick, boasting a broad powerband, yet highly manageable; complimented with a very maneuverable chassis. The VR does many things well and manages capture the joy of motorcycling more than any other product the motor company has produced in its 99-year history. Whether you're a die hard H-D enthusiast or brand X owner, you have to appreciate the VR for all that it does.
I must admit, I'm biased. And since I'm on the company payroll my opinion may not count here. But you don't have to take my word. I encourage fellow motorcycling enthusiasts to give this one a hard look. I am confident you'll be as equally impressed with the VR's performance, as illustrated by the staff at MO.
Harley-Davidson has moved forward into the _second_ half of the 20th century just in time for the 21st. Nice bike-- I want one.
I'll even buy one for $10,000 new. If Honda can pay Japanese workers and offer the RC51 for $10K, and BMW can pay German workers and offer the R1150R for $10K, then Harley can offer this bike for ten grand. They just won't.
And I don't like getting ripped off.
Other $10,000 range bikes include the Moto Guzzi Quota, Ducati M900 Monster Dark, and of course all the flagship open-class Japanese fours. There is nothing special enough about the V-Rod to warrant a 70% sucharge over all these bikes.
And as if an MSRP big enough to buy TWO 1200 Bandits plus a long riding vacation weren't enough, I bet not one of those 11,000 first year V-Rod sells for anything close to MSRP. Some folks just can't get enough of the "Vaseline tax." They can have it, I say.
Well it doesn't look like any Harley I've ever heard of! 2 fingers on the front brake to scrub off speed? 140mph? Decent handling? I've only ever ridden one Harley, in the interests of research, and the Softail Deuce I borrowed from a dealer over here was a £15,000 ($21,000) anti-social deathtrap with awful handling, no ground clearance, lethal (complete lack of) brakes, pathetically inadequate suspension, ridiculous head-rake and a motor which managed to be both gutless and too much for the chassis.
If this thing is for real then it's still not my kind of bike, but at least it *is* a bike rather than a dangerous practical joke played at the (vast) expense of gullible and affluent Americans.
I guess I'll wait until the hype dies down before I try to decide whether this thing is likely to go down as 'good by some sensible absolute measure' or 'pretty average, but still [email protected]@dy amazing for a Harley'.
One thing, though - I notice they keep the traditional ridiculous steering head angle... so I'll take all claims of superb cornering perfromance with a pinch of salt until somebody can explain how forks that kicked-out are compatible with twisty roads...