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Hmmmm....first Honda,then yamaha and now Kawasaki....if Harley doesnt get their long awaited porsche motor out soon they are going to be playing catchup in their niche market--the v twin power cruiser.no true sport bike,a failing race effort and now falling behind in the cruiser wars.Gotta believe a company as savvy as HD has something up their sleeves but they better play it(them?) soon.
 

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I was at a H-D/Buell dealership looking for an X1 Lightning in white and blue (no one has one, it sucks.) the other day. Anyways, I ask the guy if Harley is getting the watercooled motor on the 13th of July. He says, "Well, all I can say is that Buell isn't getting the watercooled motor." Then he looks me in the eye, holds my gaze with a "what do YOU think" look, and says, "But I can't really say anything else."



Now, normally I would say it's the H-D dealer talking out his rumpus, but this fellow ONLY sells Buells; he doesn't touch the Harley aspect of the operation. It may pay (literally) to be at your local Harley dealer on the 13th.



By the way, if they do release it on that day won't it be kind of an omen? Friday the 13th for the new hawg? Makes you wonder...



Anyways, this Kawa Mean Streak, aside from the name, looks the buisness. Now all they have to do make sure it performs and market the sumb!tch. Yamaha better update the V-max here, or there's gonna be trouble.



The Fox

 

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TheFox,



The dealer you talked to is wrong. Unfortunately I can't tell you why and on what counts just yet. Hee, hee, hee...



What do you think of the Kawi? Like the looks? Will 10 percent more power do the job?
 

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The Kawi is far better looking than the Yamaha "Warped Star".

Still, they are both obvious attempts to catch the VTX. VTX has the power and looks. I'm lining up the the 2003 version next winter. Let's see if the Motor Co. can change my mind.

Brutus
 

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I'm a Kawasaki fan, and to me this bike looks like the Honda Shadow Sabre... I saw a picture of a Kawasaki On MCN.com that was the 1500 Vulcan motor, but in a sportster looking package, now thats an Idea....Sounds like it would be a better set up for a street fighter bike. Not sure about this Kawasaki Sabre though.
 

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I don't think 10% increase in power is gonna cut it. What does a standard

Vulcan give, 50-55 horsepower; a ten percent only brings it up to sixty something and as far as I know the new Yam is around 75, but is light for a big-bore power cruiser, VTX is heavier but quite powerful. How light (heavy) is the new Kaw? I don't think it's lighter than others so I don't expect significant performance increases (even the pipes are thin, don't you need big muffler volume on performance oriented twins?). It looks nice though...



Arrow

 

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The new Yam power cruiser is air cooled. With less weight, it can afford to make less power than the VTX and still compete.



This Vulcan will probably only weight a couple lbs less than the VTX. But, since the VTX has 100 hp, this underpowered Vulcan will probably get trashed by both the more powerul VTX and the lighter Yamaha. Sounds like it's DOA.
 

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Harley has released it's water cooled bike for magazine review in Europe. It is supposed to be a mean mother. Come on Harley, build us a sportbike that rocks!



Motorcyclenews.com, a European magazine is posting the story today.
 

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Bike looks nice enough to me, but only 10% more power?... that's totally weak! I like Kawi, I'm a 'Kawi Guy', but I am sorely disappointed that they can only muster 10% more power.



Hell, -I- can squeeze 10% more power out of that motor by typical bolt-ons! Sheesh Kawi, make a real effort for a change! You did so well with the ZRX1200 (a bike I will probably be buying if I can scrape up the $$), get with it on this one and make it a -real- challenger to the VTX (which I also really dig!).

 

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That picture is of the new harley and the full story is on motorcyclenews.com. Hey MO, are you allowed to report on it yet or are you still under a news embargo.



If so, the manufacturers are going to have to change the way they give out information. With the internet, the US pubs will get scooped every time if they continue to give the dirt to the Euro mags first.



I like the way the new Harley looks. Very Japanese. Which means it actually has some forward-looking style. The wrap-around tubular frame is pretty cool. I'm wondering if the Harley crowd will complain that it is TOO Japanese, or think it is great because it's a Harley... because Harley's are always perfect...
 

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I'm betting your last comment will be the prevailing mode of thought... the "die hard" (cough-cough) Harley fans (you know, all those folks who just bought a Harley in the last couple of years b/c its 'cool' to have one) will balk at first, then say "I love it!... it's totally new and unique!" once they figure out how to trade in their twin-cam bikes.

Watch how many TC88's are for sale once this one hits the states.



I think it's a nice looking bike... the 'die-hards' that say it's too Japanese looking are nuts. This bike isn't any more outrageous than the scores of one-off custom bikes out there that these same scoffers say are so "trick" and "authentically American" etc...



I think it's great that Harley is doing something like this .. FINALLY trying to progress their image.



Good luck to them!



-James
 

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Re: New Harley VR

motorcyclenews.com has the story up. All I can say is WOW!

I have to hand it to H-D on this one. An 1130 cc motor that puts out 74 lb-ft of torque and 113 hp! Makes the Honda VTX look sorta silly by comparison.

The styling is also very different, and I like what I see so far. Are those frame tubes aluminum? They appear to be really large diameter, like an aluminum mountain bike.

Instead of trying to hide the radiator to make the bike look like a "classic" H-D, they took a whole different direction with the styling and chromed the housing to make it part of the look. I not partial to the forward controls and foot pegs, though.

When does Buell get this motor?
 

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I'm not a big fan of the forward placed foot pegs either. I rode a friends Dyna Wide-Glide and it felt completely awkward. But I understand that a majority of the prospective customers of this bike are riders who have been on Harleys for years and want the laid-back riding style. I'm glad it finally gives the people who will only buy a Harley a bike with decent handling and performance.



I just saw a new design concept from Honda on motorcycledaily.com called the New American Sports that is much more my style. Build that bike and I'll buy it!!!! Even with a conventional front end to make it more affordable.



MO, getting scooped again? are you guys awake back there?
 

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Hey Rod,



Point well taken. Everyone has their own tastes. I guess I'm just interested in a mix of style and performance. I own a Triumph Daytona 955i and think it's a darn close perfect mix. It's not the fastest bike out there, but I'm not even close to being the fastest rider in the world. (maybe the fastest on my block, but that's not saying much. ha ha)And I think the Daytona has great lines.



I don't think I believe in motorcycle perfection. I always look forward to the new models that come out and always seem to think about getting one. The New American Sports concept that Honda just released is amazing! I'd trade my Daytona on one of those in a heartbeat.



If I could afford a bunch of bikes, I'm sure one would be a Harley... and I'd customize the heck out of it as well!



Keep the leather off the tarmac,



Draz
 

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Re: Harley h2o cooled engine

Hmm.......Harley has FINALLY gotten my attention with their new engine. I won't say "too bad that it's wrapped in a cruiser frame" because apparently (from the motorcylenews.com review) it handles well. I will say that if Harley in its newly found wisdom chooses to wrap it in a Buell frame that rivals a Ducati, Aprilia or MV Agusta styling, I will camp out ala Star Wars Fan to be first in line for that bike - make mine screaming red (white and blue)!!
 

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Re: Harley h2o cooled engine

Harley has been building bikes for almost 100 years now, and they have to go to another company to get help on building a new engine! I can't wait till for the day that Harley dealers will have to beg people to buy their bikes. I remember back in the late 70's Harley could not give their bikes away. Just as soon as the fad with the RUB's is over Harley will be in trouble again. With all the money Harley has,looks like they could develope a motor that would run with some strength and dependability. Their so called sport bikes are a piece of crap. They can't win at the track, they can't win on the street.....why don't they just stick with what they know.....Building outdated overweight, slow, ill handling boat anchors.
 
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