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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
These companies routinely miss the bus....

Suzuki:
I had a VL1500LC and it was a great bike. I wanted to check out the M-109 and the C-109 and planned to wait until I could ride them before I decided what bike I would buy. I rode the M and didn't think much of it, so I waited for the C. Nope, it was just huge for the sake of being huge. Way too heavy and not all that impressive. Pass.

Yamaha:
Roadliner/Straoliner were very interesting to me. No six speeds, Too much Harley copy thing. Too much I would need to change on it and some of what I wanted wasn't even available. Pass.

Kawaski:
Mean Streak is kinda cool... but no power. Vulcan 2000 had my interest until I rode one. Pass.

Honda:
They may be the worst one. They came out with the Fury chopper like 5 years after that whole chopper craze was dead and buried. They put all their eggs into the 1300cc class for cruisers and killed off the big bore stuff. Goldwing owners were screaming for a 6-speed trans and electric shield. They FINALLY went to a 6 and e-shield... but reduced luggage capacity. Another fail.

Victory is gone and done. They wanted to chase Harley's market... so in order to compete with a household name, they bought a household name. Guess what? That market is an aging/dying market anyway. HD is making adventure bikes and streetfighters... To me, Victory was in a better position to compete than Indian is if they just kept improving each year. Build a following... it's not something you can go out and buy.

Just talkin' to ya... Many might not share my opinions and that's cool too. I'd love to hear what you guys have to say.
 

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All you have said and done I have done and said.
100% agree.
Victory was on their way and it was proven by more exposure and more owners. In Daytona they made a great impression especially when guys like Rusty and KevinX and Kyle were accessorizing and tuning bikes all day just to see them hit the streets with their owners sh!t eating grins. Dinner nights dedicated to Victory. Rides Dedicated to Victory. Arlen Ness and it goes on and on.
For 10 plus yrs Victory went un noticed until 2010 when the Cross bikes came. It was bagger time. Still is bagger time. That’s what sold and continues to sell today. Why would a company who has the best 2 baggers on the road not see this.
Modern muscle and classic nostalgia. They f’d
up again.
 

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Curious H_C, what you do think of some other brands that aren't Jap? Triumph? Moto Guzzi? Right now IF I was looking for a bike they're the only 2 making something that interests me. I've owned or ridden extensively just about everything on 2 wheels sold commercially but after sifting through the catalog of all the other marques there's not much compelling out there.
 

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The BMW national rally was just in Des Moines and I took a nice 40 minute demo ride on the K1600B Grand America. Beautiful bike, solid construction (no squeaks and rattles) and the tranny speed shifter thingy was awesome. And the damn thing was so uncomfortable I wanted to give it back halfway through the ride. That and the goofy “windshield” was a joke. It’s an inverted triangle shape so the higher you raise it the more turbulence there is coming around the pointy bottom of the screen, useless.

I think Victory came closer than anybody else but even they have shortcomings. I was once at a Q and A with a Polaris engineer at a Victory rally shortly before the shutdown. He was asking us what we wanted in future models. I told him to take two Octane motors, put them together for a 200 hp V-4 Vision. He acted like I was drunk and blew me off. Why? Think about that motor, it would probably put down around 120-130 ft-lbs of Torque to 8000 rpm redline with hp peaking around 165 at the wheel. Why is that crazy talk in an 800+ lb bike? In fact that’s pretty close to what the BMW makes, but the strait 6 configuration seriously interferes with leg room contributing to that bikes poor comfort.

When it comes to bikes I unapologetically want it all. Why can’t cruisers be fast?
 
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Ya know you ride one brand of bike for 40+ years & ya get to know their good side & their bad side.
You keep looking at other brands, ya ride your bud's, ya ride demo's & ya keep on riding what you've been riding because nothing else works.

That was me & Guzzi's then along came Victory.
In so many ways owning a Vic was pulling me further away from Guzzi's, there were so many advantages the Vic had.
I planned to add another Vic & sell off the Guzzi's except for one.

Triumph is the only other brand that holds any interest for me.
I like stuff that works because it is well engineered, lasts a long time & is easy to fix: Guzzi, Triumph, Victory.
 
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Victory was the one. They had the frame. Both steel and CC / vision. Anyone can build a motor. All they needed was refinement and more power.
Polaris wants what HD has. That’s why they copied them. Showroom and old school design bikes.
I give it to HD because that’s all they have is Motorcycles that’s what they live for. Not boats or ATV or sling****s
 

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Sheeple.
Most either cannot, or do not think outside what is in front of them.
They accept the status quo as the standard.

Everyone wanted a Harley-- remember when there was a waiting list? THOSE guys are aging and getting out.
Everyone does NOT want a Harley now.

Victory did well because they put it in the hands of a real biker-- same guy who revived Kawi.
Yes-- I agree-- they were the brand to be in-in-step with the times. A loyal following who stuck it out when there was no aftermarket.
Anything was possible with that brand.

An HD "adventure bike" ?? Yeah, right. It will go the way of the Vrod and that Sporty Sportster.

I am still smarting over Victory's death. I want to buy another bike.
I cannot find anything that raises the bar...
 

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Just curious what you didn’t like about the M109. They have good power and a wide power band. Looks are in the love it or hate it catigory. Handling is there if you are willing to muscle it over and around the curves. Definitely not a bike for everyone, but I kind of thought you would like the motor.

It also doesn’t have a 6 speed, but for it and the Yamaha’s, as long as they are geared properly, I don’t see the point in having one more gear to shift to get to the same final gear ratio. That is what most manufacturers do. They just make 6th gear the same, or really close to the same as 5th gear was on the previous version and stick an extra gear in between the first 4 gears somewhere.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Curious H_C, what you do think of some other brands that aren't Jap? Triumph? Moto Guzzi? Right now IF I was looking for a bike they're the only 2 making something that interests me. I've owned or ridden extensively just about everything on 2 wheels sold commercially but after sifting through the catalog of all the other marques there's not much compelling out there.
I agree... Triumph is doing Triumph again! They canned the whole going after HD thing. Their new models are very interesting. The Guzzis too... but they are getting pricey.
A Flying Fortress with 120 HP would be a groove...
A Triumph Speedmaster with 100 HP would be a groove...
Right now, the closest thing to meeting my wants/needs is HD's Sport Glide. Close... not the bullseye, but close.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Just curious what you didn't like about the M109. They have good power and a wide power band. Looks are in the love it or hate it catigory. Handling is there if you are willing to muscle it over and around the curves. Definitely not a bike for everyone, but I kind of thought you would like the motor.

It also doesn't have a 6 speed, but for it and the Yamaha's, as long as they are geared properly, I don't see the point in having one more gear to shift to get to the same final gear ratio. That is what most manufacturers do. They just make 6th gear the same, or really close to the same as 5th gear was on the previous version and stick an extra gear in between the first 4 gears somewhere.
The M was too heavy and large. Covers everywhere, covers and more covers. Just checking the oil had a long procedure. They talked all sorts of smack about how it was a killer in the power department... it wasn't. The transmission was a crash-box and 2nd gear failures were common. The louder you make it, the more it sounds like a Honda 350 with straight pipes. It requires valve adjustments. It doesn't lend itself well to bags. I don't like the styling either.

Hey, you asked.

As far as a 6-speed, I agree with you. My bike would be OK with 4 gears... but 6 is nice for having a gear for any occasion.
 

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Every bike ever made (after mods) is the perfect bike for some. No bike is perfect for all.
I've been kicking around the idea of what I would replace my XR with. Sounds crazy but a couple bikes I checked out were a 2016 Triumph Rocket Roadster abs set up to do some touring, what a beast. Also a 2015 Honda Valkyrie fc6 felt pretty good.
 

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The M was too heavy and large. Covers everywhere, covers and more covers. Just checking the oil had a long procedure. They talked all sorts of smack about how it was a killer in the power department... it wasn't. The transmission was a crash-box and 2nd gear failures were common. The louder you make it, the more it sounds like a Honda 350 with straight pipes. It requires valve adjustments. It doesn't lend itself well to bags. I don't like the styling either.

Hey, you asked.

As far as a 6-speed, I agree with you. My bike would be OK with 4 gears... but 6 is nice for having a gear for any occasion.
I agree with most of what you said. As for the power, I haven't found any cruisers in stock form that exceeds it tho. It definitely doesn't have the power of your KP, but then again, what stock cruiser does?

Second gear and clutch issues have been addressed and haven't been a problem on the newer bikes. I'm not sure what you mean by sounding like a Honda 350 unless you are referring to the "huffing" sound of the exhaust.

The rest, I think you are spot on in your explanation. Other than the styling. I like it, but that is always going to vary form person to person.
 

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I agree with most of what you said. As for the power, I haven't found any cruisers in stock form that exceeds it tho. It definitely doesn't have the power of your KP, but then again, what stock cruiser does?

Second gear and clutch issues have been addressed and haven't been a problem on the newer bikes. I'm not sure what you mean by sounding like a Honda 350 unless you are referring to the "huffing" sound of the exhaust.

The rest, I think you are spot on in your explanation. Other than the styling. I like it, but that is always going to vary form person to person.
Ducati Diavel has the power. I also dig the looks. I haven't ridden one though. A few concerns that may or may not be valid (because at this point I haven't seriously looked) the bike is kinda pricey, maintenance sounds really expensive and I've heard horror stories of pricey rear tires only last 4K. If something were to happen to my Kingpin it would get a serious look.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
The BMW national rally was just in Des Moines and I took a nice 40 minute demo ride on the K1600B Grand America. Beautiful bike, solid construction (no squeaks and rattles) and the tranny speed shifter thingy was awesome. And the damn thing was so uncomfortable I wanted to give it back halfway through the ride. That and the goofy "windshield" was a joke. It's an inverted triangle shape so the higher you raise it the more turbulence there is coming around the pointy bottom of the screen, useless.

I think Victory came closer than anybody else but even they have shortcomings. I was once at a Q and A with a Polaris engineer at a Victory rally shortly before the shutdown. He was asking us what we wanted in future models. I told him to take two Octane motors, put them together for a 200 hp V-4 Vision. He acted like I was drunk and blew me off. Why? Think about that motor, it would probably put down around 120-130 ft-lbs of Torque to 8000 rpm redline with hp peaking around 165 at the wheel. Why is that crazy talk in an 800+ lb bike? In fact that's pretty close to what the BMW makes, but the strait 6 configuration seriously interferes with leg room contributing to that bikes poor comfort.

When it comes to bikes I unapologetically want it all. Why can't cruisers be fast?
I test rode a bunch of BMWs and came away thinking I'm not a BMW guy. The R Nine T is interesting but I don't want to own one.
It goes back to the HD playbook. For many many years people who rode Harleys made justifications for the lack of performance.
 

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I agree... Triumph is doing Triumph again! They canned the whole going after HD thing. Their new models are very interesting. The Guzzis too... but they are getting pricey.
A Flying Fortress with 120 HP would be a groove...
A Triumph Speedmaster with 100 HP would be a groove...
Right now, the closest thing to meeting my wants/needs is HD's Sport Glide. Close... not the bullseye, but close.
Finally saw a Sport Glide at a dealer. I sat on it and was pretty impressed. Much more roomy than I expected and the bars felt good.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
That's something about most cruisers... I look at the handlebars and think, "Who decided that was a good position for the rider's hands?". The Japanese cruisers are the worst because they all started with bars that are shaped like the old Fat Boy bars (terrible) or some sort of beach bars. The Heritage bars are OK. I can't do the buckhorns either. One thing about Victory, the handlebars made sense, my first thought wasn't, "These have to go" when I sat on the bikes (except the Boardwalk).
 

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HC, your opinions and thoughts on this are carbon copies of mine. Suzuki, Kawasaki somehow never sparked anything in my interest. The Yamaha’s are close, and the Honda’s are nice but that’s it. They’re not exciting to me at all. They’re just too vanilla in nearly every aspect. Victory was the only real choice for me once I got on one. I’m always looking at other bikes but find myself comparing them to Victory and all of them fall short. I love the sound of the exhaust, the ride, handling and ergos. They look like a bike a custom builder spent a year making with the split tank that fits together with the seat, scallops in the tank and the tail light frenched into the fender. ALL THEY HAD TO DO.... was refine. If they weren’t making money then cut production way back. Make just enough bikes every year to meet customer demand. But alas here we are a year and 8 months after they killed it still wishing. Will it ever end ?
 

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I sure like my V-Strom and I'm 6'3" 215.
 
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I think HD looks more like victory today. You nailed it when said the FXRD looks like the hammer, it sure dose. There E bike ( victory had one), HD coming scout copy ( victory octane ), and now the masses will except change because it has the shield on it. Let’s hope Polaris can now follow up with future bikes that don’t have be nostalgic. HD is going to have an offering for every rider in there line up by 2020.
 
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