BMW of North America, LLC (BMW) is recalling certain model year 2012 K1600 GT and K1600 GTL motorcycles. In certain riding conditions, an incorrect throttle valve control signal may be received by the engine control unit, limiting the engine speed. As a result of the reduced engine speed, the engine could stall, increasing the risk of a crash. BMW will notify owners, and dealers will update the throttle control software, free of charge. The safety recall is expected to begin in December 2013. Owners may contact BMW customer relations at 1-800-525-7417 or email BMW at CustomerRelations@bmwusa.com. Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.
As I twist the throttle and lean into the curve, the brisk October wind slings a basketful of brightly colored Autumn leaves across the highway ahead of me. Colors so vibrant my nose sniffs the air searching for what my brain insists should be a host of complimentary fragrances.
With the speedometer reading 85 mph, I should be concentrating on the highway but instead I’m wishing I’d had the foresight to have a photographer stationed to catch that moment. In my mind I’m daydreaming about the missed photo.
This all black Suzuki surrounded by a swirling riot of orange, red and yellow. Such a photo would be shared by thousands on social media sites and bestowed with awards and honors. I would, by association, become an instant celebrity.
But, without a photographer, the only accolades occur in my imagination. But, at least I’m riding, so it’s still a good day at work. Today is one of those days when the job is so enjoyable it shouldn’t be considered work.
More After the Video
I’m tearing down a sparsely traveled two lane country road on a 2013 Suzuki Boulevard C 90 T BOSS. The T designates the “touring” and the BOSS stands for “Blacked Out Suzuki Special.” A few hours earlier as I was picking up the bike from Statesboro Suzuki/Polaris, owner Mike Wallace told me he’d had the opportunity to put a few hundred miles on a BOSS earlier in the year and was confident I’d enjoy my time on this bike.
The C90T BOSS is new for ‘13 and (since the C109RT has been discontinued) is Suzuki’s largest “Boulevard” cruiser.
And it’s black. Not just the paint, but just about everywhere. From the paint, to the matte black forks, wheels, exhaust, frame and suspension. Pretty much everything they could black out, they did, leaving just enough chrome for contrast.
Other manufacturers have “blacked out” models but none do it any better than the BOSS. Our measure of how good a bike looks is by how much attention it receives when we ride it. The BOSS received a number of thumbs up, and more than a few head turns at stop lights and more than its fair share of female admirers. Of course, some of that attention could have been for the operator and not the bike.
The squat aggressive stance on the C90T is achieved by a 65.9 inch wheelbase (100 inches overall) and a 28.3 inch seat height. It’s a beefy bike, weighing in at 800 lbs, but drop the hydraulically assisted clutch too fast in first gear and you’ll find the 1,462 cc power-plant has enough oomph to lift the front wheel off the ground high enough for you to pucker up the seat.
Twist the throttle and the BOSS shows it’s sportbike DNA. Sharing the same throttle bodies as the Suzuki Gixxers, the engine pulls away so strong you might forget you’re on a cruiser, if not for the seat position.
In our tests (closed course professional rider) we hit the rev limiter at 80 in first gear, 95 in second and over the triple digit mark in third. We maxxed out at 107 mph.
But here’s where we have to bring up the biggest knock on the BOSS. The brakes are squishy. With a single disc in the front and rear, this bike begs for better brakes, ABS or at least as good as those on discontinued C109 which sported linked 2 piston front and three piston rear.
Although The BOSS has all the trappings of a serious tourer, including a large windscreen, in reality the bike isn’t one I’d choose for the coast to coast epic rides. For one, there’s no cruise control or heated grips and the hard plastic saddle bags are too small for anything farther than an overnight jaunt. To increase the baggage capacity you’ll spend $800 for the add on pillion backrest and luggage rack, and then you can add a Kuryakyn tour pack.
Suzuki gets high marks in the comfort department. The seat and pegs set the rider in a natural and comfortable position for long haul days. Suzuki says they designed the seat to allow the rider to shift positions as necessary to eliminate pressure points on long trips. During our longest ride of 5 hours, we found the truth in that. The roomy floorboards also gave us plenty of room to reduce fatigue and adjust our feet for comfort. However, we were not a big fan of the heel/toe shifter, but that’s not a knock on the BOSS, we don’t care for them on any bike we ride.
Our passenger gave rave reviews for the pillion seat comfort as well, although she wasn’t too happy about the passenger pegs. As a female with a short inseam, she found it difficult to swing a leg over the bike to mount due to the width of the bike, and had to resort to placing her left foot on the peg and swinging her right leg over the back of the bike. Adding a backrest would make this maneuver all but impossible, forcing the passenger to mount up before the operator.
Kudos to Suzuki for their LCD gear display which shows the operator which gear the bike is in, even if the clutch is pulled in. Harley and Victory both should copy this bit of engineering as theirs only shows when the clutch is out, rendering it useless at stop signs and red lights, exactly the places where it would be the most useful.
The position of the analog speedometer could be improved as it’s located on the tank, far enough down so there’s no way to see it while wearing a full face helmet without taking your eyes off the road. Since most cruiser riders don’t wear full face helmets, we can certainly understand why Suzuki considers this a minor annoyance.
We wound up spending a week on the BOSS and putting close to 500 miles during our test. We found it to be a good looking, dependable, and powerful touring cruiser for that long day trip or weekend jaunt. Throw on the optional pillion backrest and luggage rack, score a bag from Kuryakyn, and you’ll have a decent mid-level touring bike for slightly longer cruises. Priced at $13,999, the BOSS is a great bike for a spouse who’s significant other has a big touring bike to carry the gear or the person who wants to ride 3 or 4 hours at a time and who mostly logs overnight or weekend trips.
But, I’m not thinking about any of that right now. I’m tearing up the back roads around South Georgia and hunting the perfect spot for a photograph.
Harley-Davidson Motor Company (Harley-Davidson) is recalling certain model year 2014 Trike motorcycles manufactured July 24, 2013, through September 2, 2013. Due to an incorrectly machined part, the motorcycle may have an excessive steering angle allowing the inner fairing to contact the rear brake fluid reservoir resulting in a loss of brake fluid. Additionally, the steering damper may be damaged.
Loss of brake fluid from the rear reservoir would reduce brake performance. Steering damper damage could reduce the rider’s ability to control the motorcycle. Either condition increases the risk of a crash.
Harley-Davidson will notify owners, and dealers will inspect the trikes and replace the fork stem bracket, as necessary, free of charge. The recall is expected to in late November 2013. Owners may contact Harley-Davidson at 1-800-258-2464. Harley-Davidson’s recall number is 0152.
Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.
Professionally constructed of durable urethane composite at the Lehman Trikes factory, the new light bar features six dazzling red LED lights encased in stylish chrome for maximum brightness and class. The light bar can be exact color-match painted at the Lehman Trikes factory or can be ordered unpainted through an authorized Lehman Trikes dealer.
The light bars fit the Renegade LLS trike kit for 2002-current Harley-Davidson FLH and FLT models and are available through authorized Lehman Trikes dealers worldwide. Suggested MSRP is $559 (unpainted), $659 (painted). Customers are encouraged to visit www.lehmantrikes.com or call 1-888-3WHEELS for more information or their nearest Lehman Trikes dealer.
Anderson Diego Lopes, a graphic designer and paper crafter based out of Brazil was commissioned to build a paperboard version of a Harley-Davidson. It’s cool, but we think he took some artistic liberty with the design because we don’t recognize the model. Anyone have an idea what make and year it’s supposed to be?
More photos here http://strictlypaper.com/blog/2013/09/harley-davidson/
(note* at the time we received this press release, the links are not yet active)
MILAN (Nov. 4, 2013) – Harley-Davidson (NYSE: HOG) is continuing its monumental ride, which began with the introduction of Project RUSHMORE in August, by revealing two new Dark Custom™ motorcycles designed for young urban riders around the world.
The Harley-Davidson Street™ 750 and Street™ 500 motorcycles – the first all-new platform from Harley-Davidson in 13 years – are built for urban environments with all-new liquid-cooled Revolution X™ powertrains, nimble agility and the sound and look that lets everyone know they are genuine Harley-Davidson.
“These are the newest motorcycles to join our Dark Custom lineup, which helped make us the number-one selling brand to young adults in the U.S. for the past five years,” said Matt Levatich, President and Chief Operating Officer, Harley-Davidson Motor Company. “Both the Street 750 and Street 500 were designed with thousands of hours of input from young adults in cities around the world. This input guided both the attitude and capabilities of these motorcycles. They are proof that being customer-led continues to be a core driver of our product development process.”
Urban, Authentic Harley-Davidson
The Street 750 and Street 500 from Harley-Davidson are built for an urban environment. Each motorcycle features the new Revolution X engine, designed to match the demands of stop-and-go traffic with nimble agility, while delivering instant throttle response to escape city gridlock.
The Revolution X engine will be housed in a new, narrow and lean chassis built for agility, with a super-low seat height, new suspension and broad handlebar sweep that provides confidence and maneuverability when managing tight turns and fast moves. Both signature Dark Custom motorcycles feature a premium, minimalist style that serves as a blank canvas for riders to customize.
“These new bikes are leaner, yet still have a mean streak – they’re the real deal, made of real steel.” said Mark-Hans Richer, Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer, Harley-Davidson Motor Company. “They’re designed to handle the abuses of urban environments and provide authentic opportunities to customize.”
The Harley-Davidson Street 750 and Street 500 will be rolling into dealerships in select markets starting in 2014. More information is available at www.h-d.com/street.
Video of the Harley-Davidson Street platform reveal in Milan, including an in-depth walk-through of the motorcycles, details on their design, and a Q&A with Richer will be available athttp://www.youtube.com/
Motorcycle racing legend Ray Price was recently inducted into the East Coast Drag Times Hall of Fame at a ceremony held in Henderson, N.C., by the Vance County Tourism Department. Ray and his wife Jean attended the 12th annual event, which was held Sunday, October 20, at the Vance-Granville Community College Civic Center. The East Coast Drag Times Hall of Fame weekend has grown into one of the nation’s largest gatherings for drag racing cars, muscle cars, street rods and motorcycles.
“I’m honored to be inducted into the East Coast Drag Times Hall of Fame and join so many drag racing legends,” said Ray Price, founder of Ray Price Harley-Davidson and Ray Price Triumph in Raleigh, and Ray Price Triumph/Ducati of Fayetteville.
The East Coast Drag Times Hall of Fame and the Vance County Tourism Department promote the impact of hot rodding and drag racing, which has become a major motorsports industry with an estimated $1 billion impact on the nation’s economy.
Price also has been inducted into the American Motorcycle Association Hall of Fame, the Sturgis Motorcycle Hall of Fame, the National Motorcycle Museum, and the N.C. Drag Racing Hall of Fame.
About the East Coast Drag Times Hall of Fame
Formed in 2002 in Henderson, N.C., the East Coast Drag Times Hall of Fame was established by Nancy Wilson, director of the Vance County Tourism Department, along with a determined group of eastern U.S.-based drag racers, media members, and local professionals. The popular East Coast Drag Times Hall of Fame weekend, held each year in mid-October, has grown into one of the region’s largest car shows. It closes down the main street of Henderson, forming a pedestrian mall that showcases hundreds of hot rods, muscle cars, antique automobiles, motorcycles and racecars. The weekend event attracts more than 20,000 attendees, including many retired racers who visit each year to re-establish friendships and past rivalries. The event also features a cruise-in car show that transports participants and the downtown blocks of Henderson back to the cruising scene of the 1950s and 1960s. Hall of Fame induction ceremonies take place at the Vance-Granville Civic Center.
About Ray Price Harley-Davidson
Throughout 2012, the Harley-Davidson Motor Company celebrates its 110th Anniversary. In Raleigh, N.C., Ray Price Harley-Davidson has been a big part of this American history for the past 30 years as the Southeast’s premier Harley-Davidson dealership. Staff has 950 years of combined Harley riding experience to provide award-winning customer service and education programs for beginners to expert riders. Ray Price was named 2012 “Top 10 Dealer” from Dealernews, the leading powersports industry publication. The dealership’s commitment to community philanthropy has resulted in more than $100,000 in donations to area nonprofits in recent years. Last month’s 9th annual Capital City Bikefest attracted 85,000 people to Raleigh for the state’s largest motorcycle festival. Learn more on the Ray Price Facebook page.
Ray Price is best known for his many successes in motorcycle drag racing with the International Hot Rod Association, and National Hot Rod Association, among others. He has been inducted into the American Motorcycle Association Hall of Fame, the Sturgis Motorcycle Hall of Fame, and the N.C. Drag Racing Hall of Fame. He is now an inducted member of the East Coast Drag Times Hall of Fame.
Most brands don’t give you a full fledged sales pitch at the demo rides. Indian, on the other hand, takes advantage of the opportunity to inform their prospective customers of the benefits and features of the brand. As the model offering expands, it’s not going to be something they will be able to continue to do, but kudos to the marketing staff for doing it while they can. As you can see in the video, it’s informative and designed to sell the value of owning the Indian over other brands. Additionally, the presentation does a good job of explaining why the bike feels so well balanced (right side drive) and how Polaris used the latest technology to enhance the ride experience.
Harley-Davidson (NYSE: HOG) is acting quickly to address potential safety issues by voluntarily recalling certain 2014 Touring motorcycles equipped with a hydraulic clutch system that may pose a safety issue for riders and/or passengers. The recalls include a Do Not Ride notice to owners and a Do Not Deliver notice to Harley-Davidson dealers until the motorcycle is fixed.
“The safety of our customers is our highest priority,” said Tony Wilcox, Harley-Davidson General Manager of Motorcycle New Product Delivery. “We have identified potential safety issues and are moving quickly to notify our customers and dealers. The inspection and repair of these motorcycles is extremely important, so it’s critical that our customers with affected vehicles contact their dealers immediately. We apologize for this circumstance. The company is committed to correcting the issues and providing customers with the quality experience and service they expect.”
The recalls affect 25,185 Touring motorcycles, models FLHTCU, FLHTK, FLHTP, FLHX, FLHXS, FLHTKSE and FLHRSE, and 3,861 Softail® CVOs and Trikes, models FLHTCUTG, FXSBSE and FLSTNSE, built between May 3, 2013, and Oct. 14, 2013.
Some of these motorcycles may exhibit a condition in which the hydraulic clutch system may lose the ability to generate enough lift to disengage the clutch. If the clutch does not disengage as intended, the rider may have difficulty slowing or stopping the motorcycle, which could result in an accident. Harley-Davidson has initiated these recalls to correct the affected motorcycles.
The company is taking the additional measure of issuing a Do Not Ride notice to riders given the potential safety issues. The company wants owners of affected motorcycles to contact an authorized Harley-Davidson dealer immediately to arrange for an inspection. The dealer will pick up, inspect and make the necessary repairs at no cost to the owner. The repairs have been identified and should take less than one hour.
Yamaha is recalling certain model year 2011 XC50A (Vino Classic) motorcycles manufactured from April 2011 through August 2011. Due to improper adhesion, the brake shoe linings may separate from the front and rear brake shoes. If the brake shoe linings separate, the brake performance could be reduced, increasing the risk of a crash. Yamaha will notify owners, and dealers will replace the front and rear brake shoes, free of charge. The recall is expected to begin in early October 2013. Owners may contact Yamaha at 1-800-962-7926. Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.