January 23, 2013 by Rider Newsletter Staff
Is 2013 the Year to Get a New Ride?
Some interesting new models worth checking out
The New Year is well underway and most of us are looking forward to spring and the 2013 riding season. Now might be the time to take a look at your current ride (and your bank account) to see if you’re ready for something new. Finances are a big part of that equation, of course, but where there’s a will, there’s usually a way.
We’ve been nosing around the Web lately eyeing a lot of new and updated bikes and found some we think are worth a look. 2013 seems to be a good year for innovation and updated styling. Below are a few examples. Get on the Web, pull out your favorite magazine or head over to a dealer and see what you can find. Even if you’re not really in the market, it’s always fun to look.
Moto Guzzi California 1400
It’s been a long time since Moto Guzzi slipped from motorcycle greatness to has been status. However, the 2013 Moto Guzzi California 1400 is designed to bring back some of old Guzzi Mojo. If it looks familiar, cast your mind back to the California Highway Patrol (CHiPs) bikes of the past. In fact, you don’t really have to look back; there are still thousands of the old Guzzis on the road today.
You can’t deny this is a cool looking motorcycle. It’s a damned big one, too. It also may be a bit of a gamble for Piaggo, who purchased the Aprillia Group, which included Moto Guzzi, back in 2008. Since then, they’ve invested tens of millions updating manufacturing facilities and design capabilities. The new California 1400 is the first step in what Piaggo hopes will be the rebirth of a classic brand. Judging by the press, their hopes may be well placed.
Honda Gold Wing F6B
An affordable Gold Wing? Well, affordable by comparison. The new F6B retails for $19,999, which places it squarely at the bottom of the Gold Wing line. It’s no slouch, however. Featuring exceptional good looks and the frame, drivetrain and reputation of the Gold Wing at a lower price, the FB6 is designed to attract some new, younger riders Honda’s way.
The new model features a shorty windscreen and a “gunslinger” seat. You can have any color, as long as it’s black or red. Most of the shiny parts have been blacked out, so it looks super cool. For a grand more, you can add some extras, including a passenger backrest, heated grips and a center stand. It may not be the Gold Wing of your dreams, but at more than $10 thousand less than the high-end models; it’s certainly worth thinking about.
2013 Victory Judge
What if you took the look and feel of a classic muscle car and applied them to a modern, well-appointed motorcycle? According to the folks at Victory, you’d have the new Judge. The name is taken from the famous Pontiac GTO model that first appeared in 1969. We’ll let you be the judge (pun intended) of whether Victory has captured the muscle car spirit in the new 2013 model.
Designed as a sport cruiser, The Judge is one of the more affordable Victory models, retailing under $14,000. The bike features Victory’s 106 cubic inch V-twin engine and a six speed transmission. The styling is all new, but the style will take you back.
2013 Harley-Davidson Seventy-Two
We wrote a blog on this bike when it was introduced last year. It’s worth mentioning again because it’s cool looking, simple and – with a price just over $10,000 – within reach of a lot of riders. Plus, with its 70s chopper styling and available super cool red metal flake paint, you’ll be riding with class. Overall, the bike offers a simple, quasi-custom, scaled-back look with the known quality and drivetrain of a true Harley Sportster.
This spring should see the nationwide release of the Motus MST and MST-R. It seems like the new, Birmingham-based manufacturer has been pregnant forever, but the new babies are finally on the way. Prices range into the mid $30K range, so they are not for everyone. However, the V-4 baby block engine has a powerful cool factor and the company promises a powerful, comfortable ride. Time will tell.
The 2013 Zero S is bringing electric motorcycling into the realm of the real by extending the range to 137 miles with a top speed of 95 miles-per-hour. You may not see an electric in your future, but the new specs at least make them a viable alternative.
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