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Motorcycles Top 10 Guilty Pleasure Motorcycles

13:31  18 september  2020
13:31  18 september  2020 Source:   motorcyclistonline.com

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Having a new motorcycle you’re proud to ride that does everything you need it to do predictably and effectively is about as close to heaven on Earth as you’re likely to find. For a lot of riders, there might be a handful of bikes like that, and if they’re fortunate, those machines will each have a place in the garage at the same time.

a motorcycle parked on the side: The Honda Trail 125 ABS is going to be pure fun on two wheels. © Honda The Honda Trail 125 ABS is going to be pure fun on two wheels. a motorcycle parked on the side: I would never unleash the full potential of a Ninja H2R, but that doesn’t mean I don’t want one. © Kawasaki I would never unleash the full potential of a Ninja H2R, but that doesn’t mean I don’t want one.

But being a rider also means that you’re always looking around, scoping the other bikes on the road, in the magazines, online, at dealerships. It doesn’t matter if you’ve found “the one” and are entirely content. It’s in our nature to imagine what the grass is like on the other side.

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a motorcycle parked on the side of a building: The FA-13 Bomber is everything that’s great about Combat motorcycles. Audacious design, high-quality materials, and a jaw-dropping look. © Combat Motorcycles The FA-13 Bomber is everything that’s great about Combat motorcycles. Audacious design, high-quality materials, and a jaw-dropping look.

Some bikes inspire that feeling more than others and can occupy space in your mind for years. They’ll command your attention every time they roll by or pop up on your computer screen. These, in a broad sense, are what I see as guilty pleasure bikes.

a motorcycle parked in front of a house: The Halcyon 250 may be a bit too hipster, but it still creeps back into my mind every now and again. The curse of being a millennial, I guess… © Janus Motorcycles Facebook The Halcyon 250 may be a bit too hipster, but it still creeps back into my mind every now and again. The curse of being a millennial, I guess…

They’re the bikes you keep up with during new model year announcements. You’ll read the motorcycle reviews and watch the videos every time you see them. Some may fit the strict definition of a guilty pleasure, others are simply bikes that take up more time than they should and you’ll rarely ever talk about with others.

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a close up of a motorcycle: A Tri Glide would make cross-country travel so, so nice. © Harley-Davidson A Tri Glide would make cross-country travel so, so nice.

So I’m going to lay my secrets bare and share 10 of the bikes that fit into this category for me, and I hope you take a moment to tell us what your picks would be down in the comments.

Honda Trail 125 ABS

a motorcycle parked on the side: The Honda Trail 125 ABS is going to be pure fun on two wheels. © Provided by Motorcyclist The Honda Trail 125 ABS is going to be pure fun on two wheels.

This is a new one for me, but as soon as I saw the new Honda Trail 125 ABS, I wanted one. It reads as pure fun and could have some practical uses too; it would be a great little rig to take camping or to use as a pitbike, it might even be a decent around-town machine. But it doesn’t have the off-road prowess of an ADV or dual sport, and it lacks the convenient covered storage capability of a scooter. It’s got a moped vibe and would never be my first choice for off-roading or commuting. All that being said, I want one. I want one bad.

Kawasaki Ninja H2R

a motorcycle parked on the side: I would never unleash the full potential of a Ninja H2R, but that doesn’t mean I don’t want one. © Provided by Motorcyclist I would never unleash the full potential of a Ninja H2R, but that doesn’t mean I don’t want one.

I love the look and the sound of the Kawasaki Ninja H2R pulling air into its supercharged 998cc engine. But I am far from being an advanced track rider and would never, ever unleash the potential of this bike. It’s expensive and exclusive, two things that typically put a bike in the not-for-me category, but despite all that I’ve dreamed about owning one of the H2 models since I saw it unveiled in 2014. It’s beyond my skill level, pay grade, and typical ride style, but who cares. If I ever get the chance to own one, I will.

Combat Motors FA-13 Combat Bomber

a motorcycle parked on the side of a building: The FA-13 Bomber is everything that’s great about Combat motorcycles. Audacious design, high-quality materials, and a jaw-dropping look. © Provided by Motorcyclist The FA-13 Bomber is everything that’s great about Combat motorcycles. Audacious design, high-quality materials, and a jaw-dropping look.

Combat Motors makes extravagant custom motorcycles that are available only to the limited number of consumers unconcerned with dropping more than $100,000 on a bike. Its machines are striking though, and not in an early 2000s, gaudy paint job/ridiculous rake kind of way. They are bikes that seem to result from the brain of some creative industrial designer let off the leash. The FA-13 Combat Bomber is actually one of the more subdued bikes in the Combat stable and is the kind of outlandish custom I would want if money grew on trees.

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Janus Motorcycles Halcyon 250

a motorcycle parked in front of a house: The Halcyon 250 may be a bit too hipster, but it still creeps back into my mind every now and again. The curse of being a millennial, I guess… © Provided by Motorcyclist The Halcyon 250 may be a bit too hipster, but it still creeps back into my mind every now and again. The curse of being a millennial, I guess…

Janus Motorcycles is a relatively new and fairly small operation out of Indiana making small-bore, retro-inspired bikes at a decent price. A new Halcyon 250 starts at $6,995, for example. These bikes are designed and built in the USA and they actually look pretty impressive in person. There’s one I see around town here in southern Oregon occasionally, and I was surprised at the quality of the fit and finish. Sure it’s a bit too hipster for many, and the nostalgic designs may be a bit much, but ever since I learned about Janus a few years back I’ve never been able to shake the desire to own one.

Harley-Davidson Tri Glide

a close up of a motorcycle: A Tri Glide would make cross-country travel so, so nice. © Provided by Motorcyclist A Tri Glide would make cross-country travel so, so nice.

I’ll be perfectly honest and say that I’m a little jealous of you riders out there with Tri Glides. This bike would be an absolute blast to take on a cross-country trip and would take a lot less work to convince my wife to ride along with me. It’s got comfort, storage space, wind protection, infotainment, cruise control. The list goes on and on. I’m nowhere near retirement age and am still fully capable of riding a two-wheeler anywhere I’d go on the Tri Glide, but it would be nice to have the option to kick back a bit on the road while still enjoying the open-air experience only a bike provides.

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Kawasaki Vulcan S

a motorcycle parked on the side: The Vulcan S is sort of a sleeper, but it made an impact. © Provided by Motorcyclist The Vulcan S is sort of a sleeper, but it made an impact.

The Vulcan S would be a bike I’d proudly ride around town and use to take on weekend-long trips. However, it doesn’t command my attention when I walk through a dealership. I had the good fortune to ride one a few years back and thoroughly enjoyed myself, but there’s a line of bikes ahead of it that would earn my hard-earned cash first. A good adventure machine, then a sporty standard, at the very least, would have to be in my garage before I’d even entertain the thought of dropping cash on the Vulcan S. That being said, I still think about it fondly from time to time.

KTM 450 SMR Supermoto

a man riding on the back of a motorcycle: Is there anything better? © Provided by Motorcyclist Is there anything better?

I love, love, love a supermoto. Nimble and lightweight, these things are a blast to ride. And KTM bringing back the 450 SMR Supermoto to its lineup for 2021 has revived my desire to have one. But I don’t have a track nearby, nor a truck to haul the bike, so it would be absolutely impractical of me to put down $11,299 to own one. Maybe a day will come when I give in and get a road-legal supermoto and enjoy myself beyond measure on the winding roads outside town, but for now, this one is just not in the cards for me.

Honda NC750X

a motorcycle parked on the side: The NC750X isn’t a showstopper, but it’s one smooth ride nonetheless. © Provided by Motorcyclist The NC750X isn’t a showstopper, but it’s one smooth ride nonetheless.

Seven years ago I got on a Honda NC700X and I still remember that bike being as smooth warm butter. Since then Honda’s upped displacement and given the NC750X a face-lift and DCT as an option, which would make the ride even more effortless. It’s not a showstopper in the looks department, even with its makeover, and does everything OK without blowing the roof off in any one performance category. But even with its middle-of-the-road presence, this bike stays on my radar year in and out. Maybe I’m just a plain oatmeal kind of guy…

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Victory Magnum (or any Victory model for that matter…)

a person wearing a helmet riding a motorcycle down a street: I was a big fan of the Victory look and might be tempted someday to pick up an old model if the stars align. © Provided by Motorcyclist I was a big fan of the Victory look and might be tempted someday to pick up an old model if the stars align.

I was a fan of Victory motorcycles when they were still around; I thought they had a unique, clean look with just the right amount of attitude and aggression. The Magnum is a great example of that aesthetic, a mean-yet-classy bagger that catches the eye without totally offending it. True, they didn’t have the best handling or performance characteristics in the cruiser segment, and Polaris ceased production of the brand in 2017, and technical gremlins plagued a number of the models. But despite all that I still catch myself thinking that if I ever found a used Victory, I might just go for it.

Triumph Rocket 3 R

a motorcycle parked on the side: The Rocket 3 is a gorgeous, powerful motorcycle. But I’m still trying to find a way to justify having one in the garage. © Provided by Motorcyclist The Rocket 3 is a gorgeous, powerful motorcycle. But I’m still trying to find a way to justify having one in the garage.

The Triumph Rocket 3 has had a hold on me ever since I first saw those elegant pipes in person. And with a Rocket 3 R now on the market, my interest is once again piqued. Who wouldn’t want a bike with the largest production engine in it, gorgeous fit and finish, a sound to die for? Plus it now handles, and I would absolutely love to explore every detail of that seemingly endless powerband. It’s even quite a bit lighter now, which is a big plus for this machine. Despite all that, it’s simply not in the cards for me.

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