Honda VFR1200F: Riding Shamu On The Road

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Honda VFR1200

Last Saturday, we took the Honda VFR1200F to the track and were terrified. This week, we put in a bunch of highway miles, some of them two-up. This should be Shamu’s ideal environment, right? >

Yesterday, we had to return the 2010 MV Agusta F4 (VS. feature soon, promise) we’d been enjoying the hell out of back to Fast by Ferracci so we rode it and Shamu from New York to Philly and back, a 90-ish mile trip each way, most of it on 95. Two bikes on the way there, so two up on the way back. Before you ask, Grant rode on the back, that’s just our relationship dynamic.

A lot of people got very upset when we criticized Shamu for being under damped, equipped with snatchy brakes, unpredictable fueling and precisely the wrong ergonomics for track riding. So, let’s start by saying a bunch of nice stuff about the VFR:

1. It’s very stable while carrying a passenger. Crank the remote preload adjuster up as far as it’ll let you and the bike tracks straight and predictably at highway speeds and is easy to balance while lane splitting at low speeds. Just watch the front end when you throw it into corners and you’ll be fine. Grant and I both weigh about 175lbs, so it was carrying a considerably amount of weight.

2. The paint quality is outstanding. Honda applied its car paint process to a bike for the first time and it really paid off. The paint is deep and lustrous.

3. It sounds awesome. Well, once the second exhaust valve opens at 6,000rpm it does. The bucket full of muffled nails turns to a proper V4 drone in an instant, reminding you that the fueling has now ceased to be jerky. This is a really cool solution, delivering excellent engine sound when you’re going fast and near silent running when you’re not.

4. It shoots really well. Or at least Grant shoots it really well. Doesn’t it look hot in these photos?

5. Each visual detail is brilliant when considered individually. The headlight, the layered fairing, the curvy tank, all super sexy.

6. You can see stuff in the mirrors!  They’re big, wide and nearly vibration free. Cop car sneaking up behind you? You can tell it apart from a cloud or a truck or your elbow. You can actually identify individual cars by make and model out to a couple hundred yards behind you. Why aren’t all bikes like this?

7. The clocks are super easy to read. A big tach in the middle, just like it should be and all the ancillary functions – temperature, clock, gear position — are easy to read too.

8. The badges and subtle branding reek of luxury. No giant wings or shell suit colors, just slick cloisonne badges and a couple of subtle “Honda” logos. Fitting for a $15,999 luxury good.

9. It hides its weight almost completely. You’ll never guess it weighs 591lbs (wet) until it comes time to push it around in a garage. Even at very low speeds you can trickle along with both feet up just like you would on a scooter.

The problem is, that even cruising on the highway, the sea in which Shamu was built to swim, still reveals some huge shortcomings:

1. It’s not comfortable. Sit on the bike in a showroom and it feels incredibly plush. The seat is soft, the bars are relatively high, the pegs are low. Good, right? Not after twenty minutes or more. Both Grant (5′ 11″) and I (6′ 2″) complained that the riding position directed shocks straight into our spines, resulting in sore backs. The bars too, are just low enough to put weight on your wrists. Vibes are also a problem, my right hand was numb for most of the ride back. We’re not the only ones with this problem.

2. The fairing doesn’t do a good job of redirecting airflow. Granted, I’m slightly taller than average, but even at highway speeds I was subject to considerable buffeting. Not something I’d be happy with on a bike intended for distance work.

3. The pillion seat sucks. Grant didn’t just insist on riding bitch the whole time because he likes being the big spoon, he didn’t think my 34″ inseam would be feasible given the peg height. At a 32″ inseam, his legs were still very uncomfortable. He also complained of a sore ass and felt like he was going to fall whenever I accelerated. Forgivable on a sportsbike, not on a touring bike.

4. The fueling is still awful. We had to lane split through stationary traffic all the way across Staten Island and up the BQE as far as Carroll Gardens, which is about 15 miles. Traveling at a constant speed in first gear results in unpredictable surging and snappy on/off throttle response. Not good for a passenger’s confidence when their knees are clipping wing mirrors. Always cover the clutch.

5. First gear is too tall. You need to use it up to about 25/30mph and you’re slipping the clutch up to about 15mph. If the VFR had chain drive we’d simply suggest going down one tooth on the front, but honestly, we aren’t sure what you’re supposed to do with shaft drive.

6. The brakes are still snatchy. It’s simply too easy to plunge the front end accidentally with a whiff too much lever. This is especially evident while splitting, when a hair’s breath separates you from certain death.

7. You still aren’t going to be cornering hard. This was our biggest complaint on the track, the suspension simply couldn’t deal with big lean angles and big speeds. Even on the road, get some g-forces going and things start wobbling. Before you ask, the suspension settings were just off max on everything and no, the shock is not blown.

8. Put all those neat design features together and it looks like a different designer worked on each part of the bike. Why is the swingarm so weedy in comparison to the visual bulk of the fairing? What’s going on with that crazy triangular exhaust outlet above an old bit of pipe for the other output? Why do the headers look like spaghetti poking out of random holes in the fairing? Why do the plastic cladding on the tank not meet at the front? Why is the front of the bike red and the rear silver? Why is there so much black plastic covering every conceivable mechanical part that could otherwise be on display? 

There, we said one more nice thing about it than we said nasty things. Everyone happy? Good, because we’re about to say one more very negative thing. The Honda VFR1200F in no way justifies its $15,999 price. It’s not a good tourer, it’s not a good sportsbike, it’s not a good all-rounder. It’s not even average at most of that. For that price, we’d expect it to be brilliant at something (beyond paint quality) or at least good at everything. Shamu doesn’t even have any toys or any luggage. What are you spending that money on? An all-new engine that fuels terribly and develops no power below 6,000rpm? Suspension that can’t cope with the weight?

Look, it’s not that we hate Honda or something. In fact, it’s exactly the opposite. Personally, I love Honda. I’ve always owned Hondas. I’m a sucker for decent build quality, good reliability, peerless engineering and an affordable sticker price. Shamu only has the first two though.

If you want the best all-rounder in the world, buy a current Honda CBR600RR. Seriously. It’s comfortable enough that you could hop on and ride it across country, it handles well enough that you could ride in the Advanced group at a trackday on stock equipment and it’s cheap and reliable enough that you could commute on it everyday.

If you want the best superbike in the world, buy a current Honda CBR1000RR. It’s an amazing combination of exotic performance, intuitive control and an affordable sticker price.

If you want a touring bike, buy a Goldwing. They’re ridiculously fun to ride, will hold all your luggage and riding pillion on one is like reclining in your Lay-Z-Boy.

The above three suggestions aren’t just the three best Hondas, they’re the three best bikes in the entire world. If I didn’t get to ride other people’s motorcycles all the time, I’d buy a CBR600RR and be happy with it for a long, long time. It’s a no brainer, I wouldn’t even consider anything else.

This VFR just isn’t in the same league, not even close. What the hell happened here, Honda?

Shamu-Road.jpgWhy do we call the VFR1200 Shamu? Believe it or not, the nickname’s
not supposed to be negative. Last summer, when black
and white photos of the bike leaked
, before we ever knew it weighed
what it does, commenters and forum fan boys started calling the bike
“Shamu.” Look at this black and white photo and tell us it doesn’t look
like a Killer Whale with all those organic curves, smooth bulges and
contrasting colors. We like nicknames, so it stuck. No harm meant.
 

  • http://psrey.com/wp @Reyzie

    As a CBR1000RR rider, when the news of the new VFR initially broke, I thought it could potentially be my next bike. Unfortunately the VFR1200 seems to be more DN-01 than CBR and therefore, not the right platform for me.

    I’m not saying it’s an awful motorcycle, just too much tech and weight for my style of riding. I’m certain some touring-centric riders will swear by it, but for me, I was hoping for a more “sporting” motorcycle.

    • dogfm

      Go test ride it and decide for yourself rather than judge it for the specs or from forum comments. I did and am glad I did. I bought one after a test ride, prior to that I thought it was ugly & overweight.

  • robotribe

    I like Hondas too, but between Shamu, the DN-01 and Rune, failure comes in threes. Hopefully we’re beyond this recent shit-spell.

    • swami

      In defense of the Rune. It didn’t have any competition.

  • patrick

    Hmm too bad, cause I won’t be able to dislike this motorcycle. I like the looks of it too much.
    Oh well, I still have quite a few years before I consider riding this, guess I’ll count on the updates.

  • Sean Smith

    So do you guys always ride two-up? Or is it only on special occasions?

    • http://Http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

      Always. It’s cuddlier that way.

  • The Grudz

    The East Coast in July? Two up?! Sounds like things might be getting pretty serious! Your close friends will soon start calling you Went…or Gres. You choose. I have to agree with your take on the CBR600. Mighty good at many things.

  • GeddyT

    Agree on all counts on the 600RR. I had an ’05 1000RR and loved it, although it always felt a bit heavy for a sportbike. Fit me well, though, and no matter how hard I crashed it at the track, I just couldn’t kill the thing. As a Honda guy, I couldn’t wait for the ’07 600RR. Everything I read was so positive that I bought one the month they were released. Bought it “for the wife.” Figured if she didn’t like it I could make it my next track bike.

    Anyway, I was blown away. I had never ridden a bike before and have never since that just WORKS so well. It’s so incredibly easy to go fast on it. Ergonomics are perfect, and I couldn’t believe how comfortable it was right out of the box. “Why is this little bike more comfortable than my bigger, roomier Repsol? And REALLY why is it more comfortable 2-up!?” It was also incredibly light, which doesn’t hurt anything. Most importantly, though, was how well it handled. No other bike has given me that kind of telepathic feel to the pavement. Just want it to do something, and it does.

    I understand it’s gained a little weight since then and lost a tiny bit of power. That’s too bad. I wish I would have kept that thing. When I finally have the time and money to get back to the track again, I’ll probably try finding myself a cheap ’07 that’s ready to go. Or an ’08 1000RR. (I’m a “light is right” kind of guy.) Tough decision…

    It’s been all Ducati Hell since those two bikes. So, really, I miss my Hondas.

  • Jon

    Not all of us can fit on a supersport, or would ever choose to. And not all of use want an 800 lb Goldwing. But I generally agree that the VFR is overpriced for what you get. There’s zero tech in the non-DCT version other than a fancy new V4.

    I’d much rather have the new Multistrada. By the time you pile all the options on the VFR that the Strada comes with you’re at near the same price but are missing DTC, Ohlins, power modes, and weight in at about 100 lbs more.

  • http://www.proitalia.com Ed

    Agreed on all counts: IMHO shamu is too heavy, too expensive, ugly and above all just doesn’t work right. No anti-Honda bias here, either – I have had six Honda bikes (including a VF1000R and VF700C)and four Honda cars (three Civic Si and a CRX) and loved them all.

    I really, really wanted to like this bike, just like I really wanted to like the ’02 VFR800fi the last time I was shopping for a new sport touring bike. The 800fi was underpowered, too expensive when equipped with hard bags, and homely – so I bought a leftover ’02 Sprint ST for $9500 out the door, bags included.

    Now the Sprint has nearly 60,000 trouble-free miles on it and I’m shopping for a replacement, and Honda gives me this, the sterile NT700 or the ancient ST1300. No thanks; that’s two new bike sales lost in 8 years.

    Come on, Honda. Get it right next time. Make it sexy and above all make it work for the $15k you’re asking. In this economy you can’t afford a pricey sales dog growing roots on the showroom floor.

  • Liquidogged

    After my first couple bikes I wanted a big sport tourer, something that could eat miles, do it comfortably, handle well, and get something better than than 35mpg. I wound up lusting for a Honda Blackbird, which by all accounts is an incredible bike, that still has a huge following. Used examples fetch high prices. Honda has always made bikes that people can really USE, that they can CONNECT with. Never thought I’d be a Honda guy, but over the years I’ve wound up owning more of them than anything else. And of course, always wanted an Interceptor too… so I was also very excited about the big viffer. Really sad that it turned out to be such lemon… I just can’t deal with a modern bike with that kind of weight that’s supposed to be “sporting” in any way. I wonder if Honda has really lost touch… I mean damn, where is their e-bike? They make robots and F1 cars, for chrissake. And we get Shamu?

  • Joe P.

    That’ll take some big ol’ balls riding two up on 95 through Jersey; on the weeks that’s a hot trafficky mess between the shore and Six Flags.

    Honda really screwed the pooch with this one; my experience with Hondas started with a CB250 Nighthawk and a ’91 VFR. Two great bikes that perform exactly what they where built to do flawlessly. Swing and miss on this one …

  • Pepi

    They discontinued the VFR 800 for THIS???????

  • DoctorNine

    “..Success represents the 1% of your work which results from the 99% that is called failure…”

    “..What we learn through failure becomes a precious part of us, strengthening us in everything we do. So let the tough things make you tougher…”

    “..The value of life can be measured by how many times your soul has been deeply stirred…”

    本田宗一郎 (Honda Sōichirō)

    I miss him. Things are not the same.
    People of Honda Corporation, remember who you are.

    • AK

      Great quote, always relative.

  • Randall R

    The only Honda that I would consider buying these days is the naked CB1000R…but of course I don’t believe it’s being imported to the states. (yet?)

    Honda would have had the perfect sport-tourer with only a few changes : VTR Superhawk.
    If it had a bigger gas tank and FI, it would have been perfect….but of course it would have eaten into the VFR sales.

    I loved my SH, but I got tired of planning out trips in 90 mile segments.

    • pepi

      VTR SuperHawk: What a nice bike…

      I only payed attention to V-Twin and V-four powered Hondas, but it seems that even that has been degraded…

      Baby boomers gerontologicalized marketing…

      1200 FAIL

  • Emmet

    I’m sure the sponsored motorcycle magazines will have a lot more praise for this bike, probably a cover page photo as well.

  • brettvegas

    The tranny sounds interesting. Though it reminds me of the ‘derailleur diddling” of the bicycle industry. Tech solutions to a problem that everybody just deals with. My beemer shifts like a dump-truck, misses gears, yadda-yadda, up-side is robust simplicity. Same with my guzzi. Half the reason I picked up the guzzi was that raw, low-tech, mil-spec shit nearly don’t exist on this ball of dirt.
    The punk-rock chick I met at the bar, with a ’79 honda 500, would probly love a new bike, if she could find a replacement.

  • Sporty

    I’ll keep my VFR800. It is 10 times the bike this thing is hands down. I really do not know what kind of bike this thing is. It sure isn’t a sport bike and it is not a sport touring bike. Anyone buying this thing for a touring bike is making a huge mistake. It is overpriced and ugly besides. I test rode one in Madison, Wisconsin and I was not impressed at all. Honda should join up with Harley Davidson and see who can build the worst bike.

  • Chuluun

    Looks like Rider mag gave the nod to the VFR12 simply because it’s the ‘newest of the new’, and I guess there’s no harm in lauding innovation.

    Tech for tech’s sake, even if it doesn’t work quite right yet or even address an identified problem, is pretty much a Honda tradition anyway. Kind of ironic that so much of the disappointment in Shamu stems from love for the older VFRs, which were themselves a response to justifiably strong criticism of Honda’s first V4s.

    Let’s hope history repeats itself, Honda listens and learns like it did back then, and there’s a truly great motorcycle just around the corner.

    And never mind the new CBR600RRs, my old CBR600F3 still does everything I want better than most new bikes could.

  • sovfr

    Looks like the bike is low on oil… Check window on right side engine photo shows it’s empty… Maybe not a fueling problem, but near seizure!!! :-)

    THanks for this “real world” review.

    • eze1976

      do you often check oil levels on a side stand?

  • kloudykat

    Honestly, I would rather see a real review than a fake “i LOVED it and it was AWESOME” one any day. Hopefully the people at Honda are smart enough to realize this. It doesn’t make me think any less of them. I got a ’01 CBR F4i, a ’95 Civic and i am looking for a honda lawnmower so I can have the trifecta. :)

  • Penguinius

    “Before you ask, Grant rode on the back, that’s just our relationship dynamic.”

    Things like this are the reason that I enjoy HFL so much and honestly think that the reviews by Wes and Grant are better than most of the mainstream bike media, everything you read in bike magazines is just a bit too clinical and lacking in personality. Your first person accounts and ‘With my own eyes’ opinion being voiced tell people more about the reality of bikes than the press blurb regurgitate that you get from most places.

    I think the CBR600RR is a fantastic counterpoint to the VFR, The VFR is a 30 minute bike, for the first 30 minutes of riding it, it is nothing but impressive. You can be a bit dazzled by its ‘Hondaishness’ (I know I was when I had a go). It genuinely feels a bit special. That is until you’ve had half hour in the saddle and then every single one of the above negative points start to become noticeable and then unbearable. I don’t know whether it’s my wrist or the bike I rode but the fuelling combined with the U-Boat forks were borderline dangerous at times (although I suspect it might be because there is no chain & crush hub to take out some of the ‘snap’ of the drive train). It is probably the biggest letdown I have ever thrown my leg over (excluding the time I was in Norfolk, but I digress)

    The CBR is the exact opposite – for the first 30 minutes you’ll like it, there after the more you use it the more you’ll love it, subtle pieces of brilliance just keep oozing from the CBR and it puts a smile on my face every time I use it.

  • kevin

    Would the Honda NT700V be the Honda bike of choice that does a little bit of everything good (not great)? Excluding track time, of course. I’m considering one for both daily commuting (NYC area) and weekend touring for two.

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

      I haven’t ridden one of the new version, however, in Europe where it’s been on sale for a while, the NT700V is widely considered one of the most boring, if competent, bikes around.

      Having said that, take it for a spin and see if you like it.

    • John

      I haven’t ridden one either, but to answer your question, NO. It’s like a scooter on steroids, not that there’s anything wrong with scooters… they’re just not motorcycles.

      I would say that would be my last choice for a bike.

  • Eric

    My questions is how will Honda respond to the overwhelming criticism? My guess is they will do nothing.

  • Robert

    DNO1, NT700 and now the VFR1200. When will Honda quit sending us this crap.

  • Clem

    I don’t mind paying extra for something that’s engineered better and is more reliable than the competition. Unfortunately that’s not a Honda…at least not today’s Honda. The company has figured out, like many others, that there’s more money to be made by marketing vs. actually spending the time/money to engineer a better product. In short – they have transitioned from engineering to marketing. Having owned a CBR1K that went though some transmission issue with 6th gear while still under warranty, I dropped it off at the dealer only to be told that Honda would not cover it because they believe it’s due to abuse. How do you abuse 6th gear? 1st, 2nd, maybe 3rd – but 6th on a liter bike that never saw the track? OK – so the dealer said it was on my dime to check it out. I said fix it. $400 and over a month later I got the bike back – no difference. Contacted Honda, no help. I would have thought Honda would at least have the area rep stop by the dealer and verify what was going on – nothing, nada. That’s what Honda has become. Well it’s not my first bike, but definitely my last Honda.

  • alex

    so how much time have you spent on other sport tourers actually ? I meet alot of people that nit pick when they don’t really have enough comparison info – I love my cbr 600rr and I’ve ridden it on 500 mile cross canyon rides that took 14 hours of a good amount of twisties but I would find many sport tourers uncomfortable as a result of the different riding position.

    Btw the VFR isn’t using auto paint tech at all its got it’s own superior treatment – closer to 0 is better.

    Comparing Paint Smoothness
    Honda Civic 7.0
    Older Honda motorcycle fuel tanks 6.6
    Honda Accord 4.7
    Lexus 3.0
    Harley-Davidson 1.7
    New high-end Honda motorcycle tanks 0.8

    • Grant Ray

      I love it when people automatically assume that, because we’ve negatively reviewed a bike, that we clearly must have never ridden a motorcycle before, or done rides like taking the Concours 14 from LA straight to Moab.

      • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

        Wait, you know how to ride a motorcycle? Aren’t motorcycles dangerous?!

        I’m just an internet nerd spouting off random hate about something I don’t know anything about.

      • pauljones

        I love it that you let it get to you so much. You and Wes know your shit. It’s obvious. You guys have your preferences, but so do es everyone else in the world, and you guys do a better job of not letting your preferences color your reviews than most. Due credit to Wes on that one for being honest about the bad qualities of a Honda, despite having a love of Hondas.

        So, what’s the problem? This is the internet, and the internet is full of armchair experts and fanbois. You’re going to get flak in any journalistic field, and doubly so on the internet. Let them spout their crap and let it go. You have nothing to prove, in real life or the internet.

        I don’t always see eye-to-eye with you guys, but I accept that you are more experienced riders than I am, and based on what I’ve seen, I’m confident that you know your shit. I assume that you guys are equally confident, otherwise you wouldn’t be publishing content. If my assumption is right, then why let this guy bother you so much?

  • mike

    I own a VFR1200 ill respond to this. I have 4k miles on mine now.

    1. It’s not comfortable.
    Once the seat breaks in (took mine 2000 miles or 3 weeks) It is mad comfortable, great seat. The positioning seems perfect for me. The vibrations ou are talking about do exist. They arent mind numbing, but mildy annoying.

    2. The fairing doesn’t do a good job of redirecting airflow.
    Seems fine to me, i get no buffeting. 6’0 205 lbs.

    3. The pillion seat sucks.
    Dunno, never rode on it. Wife says its better than my old honda 919.

    4. The fueling is still awful.
    Yes The VFR has some fueling issues.

    5. First gear is too tall.
    Agreed.

    6. The brakes are still snatchy.
    They dont seem snatchy to me. They are very predictable. If you own multiple bikes, it maybe be hard transitioning between these brakes and your other bikes. They are just so good and powerful.

    7. You still aren’t going to be cornering hard.
    My chicken strips are still .5 inch from the edge, but for that amount of cornering, it feels like its on rails.

    8. Put all those neat design features together and it looks like a different designer worked on each part of the bike.
    I think the bike looks great. differnt strokes for different folks.

  • Chuluun

    The NT700 (Deauville) has a bad image in Europe but that hasn’t stopped it selling by the truckload, and the UK press generally admit that it’s hard to beat as a commuter/all-rounder. It sure isn’t pretty but that engine in its various guises (Bros, Revere, Hawk GT, Africa Twin) has been a peach for over 20 years now.

    As for the VFR1200, I haven’t checked the international sites but Honda UK has created an intriguing new category, ‘Roadsports’, for Shamu. Either even they couldn’t call it a sports tourer and keep straight faces or they were determined not to put it on the same page as the VFR800.

  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/christophercullen/sets/72157622530167071/ CMC

    Saw one in person on Sunday up at The Lookout. Quality paint job, even if it’s “Mom’s Old Camry Maroon.” Also, it’s a lot smaller in person than I’d have thought.

  • Justin

    Honda Powersports, you’ve lost this customer for life if you don’t pull your heads out of your asses & soon.

  • nataku83

    I really don’t understand why this named this thing a VFR. Shaft drive, heavy, “controversially” styled, more touring oriented but doesn’t really know what it is? This thing is a V4 Sabre all over again. (btw, I love my vf700s, but it was cheap and I like it’s quirkiness. I’d pay $1200 for a bike like that, not $16k…).

  • http://www.angelplastics.co.uk Marks plastic cladding

    The price is not too bad, but I would wait a year or two until there are some descent second hand bikes available for much less.

  • Pamberjack

    Sorry guys, but what your saying jars hard against most other reviews I have read.

    The one that sticks out in my mind is from the UK’s BIKE magazine, who call it “the definitive sports tourer” and mention not a solitary thing about bad fueling, poor brakes, buffeting, or gearing.

    Now, I’m not going to trash talk you and say that you don’t know bikes – but I do know that old-school bike journos like the guys at BIKE don’t just ride a bike by itself for a few hours and then say it sucks.

    What they tend to do is get ALL OF THE BIKES IN THE MARKET SEGMENT and then ride THOUSANDS OF MILES on them. Not to Moab and back once a year. They do it week in and week out. Again and again and again. Then they all compare notes and hammer out a story that is balanced and fair.

    In light of that, I think you guys are probably a little lacking in road hours and real experience. That’s not to say that your not entitled to your opinions – I wouldn’t be here if I didn’t think you had something of value to say. It’s just that when you guys say something is bad, and the BIKE guys say it’s great, I’m afraid I’m with them every time.

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Grant Ray

      You can “be” with whomever you want. We’ve had several credible reports that Honda threatened to pull all access to any English bike mag that didn’t say the VFR was amazing.

      • Pamberjack

        Grant,

        You ever heard of Occam’s Razor? It’s the theory that “the simplest explanation is usually the correct one”.

        You guys yourself have raved about the CBR1000RR. This bike is from the same team that made that bike. How wrong could they get it?

        So I ask myself, should I believe that there’s a massive conspiracy going on here with the UK’s motorbike journalists that you guys have managed to crack wide open with yr insightful genius and experience in reviewing this bike?

        Or should I just go with the idea that the bike IS ACTUALLY PRETTY DAMN GOOD and that you guys really aren’t that experienced in reviewing bikes?

        I know where my money is…

        • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

          We’re not the only ones that say it’s garbage, about half the UK press said so and the techs tasked with working on our bike agreed with every one of our criticisms. What do you want us to do? Lie and say it was decent?