Like A Cancer, Lane Splitting Spreads Eastward

Top Speed Motorcycles


Lane splitting has been officially recognized by a handful of states for a while now, and California has even stepped up as the first state to legalize it. While it’s safe to say that nobody was surprised when the Golden State passed it into law, the noises coming from the Lone Star State are a bit unexpected. Texas is looking at passing legislature to make lane splitting legal on its roads, adopting a very similar stance to that of California in regards to the language on speeds and other particulars.

Continue reading for more information on the lane-splitting trend.



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Benelli TNT600

Top Speed Motorcycles


The Benelli brand name has fallen under the Qjian Jiang Group umbrella since 2005, and has subsequently gone from strength to strength in the Asian markets, particularly in India and Malaysia. While a 600 cc mill might be a big engine over there (aren’t they cute?), it’s middling at best in the States, and there is absolutely no shortage of strong competition from established brands in this bracket. The Big-Four in Japan, plus the Italians, Austrians, Germans and Brits all bring quality rides to the table with comparable mills, so this Chinese-made bike – imported and marketed under the SSR banner – has certainly got its work cut out for it. Let’s check it out and see how they did with the TNT 600.

Continue reading for my review of the Benelli TNT 600.



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Where's The Beef? In The Small-Displacement Motorcycle Market As It Turns Out

Top Speed Motorcycles


The Office of United States Trade Representative (USTR), in its ongoing battle with the E.U over beef trade, is attempting, once again, to impose a substantial tariff hike on motorcycles between 50 cc and 500 cc, among other sundry items to include the offal of said animals and even plant matter. It’s not really about motorcycles, but the USTR is trying to use motorcycles as a tit-for-tat in its battle with the E.U. to try to gain the upper hand — if they don’t play nice, hit ’em where it hurts, so to speak. The White House tried this same move back in 2008, but it was defeated and laid aside. Apparently, someone at the USTR thinks the current political atmosphere is conducive to passage this time around, and so the thing has been pulled off the shelf and trotted out yet again.

Continue reading for more information on the tariff proposal.



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Forget Ride By Wire — Steering By Wire Is Here

Top Speed Motorcycles


Honda Motor Company comes off as one of the big winners from the recent Consumer Electronics Show at Las Vegas, Nevada. Specifically, its self-balancing, Riding Assist motorcycle that utilizes Honda’s expertise in robotics to keep the bike upright at a standstill. I admit, that’s a pretty neat gadget, but the forks turn independent of the bars, which has got to feel weird and take some getting used to. That said, this is an extra layer of safety that many will appreciate, and coupled with Honda’s DCT transmission can make for a very good bike for folks with physical challenges.

Continue reading for more on Riding Assist.



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Two Wheels Are Good, But What About 1.5?

Top Speed Motorcycles


As I peruse different concept and technology sites in my search for cool motorcycle innovations, things catch my attention and I like to share them with folks of similar interests. Sometimes innovative and creative designs leave me wondering “How did I ever live without this?” Then there’s the rest of the time when I have to wonder “What the Hell were they thinking?” For me, the UNI-CUB by Honda and Halbo from BMW each fit into one of the categories and are certainly interesting enough to share.

Continue reading for more information about these innovative two-wheeled creations.



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Yamaha T7 Concept

Top Speed Motorcycles


So the 2016 EIMCA season has finally drawn to a close, and now I get to sift through the preponderance of new-and-exciting items, then pick and choose my favorite bits and bobs to come out this year. A concept bike from the Tuning Fork Company floated right to the top with the rest of the cream, though I don’t really consider it a concept since Yamaha actually has a working prototype. Of course, I am referring to the T7, Yammy’s next-generation adventure bike that paradoxically borrows heavily from the simplicity of the popular and venerable XT600Z Ténéré of ’80s and ’90s fame. This is no soccer-mom adventure bike, but a true off-road capable machine that one could expect to find in serious cross-country competitions, such as the Dakar Rally for instance.

Continue reading for more on the Yamaha T7.



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Honda Fury / Stateline

Top Speed Motorcycles


More and more riders have come to appreciate the look associated with what I would call Classic Americana, and manufacturers around the world have responded in recent years to try to exploit this niche interest. This movement has actually been on and gaining momentum for a few years now, and we are starting to see some fairly bold designs from some of the big names. Honda had two such designs available for the 2016 model year. First was the Stateline, the sole surviving member of the 1300 Custom Line having outlived its siblings, the Interstate and Sabre cruisers, though it met the same fate coming into 2017. The Fury joined the Stateline as a sort of brother-from-another-mother with lots of shared DNA, but with a few critical differences, and it represents a very bold design concept indeed.

Join me as I critique Honda’s attempt to recapture our glory days.

Continue reading for my review of the Honda Stateline and Fury.



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Ural Patrol

Top Speed Motorcycles


Back in the day, a horse and sleigh took you over the river and through the woods to grandma’s house. Today, it’s a two-wheel-drive, all-terrain Patrol from Ural. This street-legal adventure motorcycle is comfortable as a touring bike, but is as off-road capable as its brother, the Gear Up.

Who would have thought you could have so much fun with a sidecar? Of course, the folks at Ural do. Anyone who owns one of these awesome sidecar bikes knows what "UDF" is: Ural Delay Factor. It’s that extra 15 minutes you have to add to your trip’s time estimation anytime you leave the house on one of these because inevitably, people are going to want to talk to you about what you’re riding.

Continue reading for my review of the Ural Patrol.



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Ural Patrol

Top Speed Motorcycles


Back in the day, a horse and sleigh took you over the river and through the woods to grandma’s house. Today, it’s a two-wheel-drive, all-terrain Patrol from Ural. This street-legal adventure motorcycle is comfortable as a touring bike, but is as off-road capable as its brother, the Gear Up.

Who would have thought you could have so much fun with a sidecar? Of course, the folks at Ural do. Anyone who owns one of these awesome sidecar bikes knows what "UDF" is: Ural Delay Factor. It’s that extra 15 minutes you have to add to your trip’s time estimation anytime you leave the house on one of these because inevitably, people are going to want to talk to you about what you’re riding.

Continue reading for my review of the Ural Patrol.



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Ural Gear-Up

Top Speed Motorcycles


You know that sad feeling you get when the first chill arrives in the air and it’s time to start thinking about putting your bike into storage for the winter months? What if you didn’t have to do that? The folks at Ural don’t want you to quit riding just because winter arrives.

Back in the day, you needed a one-horse open sleigh to go dashing through the snow. Today, you need a Gear-Up — a street legal, four-season adventure bike from Ural. The off-road beast of its brother, the Patrol, the Gear-Up comes standard with on-demand two-wheel drive, a high-intensity spotlight, spare tire, luggage rack and sidecar bumper to carry you through the snow, over rough terrain or anywhere your adventures take you once the pavement ends.

Continue reading for my review of the Ural Gear-Up.



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