In the modern era, mass-produced motorcycles tend to be Japanese or Italian, with the “big four” Asian manufacturers dominating the market. However, this wasn't always the case. Until the 1950s, and even into the ’60s, British makers such as Scott, Rudge, BSA, Norton and Vincent ruled the roost. These legendary companies sold their bikes around the world, winning racing championships and setting speed records as they went. They, and many smaller British firms like them, are motorcycling's founding companies. This is the story of those pioneering firms, whose engineers– (many self taught) were fired by racing ambition, commercial rivalry, patriotic duty and, above all, a passion for innovation. Superbly illustrated with more than 150 color pictures, many previously unpublished, Classic British Motorcycles is a captivating and highly informative account of the men, machines, race meetings and world events that shaped the development of the motorcycle from its bicycle origins.
Honda made its mark on the motorcycle world with small, affordable bikes, and grew well beyond that to create some of the most important performance machines ever built. Today, these bikes are increasingly coveted by collectors and enthusiasts. This guide to the collectible Hondas gives prospective buyers a leg up on the current market for groundbreaking classics like the CB77 Super Hawk, CB92 Benly, Dream 300, CB750, CB 400F, as well as 1970 to 1979 models that are quickly becoming classics in their own right. Photographs of the models are accompanied by complete descriptions of specifications, components, paint codes and serial numbers. A five-star rating system rates the bikes on collectability, parts availability, two-up touring compatibility, reliability and power. The author also highlights common repair and restoration needs, and looks ahead at future collectible models. This book is an updated version of the Illustrated Buyer's Guide Classic Honda Motorcycles.
The motorcycle should have disappeared with the advent of the inexpensive automobile, because Henry Ford's Model T usurped the motorcycle's position as a primary form of utilitarian transportation, but a funny thing happened on the way to extinction: the motorcycle not only survived but thrived. Enough people were enamored of the thrill and beauty of the two-wheeled mechanical beast to ensure it would continue to exist indefinitely. And exist they have! Many of the motorcycles manufactured during the past century truly fit the description of "classic," and many consider these machines works of art.
Written by noted motorcycle author Patrick Hahn, Classic Motorcycles presents the history of motorcycling as told through the most significant, iconic, classic motorcycles of all time, with both period photography and modern portrait photography. All the best domestic and international makes are represented here, from BMWs, Indians, and Triumphs to Vincents, Ducatis, and Harley-Davidsons: the most classic models. You'll drool over the 1933 Matchless Silver Hawk, and you'll want to tear out the page displaying the 1956 Triumph Thunderbird and frame it. Each motorcycle was shot in a studio setting using photographer Tom Loeser's light-painting technique. Period ads and relevant historic photos and documents are spread throughout the book to supplement the portraits of the bikes, evoking a sense of time and place. Prepare to be in awe of the undeniably classic motorcycles in this collection. It's the only motorcycle history you'll need.
The 916 spearheaded the Ducati revival of the 1990s. Introduced at the end of 1993, this product of Massimo Tamburini and the Cagiva Research Centre took the water-cooled four-valve engine of the 851 and placed it in an evolutionary chassis with revolutionary styling. The 916 immediately set new standards of performance for twin-cylinder machines, epitomized by its unequalled success in the World Superbike Championship. This book traces the conception and development of the four-valve Ducati from its first appearance at the Bol d’Or in 1986. Along with the factory racers, all the related four-valve models are covered in depth, from the initial 851 and 888 to the 748, ST4, and 996. All the variants, including the Sport Production series, are detailed, along with the rare and beautiful Supermono. This book is the definitive guide to these legendary Ducati models.
The Indian has been the iconic image for American big V-Twins down the years, due in no small measure to the motorcycles designed by Charles B Franklin - the Indian Scout and the Indian Chief.
Charles Franklin was born and raised in Ireland where he quickly became involved in motorcycle racing during the pioneer years. He rapidly established himself as Ireland’s first big star of racing and was the first to represent Ireland in international motorcycle competition. In the Isle of Man TT he consistently finished in the top eight, and in 1911 claimed second place, a remarkable achievement in itself. But it was when he moved to Indian in the USA, where he became the Chief Design Engineer, that his genius really flowed. His designs catapulted Indian back into the forefront of motorcycle design in the 1920s and ’30s and his racing engines and motorcycles won much glory for Indian against stiff opposition. Franklin introduced remarkable improvements in side valve combustion chamber design that predated the work of Ricardo. He championed a holistic approach that popularized new features such as the semi unit-construction power plant, helical-gear primary drive, double-loop full-cradle frames and a host of other improvements to the early motorcycles. Franklin's Indians not only chronicles his life, but also sheds much new light on the history of Indian motorcycles and the often turbulent times of the Indian Motorcycle Company itself. It's a much-needed book for all Indian fans and all who love the history of the classic American V-Twins.
No other motorcycle matches the style or sound of a Harley-Davidson, with its rumbling V-twin engines. Harley-Davidson Classics zooms in on more than 50 of the company’s greatest creations, giving a close-up portrait of each machine. Superb double-page photos and close-up shots highlight every aspect of each motorcycle. Comprehensive specification boxes accompany each model, covering all the technical aspects, including engine type and size, frame, transmission, suspension, and brakes. An in-depth description explores the bike’s development and manufacturing history. This unique and highly illustrated volume provides insight into the fascinating world of this legendary marque and is essential reading for all Harley-Davidson fans.
Harley-Davidson Custom Vehicle Operations (CVO) motorcycles are the pinnacle of the Motor Company's customization: custom-shop details that push the boundaries of style and performance with high-impact paint, killer wheels, big engines, and exclusive technology. Designed in-house since 1999 at Harley-Davidson's world-class Willie G. Product Development Center, built by the factory, and available through Harley-Davidson's dealer network, these machines set themselves apart from the pack. Harley-Davidson CVO Motorcycles: The Motor Company's Custom Vehicle Operations is the first book to showcase these works of two-wheeled art and the story behind them.
Produced in limited numbers, and always in high demand, CVO motorcycles are defined by the riders committed to riding the best. Whether you have one of these high-performance motorcycles in your garage or have one in your sight line, Harley-Davidson CVO Motorcycles provides a close look into the Motor Company's ultimate custom motorcycles.
Harley-Davidson WLA is the story of an iconic model in the long history of Harley-Davidson motorcycles, the WLA, which was used by Allied forces during WWII. Developed for the US Army’s mechanized cavalry, it became the leading US military motorcycle of the war. It served the US armed services as a messenger and military police vehicle. The Red Army’s motorcycle battalions, reconnaissance units of its tank armies, also used them as their primary vehicle. The armies of the Soviet Union, Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia, France, China, and Brazil also made use of the model and its variants. It is known today as the “Liberator”; discover the history and stories of individuals who rode this icon to war and why the model is now a favorite among civilian collectors.
Hodaka motorcycles were some of the most creatively marketed and designed motorcycles in America. The bike of choice for the hip young racer, the street-savvy urbanite, or the 14-year-old boy's favorite poster, these machines had colorful logos, creative advertising and terrific names. The Combat Wombat, Road Toad, Dirt Squirt and the fantastic Super Rat are just a few of the models produced by Hodaka. More than 15 years in the making, this exhaustively-researched tome contains all the details about the machines including production data and history as well as a treasure trove of photographs, advertisements, and graphics. Written by Ken Smith, the editor of VMX Magazine, and created with the help of Paul Stannard of Strictly Hodaka and many of the people who designed and sold Hodakas back in the day, this book is a captivating, colorful look at one of the wildest, most popular motorcycles of the 1960s and 1970s.
Author of Honda Mini Trail: Enthusiast's Guide, Jeremy Polson has put together another vintage Honda guide. It covers the third-best-selling Honda in American Honda history, the long-running Mini Trail CT-70, along with the CL, SL, and XL 72-cc motorcycles manufactured from 1969 to 1994. Polson begins with a brief introduction of the models that led to the first CL-70, and then jumps into a thorough analysis of the many models and iterations that Honda offered through the years. With more than 25 years of experience collecting, restoring, and selling more than 200 small-displacement Hondas, Polson is the ideal author for this must-have look at a group of Honda's most popular motorcycles.
In addition to the hard facts, this book is filled with many rare photos that track the evolution of Honda's 72-cc motorcycles and unravels their mystery. Rare models covered include the first CT-70 "Silver Tags" with more than 30 features not found on the majority of later-model CT-70s, as well as many other low-production 72-cc motorcycles.
A history of the Honda V4 - much of it told for the first time. Explains how these charismatic motorcycles came to be built, their strengths and weaknesses, and what makes them uniquely special in a sea of Universal Japanese Motorcycles. Covers the design and development of the first Honda V4, the oval piston, the VF road models and the iconic sport touring bikes.
When Honda released the CX500, the sales brochure stated “First into the Future,” and described the bike as a road sports V-twin. Honda’s first venture into the V-twin engine market, with water cooling and shaft drive, was certainly different from their previous twin- and four-cylinder models. Known for its good handling and fuel economy, the low-maintenance Honda was comfortable, loved by tourers and couriers alike and, after overcoming early teething troubles, developed a reputation for reliability. Sportier models incorporating turbochargers were also released for those looking for an additional adrenaline rush. After 30 years, there’s now a resurgence of interest in the CX models, both from restorers and custom builders, with aftermarket café racer kits available, too.
The techniques, tips and tricks used by an experienced restorer will save you time and money. You’ll see that you don’t need expert knowledge or a fully fitted workshop for a restoration project. Packed with photographs and detailed instructions, this book is your perfect guide from start to finish.