Hugo Wil­son



Ev­ery year bikes get bet­ter, so the stuff we thought was fan­tas­tic ten years ago now ap­pears to be ob­so­lete (though the 1973 Nor­ton Com­mando 750 Road­ster is yet to be beaten on looks).

2016 has been an­other great year for new bikes. From the as­ton­ish­ingly ca­pa­ble and en­gag­ing Yamaha Tracer 700 (tested on page 50) to the in­ter­con­ti­nen­tal Du­cati Mul­tistrada En­duro (pho­tographed in Moscow on page 47). From the im­pres­sive new Tri­umph twins (meet some of the de­vel­op­ment team on page 60) to the long-awaited Honda Africa Twin (rid­den to the Pyre­nees on page 68).

We reckon that there have been 50 new or sig­nif­i­cantly up­graded mo­tor­cy­cles in­tro­duced in 2016, but how to pick Bike’s Bike of the Year? We spoke to the most ex­pe­ri­enced and clever­est peo­ple in Bike’s bulging con­tacts book and asked them. What’s im­pres­sive is that so many of the peo­ple who work in the in­dus­try are pre­pared to say pos­i­tive things about a ri­val’s prod­ucts. Thanks to all the peo­ple who took the time to vote.

Of course you don’t have to buy into the re­lent­less march of mo­tor­cy­cling tech­nol­ogy, we’ve also iden­ti­fied the cur­rent Used Bike of the Year (page 76) and cus­tom bike con­trib­u­tor Chris Hunter has picked the ten best Cus­toms of the Year too (page 22).

This is­sue also con­tains the first re­port from our Hayabusa USA trip. Next month it’ll ac­tu­ally get out of New York City and onto some proper roads. The story starts on page 88.

En­joy the is­sue.

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