Big Bri­tish names join the new-bike charge

Motorcycle News (UK) - - Comment -

There’s been a bar­rage of new bikes over the last few weeks as the world’s big­gest and best com­pa­nies dis­play their 2017 ma­chines to the world.

The rea­son for this surge in shiny new metal is that there are two mas­sive Euro­pean mo­tor­cy­cle shows which tra­di­tion­ally pro­vide the plat­form for such rev­e­la­tions. Deal­ers start putting their or­ders in as do mo­tor­cy­clists – at least that’s the plan.

And then, of­ten, there’s a bit of a lull. A de­lay be­tween see­ing the bikes re­vealed and them ac­tu­ally ap­pear­ing in show­rooms. The wait is punc­tu­ated with Mo­tor­cy­cle Live in Birm­ing­ham (don’t miss the bumper Show Guide in next week’s MCN). But this year it looks like there will some ex­tra spice and ex­cite­ment within the NEC’S packed halls. Just see­ing the new metal in the flesh and be­ing able to sling a leg over the po­ten­tial new ad­di­tion is enough to send over 100,000 mo­tor­cy­cle fans flock­ing to the show. But this year there will be some gen­uinely never-seen-- be­fore bikes. Not only that, but th­ese bikes will be Bri­tish. Most no­tably Nor­ton will be pulling the cov­ers back on a pair of V4 road-go­ing su­per­bikes (see more, ex­clu­sively re­vealed in next week’s MCN) and Ariel will an­nounce a more ag­gres­sive R ver­sion of their Ace.

It’s more ev­i­dence of the Bri­tish in­dus­try re­cov­er­ing, al­beit in dif­fer­ent ways. While Tri­umph blaze a trail in the world of mainstream biking and gen­uinely com­pete with the likes of Honda, Yamaha, Du­cati and co, oth­ers find a niche and tar­get the low vol­ume, high price route.

An­other fa­mous blast from the Bri­tish bike in­dus­try past are also set to make a dra­matic come­back. BSA have been bought by In­dian com­pany Mahin­dra and while it’s too soon to say ex­actly what sort of bikes will carry the BSA badge, it is cer­tain that the BSA name has been ac­quired (for about £3.4mil­lion) for a rea­son. And that rea­son won’t be to hide it away.

While some will com­plain of an­other great Bri­tish name be­ing bought by for­eign in­vestors, at least the name and her­itage live on.

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