Motorcycle riders can’t be blamed if they’re caught counting the days till the snow comes off the ground and the roads are cleared for touring.?In fact, bike makers can hardly introduce a new product without rhapsodizing about the open roads of the American summer. To that end, several 2014 model-year bikes are delivering the goods for riders interested in an upgrade in time for spring.
That includes models designed to extend trips for as long as riders want to make them, not to mention getaway bikes that make warm-weather weekends a blast. From bikes made for touring to speedsters ready to break out out of a stoplight, here are seven new motorcycles built for roaring into spring 2014.
1. 2014 Harley Davidson SuperLow 1200T ($11,799)
The latest in a series of new releases by Harley Davidson, the SuperLow 1200T features the Evolution engine that came from Shovelhead and Ironhead stock. Sporting a 1200cc V-Twin, the SuperLow 1200T features relocated mid-mount foot controls for easy ground access when you want to stop as well as footboards designed for added support and cushioning. Saddlebags come standard, and a detachable windshield makes long trips possible no matter what type of terrain you’re crossing.
Harley Davidson aimed to put together a touring bike similar to those riders were assembling on their own. The SuperLow 1200T is the factory model with every inch of space covered with the bike maker’s signature style. Standard black colors come in the base price, while different color options involve an uptick in price. SuperLow 1200T bikes get 48 mpg combined and hit a max 71 lb-ft of torque.
2. 2014 Ducati Monster 1200 S ($15,995)
To build a monster bike, it takes first-rate brakes to go along with supreme suspension and power. Ducati delivers all the goods with the Monster 1200 S. Sporting a performance package with a Testrastretta 11-degree L-Twin engine capable of 145 horsepower and 95 lb-ft of torque, the ride of the Monster is aided by Brembo brakes and Ohlins suspension. The 1200 S even features carbon fiber in the fender, not to mention machined wheels.
3. 2014 Honda Valkyrie ($17,999)
Honda combined muscle to go with cruiser comfort in making the 2014 Gold Wing Valkyrie. Its engine is a vicious 1832cc opposed six that produces 104 hp on 110 lb-ft of torque. Factoring in the curb weight of just 750 lbs., the jump in the 2014 Valkyrie will be considerably greater than the 900-lb. model that preceded it. The other side of the Valkyrie is its comfort factor. Honda emphasized the laid-back quality of its seating that make its ride a pure pleasure.
4. 2014 BMW S 1000 R ($13,150)
The 2014 BMW S 1000 R is a roadster built for power but with control on the menu as well. Packing a 160 hp 4-cylinder engine capable of 83 lb-ft of torque, the 2.85 lbs-per-hp ratio is sure to excite any rider when the light turns green. BMW delivers a “Rain” mode in the S 1000 R that lightens the throttle. The Race ABS and automatic stability control ensures another level of protection for riders feeling drunk on the power.
5. 2014 Indian Chief Classic ($18,999)
In terms of styling on a sunny afternoon, riders could do a lot worse than the 2014 Indian Chief Classic. The oldest American bike company was reborn in this Victory package that sports a 111 cubic-inch V-Twin engine capable of 119 lb-ft of torque. Standard features include keyless starting, plenty of chrome, a 5-year warranty, and the vintage Indian badging that dates back to 1910. Upgrading to the slip-on exhaust adds another dimension to the riding experience.
6. 2014 Victory Cross Roads 8-Ball ($15,999)
Known as a value option in the Victory lineup, the Cross Roads 8-Ball is a bagger bike that spares the chrome for a more menacing appearance. The blacked-out ride comes with hard saddlebags that deliver 21.3 gallons of lockable storage space. Accessories allow riders to customize the 8-Ball, which carries the Victory Freedom 106/6 V-Twin engine capable of 106 lb-ft of torque. Low seats make for control at low speeds, while the 5.8 gallon gas tank means the ride can go longer than most bikes on the road.
7. 2014 Harley Davidson Low Rider ($14,199)
Another new model coming from the Harley line, the Low Rider delivers 1970s style in a total redesign for the 2014 model year. Harley brought out the chunkiness in its mag wheels, but it’s the gorgeous look of the 103 cubic-inch Twin Cam engine that makes the Low Rider one of the best looking bikes on the road. Through intricate seat design, the bike maker claims the Low Rider suits anyone from 5’1? to 6’1? in height.
Optional equipment includes the H-D Smart Security System that gives drivers a key fob to automatically sense when you approach the bike. It’s an added level of comfort and convenience that makes the throwback experience of the Low Rider complete.