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Are Upright Ergos Pushing Cafe Racers Aside?

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Tamarit Motorcycles Superstar – based on a 2010 Triumph Bonneville

Just as naked and adventure bikes seem to have pushed sport bikes aside in the production market, more and more customs seem to feature upright ergonomics, as opposed to cafe racer-style clip-ons. Scramblers, Dirt Trackers and simple Standards are found more and more on the pages of Pipeburn and Bike Exif, for example.

In the end, do riders just want to be more comfortable? Are we abandoning the pretense that low bars and an uncomfortable crouch are necessary to look cool, or to engage in “performance riding?”  What do you think?

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Yamaha’s SCR950 Scrambler


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74 Comments

  1. Joe Z says:

    The Triumph pictured really and truly is NOT a café racer. It’s a street tracker.. There apparently is some confusion as to difference between the two styles. I think that comes from the two styles having similarities like stripped down light weight and rear seat cowl. However, the bars, suspension and tires make all the difference. The street tracker is a lot closer to the scramblers.
    There is nothing wrong with upright ergos. I grew up riding Japanese standards, ujm’s and scramblers as well as dirt bikes. The motorcycle industry has gone too far to the left and the right with cruisers and crotch rockets. Even most nakeds on the market still mimick crotch rockets just look at the Ducati monster or the Yamaha fz1. Both look like they were born from a crotch rocket. The only true retro throwback standards tied to their roots are the triumph bonneville line and the Honda CB1100. In my opinion there needs to be more bikes like them. But the manufacturers won’t build them or import them because they don’t sell as fast as fake Japanese harleys or full on sport bikes. Bring on more scramblers street frackers and ujm’s.

    • Jeremy in TX says:

      The Triumph was presented here as an example of a custom bike with upright ergos. I don’t think anyone confused it with a cafe racer.

  2. Gary says:

    You don’t have to bend yourself into a yoga pretzel to have fun on a bike. In fact, it is a LOT easier on the ol’ back. It is a trusim well known to those of us who have been riding for … ahem … a few decades.

  3. mugwump says:

    That Triumph is a thing of beauty.

  4. Portz says:

    I would love too ride a Cafe bike all day like I used to, but now days riding a cafe or sport bike after a few hours, I need a chiropractor.
    So I will ride my 2005 1200 GS, until the wheels fall off.

  5. dan says:

    My FJ-09 has excellent ergonomics without being too huge of a bike for my 30″ inseam. The seat is even adjustable – i raise it for long rides and keep in low for around town

  6. Grover says:

    “Sit up and beg” or “Assume the position”. We have more options these days than when I first started riding in 1975. If you can’t find something you like, you’re just not looking hard enough.

  7. Scottie says:

    One additional note:

    For years bicycle seat manufacturers have made adjustments for riders. For instance, most of the weight on those skinny seats is on the hip bones, so after riding 100 miles your thighs will hurt (a lot), but your man parts will not.

    Every time I’m at the dealer waiting for an oil change and throw a leg over a sport bike I walk away thinking that riding position is just painful.

  8. Scottie says:

    In 2003 I saw two things happen within days:

    1. A guy I knew traded his Road King Classic for a custom chopper.
    2. I saw a young guy on a cafe, the first cafe I had seen in years.

    Almost 14 years later, my guess is that #1 is back on a cruiser and #2 is riding an adventure bike.

  9. Robby McHenry says:

    A friend read this article and suggested maybe uprights are pushing cruisers aside. I think he has good point. Uprights are comfortable without the ridiculous forward controls.

    • Jeremy in TX says:

      Granted my opinion is just based on casual observation, but I don’t think cruisers are being pushed aside. Cruisers have always been ridiculous, and yet they are the most popular type of bike the US and have been for a long time. I still see plenty of younger people on new bikes from HD’s Sportster line, so I think HD at least are doing a good job competing with other marks for new and younger riders.

      • Tyler says:

        If only the Sportsters were even remotely affordable. I have a hard time coughing up $10-14k for an XL model bike, no matter the size of the flakes in the paint. I love them and I’ve had several, but I simply cannot believe they cost so much.

        • Jeremy in TX says:

          I think the Iron 883 must be fairly inexpensive because I see a lot of younger riders on that particular model.

      • cw says:

        Cruisers seem to be moving away from the “custom” trend toward something closer to standard as there market as a whole seems to be moving toward other more upright designs.

        In fact the Roadster is a legit standard. It will be interesting to see if HD elects to release a “street tracker” version of the Street 750 to get in on the current trend on non-tourers.

  10. Bubba Bleu says:

    I am soooo comfortable on my 1983 GS1100, with the standard UJM riding position. I wish my Bandit was just like it.

  11. mickey says:

    There will always be those who favor a cafe’ or bobber or chopper just because they are different. Most of those people are not in my age bracket however. It’s been a few years since I have been able to get into a bent over riding position for very long, and I found it nearly impossible to ride an R-1 Yamaha a couple of years ago..heck I can’t even get down and play with the grand kids on the floor anymore..well I can get down, just can’t get back up. I have always enjoyed the upright riding position of a standard or ujm. Was glad to see them making a comeback and bought a Bonneville and a couple Honda CB1100’s to go along with my ST 1300 sport tourer (with slight forward bend riding position). Very comfortable bikes to ride for me, ergo wise. The new XSR 900, and FJ-09 Yams are contenders but a bit tall for me. Exciting bikes to ride though.

  12. Jorge says:

    Look at the first Kawasaki Ninja, the GPz900R, then compare those ergos to a modern day sport bike. This is exactly why sport bikes in general have been declining over the years. They’ve become very focused track tools, which is great, but not much fun to ride anyplace else. The market has responded. Cafe bikes look cool but what is selling is R9Ts, Scramblers, Monsters, etc. all of them have handlebars.

    • Dave says:

      Re: ” The market has responded. ”

      More that the market has changed. The young guys who used to buy sport bikes aren’t buying them (or anything) anymore. The used market is full of hyper-performance bikes that sell for 1/3rd to 1/2 what new ones do. Somehow motorcycling has become an old man’s game.

    • Selecter says:

      I, too, will dispute this to some extent.

      Have sportbikes become more focused track bikes and less accommodating street bikes? Absolutely.

      Has this narrowed the appeal of these bikes? I don’t think so – young people still love fast (and the image of such), and would pay money for it.

      This, however, is the crux of the whole issue. Young people ‘used’ to be able to get financing for $8000, 165MPH 600cc sportbikes. Credit was everywhere, credit was cheap, and so were supersports. The 2005 ZX-6R, for example, had an MSRP of $7999. It had fully adjustable suspension, meaty radial-mount brakes, as much power as the class ever had (actually more WHP than most of the 600s out now!), and was still nearly a competent street bike. Adjusted strictly for inflation, this *should* be about a $9850 bike today.

      But… they’re not. The pace of development has rocketed the current 636 up to an astonishing $11,699. This is for the model *without* ABS.

      Think about this. If the ZX-6R was the current bikes’ price back in 2005, the current, inflation-adjusted price would be over $14,300. This, for a 600cc sportbike, is just silly.

      Combine all of this with the fact that people under the age of 25 simply have less credit to work with than when I was 25, as well as lower overall pay (even NOT adjusting that for inflation), bikes for younger folks NEED to be CHEAP. The current 600cc sportbike is NOT cheap! Not by a longshot.

      THIS is why supersports are declining in sales, particularly the models that used to sell well with the young crowd. One would notice no lack of grown in the liter category – the guys that can afford to run these (more “mature” riders) can afford to pay $17k for a new bike. A 22-year-old on their first job out of school most certainly can’t, nor can they afford a $13,000 bike, nor can they afford a $10,000 bike. If he/she could, it will need to be way cheap. Hence the proliferation of the cheap-to-build standard, especially those with a “stripped down” design ethos (fewer development for fewer high-spec parts) and those models derived from existing models (Yamaha, Harley-Davidson, Triumph…).

      • Jeremy in TX says:

        Insurance is a huge factor as well. It was never cheap for sport bikes, but it is pretty outrageous now for anyone under 30. So even if a young squid could get the financing for the bike, adding the monthly insurance payment to the note makes for a tough pill to swallow, even to those who could afford it.

        A Ducati Scrambler goes better with a lumberjack beard and plaid anyway, I suppose.

      • Jorge says:

        So because a bike went to an astonishing 11.7K instead of 9.9K it is unattainable for the youth market and thus tanking in sales? BTW genius, credit rates today are under what they were in mid 2000. And sub-prime lending is at an all time high, beyond that of 2007 totals. Avg salary for college new hires in tech (not sure about other fields) is also well higher than what it was in mid 2000s. Might want to research just a bit instead of shooting from the hip. Part of what Dave said is right, youth is less interested but for the rest of us still in the game, I could ride my yr 2000 Ninja on long trips, but anything more than 30 minutes on a Panigale makes me wish I was closer to home. Ducati isn’t selling sport bikes like they used to and their sport bike market wasn’t built on 22 yr old buyers. A lot of factors involved here, cost is one, but crux of the whole issue, it isn’t.

        • Provologna says:

          One would expect a more thorough reply after sarcastically calling another poster “genius.”

          Your diatribe against the prior poster has one glaring omission, from Wiki’s “Student Debt” page: “…According to the Student Debt Crisis, within the past three decades the cost of attaining a college degree has drastically increased by more than 1,000 percent…”

          Your stats Re. wages are worse than useless, they are misleading. Average wages adjusted for inflation are comparable to the late 1980s, meaning that current wages have increased zero to compensate for the 17% increase in cost for the stated item. You need something more than a loud rude mouth to support your opinion that 17% cost inflation does not decrease sales for a $10k luxury purchase.

          Re. the age demographic likely to purchase a Supersport: the ratio of this demographic still living at home in their mom’s basement is infinitely higher than thirty years ago. This is directly caused by their degraded financial state.

          During the current “recovery,” (fully fueled only by money printing and so-called quantitative easing) the overwhelming majority of job growth has been in the age demographic of 55+. In fact, the worst rate of jobs growth is in the exact “Supersport” age demographic. I’m slightly less sure of the following, but it may be that this demographic has been flat with almost no growth, and possibly even negative growth.

          So yes, I’m quite sure your entire post is pure BS as far as refuting the prior post, which was fairly accurate IMO.

          • Jorge says:

            Average wages adjusted for inflation are comparable to the late 1980s…
            The same late 80s that was a boon for sport bike sales?
            LOL.
            Everyone isn’t poor, just the poor have internet today and complain a lot. Unemployment is incredibly low. What we do have is a growing group if discontents that want to blame everything under the Sun. College is too expensive, can’t get a job, can’t get credit… Get angry all you want but it isn’t 2010, if you don’t have a job and can’t get a loan it has nothing to with the economy. Losers find it a lot easier to blame something and get all angry than take responsibility for their situation. But I guess the bad economy is why bike sales in general are at an all time high? Thought so.

          • Jeremy in TX says:

            “But I guess the bad economy is why bike sales in general are at an all time high? Thought so.”

            US motorcycle sales in 2015 were less than half what of they were in 2005 – approximately 500K units in 2015 vs. 1.1 million units in 2005. Just sayin’.

        • Jorge says:

          @Jeremy, 100% correct about sales in 2005 vs 2015, what I’m referring to is post crash not peak bubble sales. It was dark days visiting a dealer back in 2010. Now things are a lot brighter. BMW, Ducati, etc. having some record years. That is a direct reflection of a healthy economy.
          Again a lot of factors, your comment about insurance is accurate as well. But the Fortune 500 company I work for just hired over 400 interns. Plenty of jobs for youth, the problem is youth today isn’t quipped to be self starters. They require a lot of baby sitting which means a lot of them get cut loose before they make it a year. That is nothing to do with the economy and despite nonsense from idiots, the avg age for sport bike riders isn’t 22.

          • Jeremy in TX says:

            Yes, sales have fortunately been increasing, and it looks like the trend will continue for 2016. Long way to go to get back to the glory days. I don’t know if we’ll ever see relative sales like that again.

            I can’t disagree with your perspective on the youth of the nation either. I got to where I don’t even like to consider new college grads for positions where I work. It seems they just feel entitled to a pay check. They aren’t trying to learn or solve problems or really accomplish anything which is a stark contrast to 20 years or so ago when I was entering the workplace. I’m speaking in general terms of course – I know they aren’t all like that.

  13. Frank says:

    Beautiful Triumph….but still more style than substance if you’re talking about comfort. Put on a good seat and a (stylish) windshield and you’d have a reasonably comfortable bike for short trips at speeds of 60-65 mph and above.

  14. Neal says:

    But the forward crouch IS best for performance riding.

    • Stuki Moi says:

      It is, but as the outer envelope of performance riding possible on a bike, has grown ever further from what is legal on public roads, the crouch is increasingly becoming relegated to closed circuit racing. Whereas “dual sport” bikes once wobbled around on pavement (80s playbikes), they now rail around a pretty good clips. Although the notion that they “handle like a sportbike” or “embarrass sport bikes in the twisties”, has more to do with the guys’ riding them, having their last sportbike experience in the pre 900rr era, than with anything genuinely realistic.

      I still believe young people who are still at an age where their body can, even if over some time, adopt to a sportier riding position, should buy sportbikes. 600s. Even after a decade of virtual non-development, they are still the most spectacular embodiments of two wheeled, road going dynamic bliss that can be had for all around street riding. The industry press is pushing and going oooh-aaaah over uprights now, because only geezers buy bikes. So I see ever more young riders buying into the “sportbikes are pointless” myth as well. Which is sad, as unlike the bodies of 60+ riders, theirs will relatively quickly accommodate and get used to the more physically demanding riding position. And then they’ll get to experience a bike dynamically much more spectacular than any bike compromised by the need to be suitable for stiff jointed oldsters will ever be.

    • dan says:

      I agree, when I was younger I loved my ZX6R

  15. allworld says:

    I have always prefered the ergonomics of naked/street fighter bikes vs. sport bikes including cafe racers.
    For a long time the sport bikes had the performance advantage and still do, but nakeds have come a long way in regards to performance and offer far and above what rational riders need for public road.
    IMO; bikes like the KTM 1290 Super Duke GT, BMW R1200RS…. are the wave of the future, multipurpose, comfortable with real world performance.

  16. Grover says:

    There are a lot of bikes that I would have bought if the riding position didn’t put me in an uncomfortable riding position. Even the Honda Intercepter is too radical for long distance comfort. I’ll bet millions of dollars in sales have been lost due to manufactures believing that low bars and high pegs are what riders need to have in a sport touring motorcycle. And no, Helibars don’t always provide an adequate fix.

  17. Provologna says:

    To the Q: yes.

    I looked closer at the SCR950 Scrambler, which reminded me of my then-new ’81 Yamaha XV920R “Euro” model w/enclosed chain drive.

    920
    Curb weight full fuel tank 5.0g 500 lbs
    Wheelbase: 60 inches
    Dual front disc brake

    950
    545 lbs
    62 inches
    Single front disc brake

    All above specs favor the 35-year older 920, and this does not seem acceptable to me. I presume power is similar (the 920 did about 13.00 second 1/4 mile ET @ almost 100 mpg terminal speed).

    Frankly, I don’t understand how 35 years does not produce a bike w/overall better specs than it’s great grandfather. It doesn’t make a lot of sense. Especially with lighter belt drive on the newer bike.

    Too bad, because I love the general look of the 950, as much as most posts were negative on it in the first notice here.

    The Triumph looks great above, BTW.

    • bmbktmracer says:

      I too had a 920 Euro. It was one of my favorite bikes. I totally agree with you. All I can guess is that Yamaha really intended this as nothing more than a Scrambler-styled cruiser. It’ll be interesting to see how it sells. I imagine that as a cruiser, it’s probably lighter and better suspended than most of that ilk. But, I can’t help but feel a bit insulted as they rob history to create image bikes.

    • Curly says:

      I had a XV920RH for a while and it was a great bike when the starter worked and the Hitachi carbs were dialed in ;). Lucky Europe got the TR-1 version that was a full 980cc engine and had the reliable Bendix type starter. The 920 made 65hp, the wheelbase was 60.6″ and wet weight was 509lbs. The 37mm forks were a bit wiggly for the bike’s weight. The tires were skinny even for 1981 and the 1970s pin slider brake calipers were not all that good. On the other hand the rear monoshock suspension was adjustable for damping and preload and smooth with some useful travel unlike the 950. The new 950 could do better but it’s not really intended to be a mile eater like the XV920R was. With fuel injection and it’s nice sit up riding position I see it as a fine but not too serious street bike and just another choice for the buying public.

    • notarollingroadblock says:

      1979-1983. The pinnacle of “standard” motorcycle design.

      • Jeremy in TX says:

        I’d argue that the pinnacle of standard motorcycle design is right now. There are some truly great “standards” in the market right now spanning the entire price/performance range from the 390 Dukes and CB500s to the SuperDukes and Tuonos. Edgy designs or classic lines. I can’t remember a more glorious time for the standard motorcycle. But then I was just a toddler in 1979. I can’t really remember that far back. 🙂

        • Provologna says:

          I lean toward roadblock’s perspective, at least for cosmetic design.

          I mean c’mon, look at the early 80s Yamaha XJ650 Seca, the 750 Seca, Suzuki GS standards from the very first 76 GS750 through the last 83 GS1100 (maybe less so the 80-81 GS750/GS1100), from 76 CB750F through the very last CB1100F. These bikes all rocked my world back then.

          I still love the looks of the Yamaha XS750/850 standards, every single model year, from 77 through the early 80s.

          Of course, virtually all the metric cruisers of the day were dawg vomit, at least cosmetic wise. A few rare exceptions looked OK (Yamaha Specials), but then performance wise, to me, it’s simply impossible to corner a motorcycle w/your legs IFO your body mass, requiring one to pull the grips to shift body weight, and unfortunately the grips affect steering……..Cruisers almost seem like rolling bombs in that way to me, so much so that they’d seem illegal to sell, being unfit for the intended purpose if you intend to corner on one.

          Performance wise Jeremy is right, though. Obviously bikes like the Yamaha FJ-07 and FJ-09 are practically perfect performance wise, and the SV650 is still kicking butt. But looks wise the older bikes still rock.

          I suspect the problem is they pay these styling department, and like engineers, these folks think they should “style” things rather than carry over. And for marketing reasons, this might be correct.

          Glad I’m not in the bike biz! I’d hate me!

    • Dave says:

      Re” All above specs favor the 35-year older 920, and this does not seem acceptable to me.”

      The old 920 was designed to be what it was. This new 950 was designed to be a cruiser and restyled into what is shown here. It is a styling exercise, not a unique motorcycle, and thus should not be judged as a measure of what 35 years has meant to motorcycle design.

  18. azi says:

    All bikes are customs – it’s just the number of customers per design that varies.

  19. Jeremy in TX says:

    “In the end, do riders just want to be more comfortable? Are we abandoning the pretense that low bars and an uncomfortable crouch are necessary to look cool, or to engage in ‘performance riding?'”

    I suspect that comfort is not the fashion. It is just a coincidental by-product of what is fashionable at the moment.

    • Chris says:

      In my case, your use of the word pretense is exactly correct, an assumption that is incorrect. Every one of my Snarley Davidson buddies, who have never ridden my ZX-14 Ninja, tell me how uncomfortable it is. Of course, comfort is subjective, but having my weight distributed over three points (hands, feet and butt) suits me, and I’m 67 years old. Hell yes, Lazy Boy chairs are great for watching TV, but don’t drown out the sound with a V-twin. At my age, I’m beyond trying to “look cool.” I ride what I ride because of the way it performs (handling, braking and acceleration), and I find it comfortable, to boot.

  20. The_undecider says:

    For me, comfort has more to do with the seat to peg relationship. If I have sufficient height, the pegs can be fairly rearset. Too high or forward and my right hip begins to protest. I’m a mere 34 years old, far too young for such problems. ADV and dual sports seem to be most comfortable.

    • TimC says:

      “far too young for such problems” … ha ha ha ha, or so you think … this is how it starts, whippersnapper

      “We’re only immortal for a limited time.” – NEP

      • The_undecider says:

        It’s the older folks that are first to remind me that my age is not advanced enough to be complaining as such. However, my contemporaries all complain about not being as spry as even a few years ago.

  21. oldjohn1951 says:

    I like that Yamaha GSR950 and that riding position is just what my arthritic 65 year-old self needs. I hope Royal Enfield’s twin is an Interceptor redux with that same riding position.

    • KenHoward says:

      “…that riding position is just what my arthritic 65 year-old self needs.”

      Yes, but combined with more rear suspension travel than this scrambler-styled cruiser offers. Personally, I’ve had enough of the bouncing-out-of-the-seat experience.

  22. EZ Mark says:

    Seating positions have been moving up at the same rate as the average riders age.

    • Austin ZZR 1200 says:

      Took the words out of my mouth

      • Grover says:

        An older riding buddy of mine was lusting over a year 2000 Ducati 900 SS. We went to the dealer and he decided to test ride the thing. After he came back from the ride his only comment was, “I got that outta my system. The most uncomfortable bike I ever rode”. He never mentioned that bike again. Funny how reality will set your mind back to working order.

  23. JPJ says:

    Average age of motorcyclist is rising. Young people do not have much disposable income, and are priced out of the market for bikes they desire. Ergonomics help the motorcyclist adapt. Myself, I sold my GSXR-750, purchased Ducati Monster 1100EVO.

  24. Dug says:

    I appreciate all types of motorcycles and don’t understand the posers who place snob appeal over practically. No need for them to feel threatened or superior because everyone doesn’t ride the same style of bike. The type of riding that I do works best with something that can comfortably travel anything from gravel rain rutted mountain roads to cross country superslab freeways. Although somewhat drab looking next to a sexy cruiser or sport bike, the upright ergos, maneuverability and overall capability of my humble Vstrom 650 eclipse the overall flexibility of either one of them. Sure it won’t rumble and shine like a Harley or rocket like a sport bike but it easily produces enough speed to get killed on and rarely has problems keeping pace with other bikes putting out much more power, especially on secondary roads where handling is critical. I’m excited by the amplified versions of mine such as the FJ 09, upcoming next generation KTM compact twin, and many more. It’s much easier to tuck down on the an upright style bike than to ride upright on a lay down variety. I’m talking real roads not race tracks by the way.

    • Chuck Chrome says:

      Keep stroking yourself over how smart you are with your practical bike. Your over inflated ego is just as annoying as the “posers”. You see, not all of us are in this for the same reasons. Maybe if you ever get over yourself you will realize this. Good luck.

  25. You mean a bike that can be ridden beyond the nearest bar?

  26. ApriliaRST says:

    The lowest handlebar bike I’ve ever owned is my eponymous Futura, and the bars are not nearly as low as a typical sport bike. Every bike I’ve bought since has had more upright seating, but my feet need to stay back under my body. By itself, upright seating may or may not be comfortable, depending on the seat form and foam, the quality of the suspension and the location of the foot pegs. Manufacturers will only make bikes more comfortable if buyers know what qualities make or break the bike’s ergos for them and vote with their wallets.

  27. waitman says:

    David Sanchez is a genius. HD haters warm up those fingers. Please comment.

    http://bottpower.com/

    • Jeremy in TX says:

      Well, it’s a Buell XB, not a Harley, but those are pretty cool. It would be a fun conversion.

      • waitman says:

        My bad. I know the distinction is real and important. Sanchez is a very cool guy. He is totally accesssible and loves what he does. If you like his stuff please drop him an email. He would love to hear your comments.

  28. redbirds says:

    A trend that will continue I hope. I built a Ryca cafe racer a few years ago. Fun to build and misery to ride, it was soon sold. A standard riding position gives comfort and better control and they just look so much better.

  29. Bob says:

    I think it has more to do with the fact that people who follow fashion trends have a 15 minute attention span. Cafe Racer? Been there, done that, lets move on to something else. Doesn’t really matter, however, as the term has become so diluted as to mean in some instances nothing more than a Sportster 48 with the bars turned upside down and rear fender removed. That said, the bikes styled in “scrambler” fashion are a more comfortable ride, especially for my 67 year old body.

  30. Onto says:

    Sitting upright gives you much better control of the motorcycle which makes riding safer and more fun. Riding motards and dirt bikes requires the ultimate in bike control so on those bikes you sit upright. The only purpose of the racer crouch is to reduce wind resistance which is only necessary when riding at high speeds. Where I live the speed limits are now so heavily enforced that riding at high speeds is becoming a rare experience so there is no point in putting up with discomfort for better aerodynamics.

    • Kiwiclown says:

      Yeah the wind thing is a factor but when you’re scrubbing off speed with the front tyre (on the track of course) you really want to have the best feel for traction as possible, you don’t get enough of that through long travel forks with high and wide bars. So yes, the trend of the ergos of a race bike on the road isn’t really necessary apart from the desire to look like a race bike, um, on the road 😉

    • Selecter says:

      Wrong on so many counts. The biggest reason for the “crouch” is to get more of a rider’s weight on the front tire. This aids traction and steering feel/control. These are a moot point on dirtbikes, where there’s little traction to begin with, and the tire is never in static, “grippy” contact with the ground to begin with.

      Riding a bike on the street does not have the same demands as riding a bike off-road.

      • Jeremy in TX says:

        I agree with all counts here. The crouch allows the rider to optimize body position for doing all things fast: accelerating, turning and braking.

        That said, I’ve never ridden a public road where a sport bike offered better “feel” / handling than an equally light sporty standard. On the track, I don feel as confident without the crouched riding position. On the street, I prefer something more upright.

        • Selecter says:

          Agreed on all counts here, as well. There *is* a purpose to The Crouch, but it is a bit useless on the streets. I should really have said “track” instead of “street” in my reply post in that sense. But the fact stands – the demand is different on pavement than off with regards to seating position.

          I LOVED the feel of my ’11 ZX-6R. But, that seating position (though FAR more comfy than my previous V11 LeMans or Falco) was just a terrible experience after a couple of hours. And what’s riding without a good overall experience?

  31. Ax1464 says:

    Yes, motorcycles are fun to look at and admire. But they’re even more to fun actually RIDE. And a comfortable bike is more enjoyable to ride for longer periods and more often.

  32. Pete says:

    Triumph makes real motorbikes, not those poser bikes. That’s for sure.

  33. Curly says:

    Maybe, just maybe, some of the talented (yes there is some very nice work out there) folks who have been creating all of those “cafe builds” for the last several years are starting to realize that clubman bars, plank seats, huge oversize Firestone tires don’t make for a very good ride and that no fenders, pipe wrap and checker flag tape look downright doofuss. Now please stop the knobby tires on street bike thing Ok?

    • rokster says:

      Agreed, I am so sick and tired (excuse the pun) of those damn things all following the same path and all using the same boring twins. How about someone making a classic standard out of, say, a 3-cylinder XS 850? Or a Guzzi? With an actual seat and proper tires and stuff…

      • bmbktmracer says:

        Remember the Moto Guzzi Breva 1200? Great bike. Maybe 10 people bought one.

        • EGS says:

          I had one and it truly was a great all-around bike. The Griso is even better! I left the fold and now ride an F650GS twin. Another great all-around bike (2-wheel SUV?) and over 150 lbs less than my Guzzis, but sorely lacking in the style/soul department.

          I sold out for function over form. These customs are a fun melding of the two elements.