The Motorcycle Blog

I Want It All, But Not Too Big


Triumph Tiger 800XC

Triumph Tiger 800

Bigger is better, right?  For the past few years that’s been the mantra of the motorcycle industry, bigger engines and more power.  Bigger also came with a hefty price tag.  Building a bigger engine isn’t as simple as increasing the bore and stroke of an existing engine.  With increases in power come increased stresses on the engine parts so making sure the engine doesn’t fail is important.  The rider also needs to be able to use the power increase effectively so advanced electronics had to be developed.  The cost of all this is passed on in the price of the motorcycle.  Oh, and don’t forget that this wonderful increase in power scares the insurance underwriters to death and the result is a big increase in insurance premiums.

Bring on the Mid-Weights!

Mid-Weight motorcycles, use to be the big bikes but were some how forgotten in the push to get bigger.  Not any more.


In the Adventure bike world, Mid-Weight motorcycle is relatively new and until 2011 BMW was the only player.  BMW introduced the F800GS in 2008 and it was an instant hit.  It didn’t have the hefty bulk and price tag of it’s the 1200GS and it proved to be an excellent daily commuter that could be packed up for weekend adventures.  A 798cc parallel twin engine powers the F 800 GS and while the performance may not be “sexy” it is very user friendly and all riding conditions.

You Need To Ride It!

Go to your local dealer, I don’t care which one.  Now walk inside.  Breath in the smells and gaze at the bright, beautiful and exciting machines.  Now go sit on the one you like the best and imagine cruising down a car-less highway or carving up a mountain road. 

How do you feel? 

Are you ready to buy that motorcycle? 

What would it take to help you make that decision? 

You can imagine all you want how it would feel, but that’s not enough.  Feeling how the bike moves under power, hearing how the engine sounds under acceleration and smelling the scents of the road is what you need.  

You Need To Ride It!

Last weekend I took my Star Roadliner out for it’s first ride of the season and one of the stops was the region’s only Triumph dealer.  I wanted to see the new Tiger 800 as I’m looking to replace my Kawasaki KLR 650 with something that’s got more “zing”.  I didn’t see the bike in the showroom so asked the salesman, who turned out to be the owner, if they had one to look at.  He had me follow him outside to where they had the Tiger parked.  I looked the bike over and then sat on the motorcycle.  I immediately liked the feel of the bike, especially the seat height.  I asked him if Triumph was going to have any demo days to experience the bike.  His response was a pleasant shock.  “I need to take a copy of your license and have you sign a release and you can take it for a ride, OK”.  Perfect!

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