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I traded in my Kawasaki Vulcan 1600 for a silver colored '04 Silver Wing and I couldn't be happier! The Vulcan was a great bike, as far as cruisers go, but I got tired of moving the excess weight around, scraping the floorboards in turns, and polishing the chrome. While I do like the cruiser idiom, I like the maxi-scooter platform better. The Silver Wing is lighter, faster, much quicker in turns, and gets better mileage (41-50 mpg). What's more, it is more comfortable and confident in a greater variety of riding conditions, especially touring when fireroads are involved. This is my eleventh motorcycle in 30 years of riding. Many bikes are compromises, excelling in some areas, but limited in others. Each bike, although right for the moment, had its great features and thus has taught me about what I ultimately look for in a motorcycle, hence my 12 ideal features. Of course all of these ideal features are personal, although you may find you agree with some of them. The Silver Wing ABS has more of my 12 ideal features than any bike I've owned! The twelve features of my ideal motorbike are: Thy bike, above all, shall be fun to ride and own, giving one the sense you love your ride. Thy bike shall be reliable, whether thy road be city, country, fireroad, highway, mountain, or desert. Thy bike must have good brakes, tires, and wheels giving confidence for riding and stopping in a variety of terrain. They should ideally be disc brakes with ABS. Tires should have good tread, ideally tubeless radial tires on mag wheels. Thy bike shall be flickable, i.e. light-weight with good handling and suspension, regardless of road, weather, or traffic condition. Thy bike shall be thrifty and economical: having good gas mileage and range, and being inexpensive to own, operate, and maintain. Parts and accessories should not be expensive or hard to obtain. Thy bike shall be comfortable, with a relaxed standard seating position (feet not too far forward or back), and be easy to maneuver, park, and operate. It should be able to travel long distances, a trip to the corner store, or a U' turn in comfort. Floorboards and/or highway pegs, giving a variety of foot positions are preferable. Ideally it should have a large and comfortable seat for both driver and passenger. Thy bike shall have easy to read gauges and instruments such as speedometer, tachometer, fuel gauge, temperature gauge, trip meters, and a clock. Thy bike shall have a strong reliable engine: having ample horsepower and torque, using liquid cooling, either oil or water, but preferably water to ensure long engine life. Thy bike shall have good weather protection, ideally a frame mounted windshield/fairing, small enough to see over, but large enough to deflect high speed winds. Additional wind protection for the legs is an added plus. Thy bike shall have fuel injection to ensure easy starts and operation in all climatic conditions. Thy bike shall have an effective way to carry personal luggage, or be able to be easily fitted with saddlebags, topcases, or a luggage rack. Thy bike shall have a centerstand, preferably as standard equipment, to make loading, parking, and maintenance easier.
- Anonymous, Redwood City, California
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