Best Sport Touring Motorcycle of 2018

Best Sport Touring Motorcycle of 2018: Kawasaki Ninja H2 SX SE

It was a fairly easy choice. The newly domesticated version of the mighty Supercharged Kawasaki makes enough horsepower in stock form – 171 on our dyno – to deliver a full dose to even the sickest speedfreak, but it does so in a sneaky, gentlemanly way: this air-cooled compressor means the 998cc Four n he only needs 10,000 rpm to produce all that power, and that’s 89 lb-ft. of torque at just 8,600 rpm. Suddenly the world is flying through your face shield at an alarming rate, with no vibratory or auditory warning. Sacred Kawasaki! That’s what we call Efficiency, another by-product of which is the SE’s ability to extract over 40 mpg from a gallon of gasoline, giving it a range of 200 miles.

On this bike you could get this far in about an hour and a half, but since it also has the best suspension on any Kawasaki, along with great ergonomics and creature comfort, you can sit on it a lot more. long time. The first electronic cruise control on a Kawasaki “sportbike” also makes it a sport-tourer, that inline-four is incredibly smooth, you have saddlebags, a center stand, etc.

The SE takes it a step further by including cornering lights, a quickshifter, heated grips, all the latest trending acronyms including TFT, IMU and tilt sensitive ABS.

Kawasaki H2 SX SE review

Then there is the fact that the SE is beautiful despite being green. They don’t put the Rivermark logo on just any Kawi, and this bike was meant to show the world what Kawasaki can do. The trellis frame not only looks cool, it allows for more air circulation which helps keep the engine cool. The one-sided swingarm is inflated, the level of fit and finish wherever you look is a cut or two above what you expected, and the beauty you just can’t see is this one, at 576 pounds wet, weighs about 100 pounds lighter than the old Concours 14.

$ 22,000 for the SX SE is a steal, but you can buy a base model for just $ 19,000 if you just like to practice abstinence.


Best Sport Touring Motorcycle of 2018 finalist: Yamaha Tracer 900 GT

Less can really be more, especially if we are talking about less weight – the 900 GT plotter tips our scales at under 500 pounds – in a bike that still contains all the minimum daily requirements for good sport-touring: decent, adjustable wind protection, plenty of power from the soulful 847cc Triple, fuel economy of 45 mpg, all-day comfort, cruise control, standard hard luggage …

For $ 12,999, you might not expect a TFT dashboard, heated grips, front 12V outlet, or a standard center stand for those obsessed with chain lubrication.

The basic building block is the FJ-09 (another Yamaha we liked it very much), but Yamaha listened to exactly what these owners wanted by delivering this new makeover model. Plush seats for pilot and passenger spread across a spacious cockpit, sleeker bag racks and adjustable suspension with a remote preload adjustment knob.

We’ve always been fans of this Yamaha Triple, and in the Tracer GT it seems to have found a great home; throttle response is smooth and precise, and the torquey nature and linear delivery of the motor are perfect for long-distance rides. So much so that yours has done a 1,048 mile day aboard the Tracer since it launched in Portland a few months ago, without feeling any ill effects afterwards.

2019 Yamaha Tracer 900 GT Review

You can obviously spend a lot more money on a sport-tourer with more horsepower (and more fuel and weight consumption), or a more prestigious home country, but downsizing and downpowering is not at all like compromises in this case. In fact, they seem like a step in the right direction when you reach a certain level of experience, harumph.

Check your shoe size before you get too excited: some riders with larger dogs complain that their heels hit the passenger footrest brackets, which you need as they are part of the bag brackets as well. If the Tracer is suitable, however, it’s a bike that’s hard to dislike.



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