Moves from A to B with no frills
All of the turn signals needed to be replaced after my fifth year of ownership because of my neglect, not because of abuse or faulty workmanship. The bike was parked inside a hot garage for about one year and the plastic mounts simply crumbled, flaked and fell off. I purchased after market turn signals for $50.
The battery has been replaced once. $50.
Both tires have been replaced once. About $70/each.
Speedometer stopped working at about 3500 miles. Speedometer cable was replaced $25 and that fixed the problem.
The seat developed a small tear and has grown to about 3 inches.
I have replaced the spark plugs twice. $4/each x 4.
The flasher fuse has been replaced once. $2.00.
Replaced mirrors with square aftermarket. $15/each.
The headlight has been replaced once. $60. The low beam died on the original so I just kept the high beam ON all the time until it too finally died.
I am the second owner. It used to belong to the city and used by the police to patrol downtown. The dealership warned the city the bike would be too small, so they returned the bike and upgraded to the Nighthawk 750.
The bike does not have an oil filter. It simply uses a small net-like mesh filter about the size of a US five cent coin. I should probably change the motor oil more frequently than every 3000 miles, but I don't.
I put gas, check the tire pressure (sometimes) and go.
The engine is a very simple 234cc air cooled design. It just works, but, I do not feel comfortable getting on the freeway. I weigh 220 pounds, have a 31 inch inseam and am 5'8". The bike begins to struggle once it reaches 60mph. The fastest I have ever gone on the bike is 65mph with a strong back wind helping me.
Surprisingly, the bike rides smoother with my wife riding on the back. She weighs about 150 pounds.
I believe this is the only bike in production that still uses drum brakes front and rear. The brakes are its weakest link.
The bike has been very reliable. I keep telling myself I will buy another bike as soon as this one dies on me, but I don't it ever will.
The seat is comfortable for about half an hour, and then my rear end begins to hurt.
I never mess with the preload rear shock suspension setting. I just leave it on the middle setting.
I average about 220 miles before I need to switch to reserve. I think I can probably get 250 miles before I empty the tank.
My longest tour was 200 miles one way and it took about three hours. Four hours later I made the return trip. I will never do that again.
I experimented with a fairing at one time. The engine noise was emphasised. The fairing did its job, but it was too hot in summer. I took it off and never used it again.
I have considered a used Honda ST1300 but, may just settle for a lightly used Suzuki Burgman 650. :)
Would you buy another motorcycle from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 7th March, 2008