Victory Motorcycles rolls out its new Vision line of motorcycles today.
The unveiling of the Victory Vision Tour and the Victory Vision Street end months of speculation among the public that Victory was going to introduce something completely new and different in the luxury touring category.
“This sets a new standard. It sets a new standard in styling, sets a new standard in comfort, it has all the features people want and it will be a bike that gives each rider the ability to touch all the senses,” said Steve Smith, Product Manager with Victory.
The Vision Tour with hard bags and a hard top case goes head-to-head with such motorcycles as the Honda Gold Wing and the Harley-Davidson Ultra Classic Electra Glide. The Vision Street, similar to the tour but without the top pack, is comparable to Harley-Davidsons Street Glide. The Vision rounds out Victorys cruiser line-up, which includes the Vegas 8-Ball on the low end, and the Ness Signature Series on the high end.
The most striking element of the Vision is its aggressive, modern styling, something not seen in the luxury touring market. Victory executives say the Vision fills a void in that market. “Just because a motorcycle is made in the USA doesnt mean it has to look like its 20, 30, 40, or 50 years old,” said Gary Laskin, Product Manager with Victory. “Americans can design high quality up-to-date performance motorcycles that are up-to-date in their design.”
The Vision is the most extensively researched product in the history of Polaris Industries, Victorys 53-year-old parent company. Thirty-six months in development, the Vision represents exactly what customers are asking for, according to Laskin. “We designed this bike for the American luxury touring rider. We spent about three years studying the customers, studying the market and understanding what it is people wanted. We figured out after a lot of hard work and a lot of research that styling and comfort were the two most important things. So our goal from the beginning has been to make the most beautiful and the most comfortable bike in the category.”
Comfort comes in the form of a low seat height, 26.5 inches, for a bike in this category, and integrated floorboards. The seat has been ergonomically designed for the rider and passenger boasting more than 4 inches of padding, more than any competitive model. Optional electrically adjustable windshield and adjustable side wind deflectors allow riders to tailor airflow on the fly.
Both Vision models are powered by Victorys Freedom V-Twin motor; theres speculation the 100 cubic inch motor may get a horsepower boost to accomodate the extra weight. The sleek, stretch tank holds six gallons of fuel. Rear suspension is adjustable. Integrated premium audio and visual features include GPS navigation and MP3 support.
Victory executives wont reveal much more about the Vision motorcycles until June 2007 when price and additional specifications become available. The bike is expected to be in dealerships in the fall of 2007.
The Vision was so highly anticipated by the public that some Victory dealerships already have taken deposits for the bike. WRN Editor Genevieve Schmitt spoke with legendary custom bike builder and Victory dealer Arlen Ness at the press launch of the Vision in December 2006. He told her hes holding deposits from two customers, one of them a woman, who heard about the bike late last summer and wanted one, sight unseen.
Whether the look appeals to you or not, Victory reps say the Vision will have a significant place in motorcycling history. “I believe this bike is going to be a historic motorycle,” said Laskin. “Its going to be one of those bikes 30 years from now where its going to be in a museum and people are going to look back and say thats the bike that fundamentally changed the design of American motorcycles.”
Greg Brew, Director of Design on the Vision said, “Even if you dont like it, youll say its a bold and ballsy motorcycle and pay attention to it.”
To read more about the long roll-out of the Vision and its significance in todays marketplace, read Genevieve Schmitts editorial where she shares her view inside the industry.
And to read her review of the 2007 Victory motorcycles just posted, visit the Motorcycle Reviews page.