How's this for a pair of fun baggers? Victory expands its 2010 touring lineup into the hot-selling "hard-bagger" segment with two new cruisers: the fully faired Cross Country and windscreen-equipped Cross Roads. These are not stripped-down versions of the Vision luxo-tourer; they're based on an all-new chassis optimized for more athletic, light-duty touring.
Victory claims the Cross twins will be the lightest and best-handling hard baggers on the market thanks to its proprietary CORE chassis technology. The aluminum frame consists of separate sandcast, hollow front and rear sections that together are significantly lighter and stiffer than the steel-tubed competition. Hanging the engine as a stressed member further increases rigidity, and also provides class-leading cornering clearance and an exceptionally low center of gravity.
Styling is distinctly modern, highlighting Victory's signature smooth, flowing lines. The 765-pound Cross Country utilizes a fork-mounted fairing said to have been perfected in the wind tunnel to provide maximum wind and rain protection. This fairing also contains an extensive instrument and audio package, complete with analog speedo and tach, digital multi-function-display trip computer, and a standard AM/FM stereo (with optional iPod or satellite-radio capabilities). The lighter, 745-lb. Cross Roads gets a simplified cockpit (no tach, audio or trip computer), and substitutes a removable Lexan windscreen for wind-in-your-face versatility.
The Cross Roads features a quick-release windscreen in place of the Cross Country's full f
Both models share the same massive, class-leading 21.3-gallon hard saddlebags (25 percent larger than Harley-Davidson's Street Glide). Crash bars are standard equipment-simple tubular pieces for the Cross Roads; highly stylized forged wings for the Cross Country. Ergonomically both bikes are identical, with the lowest seat height in the class (26.25 inches), the longest floorboards (18 inches) and adjustable-height handlebars. Attractive, hollow-spoke "Roulette" wheels hold each up.
Victory's Freedom 106 cubic-inch V-twin provides power for both bikes. Featuring a self-adjusting cam chain and hydraulic lifters, and counterbalanced to quell vibes, the SOHC, four-valve, 50-degree twin produces a claimed 92 horsepower and 109 lb.-ft. of torque. A six-speed overdrive transmission translates torque into forward motion, delivered via a carbon-fiber-reinforced drive belt. Suspension comes straight from the Vision, a 43mm cartridge fork and an air-adjustable rear shock.
Solid Black and Solid Midnight Cherry are standard colors; an optional Black/Graphite with Extreme Skulls graphics applies to the Cross Country only. Pricing has not yet been finalized, but both Cross bikes will come in well under the $18,999 Vision Street when they appear in dealerships in December. These two new bikes will be great additions to the hard-bagger category, and more evidence of Victory's willingness to push the performance and style boundaries in the cruiser category. Kudos to the "New American Motorcycle" manufacturer for giving touring riders all the features and benefits they demand in a fresh, innovative, non-derivative machine.