But that is as it should be, in my view. The broad, strong power of the 1,832cc flat-six is the Valkyrie's most endearing quality. It makes power from barely off-idle, responding enthusiastically to the slightest tug at the two 40mm throttle bodies. You can purr along in top (fifth) gear at less than 2,000 rpm without lugging, then just open the throttle. The power flows seamlessly right past 7,000 rpm. With six cylinders singing, it actually sounds like it's spinning faster than that. You can carry a lot of rpm and let the exhaust announce your approach or shift up two or three gears and still have plenty of acceleration available when you ask for it. Shifts are smooth and fairly quiet, with nicely staged ratios. Five speeds are certainly enough for such a torquey motor, though more ratios are virtually always better, so we wouldn't object to a six speed. The light, manageable clutch cooperated with full-throttle departures, never heating up or becoming unpredictable. My only quibble with the drivetrain is that the shock absorbers it incorporates sometimes create a slight lash-like effect, winding up a bit when you get on and off the throttle. Other Honda flat-sixes haven't been noted for outstanding mileage, and there is no reason to expect this one to be, either. However, history says it will be reliable and ask for little maintenance.