New for 2018, the Star Venture promises a luxurious touring experience. The heart and soul of this flagship is an air-cooled 1,854cc V-twin tuned for strong midrange power and imbued with a ride-by-wire throttle, traction control, and selectable power modes. Electronics further permeate the 957-pound machine, including an electric drive motor that can move the bike backward or forward to ease parking (does this make it a hybrid?), and a standard infotainment system that may be either touch- or voice-activated. An optional Transcontinental package adds a navigation system, an up-level audio system with SiriusXM radio, LED fog lights, and a security system with alarm.
Running gear includes a steel main frame and an aluminum subframe, a stout 46mm adjustable fork and linkage-activated shock, and linked antilock disc brakes with electronic brake-force distribution. The 130/70-18 front tire—large in diameter compared to the 16-inchers found on some tourers—is backed up by a fat 200/55-16 rear tire; both are touring-spec radials. The full-coverage fairing can be trimmed for conditions, including electric height-adjustability for the windshield, movable side visors, and closable internal vents.
Likes: Robust claimed 126 pound-feet of torque exceeds that of a Ford Focus!
Dislikes: Doesn't the need for a separate parking motor imply this bike is too big?
Verdict: A traditional V-twin tourer wrapped in modernism