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5 Iconic Motorcycles from the Past

British motorcycle manufacturer Vincent was known for producing  exceptionally-engineered bikes with innovative designs.

Certain motorcycles stand apart from the rest due to their innovative design or exceptional performance. Many of these belong to past eras. However, they are still revered by most riders to this day.

Let’s look at 5 iconic motorcycles from the past.

Harley-Davidson Low Rider

Harley-Davidson is a household name in the biking world as you must already know. The company enjoys a title of the oldest continuously operating motorcycle manufacturer in the United States. They introduced the Low Rider, also known as FXS, at the Daytona Bike Week in Florida in 1977.

This ride was notable for being the company’s first factory customs motorcycle. It featured the lowest seating on any Harley Davidson bike and came with raised white lettered tires. The Low Rider was equipped with a 1200cc shovelhead engine that produced 60hp.

BMW R69S

BMW made their foray into the biking world in 1921. They introduced the R69S in 1960. This model was a special edition that sported a unique style and offered great performance. This high-powered bike came with a 594cc boxer twin engine that produced 35hp. The company produced a little over 11,000 units, many of which still exist today.

Vincent Black Shadow

British motorcycle manufacturer Vincent was known for producing exceptionally-engineered bikes with innovative designs. In 1948 they introduced the Black Shadow, which quickly earned the title of the first superbike.

It was considered the fastest motorcycle of the 1950s, and was capable of reaching a top speed of 125 mph. All this during an era where other bikes were seldom capable of reaching speeds of 100 mph. The Black Shadow was capable of reaching these high-speeds thanks to its 900cc V-twin engine that cranked out 55hp.

Honda CB750

Honda introduced the CB750 in 1969. This transverse-mounted four cylinder engine bike was a game changer for the company, and was Soichiro Honda’s attempt at breaking into the American market. This ride could accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in just 5.8 seconds. It was also capable of reaching a top speed of 120mph comfortably.

These high-speeds pushed Honda’s engineers to develop a superior braking system. They eventually came up with front-mounted disc brakes for the model. This feature would go on to become common on other bike models that followed the CB750.

Triumph Bonneville

Few motorcycles are considered as legendary as the Triumph Bonneville. This bike sprang into mainstream consciousness following its launch in 1959. It takes its name from the speed record set by Johnny Allen at the Bonneville Salt Flats in 1955.

This British bike became popular with notable individuals such as James Dean, Marlon Brando, and Steve McQueen. It featured a 649 cc two-cylinder engine which enabled it to reach speeds up to 115 mph.

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