Horowhenua Mail : December 22nd 2011
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GIANT SAVING! 1999 Toyota Corolla 1600cc, NZ New, 5 Spd, Airbag, A/C. GIANT SAVING! 3841682AZ TIDE TABLE FRIDAY DECEMBER 23 Low 2.35am High 8.52am Low 3.07pm High 9.14pm SATURDAY DECEMBER 24 Low 3.31am High 9.45am Low 4.00pm High 10.08pm SUNDAY DECEMBER 25 Low 4.22am High 10.34am Low 4.50pm High 10.58pm MONDAY DECEMBER 26 Low 5.09am High 11.20am Low 5.37pm High 11.44pm TUESDAY DECEMBER 27 Low 5.33am High am Low 6.22pm High 12.04pm WEDNESDAY DECEMBER 28 Low 6.36am High 12.29am Low 7.05pm High 12.46pm THURSDAY DECEMBER 29 Low 7.18am High 1.11am Low 7.48pm High 1.27pm A Victory in more ways than one Highball looks custom-made for Indian's second Summer, writes PAUL OWEN. Impressive machine: Highball looks custom-made for Indian. It's often said that the major difference between buying a Harley and purchasing a Victory is that you get more than 100 years of heritage with the former. For Victory, the Minnesota-based arm of Polaris Industries, has only been building bikes since 1993. However, that market mindset is about to be cracked wide open. For after years of wrangling, Victory has finally acquired the rights to the historic Indian brand, and is currently developing a range of bikes that will revive what was once Harley's fiercest rival. What will those new Indians look like? I reckon they won't stray too far away from the throwback looks of the bike you see on this page. For the new Victory Highball is the most retrospective bike of the current range, and its white-wall tyres and old- school graphics would fit any revival bikes about to wear the Indian brand like a tailored leather riding outfit. The most striking things about the Highball are the model's ape-hanger handlebars. These high-rise controls are borderline legal in several markets around the world and ape-hangers are generally valued only by outlaws for their ability to put tattoos, arm muscle, and, presumably, hairy armpits on display to better distribute male pheromones. Yet the Victory seemed to attract people more than scare them away during the test period. I'm sure all who expressed interest in the bike during its time in my hands went home that night and said: I saw the coolest- looking motorcycle today. . . If the Highball looks custom-made, it displays none of the dynamic pitfalls that usually come with the territory. Victory's starting point was the existing chopper- esque Vegas cruiser model and they reined in the wheelbase of that bike, steepened up the steering geometry and fitted a fat front tyre mounted on the 16 front wheel. The result is a bike that steers and handles much better than its limited footpeg clearance will allow. You feel the Highball is just getting its groove on as it charges into a turn with some of the sweetest steering in the cruiser sector... then the pegs smack noisily into the road. Fortunately the spring rate chosen for the bikes preload-adjustable rear suspension is on the firm side of the cruiser spectrum, helping keep those pegs from grinding away on bumpy winding roads. Up front, the 41mm forks are perhaps a little too eager to use up their 130mm of wheel travel and even the modest braking power of the single front disc/4-piston caliper -- a comparatively weak stopper compared to the more emphatic bite of the massive rear disc -- can send the forks diving for cover. However, Victory's over-plush front end is fine for the Highball's cruiser aspirations and it's only when riding outside that envelope that the front wheel occasionally runs out of travel. When it does, the high handlebars suddenly offer an advantage, for there's no direct load path to transfer excess bump energy to the rider's shoulders. Victory's sweet 106 cubic-inch 50-degree air-cooled V-twin is in its Stage 2 tune for Highball duty, which means it puts 97bhp (72kW) and 153Nm on the table instead of the 94bhp (70kW) and 143Nm of the Vegas 8-ball. While the horsepower peak looks modest for an engine of 1.7 litres, the access to it is impressive. Torque flows through the Highball's six-speed powertrain like muddy water down the mighty Mississippi. There's an impression of relentlessness to this engine that makes it totally endearing, and the top-end zip is more than respec- table for a mill with elongated piston strokes. Rev it out a heady 6000rpm in the first five gears, and the Highball will feel like its just pinged off the flipper of a gigantic pinball machine. Slip into the overdriven sixth gear, and the Victory will chug as smoothly as a diesel-electric locomotive, content to pull 2000rpm up a steep road gradient at a strictly-legal 110km/h. The Highball gets a minimalist do-everything speedo, and its a little beauty.
December 15th 2011
December 29th 2011