A Middleweight Resurgence

Is downsizing the wave of the future? Proof that less can be more!

I remember when I started my motorcycle journey. My dad signed me up for a motorcycle safety course and said that when I graduated he would give me his Honda 500cx Custom. At 16, all I could think about was the fact that I would have my own motorcycle and a 500cc bike to boot. Times sure have changed. Today we all want bigger and faster machines. After seeing the new crop of middleweight machines ready to hit the market, I am wondering if we can be coaxed to go back in time.

Most of us remember a time when the middleweight motorcycle market was a dog eat dog battle for supremacy. All the big manufacturers were players in the game and the bikes were amazing! Well the good news is this market is making a comeback in a big way. Why is that, you may ask. Here are my thoughts:

We might not want to admit it, but the majority of the riders that have the means and the want, to buy motorcycles are older riders. We all know from experience that big liter machines are harder to ride, take more effort to ride and to be honest, most riders will not even come close to riding these magnificent machines close to the level that they deserve. They are larger, weigh more and demand your full attention. The new middleweight machines, offer plenty of usable power with world class technology in the areas of suspension and rider aids. They give the experienced rider everything needed to have a great riding experience with less weight. A win-win situation.

Newer riders are begging for a adrenaline pumping machine, that gets the heart rate up, looks great and does not put them in debt, unlike their student loans. Affordable machines, that the younger crowd can grow with, gaining the experience needed to be a motorcycle enthusiast for years to come. This new middleweight class will be a nice springboard to bigger bikes, with more technology and horsepower. Manufactures are committed to making these machines because they see the potential market share that they are leaving on the table.

The new look Middleweight class is exciting. Everything from Standards, Super Sports, cruisers and adventure bikes are all coming in smaller sizes. They have all the bells and whistles, with much less weight and a price tag that most of us can afford without having to mortgage the house. I am excited to see these new machines at our local dealers, luring the newer and experienced riders to take a dip in the Middleweight pool. Heck I may even jump in. Stay tuned!

So what are your thoughts? What new Middleweight has gotten your attention? Maybe you are not interested at all in these small machines. If that is the case, let me know why? While most of us are stuck in the house during this cold spell, we can all discuss the resurgence of the Middleweight. Ready … set…go!

3 thoughts on “A Middleweight Resurgence

  1. I downsized from my trusty 2003 FJR to a KTM 790 Duke in order to continue riding in my 80’s, now that we no longer ride two-up, and I no longer ride cross-country, the FJR’s areas of excellence. I noticed increasing difficulty with the high center of gravity and overall weight of the FJR, an first went to the Yamaha FJ-09, but found it difficult in high winds in the California Delta and the engine control system difficult to manage from idle and in low speed switchbacks, leading me to trade it for the 790 Duke, with its responsive engine and very stable aerobics in heavy winds.

  2. I downsized, at least in weight! From my 540 lb Bandit 1250 to my 440 lb KTM 1290 SDR. Downsize the engine? Noooo, not for me. If I want a more sedate ride, I still have my Bandit, and an ’03 SV1000 that’s still a lot of fun to ride. I prefer lots of low end and midrange power. I can ride these bikes from 3-6000 rpm and just rip along. These smaller engines have to spin 2-3000 rpm faster to get the same power. I don’t like riding all day from 6000-11,000 rpm to get the power out of them. So, no, I’ll be sticking with 1000cc + motors for my street bikes anyway. My DR650 is my put put go anywhere rig, and I don’t see that changing.

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