Don't buy an established classic. Use your noddle. Buy a future classic instead...
If you hanker for a bike that won't depreciate and you can fix-up or fettle yourself then you're best looking at old bikes that haven't yet acquired the 'classic' title.
You're probably also looking at a bike that'll cost under two grand, has carbs (none of this expensive and complicated fuel injection, thank you) and will still induce a grin of anticipation when you pull open the garage door.
The choice is pretty impressive. Here's ten bikes that fit our bill. Are these the next classics?
Suzuki GSX-R750 WTWe sniffed out a 20,000 mile '96 model that looked well cared for for just £1250 on Bike Trader. The beam-framed WT is still a hoot for track days and even if it barrel rolls through the gravel trap on the exit of Paddock Bend, you're not going to be too upset as eBay has all the parts you need to repair it...
Yamaha FZ750Yamaha's five-valved 750 is a sweet motor and to the cash strapped biker, a torquey, flexible, powerful 600 alternative. How about a nice late model J-plate example for £995? Why not Superstock it with some 17in racing mag wheels, a rattle can Loctite paint job and Lockheed/Brembo brakes?
Cagiva MitoOne of the prettiest bikes around (still), Cagiva's little 125 two-stroke will make a very lively 30bhp with not much work. They may take a lot of TLC to keep in tip-top condition but riding round the outside of people down Craner Curves makes up for it. £1295 buys you a '99 V-reg model with an Arrow pipe and 14,000 miles on the clock.
Kawasaki ZXR750How can you not fall for those Hoover pipe air intakes, even if they are a fake? Rock solid suspension, enough power to terrify yourself and we found a few tatty examples for under a grand. Could this be your first 'classic' restoration piece? Send us your pics as a before and after, please...
Kawasaki ZZ-R1100We rode Triumph's new Sprint GT a few months ago and it was amazing how much it felt like a ZZ-R1100. Then we looked at the specs back-to-back. The ZZ-R1100 was lighter, more powerful and much, much faster. The cost of retro-progress? £1795 buys you a really tidy ZZ-R on an S-plate with 29,000 miles under its sturdy belt. 175mph top speed here we come...
The final five future classics follow
Totally agree with your choices Mark
I espec. like the blurb about the ApriliaRS250, mainly cos I own one hehe (:
Posted: 25/10/2010 at 15:03
Posted: 25/10/2010 at 16:34
Posted: 25/10/2010 at 16:57
I had a ZXR750 J1 model yonks ago, great bike, lots of torque, wicked riding position and with a Yoshi pipe sounded the mutts nuts ... ah happy days, proper classic !
Posted: 29/10/2010 at 08:11
Posted: 29/10/2010 at 12:12
Posted: 16/11/2010 at 14:50
RS 250. The one bike I regretted selling.
I knew i should've kept it but the certainty that one day the engine would explode and the somewhat patchy spares situation (from my experience anyway) means after 5000 miles of road fun and trackdays it had to go.
In fact, my track record with bikes seems to be, if i've I owned one and now sold it, it'll become a classic.
Posted: 16/11/2010 at 15:54
Posted: 16/11/2010 at 17:46
Posted: 17/11/2010 at 11:21
Posted: 25/01/2011 at 21:30
What about Honda VFR750 / 800? The only engine in any machine I have come across that pulls away through a rev band of 11,000. Pull away at 1,000 rpm, and it's still accelerating when its doing 12,000.
Mind you I'm not well up on aeroplane engines. do they do that?
Posted: 25/01/2011 at 22:04
Posted: 29/05/2012 at 17:19
Posted: 31/05/2012 at 14:50
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