If you wanted to buy a 2021 motorcycle from Zero, you’re too late. They’re all sold out, according to Jalopnik. Zero is already hard at work on updating the electronics to make most 2022 models even better.
After I got to ride a Zero SR/F at IMS Outdoors, I understand the popularity. If you can get over the almost complete lack of sound from these bikes, they’re legitimately fun to ride, and FAST. Did I mention fast? On our demo ride our leader got us all onto a nice quiet straightaway real slow, then mashed the throttle and took off like a light cycle from Tron. Naturally, the rest of us did the same. There’s nothing like the instant power and torque from an electric motor.
I could definitely see myself owning an electric bike as a commuter or city bike. They’re perfect for squirting in and out of traffic, and use virtually no power at a stop. My thing, though, is getting out of the city, out into the middle of nowhere, for hours at a time. That’s where electric bikes in general, not specifically Zero, fall short. It comes down the same old problems: charging time, and places to charge them. I’m sure that situation will continue to improve as more and more electric vehicles hit the road.
Fans of Top Gear likely remember the trope where James May would report some piece of news about the Dacia Sandero, after which they would immediately move on to some other piece of news that we actually cared about. We have to care about the Sandero now, though, as Automotive News Europe reports that it has displaced the VW Golf as the top selling car in Europe for this past July.
We still don’t really care. It was just a convenient excuse to write a throwback to the old Top Gear days for fun.
A brief Harley-Davidson press release makes the bold claim that the new Pan America adventure bike is “the #1 selling adventure touring motorcycle in North America.”
Unfortunately, H-D provides no actual sales numbers to back up this claim. While there’s a great deal of interest in the Pan America (and definitely include me in that category), without knowing how many Harley sold compared to the BMW R 1250 GS, the Honda Africa Twin, and all the other usual suspects in the big ADV bike world, and in what timeframe this occurred, such claims are little more than posturing.
Is H-D lying? No, I certainly don’t think so. I’ve started seeing Pan Americas on the road. People in motorcycle Facebook groups I’m on have been posting pictures of their new Pan Americas. They’re definitely selling. Additionally, as Canada Moto Guide points out, it’s entirely possible that the international chip shortage has left certain models built elsewhere in the world high and dry, while Harley doesn’t appear to have had any problems building theirs. I would say their claim is, as Mythbusters would describe it, “plausible.”
It’s also possible that they could be only counting sales on Tuesdays between June 28 and August 7, in Iowa, in counties whose names contain the letter C. Like Obi-Wan Kenobi, such claims can still be true, “from a certain point of view.”
Which is it? I don’t know, and I won’t speculate. I’m not getting down on Harley here. I genuinely want to see the Pan America succeed, not just because I’m an adventure bike rider myself, but also because H-D desperately needs to innovate or die. The Pan America is their best shot at breaking out of the mold they’ve created for themselves, as middle-age riders (like me) seem more interested in ADV bikes than cruisers these days.
I absolutely plan on booking a Pan America demo ride at IMS Outdoors. Stay tuned to read how that goes.
Due to a perfect storm of the ongoing chip shortage and a resurgence of COVID-19 in southeast Asia, Honda has warned US dealers to expect a 40 percent reduction in some models, according to a letter leaked to the CivicXI forums.
The Pilot and Passport shouldn’t be affected, partly because they’re built elsewhere, and partly because SUVs rule North American sales. Additionally, the new 2022 Civic Hatchback should also remain on schedule for its planned rollout in late September.
If it seems like Corollas are everywhere, that’s because they are. The Drive reports that last month, Toyota sold its 50 millionth Corolla, along with a great history of the iconic model.
50 million! That’s more than the population of Spain. It’s more than double the number of VW Beetles ever made. I’m talking the original, air-cooled, rear-engine Beetles, not the modern Golf with a round body.