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Ariel Ace (2014-current)

£20,000

1237cc, 170bhp, 150mph, Insurance group 17

Ariel has more recently been known for producing quirky-looking space-framed Atom sports cars with fearsome power to weight ratios and superbike levels of acceleration. But now they’re back making bikes. The Ace is a modular concept, so you can have any style you want from the cruiser shown here, to a super naked. Build quality is superb, it comes with ...

  • MCN rating rating is 5
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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Yamaha XVS1300 Custom (2014-current)

£8,999

1304cc, 72bhp, 110mph, Insurance group 12

Yamaha’s XVS1300 Custom off-the-peg chopper is a rebadged Yamaha Stryker, originally released in the US in 2011. It mixes ‘American Chopper’ styling with bomb-proof Yamaha build quality. Badge snobs might sneer at its lack of ‘Harleyness’ but it’s a capable machine and superb value for money.

  • MCN rating rating is 4
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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Ducati 1199 Superleggera (2014)

£54,000

1198cc, 200bhp, 186mph, Insurance group 17

Based on the homologation-special Panigale R, the 200bhp Superleggera (‘super light’ in Italian) weighs just 155kg dry, or 166kg wet with no fuel, which is the same as the Bologna firm’s WSB racer. Ducati has created 200 shiny new parts for this most exclusive slice of exotica, including a magnesium frame and wheels, a carbon fibre seat unit, a bucket-full ...

  • MCN rating rating is 5
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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Norton Domiracer (2014)

£26,000

961cc, 80bhp, 125mph, Insurance group

New Nortons don’t come along very often, especially ones with featherbed frames and looks like this. That is in enough in itself for the Domiracer to be considered special. The fact that it's 83% British with much of it (frame, tank, pipes, engine and final assembly) all done on site at Donington, is another big plus. Then there’s the look ...

  • MCN rating rating is 5
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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Yamaha XV950 (2013-current)

£7,199

942cc, 51bhp, 110mph, Insurance group 10

Like any proper bobber, Yamaha’s XV isn’t for the long, open road but is more suited to the urban dude. Yamaha has kept it relatively light, at 247kg, and a super-low seat height of 690mm makes it easy to control for virtually everyone. An abundance of torque delivers a fun, responsive ride and having suspension and brakes that work goes ...

  • MCN rating rating is 4
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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Suzuki V-Strom 1000 (2014-current)

£9,999

1037cc, 100bhp, 140mph, Insurance group

The V-Strom is never going to electrify you with thrills. It’s not breathtakingly quick, but it is easy to ride and manageable, delivering loads of low and midrange grunt. You can throw it around with confidence and it’s backed up by excellent traction control and ABS. It’s also comfortable, natural, frugal and simple – yet still has neat touches like ...

  • MCN rating rating is 4
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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Moto Guzzi California Touring 1400 (2013-current)

£16,132

1380cc, 95bhp, 130mph, Insurance group 13

The new California is a fabulous looking bike, it’s sophisticated and, dare I say it, sexy, too – it’s a successful modern twist on a classic design. In short it has that little something extra that Japanese, and even American, cruisers can’t match in standard form. What’s more, the big transverse V-twin has typical Guzzi traits, but is far smoother ...

  • MCN rating rating is 4
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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KTM 1190 Adventure (2013-current)

£12,999

1195cc, 150bhp, 140mph, Insurance group

The new 1190 is radically different from the 990 it replaces. The whole package of chassis, electronic suspension and rider aids makes this 150bhp, 230kg bike seriously capable with more rider-friendly characteristics than any previous KTM Adventure. It can also be ridden faster than I ever thought possible – in this respect it’s more like a Ducati Multistrada, but with ...

  • MCN rating rating is 4
  • Owners' rating rating is 4
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Ducati Monster 1200S (2014-current)

£12,995

1198cc, 145bhp, 150mph, Insurance group

In isolation I like the new Monster, which has character, looks good and is modern but still very much a Monster. The new liquid-cooled engine is much better than the old bike’s. There’s loads of mid-range and low-down grunt, and it sounds fantastic for a standard bike. The handling on the S model is excellent, just as happy on road ...

  • MCN rating rating is 4
  • Owners' rating rating is 4
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Ducati 1199 Panigale R (2013-current)

£26,995

1198cc, 195bhp, 180mph, Insurance group 17

This is a bike for two types of people: the well-healed Ducati collector, or a race team owner who will strip it down and compete in Superstock 1000 championships. Acceleration is slightly more urgent out of the corners, but essentially the Panigale R feels and handles the same as the base model, S or Tricolore. It is, of course, a ...

  • MCN rating rating is 5
  • Owners' rating rating is 0

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