VICTORY HAMMER S LE (2014 - on) Review
At a glance
|Owners' reliability rating:|
Overall ratingNext up: Ride & brakes
The base Hammer S remains an appealing package that’s enduring well, hardly showing any signs of its age. It’s a crisp, clean, grunty American musclebike and an appealing alternative to the ubiquitous Harley. Its blacked-out powertrain is as bad-ass as they come and is a pleasure to blast away from the lights. Its styling somehow reminds of the re-invented Chevy Camaro or Ford Mustang, old school brought up to date rather than the gawdy chrome and heritage of some rivals. And it’s all beautifully done in a chunky, solid kinda way: the paint is thick and gleaming; the switchgear beefy and effective; there’s no flab, no mess. For £12K+, if I couldn’t face a Harley and wanted something younger and meaner, I’d be more than happy.
I’m just not convinced, however, that I should spend a further grand for this version. Yes, I’d probably prefer the riding position for UK roads, but it’s not a massive deal. And yes, the reflected cache of that aluminium placque and limited edition status is nice. But I’d probably be happier still if I had a few more bells and whistles, maybe from Brembo or Ohlins, for my money, too. Without them it’s a nice bike, but pretty much a special in name only.
Ride quality & brakesNext up: Engine
It's a massive cruiser with limited ground clearance, so wehat do you expect? Actually for a big old bruiser it's not bad.
Being less laid back the rider feels more ‘in’ the machine, slightly more forward canted, more aggressive even. But let’s not kid ourselves: this is a subtle distinction. The enormously fat 250-section rear tyre combined with the long wheelbase, raked out forks and 18-inch front wheel still adds up to a bike that’s barely more nimble than a stretch limo. Whatever Victory’s intents this is still a great big barge of a cruiser, a machine that far prefers straights to switchbacks, not a sprightly sports hot rod, On the whippet-like MT07 I’d ridden the day before I felt I could hit any apex and steer to within an inch. On the Hammer I’d be lucky if it was within a yard.
EngineNext up: Reliability
The Hammer S LE - uses the same motor as the standard Victory Hammer - and there's not much wrong with that.Loads of low-down grunt and a rumbling V-twin can't be bad.
Reliability & build qualityNext up: Value
This is a beautiful motorcycle with great attention to detail. The chrome and paintscheme is fantastic. It's a lot of money, ut you do get an amazing level of finish.
Value vs rivalsNext up: Equipment
A 13 grand bike can hardly ber described as good valuer and it's hard to justify the extra £1000 over standard Hammer, but you do get a lot of bike for your buck.
If you wanty something different - not a Harley - you won;t be disappointed with the Hamme LE.
What you get for your extra £1000 over the price of the stocker (the LE is £13,995, the standard S £12,995) is this: revised, more sporty, more rearward footpeg position (the ‘S’ has full-on, feet forward ‘Highway’ pegs, the LE slightly more conventional versions); a very slightly revised handlebar position to suit; special plain white paintjob plus an individually numbered, commemorative, aluminium placque on the top yoke. Our test bike, incidentally, was number 043 of that run.
|Engine type||4v OHC 50 degree V-twin|
|Frame type||Steel tube double cradle|
|Fuel capacity||17 litres|
|Front suspension||Preload only|
|Front brake||Dual 300mm floating rotor with four-piston caliper|
|Rear brake||300mm floating rotor with two-piston caliper|
|Front tyre size||130/70 x 18|
|Rear tyre size||250/40 x 18|
Mpg, costs & insurance
|Average fuel consumption||160 mpg|
|Annual road tax||£101|
|Annual service cost||-|
17 of 17
How much to insure?
|Warranty term||2 year unlimited mileage|
Top speed & performance
|Max power||88 bhp|
|Max torque||110 ft-lb|
|Top speed||140 mph|
|1/4 mile acceleration||12.98 secs|
|Tank range||200 miles|
Model history & versions
Limited Edition version launched in 2014.
The Victory Hammer S came out in 2007. Before that there was the first Hammer - out in 2002.
There's also a Hammer 8-ball.
Owners' reviews for the VICTORY HAMMER (2014 - on)
1 owner has reviewed their VICTORY HAMMER (2014 - on) and rated it in a number of areas. Read what they have to say and what they like and dislike about the bike below.
Summary of owners' reviews
|Ride quality & brakes:|
|Reliability & build quality:|
|Value vs rivals:|
The torque this bike has is great, the comfort level for rider good, but cornering is as poor as the finish. This bike struggles without the induction and exhaust upgrades which once done transforms the bike.
A & B road heaven. I commuted from Cambridge to south London on dry days, on the motorway 70mph without a screen gets tedious after 90 minutes pillion is ready for some relief then too, the bike becomes unstable past 85mph so a clean license is easy to maintain. The single disc at the front isn’t quite enough and v-twin engine braking required to stop.
It’s torque gives you a huge grin, pulling away from lights is literally addictive.
All the fastenings are cheap, engine paint flakes off as did radiator (5000 miles).
Cheap to run and insure.
Victory induction and exhaust upgrade is an absolute must, but choose the silencers wisely I literally now have tinnitus from motorway riding despite wearing ear protection! Also consider taking yours to the wizard of Noz ;)
Buying experience: Dealer in March Cambridgeshire- Amazing guys.