2015 MCN Long Term Fleet

After months of careful planning and delicate negotiations, we present the most important collection of bikes in 2015 – the MCN long term test fleet.

Interested in one particular bike? Click on that bike and you'll find all updates from 2015.

Yamaha R1 KTM RC390 Ducati 1299 Panigale S Suzuki GSX-S1000FA Ducati Scrambler Triumph Street Triple RxKTM 1050 Adventure Yamaha MT-09 Tracer Kawasaki 1400GTR Honda VFR800X Crossrunner BMW S1000RR Indian Scout Suzuki V-Strom 650XT Kawasaki Versys 1000 BMW F800R BMW R1200RS

Long term update: 'I laugh at winter'

Long term update: 'I laugh at winter'

With a 140-mile commute to the office and back, it’s fair to say I’m going to be racking up the miles this winter. I know it hasn’t turned really cold just yet, but right now I’m feeling optimistic...

Long term update: 10,000 mile round-up

Long term update: 10,000 mile round-up

Nearly there... the odometer’s on 9998 and the last digit is heading towards 9. I can’t help but watch, waiting for the clock to ping into a perfect 10,000. I’ve never known why it’s so exciting to...

Long term update: Sublime come slime time

Long term update: Sublime come slime time

Suddenly my favourite road has disappeared under a carpet of rotting leaves and November slime. I’m wearing fat-finger gloves, and through the small window of visor that isn’t misted up I can see...

Long term update: Triumph triple-header

Long term update: Triumph triple-header

‘Here Come the Girls!’ Charlie Lester, MCN contributor and 2011 Street Triple R owner, admitted at a fuel stop that she had been singing the song (think Boots’ telly adverts) to herself for the last...

Long term update: Ready to face salt onslaught

Long term update: Ready to face salt onslaught

Britain is heading for salty roads and freezer-box conditions but that doesn’t mean it’s time to stash the Tracer in the garage – I just need to make sure the Yamaha is properly prepared. There are...

Long term update: All about dudes, right?

Long term update: All about dudes, right?

Impossibly good-looking guys and girls cruise around on retro bikes under a beating sun. They stop for a spot of skateboarding then park near the beach, set up camp and hit the surf. It can only be...

Long term update: Indian Scout

Long term update: Indian Scout

MCN's Ped Baker has had his Indian Scout long term test bike for six months and covered just over five thousand miles on it. Here's his round up of what he did, how the bike has performed and whether...

MCN Fleet: Winter treats for my CFR800X Crossrunner

MCN Fleet: Winter treats for my CFR800X Crossrunner

Where the bloody hell did summer go? The clocks have gone back and I feel somewhat cheated – all those things I was going to do in the lighter evenings, and blow me, I’ve missed it! Ah well, no point...

Long term update: What's it like in the wet?

Long term update: What's it like in the wet?

The rain outside hammers against the windows of my warm and cosy home. The task of collecting various items of warm and waterproof clothing is done with a certain dread. I only have a 20-mile commute...

Long term update: Turning over a new leaf

Long term update: Turning over a new leaf

Usually I wince at the thought of subjecting a bike to the horrors of autumn; mud-strewn roads permanently soggy, plummeting early-morning temperatures and the hazard of slippery mulched leaves. I’ll...

Long term update: New vs old R1

Long term update: New vs old R1

My 2015 R1 is such a departure from the old crossplane model, Yamaha could’ve got away with giving it a different name. But what would owners of 2009’s first-generation crossplane crank R1 make of...

Long term update: British icons

Long term update: British icons

I don’t own an anorak, have never used binoculars and haven’t collected tail numbers. These facts aside, I seem to have been caught up in the excitement surrounding XH558, the last flying Vulcan...

Long term update: Is the KTM 1050 worth more than a V-Strom?

Long term update: Is the KTM 1050 worth more than a V-Strom?

It was the kind of email that cuts to the chase. Having been relatively effusive so far in my praise of the KTM 1050 Adventure, a reader got in touch with a simple question: ‘Is it worth two grand...

Long term update: Versys versus Versys

Long term update: Versys versus Versys

The 2015 Versys 1000 has been receiving rave reviews since its launch at the end of last year and in 6000 miles I’ve been seriously impressed. The previous 1000 never managed to generate the same...

Long term update: Add petrol and enjoy

Long term update: Add petrol and enjoy

My whole Panigale experience has been about riding: mainly in shortish clattering bursts of intensity that often leave my hands shaking; sometimes in lazy, torque fuelled canters across country that,...

Long term update: Getting to know the neighbours

Long term update: Getting to know the neighbours

What a beautiful building and fabulous view. I’m sat in the grounds of a windmill, set high on Mont De Watten – and I’m only 50 miles into my little French adventure. I’d been planning a solo...

Long term update: Can the V-Strom dig the dirt?

Long term update: Can the V-Strom dig the dirt?

I’ve been thinking about taking the V-Strom 650 XT off-road since I got the keys earlier this year. Suzuki reckon their V-twin can handle it too, that’s why they’ve attached a set of sturdy crash...

Long term update: Ducati hits London for dapper fun

Long term update: Ducati hits London for dapper fun

“That’s cheating,” grins the lad next to me on the 60s-racer style Honda special to my left as I thumb the starter on the Scrambler. “I know,” I shout back over the fumy rumble. “But there’s nothing...

Long term update - R1200RS, a little bit of everything

Long term update - R1200RS, a little bit of everything

Senior road tester Michael Neeves swaps his long-term Yamaha R1 for the Editors R1200RS and takes it for a long weekend away "I’ve been riding the Editor, Andy Calton’s new £11,065 BMW R1200RS all...

MCN Fleet: Suzuki’s GSX-S1000F has a lot to offer but lacks a little sporty sizzle

MCN Fleet: Suzuki’s GSX-S1000F has a lot to offer but lacks a little sporty sizzle

I love free-riding, heading down an unfamiliar road at speed just for the hell of it. I don’t have to be anywhere at any particular time, I’m just heading where the road looks good and enjoying the...

MCN Fleet: Is the RC390 the modern LC?

MCN Fleet: Is the RC390 the modern LC?

At the launch of KTM’s RC390 many people were asking whether young riders have ever had it so good. The RC is the raciest thing 19-year-old A2 licence-holders can sling a leg over, and it even has its...

MCN Fleet: The GTR has been sorely missed

MCN Fleet: The GTR has been sorely missed

After spending most of the past three weeks riding various other machines for work, I’m back on the 1400GTR. As frustrating as it can be to leave your bike tucked away in a corner of the work lock-up...

MCN Fleet: Can I sort my MT-09 Tracer's harsh suspension?

MCN Fleet: Can I sort my MT-09 Tracer's harsh suspension?

The Yamaha MT-09 Tracer is one of the UK’s best-selling bikes of 2015 and my criticisms are few and far between – but it could definitely benefit from some work to the suspension. My biggest issue is...

MCN Fleet: ‘High or low option, for your R1200RS sir?’

MCN Fleet: ‘High or low option, for your R1200RS sir?’

That’s the one thing we want to know before putting their money where our mouth is? Power? Torque? According to a recent MCN survey the thing that bothers us most is seat height Related: full...

MCN Fleet: Going coastal on mile-eating Crossrunner

MCN Fleet: Going coastal on mile-eating Crossrunner

The Crossrunner has already proved itself on my all-weather 24-mile commute plus the odd evening jaunt, so I was looking forward to spending the best part of a weekend in the saddle.  The plan...

Long term update: A tale of two XTs

Long term update: A tale of two XTs

My friend Bradley quit his job, left his missus, tucked his Honda Hornet in a garage and bought a Yamaha XT660R. He’s leaving next week for a seven-month ride through Europe and Turkey to Georgia. But...

Long term update: Scramble-up the Scrambler

Long term update: Scramble-up the Scrambler

Yes I am 45 and yes, I am playing with a jigsaw. And for the record, I’m having fun. But this is no ordinary kids’ puzzle, it’s a way of checking out how the Scrambler might look with different mods...

Long term update: 'I'll take the pain and the gain'

Long term update: 'I'll take the pain and the gain'

A manufacturer makes a great bike, everyone raves about it, then the other manufacturers jump on the bandwagon and before you know it a whole new class of brilliant bikes at competitive prices has...

Long term update: A tent and a free weekend

Long term update: A tent and a free weekend

So far this year’s events have conspired against the GTR and I taking any big trips, but knowing the Great British Summer could very well be a distant memory come September all excuses were put on...

MCN Fleet: GSX-S OR GSX-R?

MCN Fleet: GSX-S OR GSX-R?

Let’s look at the facts. The GSX uses a revised version of the 2005 GSX-R1000’s motor, which Suzuki claim makes 143.5bhp and 78.2ftlb. It also tips the scales at 210kg. In comparison, Suzuki...

Long term update: Spruced up and ready to roll

Long term update: Spruced up and ready to roll

Fritz has taken a tour group to see the best toilet in Germany,” says biker hotel manager Christian as we attempt to digest a Bratwurst long enough to show up on Google Earth. If the thought of...

Long term update: High-speed homecoming

Long term update: High-speed homecoming

Lydden Hill circuit, nestled in the Kent countryside between Dover and Canterbury, isn’t the kind of track you’d travel the length of the UK to ride. Less than a mile round, Lydden is small,...

Long term update: Can you tour on the Indian Scout?

Long term update: Can you tour on the Indian Scout?

Wind protection The fork-mounted screen (mid-height model, £474) is one of best detachable cruiser screens I’ve used. I’m 6ft 4in and didn’t suffer lid buffeting or intrusive turbulence on the French...

Long term update: Racing the sun

Long term update: Racing the sun

There is something satisfying about watching the sunrise. The sense of tranquillity from being the only person awake at 4.30am has a lot to do with it. So with a full 16 hours of daylight ahead...

Long term update: The rough with the smooth

Long term update: The rough with the smooth

After several hundred miles on the BMW F800R this past weekend, I’m confident I’ve got the measure of it. I’ve discovered all of its little foibles and have learned to love some of its elemental...

Long term update: Triumphant island return

Long term update: Triumphant island return

What a dramatic place to sit and have a cuppa. Sat on the cliffs at Niarbyl Bay on the Isle of Man, I can see why it’s been used as the backdrop for films and telly shows. For a few days I’ve been...