What a brilliant year we’ve had for new bikes. With well over 100 new models, facelifts and updates, the sheer quantity has been overwhelming. All that riding has kept MCN’s Road Test department pretty busy… not to mention happy.
Euro4 noise, emissions and safety regulations are the main reason for the influx of fresh metal. It’s given manufacturers the perfect chance to sprinkle some glitter on their creations, while they got on with making them quieter and more fuel-efficient. Retro-style machines have continued their ascent into our affections for 2017, so there was much head-scratching when it came to choosing our favourite.
There have been exciting new machines for restricted licence-holders, as well as a raft of updated adventure and electric bikes. It’s hard to ignore the advance of these battery-powered two-wheelers both on the road and the track, which is why we’ve created a new bike of the year category for them. Whether or not these plug-and-play machines are actually the future remains to be seen, but the choice is growing. Our electric bike winner has impressed us no end and has a record-breaking story, too.
Although new sportsbike sales continue to fall, interest in them is as strong as ever. Our superbike comparison test earlier in the Spring was eagerly anticipated, especially with the arrival of the long-awaited Suzuki GSX-R1000 and Honda Fireblade finally on the scene. We’ve chosen one of the most controversial new 1000s as our winner this year, much to the incredulity of many and you can read why on page 18.
But choosing our overall bike of the year was easy. It was already an icon and universally loved, but now it has even more performance, technology and attitude. It comes in more flavours than ever and the company who built it aren’t having a bad year, either. As it’s become customary at MCN Awards time, we’ve gathered all of our winners together for one last ride and every one continues to delight and impress.We hope you enjoy reading about the best bikes of 2017. We certainly enjoyed tested them. Bring on 2018!
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