What is best power cruiser motorcycle

Motorcycles are contrary forms of transportation. People who ride them, by and large, don't want to be confused with SUV owners. They're bikers. And a beefy V-twin cruiser dripping with chrome and oozing machismo is the poster child for that rebel attitude. It's no surprise that cruiser sales represent the lion's share, about 50 percent, of a booming motorcycle market. But an old-school (read: modestly performing) cruiser just isn't edgy enough for some. Enter the power cruisers: a rowdy group of muscle bikes that takes cruiser-style riding to an exhilarating new level. These bikes are one part hot rod, one part sportbike -- and several buckets of attitude -- wrapped in taut, muscular bodywork. Power cruisers blast down the dragstrip, leaving regular motorcycles sniffing tendrils of tire smoke. We gathered the latest of the breed from Harley-Davidson, Honda, Kawasaki, Suzuki, Triumph, Victory and Yamaha and spent a week with them -- in the city, on the highway and in the canyons near Los Angeles. Since all-out acceleration is priority No. 1 for these machines, we also had professional test rider ­Danny Coe blast each one down a dragstrip 2800 ft. above sea level. (Our times would have been even quicker at a sea-level track.) Here is what we learned.

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Price
Engine
Valvetrain
0-60 MPH
$16,495
1130cc, liquid-cooled, 60-degree V-twin
SOHC, 4 valves per cylinder

4.26 sec.

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Price
Engine
Valvetrain
0-60 MPH
$14,849
1795cc, liquid-cooled, 52-degree V-twin
SOHC, 3 valves per cylinder

4.45 sec.

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Price
Engine
Valvetrain
0-60 MPH
$12,999
2053cc, liquid-cooled, 52-degree V-twin
Pushrod, 4 valves per cylinder

4.98 sec.

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Price
Engine
Valvetrain
0-60 MPH
$12,599
1783cc, liquid-cooled, 54-degree V-twin
DOHC, 4 valves per cylinder

3.89 sec.

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Price
Engine
Valvetrain
0-60 MPH
$14,999
2294cc, liquid-cooled, inline 3-cylinder
DOHC, 4 valves per cylinder

3.66 sec.

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Price
Engine
Valvetrain
0-60 MPH
$19,747
1634cc, air-cooled, 50-degree V-twin
SOHC, 4 valves per cylinder

4.53 sec.

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Price
Engine
Valvetrain
0-60 MPH
$12,549
1670cc, air-cooled, 48-degree V-twin
OHV, 4 valves per cylinder

4.56 sec.

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Harley-Davidson VRSCDX Night Rod Special

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Specifications
Price: $16,495

Engine: 1130cc, liquid-cooled, 60-degree V-twinCompression ratio: 11.3:1Valvetrain: SOHC, 4 valves per cylinderFuel System: EFI

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Transmission: 5MFinal Drive: BeltSuspension F/R: 49mm forks/dual shocks, preload adjustableSuspension Travel F/R: 4.0 in./2.9 in.

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Brakes F/R: Dual 300mm discs/300mm discTires F/R: 120/70-ZR19/240/40-R18Wheelbase: 67.2Seat Height: 26.3 inDry Weight: 643 lb.

The Night Rod is the rock star of this group. It's mean and menacing and it made us feel cool just standing next to it. Its intoxicatingly techy baritone V-twin growl and seamless acceleration curve come courtesy of engine design help from Porsche. The Night Rod was the third quickest bike at the dragstrip. Even though Harley is known for low-tech, comfy cruisers, the Night Rod has a sophisticated powerplant bolted to a rather uncomfortable chassis. The riding position requires arms stretched forward, a bit like doing a lat-pull exercise at the gym. That makes the Night Rod the most difficult bike to corner at slow speeds, so this is not our favorite bike for a long-distance cruise or a trip through the canyons. But more than one buyer is willing to make the compromise. Because, wherever the Night Rod shows up, people just stare. This Harley is the second most expensive bike here. That money brings near custom- quality construction, the inimitable Harley-Davidson cachet and a bike that's as much fun to look at as it is to ride.

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Track Times
0-30 mph
0-60 mph
40-70 mph
1/4-mile
1.86 sec.
4.26 sec.
2.78 sec.

12.47 sec. @ 108.86 mph

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Honda VTX1800F

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Specifications
Price: $14,849

Engine: 1795cc, liquid-cooled, 52-degree V-twinCompression ratio: 9.0:1Valvetrain: SOHC, 3 valves per cylinderFuel System: EFI

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Transmission: 5MFinal Drive: ShaftSuspension F/R: Suspension F/R: 45mm inverted forks/dual shocks, preload adjustableSuspension Travel F/R: 4.3 in./3.9 in.

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Brakes F/R:Dual 296mm discs/316mm discTires F/R: 130/70-R18/180/55-R18Wheelbase: 67.5 in.