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I like Triumphs (obviously) They've always put out a quality product at a reasonable price. But that's also the reason that I don't think they can ever wear the best bike mantle, because they're built to a price. & the bean counters insist on using cheap ancillary parts that keep the costs down. That's why many of us feel the need to change brand new suspensions on our new Triumphs. Whereas a bike like the MV Agusta F4 CC, which is built with no regard to costs, is dripping in the highest quality components that money can buy. & will always be a better bike than anything the mass-produced bike manufacturers can put out. So while I'll continue to support Triumph, as long as they keep putting out good bikes. I'm under no illusion that they're in the same league as an F4 CC or a Desmosedici. Because, quite frankly, they're not.
Flame away!
:D
 

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You make a very valid point, OS. But "best," to me, has to include a reliability factor, and an ease of ownership factor. If your Desmo$edici is unrideable for three months because they can't get the unicorn hoof to make new fork seals, Misty will start to look pretty dam good. Correction; she'll start to look even better.

So yes, those bikes are indeed dripping with unobtanium farkles right out of the box. But that's not all you need to be the best. Heck, a European model 2011 ZX-10R makes 10 more horsepower than the MV F4, too.
 

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Nor mine. Sure they've made a squillion of them, & they really are unbreakable. But their riders aren't! Ask Tucson Bill what it's like to tour the oz outback on one.
Best to me means top quality components, in a cutting edge design (for the time) where everything comes together perfectly, to create something that is greater than the sum of it's parts. & a Honda step-thru ain't it!
 

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Thanks Nickwiz that was very interesting. I reckon that first one would have made for some interesting riding.
Just out of interest I used to own a Gold Star. I wish I still had it.
 

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I was saying on another thread about choosing a new bike how I
arrived at a decision.The thread ( not mine) was about using a spreadsheet.

Do up a table that lists all the criteria that is important to you. Things like performance, handling, street cred, cost of parts and maintenance etc. I had 10 points with a max value of 20 points each. When you break it down like this and end up with your contenders ranked from say one to 10 on points out of 200 you can refine it further. Say elimate all but the top 3 and reexamine those
or you can just go for the one that got the most points if your confident in your original criteria and points allocation. The same thing would work for this question but only for that individual. :)
 

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I'll go with my heart on this one. It's certainly not for everyone. Can't seem to forget my first new roadster. Combat motor. Peashooter exhaust blows little puff ball kisses at your face about 15 feet behind the bike. Nearly every part is an art object- the sum of which is a beautiful, soulful, nearly living machine. I always thought they made a sound somehow halfway between a Triumph bark and a Harley growl. Unique for sure. Faster than that first Honda 750 four. Riding a good running one is very addictive. Now I know there are those who don't share the feeling... I understand, just don't bust the bubble. We're talkin' love and emotions here, not main bearings, leaks, logic, and lack of sparks. Perfection is an illusive thing. Can any machine ever have it?


Somehow it just speaks to me. Maybe that's how you find the best bike ever built.


 

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This is the bike that set the motorcycle world on it's ear. Love it or hate it, it was the best at its time and fundamentally changed how business was/is done.

 

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But would you really call it the best motorbike ever? Oe even best of it's day? It was definitely the most successful, & was the game-changer you say. But I'd take a Combat Commando over it any day.
 

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As would I.

IMO, "best" is a qualitative word. I was thinking of quantifying it - a sterile exercise for sure, but it does bring to the fore such factors as: build quality, reliability, performance, mileage, resale value, cost, etc. Looking statistically at the peaks and valleys and the impact the Honda CB750 had on subsequent designs and manufacturers would lend credibility to the exercise.

In the end though, I think "best" is the bike an individual lusts for and hopes runs often enough to enjoy for a long time.

Honda has always impressed me with its quantitative grasp of "best." But if I were forced to choose between my Blackbird and my Speedy it wouldn't be hard. I'll take the Speed Triple every the time. The dilemma I have with "best" is there are too many of them around to select just one.
 

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Best all rounder of the last 30 years would probably be the BMW GS range.
 
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