Best of the Best 2007: Touring & Adventure

Don’t be deceived by its color-coordinated saddlebags or upright riding position: The $15,599 Yamaha FJR1300AE (www.yamaha-motor.com) is a supersport bike trapped in the sharply styled body of a sport tourer. Yamaha has combined old-fashioned muscle with lightweight chassis construction to create a bike that is exceptionally responsive and begs for spirited riding. Standard antilock brakes ensure skid-free stops, and the cutting-edge Yamaha Chip Controlled Shift feature does away with a clutch lever, allowing carefree gear changes. The FJR offers an uncommonly wide range of seat and handlebar settings, and the windshield raises and lowers automatically. The combination of road-eating power and creature comforts makes the FJR a compelling option for those who want to ride fast and far.

Few motorcycles are as well prepared for the unexpected as the $14,198 KTM 990 Adventure S (www.ktmusa.com). The Austrian manufacturer’s recent dominance of the Dakar Rally has earned it a sterling reputation among hard-core trail riders. The S version of its Adventure model has nearly 300 mm of ground clearance and an impressive 245 mm of terrain-absorbing front and rear suspension travel. It also appeases off-road purists with its lack of antilock brakes. The KTM’s new 999 cc LC8 V-twin powerplant delivers wheel-lifting thrust, and the bike’s Brembo brakes allow for effective deceleration—or, depending on your sensibilities, dirt-spraying tail slides. On challenging terrain, few motorcycles inspire confidence as well as the KTM 990 Adventure S does.

In an amusing display of brand compatriotism, the $24,049 Honda Gold Wing Airbag (www.honda.com) shares more than a few characteristics with its relative, the Honda Accord. The bike is equipped with a powerful 6-cylinder 1,832 cc engine, a computer-controlled adjustable hydraulic rear suspension, an electrically powered reverse gear, and—as the model name indicates—the world’s first motorcycle airbag. When you add the navigation system, five-position heated grips and seats, and a six-speaker, 80-watt-per-channel premium audio system with automatic volume control, you nearly have a two-wheeled living room.

Photo by Drew Phillips
FREE PREVIEW: The Aston Martin Rapide S is among Robb Report’s 2015 Best of the Best selections…
FREE PREVIEW: The BMW i8​ is among Robb Report’s 2015 Best of the Best selections…
Photo by Ferrari spa/Carrer
FREE PREVIEW: The Ferrari California T is among Robb Report’s 2015 Best of the Best selections…
With fluid, aerodynamic lines these six magnificent motorcars represent the three decades in which...
FREE PREVIEW: The Lamborghini Huracán LP 610-4 is among Robb Report’s 2015 Best of the Best...
Drive a Ferrari California T with Mr. C's Beverly Hills Driving Italia! package
The packages give guests access to a Fiat 500 1957 Edition or a Ferrari California T during their...
Photo by Oli Tennent
The aerodynamic sports car looks to impress both on the track and during everyday driving…
The one-off 550 Italia prototype mates a Fiat 500 body with a Ferrari 458 Italia engine…
Limited to 50 examples, the supercar features design details found on McLaren’s 1995 Le Mans–...
The global program will feature top models from Ferrari, McLaren, Porsche, and Lamborghini…