Monday, March 23, 2009

2009 Ural Gear-Up Sahara: For real men (and women) only...

Forget big-piston USD forks, leading-link forks are what a real man's motorcycle must have!

Pics: MotoFlash

The last time we wrote about Ural here at Faster and Faster, it was in the context of a book review – American Borders – where Ms Carla King tells her story of how she rode around the United States on a Russian-made Ural sidecar outfit.

That was back in 2007, and it seems Ural haven’t been sitting around twiddling their thumbs since then. The company has just launched a brand-new model for the US market – the Ural Gear-Up Sahara. What, you don’t believe us?! No, really, this isn’t from 1959, it really is a brand-new machine…

The Gear-Up Sahara is actually a limited edition variant of the regular Ural Gear-Up and only 18 units of this sidecar outfit will be made. The whole thing weighs 335 kilos and is powered by an OHV, air-cooled 749cc boxer twin, which produces 40 horsepower and 52Nm of torque – enough to propel the Ural to a top speed of 95km/h. The machine is priced at US$13,949 plus taxes, which actually makes it rather expensive!

Built at the Irbit MotorWorks Factory in Russia, Ural machines are supposed to be indestructible though perhaps not as reliable as contemporary Japanese and European adventure tourers. Still, if you think bikes like the BMW R1200GS, Moto Guzzi Stelvio, KTM 990 Adventure and Yamaha XT660Z Tenere are too ‘soft’ for you, the Ural Gear-Up Sahara just might fit the bill. Heck, with the sidecar driveshaft engaged, you actually get a 2WD motorcycle with the Ural, and that’s more than the Japs and Euros can say for themselves. Plus, if you really want to indulge those Indiana Jones fantasies, we suppose you’ve got to have those spare canisters, spare wheel, shovel, extra lights, luggage rack and medicine kit…

More details at the Ural website here
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