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MOTORCYCLE LIVE It’s that time of year again when riders, racers, customisers and manufacturers congregate for ten days at the annual Motorcycle Live show at the NEC Exhibition Centre in Birmingham. We popped up on Sunday 20th November to see what was hot, here are our top five show highlights.

A Yamaha on display at Motorcycle Live

The Yamaha Yard Built section of their stand was heaving, it was almost impossible to get a good look at most of the bikes – this is testament to how seriously Yamaha are looking to the retro motorcycle market. Our favourites were the Yamaha XSR 900 Abarth with it’s swallow handlebars (ace bars to me) and neat liquid cooled 850cc, 3-cylinder block – and the Yamaha SCR 950 with it’s classic look single front disc and bulbous 950cc V-Twin motor. It reminded me of an old XS1100 in certain ways.

A Sideburn Flat Track on display at Motorcycle Live

Krazy Horse
The Krazy Horse area just oozed cool from every angle. Guy Martin bikes, flat track racing, custom bobbers, bespoke one-off builds and a cameo from the excellent Sideburn Mag. I could have easily spent an hour or two in their patch looking through all of the mods and tricks on their display bikes.

A Triumph Bobber on display at Motorcycle Live

It was clear before you even set foot on their stand that this year was the year of the Custom and Retro look bike for Triumph. There were loads of celeb bikes sat next to new releases, surrounded by Street Twins and Bonneville’s galore. For us the star of the show was undoubtedly the new Triumph Bobber, in particular the Down & Out Customs ‘Hold Fast’ machine – the first in the UK to get the custom build treatment. We never saw ourselves as potential Bobber owners, until now.

A Honda on display at Motorcycle Live

The new CB1100RS is a wonderful looking machine. It really nails the Seventies feel, even down to the little touches of mounting the horns on the front forks for all to see. In all honesty, a little more chrome on the two side panels and chain guard would have had us reaching for our chequebook before we’d moved on to see what else could tickle our fancy. The one-off Honda Europe CB custom tracker was a joy, too. The CB1000TR was a mean and fun looking tribute to the late Marco Simoncelli, very fitting.

A Mash motorcycle on display at Motorcycle Live

Not your normal highlight, Mash Motorcycles were a new brand to us. They were displaying a host of learner legal cafe racers and scramblers, mostly sat between 125-400cc engines. The bike that grabbed my attention more than most was a very trick looking Roadster 50cc. The thought of a whole host of new riders at the age of 16 jumping onto cool bikes is just what we need, let’s be honest – this is what the original cafe racer scene was built on. Well worth checking out if you’re off to the show this week and are considering a move into riding motorcycles in the near future. Check out Herald Motorcycles, too, if this is your brief. Click Here…

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