The Yankees are Coming
Polaris' arrival with the Victory line marks the first time a heavyweight motorcycle maker has entered the street market since Hesketh in the 1970s, and the first new American maker of big street bikes since 1934. Naturally, the motorcycle was a cruiser.

Year of the Long-Distance Cruiser
This was the year that showed that the touring market is actually the cruiser market. Honda introduced two cruisers equipped for travel. Yamaha uncorked one, and Harley just announced another addition.

Hollister Riots Revisited; Without the Riots
In 1947 it was the event that stamped motorcycling—especially the cruiser segment—with a black mark it bore for two generations. Fifty years later, the sequel shows how mainstream motorcycling has become. It also reminds us of what we and America missed by ostracizing motorcycling from polite society for so long.

Cracks in Cruiser Racism
Though it's far from gone, cruiser segregation is beginning to fade. These days a Harley rider will walk up to a custom Valkyrie and say, "That is a damn nice bike." It's becoming increasingly difficult for a Harley rider to say with conviction that foreign brands have no value. The American presence and production of Honda and Kawasaki, and the arrival of new American makers have also begun to blur the brand and nationality lines. For our next trick, we need to extend this new openness to people: We look forward to the day when you don't need pink skin, or even a penis to be accepted at a motorcycle event.

All Times, When Old, Are Good
The pleasure we take in motorcycling's past became evermore apparent with the success of Harley's Heritage Springer, the most retro motorcycle ever. It set new standards for nostalgia and others will also return to those exciting days of yesteryear in the future.

Das Kruiser
A BMW cruiser seemed like an impossibility to some, and a joke to others, just a couple of years ago. While those with their heads down and locked may have to stretch to understand it, the R 1200C proves that we have just begun to scratch the surface of what a cruiser can be.

This article was originally published in the October 1997 issue of Motorcycle Cruiser.