Honda Discontinues Valkyrie, Magna, and 750 Chain-Drive Twin Motorcycles

Two of our favorite cruisers and some of Honda's best-sellers are no more. By _ Art Friedman.

We recently sat down with a Honda rep for a brief on the new Shadow Aero 750 (watch for a first-ride report), and we were surprised to learn that Honda has discontinued all its multi-cylinder cruisers.

Though _ Motorcycle Cruiser_'s 2003 Cruiser of the Year, the Valkyrie Rune, is officially a 2004 model, it is a limited-production machine, and Honda has already built all that it is going to and shipped them to dealers.

The original Valkyrie 1500 flat-six and 750 Magna V-4, though still shown on the American Honda website, have also ceased production. If you want one don't wait too long or there won't be any left. The Magna, which was introduced in its current form in 1993, has consistently scored highly in comparisons (like our Sport-Cruiser Comarison and Musclebike Shootout) for its all-around performance, and the Valkyrie 1500 is still among our favorite cruisers of all time. We would be disappointed to lose either one, but the departure of both in one stroke is a bit much to swallow, especially with no replacements in sight.

The introduction of the new Shadow 750 Aero, which brings shaft drive, a lower saddle height and freshened styling, also spells the end of the road for other 750 Shadow V-twins, the A.C.E. and the Spirit. Those bikes have sold in very large numbers in recent years, though Honda obviously expects the Aero to fill in ably.

The Nighthawk 750, which we don't regard as a cruiser, has also been discontinued.

Although we have no official or unofficial Honda comment on the subject, we think the departures of the Magna and Valkyrie leave fairly conspicuous vacuums in Honda's line (though perhaps not in its sales figures), and we think (perhaps wistfully) that they will be filled in 2005.

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Valkyrie 1500
Shadow 750 Spirit
Shadow A.C.E. 750
The Rune's limited production run has ended.