Long-Term Bikes | 2012 Victory Cross Roads

2012 Victory Cross Roads

MSRP: $16,499
Caretaker: **Cherney
5 ft. 7 in./ 155 lbs./30 in. inseam
Odometer: 4295

The latest addition to the Cruiser long-term garage is a 2012 Victory Cross Roads, in relatively stock form. I say ‘relatively’, because the bike did arrive with a mid-height windshield and passenger backrest/luggage rack already installed, making things all the more convenient for the next stage of its journey.

A long shakedown cruise is usually my first order of business with a new bike, so as to suss out any potential nits straightaway. A 1000 + mile trip right out of the box might be a tough order for some new machines, but for my two-day hump between Los Angeles and Portland, the Cross Roads was a dream.

The air-adjustable rear shock barely needed tweaking after I loaded my gear; if I had a passenger, I probably would have added a couple of psi to the rear suspension with the included hand pump. Specs claim 21 gallons of cargo room in the soft saddlebags, which was barely needed after I lashed my duffel across the passenger seat.

Fuel mileage varied greatly, depending on whether I was flogging it on the freeway or winding through the back country. My best number so far has been 42 mpg, with the worst clocking in at 35 mpg.

I got her with about 3000 miles on the clock, and 1295 miles later, the only red flags are a low oil warning on the dash (despite constantly topping her off) and an unusually worn front tire. I’ll be taking her in for the 5000 mile service any day now—swap out the crusty oil and filter with a couple of fresh quarts, check fluid levels, inspect and adjust the drive belt and run diagnostics on all systems.

Down the road, I’ll also be looking to trade up in the brake pad department: the stock setup simply doesn’t give me the immediate feedback I’m looking for.

I’m also thinking about swapping in a new clutch lever, as my dwarf -like digits don’t always get full purchase of the stock lever—it rests nearly 4 inches off the back of the grip. It hasn’t been a problem on freeway rides as lever pull is easy (for a non-hydraulic setup), but around town it becomes a point of contention; the Cross Roads’ clutch isn’t adjustable like the stock brake lever is.

Another issue I might consider addressing is the lower air turbulence I noticed at high speeds. My test mule came with tubular crash bars, though, and I’m not sure if there are adjustable (not hard) aftermarket deflectors available for that design. Let me know if you spot any. And I’m definitely going to replace the higher-than-average mid-height windshield with one of Victory’s lower units so I can see better. Winterizing is in the cards too: maybe some Oxford heated grips, a heated seat from the Polaris Accessory catalog and better lighting, front and rear.

Luckily there’s decent aftermarket support from Victory’s Polaris Industries website as well as from players like Kuryakyn, Cobra and Kewlmetal, so I’m looking forward to making the Roads more up to the cold dark days of winter.


Luggage Rack and Passenger Backrest $949.98
Mid-Height Cross Roads Windshield Kit $549.99