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Motorcycle Buyer's Guide: Standard bikes (up to 800cc)


by Pascal Bastien ,

Standard bikes (often called roadsters) are nimble, versatile and racier than ever. They prove to be almost as fun to ride as sport bikes without feeling rough and uncomfortable.

Motorcycle Buyer's Guide: Standard bikes (up to 800cc)

An increasingly popular segment in Canada, standard bikes encompass conventional models with full fairings as well as naked bikes and so-called streetfighters.

Aprilia Shiver
2010 Aprilia Shiver right side view
Photo: Philippe Champoux

Modern and rider-friendly, the Shiver seems to have all the ingredients to win over naked bike enthusiasts including a striking design, good fit and finish, a lovely character, and a 749cc V-twin engine that calmly produces 95 horsepower. This charismatic and linear powerplant even offers three rider-selectable modes – T (touring), S (sport), and R (rain). A nicely equipped yet affordable Italian machine.

2010 BMW F800R front 3/4 view
Photo: France Bastien

The F800R is a proud member of BMW's F family, with a 798cc twin-cylinder engine, underseat fuel tank and aluminum frame. It stands out with a traditional double-sided swingarm and O-ring chain.

Compact, delicate and extremely close to the ground, the F800R manages to sustain an aggressive pace despite a slightly soft suspension. It changes direction like a bicycle and safely brushes off speed thanks to a powerful yet easy-to-modulate braking system with ABS. Near-perfect ergonomics and plush suspensions also make this bike a great commuter.
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