Motorcycles are produced every year, and whether new models or redesigns, bike makers display them at international motor shows like EICMA or INTERMOT. And while these new arrivals are advertised even in America, many of them are not originally destined for the U.S. market. In fact, for America to get hold of these fabulous creations is always a vague afterthought. And then U.S. bike lovers are left wondering, “When do we get to enjoy some of these world’s most desirable road beasts?”
Here is a list of 20 motorcycles that U.S. motorcycle lovers desire to ride on, but are not available on their market. The list includes some great adventure bikes with outstanding features like large windscreens and a big luggage racks, large fuel tanks, and a displacement of 250+cc. Who would want to ride on U.S. highways with a motorbike engine less than 250cc anyway?
These are great bikes, and I know you are tempted to own one, but you can’t, unless you move to Japan, India, or whichever other country has your favorite. We have not arranged the motorcycles in any order, nor have we captured everything. If there’s a particular bike you love and have not been able to find it in the U.S. showrooms that's not on this list, then that's even sadder!
20 Yamaha XJR1300
The 2014 XJR1300 is a modern techno-based motorcycle that comes packed with everything you need to enjoy an excellent riding experience. Its power comes from a massive 1251cc four-stroke engine with four cylinders and four valves that is capable of producing 71.9KW maximum, and 108.4nM of torque.
It is built on a double cradle steel frame and paired with a box-section swing arm of aluminum.
While the 2151cc and five-speed transmission can push this retro-style bike to quite a high speed, there's a 298mm dual brake disc with monobloc 4-piston calipers that will bring the XJR1300 to an instant halt whenever the rider decides. It is an awesome bike that we're still hoping will come to the United States someday.
19 Bimota DBx 1100
I’d love to say that this is a new Bimota model, but it’s not, it’s just a rebrand of the 2011 DB10 B-Motorad. And apart from it being absent from the U.S, it’s also very highly priced. The DBx is a dual sports motorbike that comes with TTX forks from Ohlins automotive and fitted with 4-way adjustable shocks. It also has Brembo monobloc brakes discs and a lot of carbon fiber on its body.
The Bimota DBx 1100 is currently the lightest and the most powerful bike in its category. It weighs only 385lbs, and its power comes from a potent 95 horsepower engine. The DBx 1100 is fitted with broad front and rear wheels wrapped in Pirelli tires, and ready to tear across any terrain, except of course the US ones.
18 Minsk TRX 300i
This is an exciting bike with a European origin. Though it's less known as compared to many famous brands, the Minsk TRX 300i has an excellent history in almost every aspect. And it is not just obscure; it also has a fascinating secret. This bike was not built originally as a TRX 300i; instead it's a rebadge of a Chinese made motorcycle known as Zongshen RX3.
Other than being among the largest motorcycle manufacturers in China, Zongshen also has a very rich reputation for building powerful motorbikes that can last a lifetime.
Powered by a 250cc engine, the Minsk TRX 300i is a stylish little motorbike that America at large would love to ride on.
17 The CCM GP450 Adventure
The CCM GP450 Adventure is a dual-sport bike that carries everything you’ll need on a go-anywhere motorcycle. Its 449cc engine is based on the extinct BMW 450 Dakar’s engine, which is still produced in Southeast Asia. Its manufacturer CCM was started in 1971, with Alan Clews building the first model in his garage in Bolton, United Kingdom. What makes the GP450 outstanding is its lightweight build and the perfect handling. These features are not so common among adventure bikes.
The architecture of the CCM GP450 Adventure allows it to be easily customized, and if you order one directly from the factory, you can have the seat height built to your standards at no extra cost.
16 Yamaha XTZ 250 Ténéré
The Yamaha’s Ténéré is quite a clear reflection of motor riders’ evolution over the past two or three decades. The first generation Ténéré of 1983 was a direct reproduction of the Yamaha XT500 that championed the first two Paris-Dakar competitions a couple of years back. But here we’re focused on the modern Yamaha XTZ 250 Ténéré.
This one is very different, and if you take a keen look at the specs, you’ll realize that the new air-cooled Ténéré engine is a little bit more complicated than its original. It also has new bodywork; a reimagining of the original that comes 45kgs heavier than the 1983 model.
15 Kawasaki W800
There’s no precise explanation yet why the Kawasaki W800 is still missing from America's bike showrooms. Maybe shipping it to America would be low hanging fruit for the company. It is based on the W series which was launched in 1965 and ceased in 1975.
The series was reintroduced in 2011 with the W800 model. Kawasaki has since sold this bike internationally, except, of course in America.
It is a retro style motorcycle powered by a 773cc four-stroke engine capable of producing 47 horsepower, and 44lb-ft of torque. The Kawasaki W800 would be a perfect replacement for many other British motorbikes selling in the United States.
14 Honda XRE 300
The Honda XRE 300 is a 300cc motorcycle that screams of adventure at the top of its lungs. The 300cc engine gives it enough power and torque to stay right ahead of the 250cc models, and also other bikes of its caliber. It would be a perfect bike for the US market if it ever makes it here. The combination of the conventional potent Honda engines, a big windscreen, and a large luggage rack makes the XRE 300 a super ideal bike for touring. The aluminum rims and the optional ABS is a guarantee for long life off the pavements.
13 Yamaha XT660R
This bike has been around for the last four years now. Why it has never landed in the United States I can't tell. But, if you've ridden on the Suzuki DR650 or Honda XR650L, you can easily imagine what this thing is like, just with a larger tank.
The Yamaha XT660r is a super powerful off-road beast, but it is a bit heavy compared to every other bike in this class.
It is built with Yamaha quality and a potent engine that is said to be highly dependable. It is easy to mod this bike, and the first thing you can do is to add a longer windscreen.
12 Moto Morini Granpasso
Moto Morini is an uncommon Italian bike brand that has a reputation in racing history. The Granpasso was built to compete with BMW's R1200GS specifically, and the design came out perfect for that. It comes with emphasis on character and flare in a way that has never been mastered by any other German motorcycle builders. It is designed with a potent 1183cc V-twin engine and high-end suspension components that give it enough stability to negotiate corners even at the top of its speed. Although it’s designed for adventure, the Moto Morini Granpasso will feel more comfortable on the pavement than on off-road terrains.
11 Honda Crosstourer Highlander
The Honda Crosstourer is a close competitor of BMW’s R1200GS. It is so surprising that Honda has never thought of bringing this exceedingly brilliant touring bike to the United States. It is built with an incredible combination of a V4 performance and a sophisticated dual clutch transmission.
It's a shaft driven bike which includes an electronic traction control that the rider can switch on and off as he or she rides. It also has a combined ABS.
The Honda Crosstourer Highlander is built with wire-spoked wheels to increase its durability especially when you’re off-road. Let’s hope that Honda is working on a better model of this to give real competition to BMW in America.
10 Suzuki GS1200SS
The GS1200SS was a rebrand of the original Suzuki GSX-R1100 of the ‘80s. Selling the original bike in Japan was illegal. That was when maximum engine capacity couldn’t go beyond 750cc. So Suzuki built this as a replacement. It was like bringing the past to the future, and enabling diehard Suzuki fans to re-live a glory long gone. The only significant and recognizable improvement on the GS1200SS is the instant braking capability and the improved suspension that enables this beast to make it around corners no matter how sharp they are. Its engine capacity is now at 1153cc. And, just to remind you, this bike is not sold in America.
9 Suzuki e-Let’s
As surprising as it is to see this little bike on this list, it's here because it's quite a perfect one person transportation motor vehicle that is not available in America. The e-Let's is much better than many large and loud roaring bikes. And, as you can see from the photo above, and tell from its name, the Suzuki e-Let's is a tiny electric scooter that comes with a small dorky basket out front.
It is a perfect shopping vehicle and also perfect for running errands. And just to remind you, it costs next to nothing to run this two-wheeler.
8 Yamaha SR400
If you love to build your bikes from existing ones, this is your best option. It comes with quite a humble body and a steel tube frame that makes it an easy to customize motorcycle. You can create anything that involves a pipe wrap, gum grips, or flat black paint.
It is powered by a 400cc air-cooled SOHC engine with a single cylinder and two valves. It is fitted with a 298mm double-caliper brake discs at the front and sealed drum brakes at the rear.
7 Yamaha MT-09 Street Rally
This is Europe’s FZ-09. While the Street Rally model isn’t so different from the standard MT-O9, there’s quite an improvement in the seat design, footrest and hand guards. The changes make it quite comfortable to ride on; you can hit top speed while enjoying the ultimate riding comfort.
Like the standard MT-09, the Yamaha MT-09 Street Rally version is powered by an 847cc lightweight engine that works with a combination of low down punch and short gearing to give it a true personality.
It has very direct power delivery, which makes it a little hard to get used to it. But once you do, this is one of the best street rally motorcycles. Stay calm, and wait for it to come to America.
6 KTM RC390
We haven’t heard a word from KTM about this ride. We can’t say that we will never have it, but we don’t have it right now. With crossed fingers, we know that America needs this new RC390 supersport. The 2017 model comes with a cute improvement, the introduction of ride-by-wire instead of the old direct connection between the throttle and the throttle bodies.
This is great as it reduces emissions significantly while ensuring accurate measuring of fuel.
This might not produce a noticeable change in the fuel consumption rate, but it sure does ensure that the bike meets all emission requirements. It is still powered by a liquid cooled 375cc, four valve engine with a single cylinder.
5 Honda CB650F
Unfortunately, this is a Europe-only motorbike. It is a middleweight bike that provides room for excellent engine performance. The 2014 born street legal, Streetfighter-style motorcycle is a continuity of the old CB400F that comes with side-swept exhausts and a new jolt of energy.
The 2017 model comes with considerable improvement regarding power and soundtrack. It has hard-to-ignore power that is manifested in its sharp handling. The redesign didn't make this bike bigger, nor did it affect its cost. Instead, Honda focused on what matters the most; acceleration, style, handling ability, and performance in general.
4 Bimota BB3
This a supersport motorbike that comes with the same engine as that of a BMW S1000RR. It’s a lightweight sports bike, and with the 173 horsepower engine, the Bimota BB3 can deliver quite impressively. It is designed with modern, state of the art Ohlin’s suspension to keep its massive power in check.
It’s also fair to mention that this modern sports superbike is also built on a composite trellis frame, and its body is made of carbon fiber materials.
Its safety features are also from the future, and include modernized traction control, Brembo brakes capable of bringing the road beast to an instant halt, ABS, and wheel control. I don't need to remind you that you won't find the Bimota BB3 in any of America's showrooms.
3 Honda VFR800
The Honda VFR800 is a perfect sport-tourer that’s fit for almost all your bike needs. You can comfortably commute to work and go touring away from home and off the pavement. And the best part is that it has been reasonably priced for the average adventurer. It is designed small and light, which makes it both easy and fast to cruise on. It won’t consume your entire tires before you reach your trip destination. It is fun to ride on, and its manufacturer designed it for ultimate comfort as well.
2 Kawasaki Estrella
The Kawasaki Estrella has been around for quite a long time, since 1992 to be precise. But if you really are a fan of this retro-style 250cc motorcycle, you’ll have to fly to Japan and have all the time you want with it right there. The 2014 redesign didn’t come with many changes, but updated its seat, and introduced different color options. Its power still originates from the same 250cc engine. The engine is connected to a beautifully curved exhaust with a peashooter-style silencer to complete the retro look.
Apart from one or two exports to Europe in the early ‘90s, the Estrella has remained in Kawasaki’s home market since its birth.
1 Yamaha Tricker
As the name implies, the Yamaha Air Tricker is a bike that knows no resistance. It has an excellent design that is half a mountain bike and half a motorcycle, but it's cool.
While we're specifically looking at the 2014 model, the Yamaha Tricker was launched in 2005 with a 249cc liquid cooled engine with four strokes and five valves, mated together with a five-speed transmission.
The BMX-style Ohlin's front suspension and the semi side link rear suspension are special engineering works done only to this bike. Its chassis is built with carbon fiber. Can you imagine such a motorcycle not being available in the U.S?
Sources: advpulse.com, rideapart.com, cycleworld.com