2015 Victory New Bike Specs
Victory marches, not stumbles, in the wake of its after-party
Story by Steven Wyman-Blackburn Photos Courtesy of Victory Motorcycles
Published in issue #316 of American Iron Magazine
To view the full specs, pick up a copy now on newsstands!
The fact that Polaris Industries’ first venture into the motorcycle world turned 15 years old last year is a pretty big deal. Victory’s base of operations is rooted in a country that prides itself for developing some of motorcycle’s firsts (some argue best), putting them on the shelf among the oldest brands in the industry. Having to roll out against such competition, Victory had to shout loudly in order to be heard. Victory’s 3/20-of-a-century celebration in 2014 was spearheaded by an anniversary edition of its Cross Country Tour model (which, as Victory made sure to proclaim, sported the largest ever storage space, 41.1 gallons). This was soon followed by the continuation of the Ness series with Arlen Ness checking off the Cross Country bagger from his Ness/Victory bucket list. However, this bike received extra attention from all three Ness generations — another industry first.
In retrospect, the fact that Victory chose the grand marshal of its 2015 Victory sweet sixteen parade to be an all-new cruiser, the ’15 Victory Gunner, made its venture all the more attention grabbing since it’s a bike that exemplifies a line that diverges from the avant-garde appeal of its bagger and touring families. The Gunner, stripped of the Victory-specific nacelle, is now the most (aesthetically) nonmodern bike in Victory’s entire offering. By implementing the High-Ball’s shorty front fender and low 25″ seat height, the Jackpot’s slim frame, and even finding influence (to some degree) from the Boardwalk and Judge, the Gunner, in turn, allowed Victory to consolidate most of its cruiser section, coming up with a grand total of four models to make up the 2015 cruiser family. Each cruiser now highlights something unique to its line … and all in black. Yes, we hear you again, Victory.
On one end, we have two cruisers flourishing the Victory-styled nacelles, bikes that have been stripped of their own colors and thrown into Victory’s blacked-out category, the 8-Ball. One of these two, the Hammer 8-Ball, is the more compact but heavier version of the other, the Vegas 8-Ball, the latter of which is the only one to feature a fullsized fender in the entire grouping. Meanwhile, on the more traditional side of the cruiser spectrum (read, partly, as Victory nacelle-free), we have the High-Ball, a bobber-styled bike with whitewalls and, most notably, apes. Following this all-out Goth approach for 2015, the High-Ball is now available only in Suede Black for next year, ditching the “with flames” option. To cap it all off, you then have the more old-timey bike, the new Gunner, touting a low starting price ($12,999, the second lowest overall). The fact that both 8-Balls are still being offered for the same base price and that the High- Ball’s MSRP dropped by 100 buckaroos ($13,349) makes the 2015 cruiser line not only well-rounded, but affordable. As for the discontinued models, we’ll see if they resurface somewhere down the line. But for now, the Gunner fills that void nicely.
Following the throwback introductory model, Victory unveiled yet another completely new bike, the Victory Magnum a few months later. Victory showed it off to the world by yelling at the top of its lungs in hopes of rising above the cacophony of the moto realm, claiming that the Magnum comes stock with a 21″ front wheel, an industry first for the touring market (as it boasted about the anniversary edition’s 41.1-gallon spacing in 2014, as noted above). When you put the Magnum up against 2014’s lead bagger, the Ness Cross Country, you’ll note a significant price drop (a whopping one grand). Even though this brand-spankin’-new 2015 bagger didn’t get the whole Ness treatment, it still received some love from Arlen Ness in the paint department, but rather than garnishing Havasu Red with Ness Legacy Paint, the Magnum features a Ness Midnight Cherry option, all for $21,999.
Coupled with the Magnum is the Victory Cross Country. When it comes to this model, Victory is continuing the Cross Country Factory Custom Paint program that was introduced in 2014. Along with the Factory Custom Paint Edition version, the Cross Country also comes in the 8-Ball color scheme as well as a regular option, both of whose base price tags are identical with last year’s. The regular Cross Country bagger hosts a plethora of new color schemes, replacing all of the 2014 model’s combos and solids except Suede Titanium Metallic, which finds its place in the roster among the newcomers. Concluding the bagger category, the only complaint concerns the missing Cross Roads models, which leaves a gaping hole in the line.
As for Victory’s touring models, they’re now sitting comfortably with no new additions or updates (save for the all-new color schemes) … for now. The Victory Cross Country Tour is now available for $500 less than last year’s model (starting at $21,999 and $22,499 respectively) while its more out-there brother, the Vision, is following close behind for the same MSRP, $20,999. AIM