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Ya know "Someone," you have a perfect right to be a woose or a whimp. If we didn't have those kind of people in the world, well we would have to take those words out of the English language, because those names would apply to no one!
It's apparent that you don't like speed or taking chances. Good! Stay home or just don't be stupid and pull out in front of me and then drive like grandma. Otherwise expect me to pass you and your slow asset!
Me? I don't take reckless chances when driving in traffic. I've been driving since 1974 and have driven maybe a couple of million miles since then. What I do take are calculated risks when driving, just like anyone else. Face it. Every time you go out on the road you are taking a risk. How much HP your vehicle has, makes no difference. I can take the same risks with a car with a 3 cyl. engine as with a V8. If I drive like a moron, there is no hope for me either way.
I like having a powerful or fast vehicle for those long, lonely stretches of highway in rural areas. To me it's exciting to go fast in that situation once in a while, as long as I am not endangering someone else. That's still my choice in this country and yours too.
Mech Eng, if you are a Mechanical Engineer as your name suggests then you know that torque and hp are governed together by the equation N*T/5252 so really it is more about HP as they are discussing cars in which a more HP geared engine (power at higher revs) vs. a truck where you want more torque (power at lower revs). Look at a formula 1 car hp/torque (4:1) vs. a semi truck (0.25:1). Unless the bang they are referring to is towing, hp is the correct number to evaluate. And maybe if they are just talking pure straight speed, they should consider dollar per mph at quarter mile trap i.e. Corvette Z06 would be $100,000/124mph = $800/mph. Again the sport bikes would rule this category but bikes aren't for everyone.
Why in the world do we need a transportation vehicle with three or four hundred horsepower? Here we are in an age of high gas demand and these idiot car companies putting engines in cars that just drink gas. Then you get somebody driving it that is just sooooo cool that he or she has to drive like an idiot and put innocent people in danger because of their bad driving. Keep it up GM, FORD, Dodge, I know your bought by big oil. Oh wait a second the taxpayers bought you.
Slobeachboy, I don't necessarily think we were arguing over which bike is best (at least I wasn't) but rather trying to point out that a sport bike would give you more bang for your buck compared to a Harley. An example would be a $16,000 Aprilia RSV4 with 200hp would be $80 per hp compared to a HD Softail for $20,000 with ~120hp, which would be $167/hp. I don't think this article was written to decide which car is best, just how to get the most HP for your money. And to clarify my stance on bikes, the more riders the merrier (even on HD's) as it will make the boxes with 4 wheels glance in their blind spot a bit more before changing lanes.
Normal, the other reason they don't sell them is that HD rarely changes anything significant enough to warrant the purchase. This is also why they hold their value (not much difference between new and old). Again, nothing against HD as they have their niche but look at the transformation of sport bikes in the last 15 years compared to HD. Its night and day. I think the most significant recent change they made was in ~04 when they started isolating the engines from the frames with rubber. I know I appreciated this when riding my buddies '06 vs. his old '03 down the highway and my a$$ wasn't shaking for days.
All this arguing over which bikes are best is absurd. It all depends on what kind of riding you like to do and personal preference. If you need superior handling and braking then you want one of those Japnese or Itallian Superbikes. If on the other hand you just want to cuise around with the wind in your hair on the open road while showing off a classic peice of American workmanship then maybe a Harley is for you. I personally love the look of a Harley or some of those custom choppers. They are like works or art. The only reason I dont ride them is because I'm into racing and even on the street I want to know that I have the ability to avoid an obstacle at the last possible millisecond and not get myself killed. And although both kinds of bikes have loads of power, the Harley's have most of thier power in low end torque and when you are cornering at high speeds, right on the edge, you need the kind of throttle responsivenes that you can only get at higher RPM's.