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2015 Victory Magnum—Ridden & Rated

Greg Drevenstedt
August 27, 2014
Filed under Sport + Sport Touring Motorcycle Reviews, Top Stories, Victory Motorcycle Reviews

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The Magnum is first and foremost about making a statement, but underneath the flashy paint and chrome is the very solid Cross Country platform.

The Magnum is first and foremost about making a statement, but underneath the flashy paint and chrome is the very solid Cross Country platform.

With a significant share of Polaris Industries’ motorcycle R&D focused on the Indian branch of the family tree, Victory’s new-for-2015 models are stylistic spin-offs rather than all-new platforms. We tested the Gunner, a stripped-down bobber based on the Judge, in our June issue, and I saddled up on the Magnum, a factory custom “big wheel bagger” based on the Cross Country, at the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally in August.

Some bikes seek attention, but the Magnum demands it. There’s nothing subtle about its 21-inch front wheel—said to be the largest production hoop on a bagger—with what look like silver stilettos embedded in gloss-black spokes. There’s nothing low-key about triple-tone paint jobs with names like Plasma Lime, Ness Midnight Cherry and Sunset Red (or Metasheen Black) over Supersteel Gray, with color-matched dash, saddlebag hinges, fender closeouts and radiator shrouds. And there’s nothing understated about a six-speaker, 100-watt audio system packed into the fairing. If you wear khaki trousers, this bike ain’t for you.

Six speakers and 100 watts of power are packed into the color-matched fairing.

Six speakers and 100 watts of power are packed into the color-matched fairing.

The Cross Country handles well thanks to its cast-aluminum frame and taut-but-compliant suspension, but the Magnum trades some agility and comfort for style and a 25.7-inch seat height.

Its slammed rear end is an inch lower than the Cross Country’s, but rear suspension travel has been reduced even further, from 4.7 to 3.5 inches, and front travel is down from 5.1 to 4.4 inches. Due to the shorter stroke, the suspension was made stiffer and more progressive, contributing to a harsher ride. That big front wheel feels a little awkward around the parking lot but its amplified gyroscopic effect helps the bike feel rock-solid at speed.

Also new are a low-profile Boomerang windscreen that deflects oncoming air smoothly but noisily, and an LED headlight that’s extra bright day or night. Powered by the same 1,731cc (106ci) air-cooled V-twin and 6-speed transmission found throughout the Victory lineup (good for 85 horsepower and 98 lb-ft of torque at the rear wheel), the Magnum offers plenty of thrust, and cruise control is standard.

2015 Victory Magnum

Website: victorymotorcycles.com
Base Price: $21,999
Price as Tested: $22,999 (Ness Midnight Cherry)
Engine Type: Air-cooled, transverse 50-degree V-twin, SOHC, 4 valves per cyl.
Displacement: 1,731cc (106ci)
Bore x Stroke: 101.0 x 108.0mm
Transmission: 6-speed, cable-actuated wet clutch
Final Drive: Belt
Wheelbase: 65.7 in.
Rake/Trail: 29 degrees/5.6 in.
Seat Height: 25.7 in.
Claimed Dry Weight: 761 lbs.
Fuel Capacity: 5.8 gals.
MPG: NA

Victory’s air-cooled 106ci V-twin makes 85 horsepower and 98 lb-ft of torque.

Victory’s air-cooled 106ci V-twin makes 85 horsepower and 98 lb-ft of torque.

Within the big chrome bezel is an all-new, very bright LED headlight.

Within the big chrome bezel is an all-new, very bright LED headlight.

Comments

One Response to “2015 Victory Magnum—Ridden & Rated”

  1. cat on August 27th, 2014 12:17 pm

    Rode a Magnum on a demo. Great looking bike. Seemed quicker than the other Xroad models but Vic guy said they’re all the same tune. In any case, loved the bike. The short screen looks great but doesn’t so anything. These are great looking bikes and ride nice. I wd want more power though.

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