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Discussion Starter #1
Back in the 1980's, when my ride was a Honda Shadow, I had the chance to ride a Honda Nighthawk 750. Had I not been in a pretty tight financial bind at the time I likely would have traded in my beautiful cruiser for this true "Universal Japanese Motorcycle". I know that memory plays tricks on us, but that bike seemed about the perfect all around motorcycle and it looked the way a motorcycle should look, reminding me (now that I am thinking about it) to the mid 1960's Triumph Bonneville. Well fast forward 35 years and I am riding one of my two rides, a Honda Goldwing 1800, and my little Honda PCX150 scooter, or at least will be riding once this awful winter season passes. But I know that the future does not bode well for me, and at some point I will need to give up my luxurious 900+ pound Goldwing and either go to a trike or get a much lighter bike for myself. I might well end up just going for a highway capable scooter, but part of me is thinking that maybe at that time I should look for something new, but equivalent to that old Nighthawk 750. I'm not interested in getting a really old bike, with all the issues that are unavoidable with a 30 year old bike, but not sure what is out there that might be the updated equivalent today of a lighter, all around, upright seating bike with a low enough seat for my shrinking height of now 5'7". I think I need to go look at the Triumph Street Twin, but wonder what other bikes might be worth considering. The hardest part, when that time comes, will be facing the reality that it will likely be the last new bike that I will ever buy, and that's a downer in and of itself.
 

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There was a time when I wanted that same bike. But didn't have the dollars. Most of my riding career I've had Honda's and Kawasaki's. I haven't been to the Honda shop in a while now, so I don't know what their current offerings consist of, but I was at the Kawasaki/Yamaha shop late last year. (Needed something for my Yamaha).
While I was there I saw the Z900 Kawasaki. A very good looking bike to my eye. I don't know what it weighs and I didn't sit on it, but it's a nice looking naked bike.
 

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Nice looking bike. I just looked it up and the seat height is 31.5 inches. I'd have to sit on it to see if that would work for me. I was estimating that I need to keep to no more than 30 inch seat height to insure that I can flat foot when I come to a stop. If I can't do that then I am concerned about stopping on rough or slanted pavement. I know I can solve that issue by considering a cruiser but I really don't want to go back to that seating position.
 

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Sportster with mid controls? Still a bit heavy, not near 900 lbs. though. And with 2900 different configurations, one might work.
 

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There are a number of bikes on the market today that approximate what the 750 Nighthawk was. One is a bike I own -- the Kawasaki Z650. Yes, smaller engine, but only about 10% less horsepower than the Nighthawk while being 70+ pounds lighter. Low seat height, upright seating position. Yamaha and Suzuki make equivalent bikes, too -- MT-07 and SV650. "Naked sport bikes" is what they are called nowadays, but they're mighty close to what was called the UJM's, and all outstanding rides. And, you get modern niceties like fuel injection and disc brakes fore and aft -- even ABS if you want.
 

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If you look at the Honda motorcycle timeline on wikipedia, List of Honda motorcycles - Wikipedia they show the 750 Nighthawk as evolving into the NC700s. Honda NC700 series - Wikipedia

The NC700s is a parallel twin, not a 4 cylinder. Personally, I'll take a twin over a 4 cylinder any day, less is more when it's time to pull out the wrenches.

If you tend to agree, you might want to give a passing thought to this 650 twin, Interceptor 650 - Colours, Specifications, Reviews, Gallery | Royal Enfield Folks are saying this machine is more of a direct offspring of the 1970's British twin than the current Triumph Bonneville. They are selling them in the US now, and guys who have bought them, for around $6500, with a 3 year warrantee, really seem to like them.

On the other hand, why not buy the 1980s Honda Nighthawk 750? At least around here, old bikes turn up regularly with low miles and in good condition. Some guy bought one 35 years ago as his last hurrah, rode it a few years, and put it in the garage. Fast forward a few decades and his son or granddaughter is selling it cheap to somebody who will appreciate it. The bikes that sold in big numbers for many years, can have decent amounts of spares available. The old bikes won't get the gas mileage of a new fuel injected bike, or have ABS, but one advantage they do have is that their value is increasing, not depreciating.
 

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I ride a Street Twin. I really like it. I am 5 11.
Upright, standard, comfortable, not to heavy, very like the bikes I rode back in the 80’s.
For me it’s a bigger bike, bigger engine and more powerful than those bikes.
Even so it feels very familiar.
I’ve ridden, round town and on longer highway rides. The freeway at 70 or 110. Is ok. It’s a naked bike. Keeps me from getting my bike impounded.
It’s a modern Bonneville,

My buddy at work picked the Z900. I was thinking of one of those. It’s a really nice bike. He loves it. He’s a more experienced rider than I am.

My instructor from my practice road test. Was riding a Moto Guzzi 750. It was very similar to my street twin. He was very happy with his bike and very interested in mine.
 
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