With the highly anticipated release of Harley Davidson’s® all new Pan America™ 1250 Special, Harley® invited a lucky number of selected media representatives to put the new adventure bike through its paces. One of which was Australian Motocross legend, Jeff Leisk. We had the opportunity to sit down and discuss Jeff's time riding Harley's® latest model. Here are Jeff Leisk's 4 impressive features about the Pan American™ 1250 Special.
Cleanable Air Filter
One of the most prevalent issues with adventure bikes is overcoming Australia’s harsh dust conditions. Believe it or not, but Australia has some of the finest dust particles in the world. “Harley has clearly done their homework and have included a washable air filter, allowing for simplistic filter servicing on the go” Leisk said, continuing on… “ and this filter isn’t too hard or arduous to get to either. Only 3 bolts and a hose to access the filter”. Simply remove the air filter from the bike, give it a good clean and you'll be ready to continue the adventure in no time at all!
All-New Revolution™ Max 1250 Engine
The Pan America™ Revolution™ Max 1250 Engine has been turning heads ever since the reveal and has lived up to the hype. A key feature that was highlighted in the presentation was the Valve Train innovation. Normal valve trains would need to be adjusted by a mechanic and are usually a relatively high service expense. Pan America™ eliminates this service cost, by using a roller-finger valve actuation with hydraulic lash adjusters. “This Valve Train is pretty neat and doesn’t require any maintenance or servicing, which reduces that high service cost on most other bikes” Leisk claimed. Along with the innovation of the valve trains, the Pan America™ has variable cam timing and two 2 counter balancers to help reduce vibration in the bike. It's a well thought out engine, with plenty of power and durability to handle harsh Australian landscapes.
The Adaptive Ride Height made its debut on the Pan America™ 1250 Special, and stood out during the test riding. Essentially the suspension is able to automatically lower the seat height when coming to a stop, allowing for shorter riders to confidently touch the ground. “So this suspension adjustment….. You actually don’t notice the bike adjusting heights at all, as the chassis felt so stable and smooth”. You may feel it slightly on the way down for a stop, but hardly notice it when you're accelerating off the line.” Leisk said. “My experience in this segment is that height is a big factor to people, as you want that ground clearance, yet also a low enough seat height so that most riders feel comfortable on the bike. Harley has seemed to solve this.”
Adventure bikes must be appropriately equipped with a fuel tank able to do long stretches of road. This is especially important when your adventures take you deep into the Australian landscape where refueling is limited. “Pan America™ offers around a 400 km range, which is not bad. I think it's about a 20 litre fuel tank, so it offers a pretty decent range. I’ve always felt that if you can get at least 400kms from a full tank, that's a solid amount of range for an adventure bike.”
Jeff had a lot to say about Pan America™. You have to commend Harley® for the amount of research and innovation they have put into the bike. For their first fully fleshed out adventure bike, this is a rather commendable effort. “Only wish now would be to have one in the garage” Jeff Leisk.
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