2019 Norton Atlas Ranger. Photo courtesy Norton Motorcycles.
It seems like it comes around a little earlier every year, however, for motorcyclists in the Northeast, the annual International Motorcycle Show presented by Progressive Insurance at the Javits Center is our best chance to see all the new models from every manufacturer, as well as custom bikes and the newest in motorcycling parts and riding apparel. Although many of the new models debuted in Long Beach, California, two weeks ago, Dave Conwill and I will have the advantage of seeing everything up close and personal as we travel a few hours south from the Hemmings’ headquarters in Vermont to the NYC show’s annual press day on Thursday, November 29.
After receiving a plethora of pre-show information from most of the new bike manufacturers, I am curious to see the new 2019 Suzuki Katana, which will be parked right next to one of the original Hans Muth-designed 1982 models, on loan from the Barber Motorcycle Museum in Alabama. Suzuki will also show its new café racer, the SV650X, and two new V-Strom models, the 1000XT Adventure and 650XT Touring.
2019 Suzuki Katana. Photo courtesy Suzuki Motorcycles.
Norton will also be unveiling its new Atlas Ranger and Nomad 650-cc parallel twins, which were derived from cutting the V-4 1200-cc engine from the Norton V-4 RR superbike in half. Unlike the brand revival’s earlier models, the new Nortons are said to be priced in a more attainable manner.
Harley-Davidson will have its full product line there as well, including eight new Softail models and probably a lot more information regarding its LiveWire electric motorcycle, set to launch in 2019.
Dave will be haunting the Royal Enfield stand, as he has recently purchased one and is in the process of making it roadworthy. The IMS is always a great place to spot classic restored bikes among the manufacturers’ new models on display.
As for custom bikes, the IMS has teamed up with J&P Cycles for the ninth year in a row to present its Ultimate Builder Custom Bike Show, which awards prizes to some of the best builders from coast to coast. Builders will enter a regional competition at each of the IMS events, with selected winners considered for a national grand-prize award. Last year’s winner was the Porterfield Motorcycle Missions Harley-Davidson shovelhead café racer, which won best freestyle custom at the 2018 Dallas IMS before being selected the top bike overall at the end of the competition in Chicago last March.
The Porterfield shovelhead custom. Image courtesy Motorcycle-Missions.org.
For accessories, the International Motorcycle Shows are always great for finding interesting new technology for lighting, music, trip mapping, bike suspension, tires, wheels, helmets, jackets, boots, and heated riding gear.
The IMS at the Javits Center is open to the public from November 30 to December 2, with the hours running 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Friday, 9:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday, and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday. Advance tickets are $22 for adults (12+) and can be purchased at MotorcycleShows.com/City/New-York-NY. Kids 11 years old and under get in for free. The website also has a calendar of many other activities and events planned for the weekend, including some aimed at future riders who haven’t yet mastered a street bike.
Check back next week for reports from both of us about the Javits Center IMS event and follow along on our Facebook page for photos from the show floor as the press day progresses.