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Three for the Road

The russian-made ural patrol t redefines what makes a motorcycle cool

By Mike Guy

three-for-the-road

THERE ARE FEW SUCCESS STORIES in the history of knockoffs, but then few knockoffs are produced in the same factory as the original. The Patrol T is made by Ural, a Russian company that moved into the BMW motorcycle factory after Stalin marched into Germany at the end of World War II. And rumor has it that before that, the Russians smuggled a BMW R71 through Sweden and reverse- engineered it, in the process designing one of the most rugged and enduring, if not exactly the fastest, motorcycles in postwar Europe.

Much to the delight of American moto enthusiasts, the latest evolution of this Russian three-wheeler has finally hit the States. A reassuring departure from the energy drink– fueled Frankencycles that emerge from places like Jesse James’ Monster Garage, the Ural is stylish in an understated, utilitarian way. (Plus its matte olive paint scheme makes it look as though it’s come straight out of Raiders of the Lost Ark.)

Though it has the vintage platform and look, the new $13,999 Ural (as shown here) is actually built from a conglomeration of parts: Brembo brakes, Sachs shocks, Herzog gears, Domino grips, Keihin carburetors. With the pull of a lever, a drive shaft leading to the sidecar wheel engages, making it the world’s only two- wheel-drive motorcycle. Na zdrovie.

3 Responses to “Three for the Road”

  1. radar Says:
    February 3rd, 2011 at 10:33 am

    I checked out the web sight http://www.imz-ural.com/ and the lowest price is $9999.

  2. Rick Stevenson Says:
    February 5th, 2011 at 3:43 pm

    Where can I buy the Ural Patrol T motorcycle in the Midwest as close to Oklahoma City?

  3. Dean Pennington II Says:
    March 10th, 2011 at 10:53 pm

    On a recent flight from San Diego to Dallas, I read the Hemisphere magazine (February 2010). I enjoyed the article “Three for the Road” by Mike Guy. Since there was not a www link or source listed I looked up the Ural Patrol T. I was disappointed to find that there were several errors in the article.
    1. The Ural shown is the 2010 Ural Tiaga limited edition, 27 made. List price: $13,999,
    2. The Ural mentioned, Patrol T lists at $12,399.
    3. The price mentioned, $6,999, may be referring to the Ural Solo sT, which it not a Ural sidecar motorcycle at all, but rather a regular 2 wheel motorcycle.

    What is disappointing to me, is that with less than 5 minutes of fact checking I was able to see these gross errors. I don’t know if this is the authors fault or the editors. Maybe your reading audience doesn’t care, or maybe the magazine doesn’t care, but I do. It is my thought that thoughtful, factual articles would be the norm and not the exception.

    Thank you for your consideration and time.

    Dean Pennington II
    Lindale, Texas

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