Why Would You Want A Trike That Doesn’t Lean?

tiltingmotorworksIt’s the question asked by a company called to all aging riders tempted to go from a 2 to a 3-wheeler. The argument is that a conventional trike isn’t that much fun compared to a motorcycle. The company developed a leaning 3-wheel conversion (2 wheels upfront) to fit all models in Harley-Davidson’s Touring line including the Road King, Road Glide, Street Glide and Electra Glide models and also Softails, Dynas, Sportsters and V-Rods.

The kit, starting at whopping $9,995 installation, includes shocks, wheels, tires, fenders, brakes, hydraulics, the front fairing and all mounting hardware.

Is a leaning trike ideal for veteran riders who are unsatisfied with the handling or image of conventional rear-wheel trikes and Spyders? What about the new 2 front wheels look? I let you judge.

19 Responses to “Why Would You Want A Trike That Doesn’t Lean?”

  1. 1 nicker Dec 25th, 2015 at 2:16 pm

    As Bary (barry’s Motors, Concord CA) once told me, you want a trike because it can be towed……

    Which bergs the question; Why would you want a trike that leans….???


  2. 2 JW Dec 25th, 2015 at 6:25 pm

    Really….I hope you are kidding…..

  3. 3 BadMonkeyMW Dec 25th, 2015 at 7:47 pm

    Barring a physical disability that keeps you off of two wheels, why would you want a trike at all? It’s not a motorcycle.

  4. 4 nicker Dec 26th, 2015 at 12:09 am

    “….I hope you are kidding…”

    Not at all.
    In the past a business that picked up and delivers cars would often use a trike to get its delivery-drier to and from such transactions…. Rode the trike to pickup the car, towing the trike back to the shop with the car. And just the opposite when returning the car.

    Some used motorcycles and simply left the bike at the customer’s house. I got my 42 FL from the family of a mechanic who said their dad used it to retrieve and deliver customer cars. Apparently, as a motorcycle enthusiast he couldn’t afford both a bike and a trike so made do with just a bike. A bigger enterprise would use a dedicated trike.


  5. 5 Boomer Dec 26th, 2015 at 11:07 am

    I saw something like this at the Phoenix Bike Week this year. I can only link to the picture I took. Hopefully Cyril will either allow it or embed it. A couple of points about this set up. It leans when parked and I think the side stand still needs to be used to take the pressure off the hydraulics. It’s far more than just a trike. It gives a lot more stability to the front end allowing even more spirited riding. About the only downside besides costs that I could see is there are a lot of moving parts and hydraulics which means there’s just that many more things that could go wrong but if designed and built right; it shouldn’t be a problem once set up correctly.

    I think it would be better if it locked upright in my opinion. That may be something they address in the future.

  6. 6 Harlan Dec 26th, 2015 at 11:19 am

    Interesting, productive and intuitive.

  7. 7 jerrman Dec 26th, 2015 at 3:19 pm

    Looks pretty cool. I’d rather have a sidecar than a trike but if I was considering a trike, this technology might be an option. Recognizing that it’s after-market, I sort of understand why the price is so high, but I wonder if one of the majors considered building something like this, they could do it for a far more reasonable price. Certainly would be a way of keeping some people who can no longer deal with two wheels but want the feel of leaning a motorcycle. Looks way more fun than a traditional trike.


  8. 8 Dec 26th, 2015 at 4:39 pm

    Looks like a blast to ride, and a great option for those who can’t use a 2-wheeler for whatever reason. I’m sure the price could/will come down as the R&D and tooling costs are paid off and production gets to it’s most efficient. Assuming things stay positive and accident/lawsuit free for a year or two while volume increases even the liability insurance/unit will really drop and offer a way to pare some off the price.

  9. 9 Zenaldo Dec 26th, 2015 at 8:26 pm

    Still a trike..

  10. 10 Bill Dec 27th, 2015 at 12:03 am

    The price is comparable to a conventional trike conversion that doesn’t lean. There’s a version that stands up by itself as it comes to a stop.

  11. 11 Ted Dec 27th, 2015 at 10:33 am

    The big question for me is – What is the advantage of a trike that leans?
    It still has ground clearance issues, is no good for gravel and off highway use and why pay 10 grand for something that is just a motorcycle with a third wheel? Tires will cost more , no gain in traction on corners and thy yawl rates are much higher.
    Non-leaning trikes especially the RT versions hold all the advantages of faster safer cornering, better off highway stability and superior handling in general. Plus they run car tires that will last 6 times longer than the hard unforgiving mc tires.

    Why wouldn’t you want a non-leaning trike as it holds all the advantages.

  12. 12 Dec 27th, 2015 at 12:38 pm

    Cornering takes a lot more reach and strength on a trike that doesn’t lean. Also, a non-leaning trike subjects the rider and the passenger to centrifugal forces through the turns. Those things get exhausting, making it hard to keep up with your friends who are riding motorcycles.

  13. 13 Clyde da glide Dec 27th, 2015 at 6:12 pm

    New Technology always takes time in the motorcycle industry to embrace. Trike sales are finally taking off. Can Am 100,000 over ten years, and the Harley Triglide, 14000+ and the Polaris side by side 16,000 the first year. Any model of a new motorcycle sales follows the progression of… first year weep, second year creep, and third year leap.
    The Trikes on the market were all designed by auto motive engineers.
    This design uses motorcycling as it origin. Instead of muscling your trike( like a tractor) around corners, you just lean, like a two wheeler, only this time you feel more secure, with better stability, and with an experienced rider, you can run with the boys.
    Clyde da glide

  14. 14 Steig Dec 28th, 2015 at 5:54 pm

    Nice! A Piaggio on steroids.

  15. 15 Dec 30th, 2015 at 3:40 pm

    Maybe valid competition for Can-Am Spyder ??
    Have to see some footage
    on how it handles in adverse (rain) conditions

  16. 16 Jan 8th, 2016 at 12:26 pm

    Blackmax have a look at the video section on the Tilting Motor Works Facebook page.

  17. 17 takehikes Jan 19th, 2016 at 6:51 pm

    If you had ever driven (not ridden) a trike you would know why leaning is good. A trike plows through corners. Without lean you steer it which is very bad. Typical cornering speeds are way down or you end up across the highway the front end having washed out.

  18. 18 hb May 31st, 2016 at 12:34 am

    I’m intrigued by this new design. Probably the most difficult task in riding motorcycles is staying upright at stops and especially in gravel. This design appears to remedy those issues. One obvious trade off is loosing my lower fairings on my Harley Ultra Glide. Which means, loss of additional storage and keeping my feet high, dry and warmer in in-climate weather. Perhaps Tilting Motors is working on a work-around for those desiring to keep the fairing benefits?
    Without spending the $13,000 for the auto stabilizer, does that mean the bike will lean over when you come to a stop, if so, that would seem to defeat the purpose of the third wheel for stability?

  19. 19 Bernd Brincken Jul 13th, 2016 at 6:50 am

    hb, staying upright at stops or in gravel is really not the challenge for normal bikes, nor for a trike.
    The advantage of a trike is that if you loose grip in a corner (like on rain, sand, leafs), the trike will just push to the side while the 2-wheeler will likely fall down, which always means damage and sometimes injury.
    The advantage of a leaning trike (or a leaning sidecar, german ‘Schwenker’) over a classical trike, including BRM type, is that you carry less weight, you have a smaller track width, better dynamic properties (more fun), and a cornering behaviour very close to a normal motorbike.
    The price asked is based on a low number of kits, more comparable to custum bike economy than to series models, like BRM or the HD trike.

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