The Automotive Amanojaku

This is where you'll find news, random car-related thoughts and personal views from a rabid car nut. "Amanojaku" is Japanese slang that means "person who is deliberately contradictory". I've always found myself drawn to the less appreciated car makes - the "underdogs" if you will. Suzuki, Pontiac, GM Daewoo and Holden, are among my favorite brands to watch and comment on. Let me hear your thoughts!

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Suzuki Boulevard S40: Hybrid-like Fuel Economy for a Fraction of the Price

I'm often amazed at the lengths people will go to in an effort to prove just how green they are or "save money". While not the solution for everyone, the easy answer to getting good mileage has been around for decades, and it's called the motorcycle.

While a loudly idling Harley with a radical cam and straight pipes doesn't do much to create an image of Eco-friendliness, the smaller, inexpensive motorcycles that Suzuki offers are a great way to save fuel and money on transportation and reduce your so-called "carbon footprint". It should also be noted that a small motorcycle simply uses less raw material to build, so there's less to worry about disposing of or recycling.

One of the problems with motorcycles has been the in the typical American fashion, the image of bigger=better. And this has led to some motorcycles ending up costing more than compact cars that are loaded with standard luxuries that can't be had on a bike. But riding a bike like a Harley or Victory is really more of a lifestyle choice and personal statement than it is a rational decision. These big American cruisers are not for saving money or fuel.

And then you have the "sport bike" crowd that ride a motorcycle for the thrill of speed, all dressed up in full leather bodysuits. The bikes they ride are not particularly inexpensive, either. And like with the "Biker" crowd, it's also about riding with friends and being part of a community.

The oft-overlooked alternative (at least in the USA) is the traditional simple, lightweight motorcycle built for one purpose: transportation.

So what new, simple, reliable bike could one drive to work comfortably without paying too much?


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