Just how bad is the communist motorcycle?
Usually communism and quality engineering just don’t go hand in hand, a fact which has kept many in the Western Hemisphere from scooping up a Ural motorcycle. I must admit in some of my weaker moments a Ural has seemed tempting because they’re just so cheap. Plus, they have that vintage WWII-era look that’s hard to get in other motorcycles these days, probably because they haven’t been frozen in time for decades on end. The problem is some people love spreading how horrible Urals are all over the internet and it really makes you stop and wonder if the Russian bikes are all that bad.
Speaking of old motorcycles, check out an elderly man being reunited with his beloved motorcycle after decades of being apart, right here.
The thing is Urals aren’t exactly Russian in their origin. The Soviets, being the industrious geniuses they were, stole the design from the BMW R71 back in the day. Now, it’s true Harley-Davidson did the same thing to make the XA, but it seems the Russkies didn’t copy the design too well, and so the Urals were horribly unreliable. But that was way back in the day, so surely those now capitalism-and-freedom-loving Russians have ironed out all the wrinkles, right?
Well, some claim that’s the case and they sing high praises for the bikes. There are videos of them doing all kinds of amazing things, including fording swift rivers with the water reaching almost to the handlebars. But other people claim they are just the same hunk of junk without any improvement. Which is right? Do you just plunk down the cash and see how it goes? Thankfully you don’t have to because YouTube channel Bikes and Beards has taken the risk for you.
Since they don’t have an endorsement or any other deal with Ural it’s an unbiased and completely hilarious review. You see, when perusing other motorcycle and car reviews on the internets, you need to keep in mind many of these people are getting something from the manufacturer, even if it’s just the use of their vehicles for free. The reviewers have every incentive to put a positive spin on every ride they try out, which is how you can look up the Kia Soul and see reviews just praising the damn thing.
There are some tempting designs on the Ural Gear-Up. After all, it’s supposed to be a go-anywhere motorcycle with a sidecar, so you can bring along a buddy, your dog, or maybe a bunch of gear for an adventure. It also features two-wheel drive, with a driveshaft sending power to the sidecar’s wheel. Plus, there’s a small jerrycan and a spotlight mounted to the sidecar. And, as pointed out in the video, you feel like Indiana Jones while riding this thing because it looks just like the WWII motorcycles. How cool is that?
Claims surrounding this motorcycle are pretty bold, like how it supposedly can go anywhere a classic Willys Jeep can go. Well, this bike gets put through the paces in a wilderness area during some pretty decent rain. There are plenty of water crossings to see how the Russian horse does and the results are pretty telling. I don’t want to spoil what happens, but let’s just say probably everyone on both sides of the debate about the Ural are going to be shocked. If you have a sense of humor you will also be laughing. This video is definitely worth your time, trust me.