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July 18, 2001

Here's a first look at the controversial new V-Rod that Harley-Davidson Motors will introduce later this year. With a base price of $16,995 and a host of high-tech goodies not found on traditional kidney-rattling Harley hogs, the liquid-cooled, 115-horsepower, dual-overhead cam V-Rod is aimed at bringing fanciers of high-end Japanese and European performance bikes into the Milwaukee motorcycle maker's camp. Some Harley die-hards are already criticizing the chrome, aluminum and steel V-Rod as ugly and expensive, but others chatting on a Harley owners Internet site say the "boilerhead"--a reference to the radiator--looks promising. Harley plans to start selling the bike this fall as the first of a new line of high-tech motorcycles.

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