Hesketh 24: The Comeback Bike
Yet another fabled name in vintage motorcycling is staging a comeback. The past few years have seen the revival of Norton and Indian, not to mention the relaunched Brough Superior, previously producing replicas only and now gearing up to build a Moto2-eligible race bike along with a completely new SS100 powered by a liquid-cooled 997cc V-twin.
Now comes word that Hesketh Motorcycles, the British marque launched in the late Seventies by Formula One team owner Lord Hesketh to restore Britain’s legacy as a builder of world class sport touring motorcycles, will begin producing new bikes starting February 2014. Hesketh, which has had a history of ups and downs, was bought by enthusiast Paul Sleeman in 2010.
In a major break from the past, the all new Hesketh 24 will be powered by a 120 horsepower, 1,950cc, 56-degree S&S X Wedge V-twin instead of the 8-valve twin cam V-twin used in the original machines. The look of the new bike — painted red, white and blue in homage of the Grand Prix winning F1 “24” car that James Hunt drove for Team Hesketh in the 1970s — is something of a cross between an early Buell and what a sport-minded Harley could look like, yet it’s unmistakably a Hesketh. Hesketh says they’ll only build 24 examples of the single-seat 24, with a two-seat version to be released later. No word yet on pricing, but we’re assuming if you have to ask, you probably can’t afford one. For more info visit, Hesketh Motorcycles. MC