During the age of modern, high-speed and beautiful sportbike, Ural still finds its own place. It is still collected by passionate collectors and used for trips or other things, each to their own.
Sidecar originated in UK with the name of Solo Bike and thrived during the period right after WW2. Almost every famous motorcycle brands now such as BMW, Ural, Harley Davidson, Gold Wing, Kawasaki, Yamaha… overcame the previous leading brands of that period but few received customers’ trust.
Sidecar is the 3-wheel motorcycle that people often saw police officers driving about 20 years ago.
Sidecar originated in UK with the name of Solo Bike
Sidecar is pretty picky, partly due to its heaviness and size and partly due to its driving license. People want to drive this motorcycle have to have A3 driving license, not A2, not B2 (yeah, even B2 for car!). However, sidecar has become a trend and a way to show class since no one knows when.
At first, only the elderly showed interest in Sidecar as they have become familiar with it during their military duty. Today, this hobby has spread to the middle-aged and the young. At first glance we can think that everyone can drive Sidecar but that’s not correct. Sidecar is not about speed, it’s about the power to conquer terrains that require alertness and dexterity.
Sidecar is divided into several categories but Sidecar Ural remains the most popular of all. The majority of Sidecar now has a capacity of 650-750cc and is produced in Russia, Germany and China. Ural is known as a Russia traditional beauty and has long proven its class and durability.
To own a Sidecar is already a difficult task, not to mention to control it easily. With Sidecar, cornering is a tedious task as its weight made it very vulnerable to tilt. Centrifugal force will require driver to lean to the side opposite to the direction the Sidecar is cornering, thus balancing the motorcycle.
Therefore, it is often required that one person should sit on its “trunk” to balance the motorcycle.
There’s not many original Ural left in Vietnam, therefore the price of one could go up to several hundred million VND. Sidecars with some parts replaced cost around 100-120 million VND. Even the cheapest with missing parts cost up to 40 million VND. Even Sidecar components’ price reaches quite high, around 15 to 20 million VND each and even then you cannot always get genuine ones.
Sidecar as a hobby is also extremely interesting, because if you are extremely devoted to your Sidecar, only painting it would cost you 5 – 10 million VND. For people who would like to take care of their vehicle themselves, they can reduce the cost of maintenance for it a lot. Sometimes to get a Sidecar they wish for, they have to travel a lot, but usually what they can found is only too old or damaged one with only the engine and frame remain intact…
Ural often employs 4-stroke, horizontal cylinder engine (boxer style) with a cylinder capacity of 749cc. Ural has a weakness of overheating when operating in tropical climate due to it having only air cooling. However it is one of the best vehicles to have when you are in the middle of winter’s coldness.
With its features and history along with its durability, the Ural of the past and the present are still contributing their best to Vietnamese users, bringing them burning and endless passion.
The Ural M67 650cc in the article also has a similar story to other Urals. The Sidecar was bought by a passionate young collector and brought from Hanoi to Da Nang with only the engine and frame remained intact. The collector had to almost remake the entire motorcycle for it to become a beautiful vehicle like it is today.