You might have already seen the viral video of a few sidecars crossing a fast moving river in Europe and emerging victorious despite the water level overwhelming the entire vehicle.
It’s not edited for sure, and that video basically raised some eyebrows on the capability of the Ural Sidecar. Ural is a Russian builder of heavy sidecars (although they have now embarked in manufacturing motorcycles) and they have been at it since 1941 after acquiring the rights to design and production-know-how of the then BMW R-71.
The first of Ural’s models was the M-72 built back in 1941. A similar model, known as the Dnepr was built simultaneously in the Ukraine whereas the Ural ‘design’ was also sold later to a Chinese firm which later built the Chang Jiang in China.
Primarily a boxer twin with four-strokes, it is fuel injected air-cooled with a four-speed gear box which has a separate reverse gear. It is shaft driven with dual disc dry-clutch and incorporates the use of spring shock-absorbers and spots 3 separate disc brakes on its wheels.
Ural has come a long way since the war, and is currently based in USA. To be competitive, their motorcycles have also undergone design improvements which includes the upgrade of many components for better appeal. Ural has also designed its 2-wheel drive sidecar and created a range of specialised vehicles for the defining biker.
In Malaysia, Ural is set to be the first passenger sidecar that will be type approved for import. In the past, motorcycles that were imported were basically brought in and approved by model.
This time around, Ural’s official distributor, Reed Motorcycle Company has made arrangements for the testing and approval of all Ural motorcycles through the road transport department. A vehicle type approval is the last process which, once completed by the JPJ will allow the vehicle for road use.
Managing Director of Reed Motorcycle Company, Mohammed Nik Faisullah Reed is confident that their strategy to distribute this unique motorcycle will pay off given that many bikers are getting into overland travel lifestyle.
With a sidecar, there is also the possibility of 3 members of a family enjoying the ride as opposed to single or dual participation currently.
According to Fadil Ali, who is assisting Nik, there are already many queries for the sidecar and having organised overland riding trips to the Himalayas, an exclusive Ural expedition is simply a matter of time.
Reed Motorcycles which is located along Jalan Raja Muda Aziz in Kampung Baru, Kuala Lumpur is bound to turn heads once it displays the Ural in their showroom. There are no price indications of the Ural as yet, but it is expected to be between RM70k upwards from its basic model to RM140k for the top of the line sidecars provided the Ringgit does not shed any more of its value.