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Norton Rotary Development (9): Norton Prototypes

Thanks to the same customer who enabled us to build the first "NRS588", we could eventually build the definitive Commander. As can be gathered from our remarks on the production P52 and P53, we think this was one of the best touring motorcycles of its time. However, it was lacking in some departments, due to having been designed as a Police motorcycle. As such, it was developed to be sold at a budget price. This was o.k. as far as public service went, but a civilian version should have differed in some major components, as a private owner could be expected to pay a higher price and, therefore, the civilan version could have had a higher specification. This did not happen, as time and money for such an exercise were not available. Neither was, probably, the awareness of a discerning public!

The following improvements are but a fraction of what went into the bike:

Front Forks Marzocchi USD
Brakes 2x 320mm discs with Nissin 4-piston calipers front;
Brembo caliper rear
Wheels Front 3.5x17 die-cast
Rear 5.5x17 die-cast
Tires Front 120/70ZR17 Bridgestone BT020
Rear 160/70ZR17 Bridgestone BT020
Swinging Arm F1-Type rear fork, with mounting points for the fork spindle integrated in the footrest plates.
Radiators Twin aluminium radiators with a gauze-covered centre gap for a) riders access to spark plugs and b)cool air access to plenum chamber
Electrics Twin 55W projector headlamps, waterproof connectors on lightweight wiring loom, digital ignition.
Transmission Hydraulic clutch with Brembo master cylinder; heavy duty transmission gears, externally lubricated water pump coupling.