Multiple stays of enforcement helped, but the CPSIA lead ban took a toll on the industry. Thankfully Congress passed an exemption for kids OHV.
was an ongoing saga of impending doom and despair in the motorcycle economy for the past three years. From the start it was obvious that the CPSC had the right idea to protect children from the dangers of lead, but the wide-sweeping application of the CPSIA of 2008 went too far when it included motorcycles and ATVs.
An enormous uproar from the riding community followed, but the problem wasn’t convincing legislators that our kids aren’t eating their bikes. Instead it was an issue of sorting out the finger-pointing between lawmakers and government entities, and sifting through the tedious bickering and nitpicking over specific wording of the law. Apparently getting a law passed is no problem, but getting one changed once it’s on the books is a whole other story. As the legal negotiations extended over time, the general public was confused, frustrated and paralyzed over how to address the issue. It all ended on August 12 when President Barack Obama signed H.R. 2715 into law. The CPSIA of 2008 is still in effect, but kids’ OHVs are now exempt.
How many lifelong riders started with a PW50 under the Christmas tree? How many spent summers sweating behind mowers and delivering newspapers to buy that XR75? How many dads toil at work all day so they can get home and teach Jr. to change his KTM’s oil? The bikes have changed over time and so has our world, but we still need them for our sport to survive. Every kid’s dirt bike and ATV that hung tough for the past few years have earned the right to stick around a bit longer. Collectively they are our choice for 2011 Motorcycle of the Year.
Motorcycle USA Best of 2011 Awards
Rider of the Year 2011: Ryan Villopoto
Manufacturer of the Year 2011: Polaris Industries
Best Cruiser 2011: Ducati Diavel
Best Sportbike 2011: BMW S1000RR
Best Street Bike 2011: Ducati Multistrada
Best Touring Motorcycle 2011: Harley-Davidson Road Glide Ultra
Best Adventure Motorcycle 2011: Triumph Tiger 800 XC
Best Enduro 2011: KTM 350 XC-F
Best Dual Sport 2011: Husqvarna TE250
Best Motocross Motorcycle 2011: Honda CRF450R
Motorcycle of the Year 2011: Kawazuki CRF65 SX