Norton Commando 961 SE

Norton Commando 961
Norton has revealed a few more details of the long-awaited Commando 961, and an image from a shoot held four months ago. Production is now scheduled for the end of September 2009, and Norton will be making only 200 of this model. (Yes, SE means ‘Special Edition’.) As MCN reported ten days ago, the price is set at £15,995 ($26,500) and a deposit of 10% is required to secure a bike. So it looks like the vision of American Kenny Dreer is nearing fruition—although his Norton 952 is now the 961, and we’re left with the niggling feeling that this new bike is a missed opportunity on the design front. It’s not retro and it’s not innovative, so it’s relying on the name. Given the price, is that illustrious badge enough to guarantee success—when you can buy a heart-stoppingly beautiful retro replica from the likes of Colorado Norton Works?