It has a Harley Davidson V-Rod power plant, three wheels and can ride in the HOV lane without a passenger…Motorcycle. It has a steering wheel, seatbelts and you don’t need to wear a helmet…Automobile.
The V13 R Roadster Trike is Campagna Corporations second foray to its very unique product line. Campagna (pronounced Camp-agnyah like Las-agna) a Quebec Montreal-based company released the T-REX, a high-strung three wheeled track beast with a 1,400cc Kawasaki 4-cylinder predator in 1995. The V13R Roadster Trike powered by a Harley-Davidson/Porsche V-Rod 1250cc engine. The Revolution family V-Twin produces 125 hp and 84 lb-ft of torque, and it’s connected to a 5-speed sequential gearbox. Its power-to-weight ratio of 9.47 lb/hp is close to that of a Porsche Boxster S. Compared with the T-REX, it rides on a longer wheelbase with its stretched-out swingarm, and bit longer overall. Almost identical in width and height, although the V13R weighs about a hundred pounds more weighing in at 1,156lbs.
This crossbreed defies convention; in fact, there’s nothing conventional about the V13R Roadster Trike. The V13R doesn’t have supercar power but it will blow away any super car it the corners. It doesn’t have airbags, stereo or heater but it does have more curves than Kim Kardashian. And like Kim, there is nothing rational about the V13R and that’s what’s so damn appealing.
Invited to Solid Works World in San Diego the V13R is a CAD design masterpiece. Campagna marketing magi Michel Paquette rode her up to L.A. but before he could speed dial the anxious journalists at Motor Trend the V13R disappeared with me, sorry boys. I was fortunate to spend several days running this awesome three wheeler through its paces. I imagine it similar to diving a formula one race car, four inches of ground clearance, two front wheels bubbling over the tarmac is full-blown-fun. You are lower than everything and everybody around you but certainly the center of attention. In no way do you realize there is only one wheel in the rear propelling this roadster. Cars would regularly pace me on the freeway videoing with their cell phones.
My First stop was Cooks Corner on my way towards Ortega Highway. My female passenger liked the reclining position and side by side seat configuration and even said the seat was comfortable although I could use a bit more cushion. The cockpit is windy, noisy and it’s difficult to converse at freeway speeds. We hit the lazy curves of Silverado Canyon and discovered V13R’s true nature, visceral and completely connected to the earth at 90mph. A wider front wheel width than a corvette, with unequalled opposed triangular arms with coil over shocks this beast pulls a staggering 1.08Gs. A corvette pulls ,96 Gs, a Lamborghini pulls 1.01 Gs in the corner. The massive triangular contact rubber patch of 205/45ZR17 tires up front and 205/35ZR18 single tire at the rear coupled with an incredibly low stance and wide front end width result in virtually no roll. Winding roads is where this roadster wants to rock and roll. You can easily outrun sport bikes in the turns. This beast will lunge into and out of corners like nobody business and her heart was a flutter. Glued to the road we knocked through the twisties of hwy 74 as she put her arms straight up and screamed with joy as if on a rollercoaster, good analogy actually.
The entire foot control assembly, clutch, brake and gas pedal is adjustable and will slide forward or back and lock in with a cotter pin. The seats also move a full 10 inches allowing a wide range of driver heights. Getting in and out requires a bit of gymnastics because there are no doors but the driver’s steering wheel is removable (like in most race cars) allowing easier access. The V13R features polished alloy wheels and braking power is provided by cross-drilled discs on each wheel sans ABS or any electronic stability control. Transmission is sequential shift, stock motorcycle 1 down 4 up with a foot clutch. The reverse is custom powered by the HD Motorisation and activated by a lever near the shifter pulling up engages reverse and then back forward by pushing the lever downward.
I also gained a new respect for the Harley Davidson V-Rod engine and very impressed with the power of the 125 Hp power plant. I never really appreciated its high rev limits (for a V twin) while riding a V-Rod motorcycle. The Revolution engine redlines at 9000 rpm and something special happens around 7K. On a motorcycle you’re knocking through the gears pretty quickly and when you’re up to speed generally settle in. The V13R weighs 520 Lbs more than a Harley V-Rod motorcycle and because of the additional weight you will spend more time at the upper end and this is where the monster comes to life.
Anywhere we stopped I was immediately engaged in the “what is this “conversation. After the second day of explanations I began inventing wild tales like, It’s the next transformers movie car, It’s a 2016 Harley Davidson prototype to I built it myself. It really didn’t matter what I said, gawkers circled in stunned silence. The body is made out of laminated fiberglass, bolted onto a rigid tubular steel structure with safety roll bars. Unlike the single frame of the T-REX the V13R is a multi for reasons of flexibility and ease of repair. The front end boasts quad projector headlights and a narrow chromed grille with a sardonic grin.
Final day was photo shoot and I picked up model/friend Natalie, she heated up at the sight of this sexy roadster trike and immediately shed a layer. In fact, everyone within a forty foot perimeter stopped dead in their tracks and stared at the V13R…and Natalie. Smooth supple curves accentuated by two full round twins up-front and a small tight rear end…the V13R got all the attention. We rode around the LBC with our Harley Davidson jackets feeling all bad-ass, it is after all Harley powered so we’re not really posers. Although you would truly have to know your V-Rod etymology because the only obvious attributes are the instrument cluster which is the actual V-Rod instrumentation, Harley logo #1 and the two HD bar and shields hidden beneath and behind the removable luggage on the crankcase of the engine.
This was after all a photo shoot and we changed into evening attire and immediately realized this was apropos for city driving, it just felt right. A James Bond, Pussy Galore kind of right. We rode down PCH to the next location; the weather was picture prefect, a cool breeze lightly tossing Natalie’s long blond hair, the sun caressed our faces like falling feathers. People around us stopped stone cold to stare. Natalie smiles and coos, ‘this is absolutely amazing”. Were just driving, it’s just another Thursday afternoon in Long Beach, but I had to agree. For fifteen minutes as we lazily skirted the California coast in silence I knew what it felt like to be Mr. Bond. Piloting an exotic vehicle, a dangerously beautiful woman at my side, Natalie’s furtive glances as she caringly caressed the supple black leather intimated she was falling in love…with the V13R. That’s when I fully understood the other side of the V13R. Panther-like, its a fearless predator, skillfully attacking the mountain curves devouring every corner yet at rest; this beast is stunningly beautiful, exotic and in fact exudes sheer class. There is nothing rational about the V13R Roadster Trike and it can’t be explained in words or photographs, it has to be experienced.
Natalie did after all turn out to be dangerous, she points to a gap in the barriers for the track being set up for the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach and suggested we race around it. Sure, why not, we started knocking over cones and pushing closer to the barrier walls each lap when the sound of a police siren blares and she again points to an escape a gap and we shoot back onto a side street. She makes a great bond girl. All that’s good about the V13R was bringing out all that’s bad in us and we loved every minute.
So what really is the Campagna V13 R Roadster Trike? It’s the most unique, eye-catching, three wheeler on the planet. When seated in this baby your stimulus switch is either turned on or it’s off and if this frightens you, return to the safety and comfort of your sedan. If this excites you, there are very few street legal vehicles that come close to what the V13R has to offer. The V13R is an I’m-having-the-time-of-my-life-and-not-a-bit-shy-doing-it machine. Bond Girl not included.
Price: From 53,349 to 61,616
Availability: Average 8 weeks
Mr. Bond’s personal observations:
I want a real shifter knob, the small and stainless steel shifter lacks machismo.
Put clear plastic veneer covers that adhere on the top of the side panes. Trikes use them on the rear wheel housing; it will protect from the inevitable shoe scuffs while entering and exiting.
Offer optional height windscreens
Model: Natalie Paladin