More than six decades ago, the Vincent Black Shadow delivered the most performance from a street-legal vehicle that money could buy — on two wheels or four. The ultimate Vincent was the Series C Black Lightning, a production version of the bike Rollie Free rode to break the AMA's land speed record in 1948 on the Bonneville Salt Flats; the swimming trunks were an optional extra. Available only by special order, the standard Black Lightning was supplied in racing trim with at l
Before achieving fame with aircraft, Glenn Curtiss started with motorcycles, setting a world record with this 4 litre V8. The early aviation community began to seek out Curtiss because of his growing reputation for building powerful, lightweight V-twin motorcycles, so in 1906 he designed a V8, effectively four of his existing V-twin motors.
Of course Curtiss set to wondering how fast a motorcycle with the V8 could go, making some 30 to 40 horsepower at 1,800 rpm. Trans