Motorcycle Classics Blogs > National Treasures

National Treasures

A look at the vintage motorcycles on display at the National Motorcycle Museum in Anamosa, Iowa.


1952 Vincent Black Shadow

 1952 Vincent Black Shadow 

The Black Shadow was introduced at the 1948 Earls Court Motor Show as a turned version of the Rapide and was built until the production of Vincent motorcycles ceased in 1955. A 988cc 50-degree V-twin, it got its improved performance from a higher compression ratio, a larger bore carburetor and greater attention to detail. For instance, the Shadow was fitted with specially tested Lucas magnetos. The engine was painted black to improve heat dissipation, and the machine was provided with finned brakes to handle the higher cruising speed. When new, the Black Shadow was found to reach 60mph in 6.5 seconds. To this day, the Black Shadow continues to fascinate Vincent aficionados and the general public alike.

1952 Vincent Black Shadow (1)