It’s hard not to get overly excited about the possibilities of a 2WD motorbike, isn’t it? Even if it’s a low-speed machine, the fact that the UBCO 2×2 ADV comes with both AWD and those great knobby tires is kind of exciting on its own. You can nearly feel the cautious optimism bubbling just underneath those words, can’t you?
As is the way of all things, my time with the UBCO 2X2 ADV was limited—but even so, I was determined to make the most of it. One thing I absolutely wanted to make sure that I did was take it off road, at least a little. Now, it doesn’t have any kind of serious off-road suspension, so it’s clear that I wasn’t going to be doing any crazy jumps with this thing.
A little trail riding, though? That seemed like a definite must-do—so, I did. The day was reasonably cool, sunny, and honestly pretty beautiful considering that it’s August in the Chicago area. (I’m not taunting you, Weather Gods, but I have to say that July this year was worse than August so far. I digress.)
As we’ve noted previously, the UBCO founders originally designed this bike as a farm bike. That means it was built for low-speed off-road pursuits, like simply getting around farms and helping humans ferry tools (and themselves) back and forth. As such, a small, well-tended gravel trail seemed unlikely to pose any serious difficulties.
My previous experience with wet weather, uneven pavement, bricks, and heavy construction zones already gave me some idea of what to expect when I started rolling over gravel. Sure enough, it was just as solid as it was on pavement. If anything, the bike may even have seemed happier on the gravel—probably due in no small part to those knobby tires.
I wasn’t attempting anything seriously difficult here. Heck, it wasn’t even wet weather! If I’d had a bit more time, perhaps I would have ridden up some of the grassy hills or gone off the trail a bit to see some more. With the time I had, though, I was glad to at least get a taste of how much fun this bike is away from paved roads—and it is SUPER fun.
As a primarily street rider, my current assessment is that the 2X2 ADV almost certainly has greater off-road chops than I do. For that reason, I get the sense from it that finding its limits off-road would be a fun way to grow my own skills and confidence. It’s definitely something to think about if you’re in a similar situation in your own riding life.