Introducing the 2024 Norton Commando 961…
There are few names that have endured in motorcycling like the Norton Commando. First introduced in 1967, it set a new standard for British motorcycles and, such was the Commando’s class, that it was named ‘Machine of the Year’ for the next five years in a row.
Today the Commando 961 also sets the standard for British made motorbikes and even shares some of the same performance rich DNA of that era-defining machine. With a completely redesigned 961cc oil and air-cooled engine, precision handling chassis and the finest components, the Commando 961 ushers in a new era of British manufacturing.
2024 Norton Commando 961 Guide Totalmotorcycle.com Key Features
TWO STYLES, SAME PURPOSE
The Commando 961 is the ultimate modern classic because it combines what we all want; timeless looks, unquestionable performance and a soundtrack rescued from a bygone era. But at Norton we know that not all motorcyclists are the same, which is why we have the 961 Sport and the 961 Café Racer.
NORTON COMMANDO 961 CAFÉ RACER
The Café Racer is the ideal combination of speed and style – a modern reincarnation of the dizzying machines favoured by the Ton Up Boys. It’s clip-on handlebars pull you in close to the action, where the roar of the engine fills your ears and all the matters is where you’re going and how quickly you’re getting there.
NORTON COMMANDO 961 SPORT
The Sport, on the other hand, comes with flat handlebars that favour an upright riding position for riders who have a little more time to spend in the saddle. Made for those for whom the journey is more important than the destination and the ride takes as long as it needs.
2024 Norton Commando 961 Guide Totalmotorcycle.com Features and Benefits
DESERVING OF THE NORTON NAME
When the Commando was designed in 1966, Norton stood for the same principles that ‘Pa’ Norton had when he began building motorcycles in 1902. They are the same principles we have now: the highest quality components, precision engineering and traditional craftsmanship; now in a 21st century package. That’s not to say we’ve stuffed the Commando full of pointless tech for the sake of it – the opposite in fact.
Just like the original bike over 50 years ago, a Commando 961 will not tell you when to change gear, it will not take charge of the throttle and it will not get between you and the simple pleasure of a well-earned ride. Instead it offers reliability when you require it, comfort when you want it and the roar of a petrol powered British twin when you ask for it. Quite simply the Commando 961 is everything you need, and nothing you don’t.
SPECIFICATION: SIMPLICITY, PERFECTED
We’ve also simplified the Commando 961, so you can specify the exact bike you want. As standard the 961 comes with a traditional finish to the engine, allowing the natural colours and textures of the manufacturing process to show through. If you’ve yearned for Commandos of old then this is the bike for you but, if you’d prefer, we can take a leaf out of Mick Jagger’s book and paint it black. The same is true of the frame, finishing kit, stitching and the pinstriping on the bodywork. You can even choose just how polished you want the engine cases because, at the end of the day, it’s your bike not ours. We do draw the line somewhere though. The things that make a Norton, a Norton – the logo, the hourglass body, the signature fuel tank and gentle angle of the engine – they’re not going anywhere. And nor are we, which is also why every Commando comes with a two-year warranty.
ENGINEERING: CAKE, MEET THE CHERRY
Norton Commando 961 engineering features
Of course, simplicity doesn’t mean simple. We build the Commando from the best materials; the front mudguard is carbon fibre and the yokes are made from aerospace grade aluminium. We also finish the 961 with the best components available – the fully adjustable forks and shocks come from suspension experts Öhlins, while the brakes come from the Italian maestros at Brembo. As for the engine, that’s far from simple either.
Completely redesigned, reengineered and reworked over the past two years, the latest 961cc parallel twin is the most advanced version to date and places a smidge over 76bhp in your right hand. Sometimes the old ways are the best though, which is why it’s still air-oil cooled, still has a dry sump and still sounds as mean as it ever did. We also think reliability never goes out of fashion either, so it’s been built to go 6000 miles between services meaning you get to spend more time on the road and less in the workshop.
All that’s left to do now is swing a leg over one and see what everyone has been lauding for the last 56 years.
2024 Norton Commando 961 Guide – Totalmotorcycle.com Specifications/Technical Details
US MSRP Price: 961SP $ See Dealer and 961CR $ See Dealer USD
Canada MSRP Price: $ See Dealer and 961CR $ See Dealer CDN
Europe/UK MSRP Price: 961SP £16,999 and 961CR £17,499 See Dealer for Pricing in GBP (On The Road inc 20% Vat)
Norton air-oil-cooled pushrod parallel twin with dry sump lubrication
BORE & STROKE
88mm x 79mm
Crank-fired, electronic fuel injection
81Nm @ 6300rpm
Carbon front mudguard
Colour-matched seat cowl (Aftersales)
Frame is hand TIG and MIG welded at Norton HQ
HANDLEBARS – SPORT
Black anodised tapered high bars
HANDLEBARS – CAFÉ RACER
High-grade anodised billet aluminium clip-ons
Full stainless steel exhaust system with multiple 3-way catalytic converter
5-speed constant mesh type
525 O-ring chain
Full Brembo system – twin Brembo 320mm fully-floating high carbon steel discs and Brembo 4-piston Mono Bloc radially mounted calipers with ABS, and Brembo front brake master cylinder
Full Brembo system – Brembo 240mm disc and 2-piston caliper with ABS, and Brembo rear brake master cylinder
43mm Öhlins upside-down forks – adjustable for preload, compression and rebound damping
Öhlins twin shocks with remote reservoir – fully adjustable
36-spoke, 3.5″ x 17″ polished aluminium rim
40-spoke, 5.5″ x 17″ polished aluminium rim
Dunlop Sportmax GPR-300, 120/70ZR17
Dunlop Sportmax GPR-300, 180/55ZR17
Polished stainless-steel single headlamp
Norton analogue speedometer and tachometer
With polished rims or black rims
With polished rims or black rims
Manufacturer Specifications and appearance are subject to change without prior notice on Total Motorcycle (TMW).