Jump to content

CanAm Spyder F3 and Vanderhall Carmel


Recommended Posts

Local bike shop had a 3 wheel demo day last Sunday.  I went and rode a couple of CanAm Spyder F3s and drove a Vanderhall.  Why look at three wheels?  As I get older it is harder to pick up a bike and balance a bike.  Had surgery earlier this year for prostate cancer and didn't know how that would affect me (turns out not at all really) so started looking into three wheelers. I'm looking at three wheelers from the perspective of replacing my Tracer 900 GT for long trips

 I'll start with the Vanderhall, thought I would really like it and I did.  It was a hot day and when I got in and got it going found out the heater had been left on.  Never did figure out how to turn it off - doesn't seem to be a temperature control just speed - which turned out had a zero speed position.  To turn it off it needs zero speed plus close the vents.  The turbo was nice and had a lot of power (not like the Tracer but for a 3 wheel a lot).  It made nice turbo noises and had a good exhaust sound.  Certainly something I could get used to.  About halfway thru the demo ride I gave it full throttle and then let off - it gave a loud whistling whoosh as the blowoff valve lifted and then wen into limp mode!  I had given it lots of throttle before but not sure why it did that.  Does give me a bit of a pause on the reliability but it was new and under warranty.  Limp mode was miserable particularly because I was behind a 50 yo kid who would slow then accelerate hard but was slow around the corners.  In limp mode it was very difficult to get speed up and then they would slow at a corner and I would be stuck trying to build my speed.    Another concern with the Vanderhall is I've read that they hydroplane very easily.  Looking at the rear tire it is no surprise as the back is very light and the tire very wide.  I wonder about shaving a couple of the tire ribs off and adding more groves.  The Vanderhall is nice but at $42,000 to $48,000 it does not appeal to me.  The Venice is about $30,000 and suits me better but it is the same price as a new base Miata.  I'd rather have a Miata I think.

Now to the CanAM.  I drove a F3-S Special and a F3-T.  They were very similar with the major differences being the T has sidecases and a windscreen.  The dash is a bit taller and it had speakers - I hate listening to HDs playing the radio while riding by.  They rode nicely and the semi-automatic transmission was nice.  I controlled the upshifts and it would downshift but could also be downshifted manually.  Much more motorcycle like.  The power was good but again not in the league as the Tracer.  It is more of a cruiser than sporty motorcycle but again I did not have enough time or speed to really see how much difference there is.  The steering felt twitchy but probably me as much as anything.  Certainly could see doing long trips with the CanAm Spyder and it was close to the motorcycle experience but not a motorcycle for sure.  The F3-S appealed to me more than the T but would need to add a windscreen and side cases.  Again not inexpensive at $20,000 to $22,000 or more.  Different than a Miata but would certainly have to consider that.  


  • Thumbsup 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now