If you’ve never heard of a Scott Flying Squirrel, it’s ok. This motorcycle’s name sounds like a dance move from the Roaring Twenties, which makes sense considering it came from that era. Funky name aside, the Flying Squirrel was ahead of its time in many ways, which is why Jay Leno owns it.
Launched in 1926, the Flying Squirrel made quite the impact on the motorcycle market, particularly in the British Isles. One of the strangest things about this motorcycle is that it has a two-stroke engine back when such a thing was anything but common. It also is water-cooled, using a radiator mounted forward in the frame. Thanks to thermo-cycling, the water just cycles through the system instead of a pump moving it, which is a simpler and obviously more compact design.
This particular bike owned by Jay Leno is a Replica TT model. It was built by the company to replicate the motorcycle used by Scott to place third at the Isle of Man, a feat many noticed. That means this is essentially a vintage race motorcycle made to be ridden on public roads, which might be why it’s still a blast by today’s standards.
You can get a feel for this Scott motorcycle in the video. It’s fairly loud, but not as much as you’d expect for its vintage. It also accelerates and decelerates smoothly. Leno notes the engine doesn’t have much vibration, which is a great thing for comfort. Since it was created for racing, there’s also no headlight or turn signals, so riding at night is absolutely not going to happen.
Jay Leno has proudly declared that the classic vehicles he owns all have some sort of historical significance. That includes this Scott Flying Squirrel. Scott essentially launched the British motorcycle industry with the Two-Speed model, which went on to win the Isle of Man Senior TT for 1912 and 1913.
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