To the layperson, the Black Douglas Sterling is a vintage motorcycle from the early part of the last century. It conjures up images of an age when women and men were ladies and gentleman - or at the very least appeared to be. BLACK DOUGLAS STERLING COUNTRYMAN DELUXE AUTOCYCLE From a societal perspective, the early part of the century was a period during which younger men and women began to shake off the social shackles of the Victorian era. Performing the scandalous Charleston and Foxtrot dances was one such way. Yet away from the dance halls and parties, these young men and women still displayed the facade, of what previous generations considered to be lady-like and gentlemanly conduct. BLACK DOUGLAS STERLING - NOT QUITE WHAT IT APPEARS TO BE Much in the same way as those young ladies and gentlemen of the twenties, The Black Douglas Motorcycle Co.'s first production bike, the Sterling, is not quite what it appears to be. Yet, it certainly looks as though it's been built for gentlefolk. Nevertheless, it's not a restored vintage motorcycle - in fact, the Sterling is a thoroughly modern motorcycle, with the appearance of an autocycle from the early 20th century. LEARN MORE INSPIRATION - BLACK DOUGLAS, STERLING COUNTRYMAN The Sterling is the realisation of a dream of Italian entrepreneur and custom and classic motorcycle fanatic, Fabio Cardoni. Cardoni, commissioned Englishman, Benny Thomas of Boneshaker Choppers and Mutt Motorcycles, to design a low-speed motorcycle, with vintage looks, that offered a purer riding experience. The Sterling Countryman Deluxe was selected from one of three prototypes and is the first autocycle to be produced by the marque. With its flat tank, the Sterling is reminiscent of the Douglas 4HP model made by Bristol-based Douglas - and also of the Ariels and AJS motorcycles ridden by dispatch and scout riders of WW1. One might think that The Black Douglas Motorcycle Co. gets its name from the Douglas marque - rather, it's a medieval Scottish knight; James Douglas (close friend and ally of Robert De Bruce) and a personal hero of Cardoni, that inspired the name. A GLOBAL PRODUCTION EFFORT The frame is constructed in Italy and the engine, based on Zongshen's interpretation of the Honda's CG230 is assembled in Taiwan. The full assembly of the machine takes place in Birmingham, England. Get all that? Good. The Black Douglas Sterling, much like other contemporary motorcycles requires a global production effort. PURER RIDING EXPERIENCE With its hardtail suspension, single-spring girder fork, flat tank, sprung saddle; combined with wide drawn-back bars and protruding bullet headlight (a Herring can headlight on the Original Drayton and Claret Classic), it's difficult to associate the Sterling with any other period, other than the 1910s to late 1920s. The Sterling is a beautifully crafted piece of machinery; not too dissimilar from a 1915 Triumph Model H or 1913 FN Four (Fabrique Nationale de Herstal) or even more aptly its namesake of sorts, the Douglas 2\u00be HP. Without ABS brakes or computer-controlled transmission, within the Sterling, you're likely to find a purer riding experience. In The Black Douglas Motorcycle Co. words; "Riding a Sterling is about being present in the moment, being connected, fully experiencing the ride and your surroundings." LEARN MORE This finely-finished, vintage-style roadster comes with an almost bewildering array of custom options and period-correct accessories which are sure to draw the approving gaze of other motorists. Though, with the reliability of modern technology inbuilt into the Sterling, you'll likely miss out on any roadside conversations that come with the less-reliable nature of a true vintage bike. And that's not a bad thing. GALLERY - THE BLACK DOUGLAS MOTORCYCLE CO. LEARN MORE Black Douglas 125cc specifications at a glance: Make and type: TBD Motors \u2013 The Black Douglas Sterling AutocycleBody type: Flat tank motorcycleEngine type: OHC 2 valves, air cooling, electronic CDI, assembled andcompleted in ItalyEngine configuration: 1 cylinder, 4 StrokeFuel system and type: carburettor, petrolCubic capacity: 124,9 cm3; bore & stroke: 57 x 49 mmBattery and electrics: Gel type, 3,3 Ah; three-phase alternator 90 W; LEDturn indicators; daylight dimmed by PWM controllerMax speed: over 100 km\/hNoise level: less than 85 dB in ruled testing conditionMax power: 12,75 HP (9,5 kW) @ 7500 RPMMaximum torque: 15,0 Nm @ 5500 RPMFuel consumption: average 35 km\/lFuel capacity: 9 litresRange: over 300 km Black Douglas 230cc specifications at a glance: Make and type: TBD Motors \u2013 The Black Douglas Sterling AutocycleBody type: Flat tank motorcycleEngine type: OHV pushrod, 2 valves, air cooling, electronic CDI, assembledand completed in ItalyEngine configuration: 1 cylinder, 4 StrokeFuel system and type: carburettor, petrolCubic capacity: 229,5 cm3; bore & stroke: 67 x 65 mmBattery and electrics: Gel type, 4,0 Ah; three-phase alternator 75 W; LEDturn indicators; daylight dimmed by PWM controllerMax speed: over 100 km\/hNoise level: less than 85 dB in ruled testing conditionMax power: 14,10 HP (10,5 kW) @ 6000 RPMMaximum torque: 18,3 Nm @ 4500 rpmFuel consumption: average 32 km\/lFuel capacity: 9 litresRange: over 270 km N.B. Jodhpurs, country jacket, flat-cap and pipe are not included.