It’s been a busy 12 months for Ural. The world’s only dedicated sidecar outfit manufacturer updated many of the mechanical and specification features of their range for 2019, which also proved to be one of the company’s most successful years.
All those developments and improvements roll into this year, but Ural have found time to have a little fun for 2020 and the ‘From Russia with Love’ limited edition is the result.
Born from Bond
As the name makes clear, this limited edition is inspired by the James Bond story of the same name, but here’s a fun fact for you: when it was released in 1963, From Russia with Love was the second film in the James Bond franchise, but was actually the fifth book in the 007 series written by Ian Fleming. If you know your Bond canon, you’ll know that Dr. No was the first film, but you may not know that this was the sixth book in the series.
Initially, at least, the movies didn’t follow the sequence of the books at all, with Casino Royale the first 007 novel, published in 1953. It was followed by Live and Let Die, Moonraker, Diamonds are Forever, From Russia with Love, Dr. No and Goldfinger. The first half-dozen Bond movies went in the order of Dr. No, From Russia with Love, Goldfinger, Thunderball, You Only Live Twice and On Her Majesty’s Secret Service. Despite being the first book, Casino Royale wouldn’t get a serious cinematic treatment until the 21st film of the 007 series.
OK, enough Bond geekiness. What does all this have to do with a special edition sidecar outfit?
With Ural being born and bred in Russia, naming a special edition outfit ‘From Russia with Love’ was an easy connection. It ties in loosely with this year’s release of No Time to Die, too, but had circumstances been different, that tie-in with the 25th film in the 007 franchise would have been a lot tighter.
The limited edition Ural was announced last November, which was supposed to be the release date for No Time to Die, too, but a series of delays saw the film’s release postponed to February of this year, then April. Of course, April saw the coronavirus pandemic reach its peak in many countries, so the movie’s release was delayed again, with No Time to Die now provisionally scheduled to reach cinemas in November.
We don’t have to wait for the From Russia with Love (FRWL) Ural, though.
The FRWL limited edition started arriving in Ural dealerships around the world earlier this year, initially in the US which will take the majority of the 35 units that are being produced. That’s right, only 35 of these limited editions will be released globally and Australia’s allocation is a single unit, which recently reached Ural Australia HQ in Uralla, NSW.
So, what defines the FRWL limited edition outfit against the Ural Ranger it’s based on?
Spy-Inspired Silver Style
Each From Russia with Love limited edition is finished in a unique Birch Silver paint, which is inspired by the classic silver Aston Martin DB5 used by 007.
The special blend paint is complemented with silver rims and detailing, as well as abundant use of chrome, from the front and rear cycle grab rails, to the engine protection bars, sidecar mirror, front and rear sidecar bumpers and luggage rack.
Another notable feature on the limited edition is the use of round rear and sidecar lights instead of the rectangular units normally seen on the Ranger. The sidecar also gains a pair of compact fog lights.
The solo saddle and sidecar seat are fitted with removable diamond-quilted black leather covers with contrasting white stitching. This contrast stitching also features on the sidecar windscreen’s apron and tonneau cover.
There’s a unique Ural badge on the fuel tank, which features ‘FRWL’ and the gunbarrel-view motif seen at the start of the 007 movies (a motif that, coincidentally, started with From Russia with Love), but the most individual – and amusing - touches are within the sidecar.
A Lady’s Touch
The sidecar’s seat carries the aforementioned quilted cover and Ural identification, with the dash trimmed in similar fashion. On that dash is a Euro-style power outlet and a Ural-branded analogue clock, along with an ‘eject’ button!
Inspired by the ejector seat in Bond’s Aston Martin from Goldfinger, Ural are clearly having a bit of fun here. In this instance, the eject button is nothing dreamed up by ‘Q’ – it’s actually the cigarette lighter/12V outlet.
What the dash also carries is a name. Each of the 35 limited editions carries a unique name, which Ural says were inspired by “the most successful Russian female operatives”.
Natasha (soooo Russian!), Elizaveta, Lyubov, Klavdia and Oksana are some of the names used, while the Australian-market outfit is named Arina. Here’s another fun fact: Arina is a variant of Irina and means ‘Peace’.
Away from its special paint and other unique touches, the FRWL is the same as the Ural Ranger, so runs that model’s 749cc fuel-injected boxer twin engine, a four-speed transmission with reverse gear and shaft drive, IMZ leading-link front suspension and Sachs rear suspension, Brembo disc brakes on the front and sidecar wheels with 4-piston (front) and 2-piston (sidecar) calipers, HB rear wheel brake and 19-inch spoked wheels. The compact luggage rack means the FRWL misses out on the sidecar-mounted spare, though.
Overall dimensions are the same as the Ranger, as is the 335kg dry weight and 19-litre fuel tank, which translates to a riding range of up to 300km.
Inspired and Styled
Allusions to espionage and the Bond franchise aside, the FRWL is a stylish addition to the Ural range for 2020, but it is limited. In the case of Australia, it’s VERY limited. So, if you think you’re up for a mission with the FRWL, don’t delay. Put down your martini (shaken, not stirred) and check out the details in the breakout.
One Chance at ‘Love’
With only one unit of the From Russia with Love limited edition allocated for Australia, you’ll need to move fast if you want to make ‘Arina’ yours.
Priced at $31,950 (+ ORCs), Arina includes all the FRWL special features, as well as Ural’s proven usability and toughness.
Contact Ural Australia on (02) 6778 4673 for more details, or go to: https://www.imz-ural.com.au/
Photos: Ural Australia