Vision went out of business in November of 2003. Their last phone line was disconnected in January 2004, their jigs and tooling were sold on Ebay about a year later. If you are considering one of their US tandems remember, some parts will be unavailable i.e.: handlebars, seats, seat upholstery.
You might consider one of the Longbikes USS recumbent tandems recumbents instead.
Vision R-80 Recumbents
The Vision R-82 and R-85 tandem recumbent is a great bike made by Advanced Transportation Products (ATP) in Washington State. Their stoker (rear) seat adjusts to fit 10-year-old kids or 6-foot moms and dads! It is the most economical quality recumbent tandem available with Under Seat Steering (USS.) It is very comfortable and rides well. It is available with OSS or USS. USS is Visions best seller because it doesn’t have to compete with the RANS Screamer with OSS.
Vision’s Independent Pedaling system (IPS) is available on their tandem recumbents as a no cost option. IPS allows either rider to coast while the other pedals. While pedaling both riders still pedal at the same speed. We love IPS; it means I don’t need to interrupt my workout on descents while my wife or daughters can take a breather. On other tandem brands, it is either not available (Longbikes) or adds six to nine hundred to the price.
The R-82’s long monotube frame flexes enough to take the edge off road bumps making this bike even more comfortable. This flex is a bit disconcerting on high speed (20mph+) bumpy corners, where it can be downright scary. The rear seat will adjust to fit riders under 4’8″ to 6″+. It is also low enough that my daughter could easily ride on the back when she was 10 years old. She loved this bike above all others (it was the only recumbent tandem she would fit on.) It has a pretty long wheelbase (even longer than the RANS Screamer) making it awkward to store and transport. Executing a “U” turn is a feat requiring all my concentration, but I’m proud to say I can do it (thank you, thank you…) I’ve met R-82 owners who have enjoyed their bike for thousands of miles and never tried a “U” turn.
When doing a “U” turn on a Vision tandem with USS the stoker’s toes can hit the handlebar, this can be a real “thrill” for the captain! IPS helps this, the rear stoker can coast while the captain pedals through the turn. When we have this bike in stock it is with IPS.
The riders are fairly far apart on the R-82, the space between them allows a Vision seat bag on the back of the front seat, that’s good because I find the Vision bottle cage placement awkward while riding. On the RNS Screamer, many couples do not have room for a seat bag on the front seat. The R-82 frame can be disassembled to pack in 2 smaller boxes for shipping and airline transport. This is similar to the $500 “TR” option on the RANS Screamer.
The R-85 is the deluxe Vision tandem and has the same seats, frame, and handlebars. The price difference is due to the higher-grade components. It rides and weighs about the same but shifts a bit better and requires a bit less maintenance.
These are very comfortable bikes, I like them a lot. In my opinion, their frame flex makes them less than ideal for folks who are looking forward to high-speed descents. Certainly not high-speed descents on winding or bumpy roads.
Click here for the Vision R82 & R85 Tandem Recumbent Bicycle Owner’s Manual (pdf)
Click Here for Recumbent Tandem Specials