Thursday, January 25, 2007

Significant Firsts in Motorcycling


Can you tell which of these was the first ever road bike to have fully adjustable suspension?

An interesting little list of significant 'firsts' in the history of motorcycles. The list was compiled with some help from the UK-based Performance Bikes, one of the best moto-mags in the business right now. Do visit their website here

Right, and now on to the list...

Genuine 100bhp
1978 Kawasaki Z1300. Six-cylinder engine. 225km/h top speed. It weighed a bit more than 300 kilos though, and handled liked a sack of potatoes. Not that it stopped nutters like Artie Nyquist and Gary Rothwell from pulling big wheelies on this beast!

10-second quarter-mile
Mid-1980s Kawasaki GPZ1100. (The 1984 GPZ 750 Turbo did the quarter-mile in 10.99 seconds, and the 2006 ZZR1400 does it in about 9.5…)

100bhp in a bike that weighed less than 200kg
1986 Suzuki GSX-R1100. 102bhp, 197kg. Also had the first cartridge fork on a road machine.

150bhp in a bike that weighed less than 200kg
2004 Kawasaki ZX-10R.

Aluminium beam frame
1987 Yamaha TZR250 and FZR1000.

Fully adjustable suspension on a road bike
1988 Honda RC30. Full compression and rebound damping adjustments. (The 1990 GSX-R750 was the first bike with fully adjustable suspension that real people could actually afford to buy…)

200bhp/litre engine
1989 Suzuki RGV250. 50.4bhp@11,000rpm. 202.4bhp/litre. Even the 2007 Yamaha R1 or GSX-R1000 can’t match that!

Ram-air that actually worked
The 1989 Kawasaki ZXR750 had those OTT pipes snaking over the fuel tank and the green/white/purple paint scheme was the business, but the 1989 Yamaha OW01 had ram air that really worked, with real world measurable effects. First exhaust valve too.

First radial caliper
2003 Aprilia RSV-R.

Separate high/low speed damping adjustment
2006 Yamaha R6. Also first fly-by-wire throttle linkage.

Yamaha UK: The Vale Collection


Lo and behold! The Vale Collection!

Rossi-obsessive? Then you may want to get these no.46 Rossi shirts, caps and bags etc., which Yamaha of UK have just launched. The shirt lets you corner harder, the cap psyches out other riders in your neighbourhood and the bag has enough space for the missus’ kit. More details on the ‘Vale Collection’ here


Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Team Cristofolini Racing’s 350cc, 112bhp scooter


Yeah, that's a 112bhp, 350cc V4. In a scooter!

What would you want in a scooter? A 100cc, 8-10bhp engine and some underseat storage space? Not if you’re Team Cristofolini Racing. These Italians have built a scooter which is fitted with a carburetted 350cc V4 that makes 112 horsepower. The chassis is modified Malaguti F12. And we suppose you'd have to be Valentino Rossi himself to be able to ride this machine, which, with its small wheels, short wheelbase and 112bhp engine, should be a right nightmare.

Get more pics and details here


Benelli readying the Tre-K 1130 Amazonas


The Benelli Tre-K 1130 Amazonas: Mud in your eye!

Benelli are reported to be in the final stages of readying their Tre-K 1130 Amazonas. When the big dual-purpose Benelli hits showrooms in April this year, it will be up against some very capable and well-established competition – bikes like the BMW R1200GS and the KTM 990 Adventure. But with its powerful, 1130cc three-cylinder engine (which makes 123 horsepower at 9000rpm), funky styling and high-spec suspension and chassis components, the big Benelli might just pull it off.

The only thing is, it’s expected to cost about US$16,000. Uhh..hh…

Also see:
2007 Benelli Due 750
2007 BMW HP2 Megamoto
2007 BMW G650 X-Challenge
2007 KTM 990 Superduke R

External link:
Cycle World: 2007 Benelli Tre-K first ride

Monday, January 22, 2007

Kenny Roberts announces KR Tuned


Kenny Roberts. Brilliant rider and racer. And a never-say-die businessman

Kenny Roberts (500cc motorcycle grand prix racing world champ in 1978, 1979 and 1980) has announced his new venture, KR Tuned, which will focus on high-end, high-performance exhaust systems and chassis components for sportsbikes.

Kenny says KR Tuned will apply learnings from MotoGP while creating exhaust systems and other performance accessories for street-going sportsbikes. Apart from his racing successes in the late-1970s with Yamaha, Kenny Roberts has been running his own MotoGP racing team for the last many years, albeit with limited success. In 2007, he will be running his KR212V MotoGP bike, which uses an 800cc engine supplied by Honda. Kenny Roberts Jr. (Kenny Roberts’ son, and 500cc motorcycle GP racing world champ in the year 2000) will be riding the KR212V.


Expect to see (and hear...) this in your neighbourhood soon

KR Tuned products will be marketed through an alliance with Hotbodies Racing, who also sponsored Kenny's MotoGP team in 2006. For more details, visit http://www.hotbodiesracing.com/ and http://www.krtuned.com/


Rizla Suzuki MotoGP: John Hopkins video


John Hopkins talks about his Suzuki MotoGP bike

Right-click and download this short video where John Hopkins talks about his Rizla Suzuki MotoGP bike.


2008 Victory Vision: A stylish new luxo-tourer...


The Victory Vision luxury-tourer. Coming to a showroom near you, by October/November 2007

Based in Minnesota, in the US, Victory describe their new Vision as ‘the most progressive American luxury-touring bike ever built.’ Well, it certainly doesn’t look like any other touring bike we’ve recently seen…

But seriously, the Victory Vision, designed by one Michael Song, is the culmination of six years of research and development. When it goes on sale in October this year, the bike will be available in two versions – the full-house touring-oriented Vision Tour, and the slightly smaller Vision Street. Both bikes, say Victory, ‘define 21st-century cool.’

The Victory Vision will be powered by a 1600cc v-twin (though this is not confirmed yet, and engine capacity may go up by the time the bikes goes into production), and will feature a low-maintenance belt-drive. Spec is likely to be high, with toys like MP3 stereo, GPS navigation, and satellite radio being fitted as standard equipment.

For Victory Vision wallpaper, video and more details, go here. For riding impressions, go here, here and here.


Imagine rolling up to your girlfriend's house on this!

Also see:
Wakan: 1640cc of French eccentricity
2007 Buell XBRR
2007 Suzuki B-King
2007 Buell Lightning Long XB12Ss

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