Saturday, June 02, 2007

Custom Triumph: Pettinari Speed Triple


One of the best streetfighter customs we've seen recently...

Yes, custom-built streetfighters are everywhere these days, but we think this Pettinari Speed Triple from Italy looks a bit special. Find out more here.

And here's an image gallery of some very interesting bikes which Triumph should think of building... :-)

Also see:
Cagiva Mito 650 to be made in India?
Fight Machines: The gloves are off...
Brutale 910R: The best loved naked in Italy!
Dorna to 'quantify' MotoGP exposure
Bike vs car: Honda Fireblade vs Honda Civic Type R

Friday, June 01, 2007

Ex-Top Gun buys a Vyrus 985 C3 4V


The Vyrus doesn't have an afterburner, but then the ex-Top Gun must have also mellowed a bit since 1986...

Back in 1986, Jerry Bruckheimer's big-time hit movie Top Gun pretty much established Tom Cruise as a Hollywood mega-star. But once it's been twenty years since you last flew a fighter jet, what do you do to get your kicks? Well, you get a very fast, very high-tech motorcycle. Which is what Mr Cruise has done – he's bought a Vyrus 985 C3 4V.

Built in Rimini, Italy, the Vyrus 985 C3 4V is powered by a 150bhp Ducati v-twin, and top speed is around 250km/h. Cruise, apparently, saw the bike in a Beverly Hills showroom and decided he must have one. Buying a US$90,000 bike is probably no big deal for someone who's worth more than US$100 million, and Ascanio Rodorigo, the man who owns Vyrus, personally delivered Cruise's bike to his house.


US$90,000 means front swingarm instead of USD front forks for the Vyrus. But seriously, it should be an amazing bike

Says Rodorigo, 'To get it right, we had to weigh Tom and take his height and riding position. That way, when he rides it, it feels like a tailor-made suit.' But of course. In the meanwhile, you can read Motorcyclist magazine's road test of the Vyrus here. Also take a look at various other bikes which experimented with alternative front suspension over the years, here.

Also see:
Bike magazine readers: "Carl Fogarty is an idiot!"
1980s Exotica: Suzuki XN85 Turbo!
Bikers, listen up: Could you be going deaf...?!
Spinning around: Tailgunner rotary exhaust system
Memorable: The mighty Munch Mammut TTS-E

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Single again: Mivv exhaust systems for the 2007 Suzuki GSX-R1000


Suzuki GSX-R1000s must have single-side exhaust systems. The 2007 Gixxer K7 model doesn't. Enter Italian specialists, Mivv...

Not much to say here. We love GSX-R1000s, and while styling is a matter of personal opinion to some extent, we'd say the 2006 GSX-R1000 was the best looking ever. The 2007 model is... umm... all right. But the 2006 model was the best. Perhaps what really spoils the K7's styling for us are its twin exhaust pipes - they just don't look right on the GSX-R1000.

Now, Italian bike parts specialists Mivv have a solution - the single side exhaust system you see here. For more details, go to their website here.

Also see:
Lithium battery-powered Yamaha R1!
Is the Kawasaki Ninja ZX-RR MotoGP bike any good?
From Italy: The very stylish Honda Hornet Cup
Moto Tuning's streetfighter: Top Gun GSX-R
Kalex AV1: MotoGP-spec performance for the road?

2008 World Superbikes: FIM approve 1200cc engine capacity limit for twins


Bigger twins! The Ducati camp is obviously delighted...

Ducati Superbike racing program Director, Davide Tardozzi has told Speed TV that new FIM regulations pertaining to SBK 2008 have been agreed upon, and are likely to be announced on the coming Sunday, after the Italian MotoGP at Mugello. The FIM have, in principle, agreed to Ducati's demands, and the new rules will allow twin-cylinder engines to go up to 1200cc.

This revised engine capacity for twins in World Superbikes is likely to have a major effect on many manufacturers' plans – BMW, KTM and Aprilia are likely to enter the prestigious series in 2008. Japanese manufacturers, all of whom run 1000cc four-cylinder engines, are likely to be unhappy about this. Alstare Suzuki, for one, are already reported to be thinking about getting out of World Superbikes, and going to MotoGP.


Expect to see a 1098R in 2008, with a 1198cc, World Superbikes-spec engine. It'll be expensive...

On the subject of why Ducati have been pushing for the 1200cc engine capacity limit for twins, Tardozzi says it's because 'That capacity allows us to be on an almost equal level to the Japanese 1000cc four-cylinder machines on the road. The difference in horsepower is around twenty percent. In World Superbikes, the best Japanese fours have about 215bhp, while we have about 194.'

What about electronics though? Aren't Ducati already supposed to have the best electronics in SBK? Says Tardozzi, 'We have the best electronics, but electronics and traction control cannot help you make the rear wheel turn faster. It can control the rear wheel on acceleration, but when you are on a straight, it is only the engine that is making the rear wheel turn – electronics cannot make more horsepower!'


With the new engine capacity for twin-cylinder engines, KTM and BMW may also enter the SBK fray in 2008. Good for the series...

So with the engine capacity for twins going up to 1200cc, what does this mean for the Ducati 1098? Well, expect a homologation special – perhaps called the 1098R – which will actually have a 1198cc engine. As per the new rules, Ducati will have to make at least 1000 units of this bike and offer it for sale on the open market. Of course, despite being hugely expensive, we don't suppose Ducati would have any trouble selling all 1000 units of their World Superbikes-spec 1098. The only thing that remains to be seen is how Japanese manufacturers react to this change...

Also see:
Ducati Desmosedici RR: The most lust-worthy bike in the world!
Bikes: Are there any alternatives to motorcycling...?
Acabion GTBO 70: The world's fastest motorcycle!
V-Roehr 1130: All-American superbike
Sizzler: 2007 Rizla Suzuki GSX-R1000
War of the Ninjas: Original ZX-10 vs New ZX-10R
Angelina Jolie on top, Rossi settles for second place

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

MotoGP: Rossi vs Capirossi at Mugello!


Expect a Rossi vs Capirossi showdown during the Italian MotoGP at Mugello on the coming Sunday

Valentino Rossi has won the last five MotoGP races at Mugello, and will no doubt be going all out to make sure he gets his sixth consecutive win there on Sunday, the 2nd of June. Says Rossi, ‘I have a very special relationship with Mugello. I have won there many times, including the last three years with Yamaha, and I've had some of the greatest races of my life there. Even though I will have a second home race this year at Misano, Mugello is something incredible and the fans and atmosphere there are always unbelievable. It's a fantastic track but of course the straight is very long, and we know we're going to have a very hard battle on our hands. At least we can rely on the weather... I hope!’


The Doctor is now also The Editor...

Incidentally, Rossi is also on the cover of the June 2007 issue of Italian GQ. Il Dottore is also GQ’s Il Edittore for this special issue! But back to Mugello, and on to the man who could be Rossi’s biggest challenger this coming Sunday – Loris Capirossi. Loris won at Mugello in the 500cc class back in the year 2000, when he took his Honda Pons NSR500 to first place. This time around, Capirossi could be a strong contender for the win, and his chances might be helped by the fact that his Ducati Desmosedici GP7 is getting freshly tweaked electronics and fuel mapping, which are supposed to make the engine respond better to Capirossi’s riding style.

Says Loris, ‘Mugello is our track, and it’s an important race for us. In fact, it is a great event for all the Italians. Last year, Valentino and I had a great battle here for the win. This year, we are working hard to adapt the GP7 to my style of riding – I absolutely want to find my speed again!’ Now we’re sure Mugello will see an all-out Rossi vs Capirossi battle on the coming Sunday, and we can’t wait to see whether The Stormy Stoner will be able to throw a spanner in the Italian riders’ works…

Also see:
On the pace: Read before you ride
What your bike says about you...!
2007 BMW K1200R Sport
Wildlife: 2007 KTM 990 Super Duke R
Memorable: The Yamaha RD500LC
The Best of Faster and Faster!
Tiff Needell tests the Campagna T-Rex!
The amazing Benelli Tre-K Amazonas

Is the Kawasaki Ninja ZX-RR as good as any other current MotoGP machine?


Why are Kawasaki doing so poorly in MotoGP? Is it the riders?

We are big Kawasaki fans here at Faster and Faster, so we feel pretty sorry for the poor show they’ve put up in MotoGP this year. Is it the riders? With Shinya Nakano having left for Honda, can Olivier Jacque and Randy de Puniet really stand up against the likes of Stoner and Rossi? Or is it the bike? Have Kawasaki put in enough time and money in developing their MotoGP racer?


The Ducati seems to have a clear power and top speed advantage

Well, Kawasaki’s problem might not be their bike. Most MotoGP insiders seem to think the Ninja ZX-RR is not such a bad machine. Speaking to Crash.net, Kawasaki Racing Team communications manager, Ian Wheeler says, ‘The development of the Ninja ZX-RR has been fairly rapid over the past few months. The bike we rolled out for pre-season testing was competitive from the off, because the fundamental design was good. However, it was pretty obvious straightaway that there was a top speed deficit when you compared our bike to the Yamaha and, especially, the Ducati.’


This year, the Rossi/Yamaha combo hasn't worked as well as expected

Sure enough, the Ducati’s speed and power has left all the Japanese teams stunned this year. But what are Kawasaki doing about dealing with the situation? Says Wheeler, ‘After Jerez, we tested some minor modifications to the fuel injection system and the electronics package, which gave us an increase in power of around six horsepower. The changes also allowed us to increase our rev limit by a significant amount, without impacting fuel consumption. At the Chinese Grand Prix, we tested some more modifications to the engine and fuel injection system that offered a further increase of six horsepower. The results could be clearly seen with the top speed figures at the end of the 1.2km straight in Shanghai, where Randy and Olivier were regularly in the top five through the speed trap.’


After a long, long break, Suzuki finally seem to be getting back on track in MotoGP

So despite Kawasaki riders de Puniet and Olivier being at the very back of the MotoGP pack right now, Wheeler believes the ZX-RR is as good as Yamaha, Honda, Suzuki and Ducati machines? He says, ‘At this point in time, I would say that our Ninja ZX-RR is on a par with the Yamaha and the Ducati, although the Ducati still has a significant advantage when it comes to top speed. The results might say otherwise at the moment, but I think we're currently ahead of both Honda and Suzuki.’


Up till now, Honda also haven't done very well this year. Why?

So all they need is a good rider then. With new riders – fast, aggressive, young riders – from the 250cc class coming to MotoGP in 2008, perhaps some of the old timers would be looking at other opportunities. How would the Ninja ZX-RR do, with Colin Edwards and/or Loris Capirossi riding the bike? If Max Biaggi also comes back to MotoGP with Alstare Suzuki, the oldies could be having one hell of a battle in 2008…

Also see:
Memorable: The Kawasaki ZXR750
Freddie Spencer: The Sultan of Slide
NitroDuke: The world's fastest KTM!
Bikes vs Cars: One more round...
Memorable: The Kawasaki Ninja ZX-12R
Cruiser gone bad: The Suzuki B-King!
Hyper-tourer: The Kawasaki 1400GTR

Monday, May 28, 2007

Ferrari chopper, anyone? Or a Kawasaki triple, perhaps...?


Found this on YouTube. Somebody's built a Ferrari chopper. Why?




We can understand if you didn't much care for the Ferrari chopper. So here's an infinitely more sensible two-stroke, three-cylinder, Kawasaki H2A Mach IV

You can read about the very memorable 1970s Kawasaki triples here and here.

Also see:
The 2007 World Stunt Riding championship
A special KTM for women...
Rapom V8: 1000bhp, supercharged megabike
New developments at Moto Morini...
It's coming: The Cannonball Bike Run
Memorable: The Laverda 750 Formula S

1948 Vintage: Ducati Cucciolo


Look carefully and you might just see where the 1098 takes some of its design influences from... :-)

In the mid-1940s, Ducati, who were making radios and miscellaneous electrical components at that time, partnered with an Italian company called SIATA, in order to start making motorcycles. And the Cucciolo (Italian for puppy…) was one of the first efforts of the fledgling company.

The 1948 Cucciolo T2 was the first motorcycle which Ducati designed on their own. It was powered by an air-cooled, 48cc, single-cylinder engine, which was mated to a two-speed gearbox. The engine only made 1.5 horsepower at 5500rpm, but there was a Sports version (!!!) for those who wanted more performance – 2.0 horsepower, and a claimed 60km/h top speed.


Today, the Cucciolo continues to attract female attention

The 1948 Cucciolo T2 led to the T3 in early-1949, which had a three-speed gearbox, stronger tubular chassis, rear suspension and grease lubricated valve gear enclosed in a case. As usual, Ducati also offered a Sports version, where the engine capacity upped to 65 cc, a swingarm fork was added, and two pairs of telescopic shock absorbers were bolted on. All heady stuff for those days! The bike was moderately successful in racing, and Ducati never looked back since then…

Here's the very interesting Ducati Virtual Museum - you'll want to visit all seven 'rooms' there.

Also see:
Ducati PS1000 LE: Paul Smart rides again!
Bike magazine readers: 'Carl Fogarty is an idiot!'
Memorable: The mighty Munch Mammut TTS-E
Racy reptile: The Bimota Tuatara
Blast from the past: Silver Dream Racer
Brough Superior: Rights to name on sale
Libero Liberati: 500cc motorcycle GP racing world champ in 1957...

WheelSurf Monowheel: Join the singles club…


That's the WheelSurf Monowheel. Practical transportation...
Monowheels are not exactly new – people have been working on these single-wheeled motorcycles (?) for the last 120 years. In fact, monowheels saw a fair bit of action in the early part of the last century, with interest in these weird machines fizzling out by the 1930s, by which time cars and motorcycles were firmly established as the future of motorized transport.

They thought they were on to the next big thing...
But there are still some who love the concept of traveling in a single-wheeled machine, which brings us to the WheelSurf. It has an engine and one wheel inside which the rider sits. The machine consists of an inner and an outer frame, with the inner frame being in contact with the outer, via three small wheels. Shod with a solid rubber tyre, the outer frame is the actual rotating wheel that comes in contact with the tarmac.

Single-wheeled military vehicle prototype from the 1930s
The rider sits inside the inner frame, on which the engine and propulsion mechanism are also mounted. The whole contraption weighs about 50 kilos, and powered by a two-stroke, single-cylinder, 55cc petrol engine, mated to a single-speed transmission with a centrifugal clutch.

A video of the WheelSurf monowheel in action
The WheelSurf can accelerate from zero to 40km/h (which is also its top speed) in around eight seconds. And yes, you need some time to practice – you can’t just fire it up and ride off in rush-hour traffic. Unless you’re Kerry McLean, that is. In which case you ride a fearsome, V8-powered monowheel – the Rocket Roadster.

That's McLean, with his Buick V8-powered Monowheel
McLean’s Rocket Roadster is powered by a Buick V8, and while it’s theoretically capable of doing 160km/h, it’s actually been clocked at 85km/h – no mean feat since monowheels are difficult to control at high speeds. Why ride a monowheel at all? Says McLean, ‘You may be hauling ass, but you feel like you're floating.’ Amen.

Doing 85km/h on this contraption probably takes more courage than doing 320km/h on a ZZR1400

Kerry McLean was crap at pulling wheelies, which is probably why he dreamt up this monowheel thing...
You can right-click and download this video, which shows McLean riding his Monowheel on the Bonneville Salt Flats. And for more information on WheelSurf, visit their website here.


More one-wheeled action...   :-)


Other crazy machines:
Life in the fast lane: The Peraves Monotracer
Pal V-One: The flying bike!
Allen Millyard's 2300cc, V12 Kawasaki!!
JRL Cycles' aircraft-engined chopper
Crazy Quad: The Polaris Revolver Sport
Fast and funky: The Carver One
Special KTMs for women...
Rapom V8: 1000bhp supercharged monster-bike
Acabion GTBO 70: The world's fastest bike!

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Casey Stoner gets an Alfa Romeo Brera!


Free cars. One of the advantages of being a top MotoGP rider...

...and here's some hi-res wallpaper for Stoner fans!

Update (24th Sept., 2007): Casey Stoner wins 2007 MotoGP world championship at Motegi!

We had earlier reported on Alfa Romeo having teamed up with Ducati Corse for the SBK Superbike World Championship series. Alfa Romeo are the official sponsor, official car and the safety car supplier for the 2007 World Superbikes series.

Alfa Romeo have also promised to ‘extend cooperation’ to Ducati’s MotoGP effort, and the first person to benefit from this ‘cooperation’ seems to be Casey Stoner. On the occasion of the first birthday of the Mirafiori Motor Village in Italy, Alfa Romeo gifted a Brera 3.2 to Stoner. The CEO of Alfa Romeo, Antonio Baravalle gave the car’s keys to a very happy Stoner, who said, ‘Alfa Romeo, as Ducati, is a prestigious Italian brand I have been fascinated with since I was a child. I'm looking forward to driving my new Brera.’

Alfa Romeo will also take part in the Fifth World Ducati Week, which will be held in the Romagna region of Northern Italy from the 28th of June to the 1st of July this year. And while they won’t give you a free Brera, if you fancy the car, you get can download some hi-res wallpaper here.

Also see:
More hi-res Casey Stoner wallpaper here, here, here and here
2007 MotoGP race reports, features, interviews and hi-res wallpaper...
Dorna to 'quantify' MotoGP television exposure
Retro SBK's Freddie Spencer tribute
2007 Superbike Smackdown!
Fifth Gear: Honda Fireblade vs Honda Civic Type R!
MV Agusta F4 R 312 wins 2007 Masterbike
Hi-res Valentino Rossi wallpaper

From Italy: The Honda Hornet Cup!


Leave it to the Italians to make bikes look good!
Here’s the rather immaculate looking Hornet Cup racer, from Italy. The regular Honda Hornet is a mildly interesting four-cylinder, 600cc sportsbike that offers the ultimate in reliability and practicality. Excitement is also available, but in moderation.

We think the white/red/green paint job looks totally cool!
The Italians have taken Honda’s girl-next-door to the gym, spa and the beauty salon, and transformed her into this confident, athletic charmer. With some help from parts and accessories specialist, Rosso Cromo. More details on the Hornet Cup on their website here.

The no.1 sticker seems to have been borrowed from Hayden's bike!

The wheels look a bit frumpy though...
Also see:
Ferrari chopper, anyone? Or a two-stroke Kawasaki triple?
Ducati working on all-new Monster!
Marcus Walz: "Building bikes gives me pleasure, not riding them..."
Spinning around: The Tailgunner rotary exhaust
Will the Cagiva Mito be an Indo-Korean 650?
MV Agusta 910R: The best loved naked in Italy!
Dainese invite European customers to test new helmet

Kalex AV1: All-out performance for the road


It weighs 155kg, the engine makes 140bhp. Fun!

The Kalex AV1 comes from Kalex Engineering, based in Germany. It’s the brainchild of two men – Alex Baumgartel and Klaus Hirsekorn – who’ve built this extreme sportsbike that offers all-out performance for the very committed.

The AV1, which weighs a mere 155kg dry, is fitted with a 60-degree, 998cc v-twin from Rotax, with a Motec M800 engine management system. This engine, the V990R (which also powers the Aprilia RSV1000), makes 140 horsepower at 9500rpm, and 107Nm of torque at 7750rpm, which makes for mind-blowing performance in the lightweight AV1. Just as well then, that the engine management system also incorporates an advanced form of traction control software.


Wonder how the AV1 would do against a stock R1...

The tubular steel trellis frame chassis is light and stiff, and the steering angle is 23.8 degrees, which lets the bike flick from side to side with minimal effort. WP RCMA 4800 USD forks are used at the front, and at the rear there is a WP 4618 monoshock, mated to a specially fabricated aluminum swingarm. Both suspension units are multi-adjustable. Brakes are top-spec Brembo units and the bike rides on 17-inch wheels, with 120/75 (front) and 190/65 (rear) tyres. Carbonfibre has been used extensively, for the bodywork.

Should be interesting to see how it does against a stock R1 or GSX-R1000, eh? Get more details on the Kalex AV1 on their official website here.

Also see:
Ducati PS1000LE: Paul Smart rides again!
Memorable: 1983 Suzuki XN85 Turbo
Quiet please: Put a lid on this...
The mighty Munch Mammut TTS-E
MV Agusta Brutale 910R: The best loved naked in Italy!
Tiff Needell: Honda Fireblade takes on Honda Civic

Share It