The 2008 Brutale 1078RR. Beautiful!
And if the standard Brutale 1078RR is not enough, here are some tarted-up variants...
(Note: The form is in Italian. We could not find an English version.)
The 2008 Benelli 899S. Nice...
The very stylish Benelli TNT 1130 now has a smaller sibling – the TNT 899. The new bike is powered by Benelli’s 899cc, three-cylinder engine that makes a respectable 117bhp, which should make for adequate performance in a machine weighing 199kg dry. Apart from the base model 899, there will also be a TNT 899S, which will get a few carbonfibre parts and a different seat. At about US$18,000 the 899S will be a thousand bucks more expensive than the base model bike. Seems nice enough, though we’d still take the full-house 1130…More Italian bikes:
Giacomo Agostini says the Ducati GP7's power is "incredible!"
After almost a quarter of a century, an Italian bike is once again on top in motorcycle grand prix racing!
Who’s the greatest Italian bike manufacturer of all time – MV Agusta or Ducati? That’s a tough question. Ducati machines have dominated World Superbikes in the last two decades, winning multiple championships and leaving Japanese manufacturers trying to play catch-up-with-Ducati. This year, the Italian company also dominated MotoGP, with Casey Stoner and his GP7 completely crushing Honda and Yamaha teams.
MV Agusta, on the other hand, haven’t done much on the motorcycle racing scene in recent years. But then, from 1958 to 1974, they did win 17 consecutive motorcycle grand prix racing world championships in the 500cc class – an incredible feat, and something that isn’t likely to be repeated, ever.
Which is why we think Motociclismo pulled off a coup of sorts when they got Giacomo Agostini and Ducati test rider Vittoriano Guareschi together at the Monza circuit in Italy, riding the 2007 Ducati GP7 and the 1974 MV Agusta 500 GP racer (on which Phil Read won the 500cc world championship that year, and which would be MV’s last world championship to date…) back to back!
The MV 500 racebike is now owned by Gualdo Elli, one of the world's biggest collectors of MV Agusta bikes. Ducati Corse, of course, brought the all-conquering GP7 to the party. ‘They are two completely different worlds. The technology driving the older bike is not comparable with what is available today. Back then, the pilot had to check thousands of parameters simultaneously, while modern electronics make that task much easier. The power of the Ducati is incredible,’ said Agostini after riding both bikes.
The full story is not available online – for that, you’ll have to buy a copy of the Italian Motociclismo. Visit their website here for more information!
The 2008 Hyosung GT650X. Could prove to be a very good entry-level bike...
Korea’s biggest bike manufacturer, Hyosung had first shown the GT650X concept about a year ago, and now the bike is finally ready to go into production. It still uses the same 647cc v-twin as before, but the engine now gets fuel injection and a new oil cooler. (The same engine also powers the Fischer MRX, and it’s been rumoured that Cagiva will use this engine in the Mito 650…)
The 2008 Hyosung GT650X has an all-new chassis – a steel tube trellis / aluminium beam hybrid – and the braced aluminium swingarm is also new. The headlamp assembly, fuel tank, all body panels and the alloy wheels have been redesigned, the taillamp is now an LED unit and the exhaust system is a short, stubby little item – the kind which is currently fashionable. Front brakes are twin 300mm discs, gripped by four-piston calipers.
The 2008 Hyosung RX450SM...
Hyosung have also shown the new RX450SM, their first supermoto. The bike uses a 450cc, liquid-cooled single that makes 50 horsepower. The chassis is (a rather weedy looking) tubular steel unit, while the swingarm is made of aluminium. 45mm USD forks have been fitted at the front, while the rear features a fully adjustable monoshock. Brakes are Brembo units and the bike weighs only 120kg dry.
For details on pricing and availability, visit the Hyosung website here.
Valentino Rossi finished in third place in the 2007 MotoGP world championship, and he’s making it amply clear that he’s not at all happy with that. With Rossi not having been able to win the MotoGP world championship for two consecutive seasons, and Yamaha having hired Jorge Lorenzo to run with Rossi next year, it now looks like the Rossi-Yamaha combo might not last beyond the 2008 season.
Rossi wants to make sure he wins at least one more MotoGP world championship before he retires, and The Doctor is willing to do whatever it takes to do that. He’s already shunned Michelin and will be racing on Bridgestones next year. And according to a report on Crash.net, Rossi’s been dropping hints about moving to Ducati if Yamaha don’t shape up quickly.
‘All the Japanese underestimated Ducati this season. Ducati was intelligent and aggressive, and worked better. We were competitive with Honda, but they had the money and people required to catch up [to Ducati] more quickly. This is where Yamaha has been lacking,’ says Rossi. ‘Yamaha has never had the quickest motorcycle but this year we were 15-20 km/h slower. And every time we've tried something new, it has broken. We need to make big changes to win the title again. We need more capable people and more money,’ concludes an obviously very unhappy Rossi.
Here at Faster and Faster, we still very much believe in The Doctor and we think he’s one of the most talented riders – perhaps the most talented rider – in MotoGP, ever. Says Rossi, ‘I still have a lot of desire to fight, but I need tyres and a machine that are competitive. We will wait and see how the Yamaha, especially the engine, improves for next year. If it is not competitive then there is nothing more we can do. I have good relations with both Ducati and Honda, but Ducati would be my preferred option because it is Italian!’
So there we are, the five-time MotoGP world champ has spoken and now it’s up to Yamaha to clean up their act and give Rossi a machine that can really go head to head against Stoner’s Ducati in 2008. If not, Rossi may move to Ducati. And like Rossi says, ‘I do not believe that Stoner would say no. Maybe he would want to measure himself against me with the same motorcycle…’
On the left is a scooter - the Malaguti F12R Phanton - for Stoner fans, and on the right is the very cool MV Agusta Brutale Hydrogen, for the fashion-conscious...
The 2008 Mulhacén Café 659 Angel Nieto LE
Derbi are now showing a new version of the Mulhacen, at the EICMA in Milan. The Mulhacen Cafe 659 Angel Nieto Limited Edition. This rather good looking bike is fitted with a digital instrument panel, 17-inch alloy wheels, steel beam perimeter chassis, gold anodized 43mm USD Marzocchi forks, adjustable Sachs monoshock, and Brembo brakes with a 320mm brake disc at front.
Derbi have released this limited edition bike in tribute to Angel Nieto, a national hero in Spain. Considered to be one of the greatest motorcycle roadracers of all time, Nieto specialized in racing smaller displacement – 50cc, 80cc, and 125cc – bikes, and when he retired in 1986, he had 90 Grand Prix victories and 13 World Championships to his name!
Based on the original Mulhacen ‘scrambler,’ the Cafe 659 LE is powered by the same single-cylinder, four-valve, Yamaha-Minarelli 659cc engine that’s now been made Euro 3 compliant. Derbi say the ergonomics have been reworked and the bike is suitable for longer journeys. This limited edition bike will be available from June 2008 onwards. More details on the Derbi website here.