Tuesday, April 22, 2008

2008 Aprilia SMV750 Dorsoduro: Video, pics and details

The 2008 Aprilia SMV750 Dorsoduro

First shown at the EICMA in Milan during November last year, the Aprilia SMV750 Dorsoduro is a high-tech supermoto-style machine that’s fitted with Aprilia’s 750cc, liquid-cooled v-twin. The Dorsoduro uses a high-tech ride-by-wire throttle control system, the chassis is a cast aluminium / tubular steel hybrid and the front brakes have radial-mount calipers.

Specially tuned for the SMV750, the 750cc Aprilia v-twin makes 92 horsepower at 8,750rpm and 82Nm of torque at 4500rpm, which seems just about adequate for a bike that weighs 186 kilos dry. The fuel-injection maps are available – sport, touring and rain – and throttle response has been tweaked specifically for each setting. In fact, with new electronics and other tweaks, the Aprilia v-twin is said to be better behaved than ever.

The SMV750 is fitted with a 43mm USD fork at front, and an adjustable monoshock at the rear, with 160mm of suspension travel at both ends. The suspension has been set up for sporty riding on the street, which means it’s probably at least reasonably firm, and won’t pitch or dive too much under hard braking and acceleration.

Weight distribution is 50:50 front and rear, which can only help things on the handling front. Plus, the long-ish saddle lets the rider move around a bit and get really comfortable on the bike on longer trips. Overall, the SMV750 Dorsoduro looks just about all right, but we don’t know if the Aprilia will be able to take on the competition – the KTM 990 Supermoto and the Ducati Hypermotard to name just two.

For pricing and other details, visit the Aprilia Dorsoduro website here.

And here's the official Aprilia SMV750 Dorsoduro promo video. Very cool...

Also see:
Battle of the Twins: Ducati 1098 vs KTM 1190 RC8!
Special Edition Konica Minolta Honda CBR600RR...
Now available: The new Moto Morini Corsaro Avio
Here's what a bit of paint can do for your bike...
Memorable: The mid-80s Honda VF1000R
Muzzy Kawasaki Raptor 850: Holy Kaw!!
Promo video: Aprilia Shiver 750

External links:
Spyder Club: Rent-a-superbike...
Kawasaki GPZ1100 image gallery
The hottest truck in the world...!

2009 BMW S1000RR: Rock and Roll!

The 2009 BMW S1000RR. The competition is shaken. And stirred...

With the recent unveiling of the S1000RR, BMW are now pulling out all the stops in their bid to be taken seriously as manufacturers of high-performance motorcycles. Of course, BMW are already present in endurance racing events this year, with the HP2 Sport. But with its brand-new four-cylinder engine, the S1000RR is meant to be in a different league altogether.

With the S1000RR, BMW have announced their intent to go racing in the World Superbikes series in 2010. The company will also build 1,000 street-going units of this bike next year, in order to meet WSBK homologation requirements. Technical details for the bike have not been released, but the S1000RR is likely to be packed with the very latest in electronics and technology, including an advanced version of traction control.

More than 200bhp in race-trim? But of course...

Going by the pictures here, the BMW S1000RR is fitted with top-spec bits – Brembo brakes with radial-mount, monobloc calipers, Ohlins fork and shock, Akrapovic exhaust system, Pirelli Diablo rubber, carbonfibre bodywork and a very beefy looking aluminium twin-spar chassis. Indeed, the bike looks totally awesome – if appearances are anything to go by, Japanese and Italian manufacturers should be a bit worried already.

With the V4-powered Aprilia RSV 4 also coming out next year, 2010 should be one hell of a year for World Superbikes. In the meanwhile, for BMW fans hoping to get their hands on an S1000RR next year, price might possibly be a deterrent. The HP2 Sport already costs US$25,000 and we suppose the S1000RR is likely to be at least as expensive, if not more. But stay tuned for more details...

Here's a video of the BMW S1000RR. Sure looks good to us...

And here are some more pics of the 2009 BMW S1000RR racebike, with which BMW will go racing in World Superbikes next year

Also see:
MDM: A scrambler-style HP2 Megamoto...?
Ducati SuperSport Turbo dragbike!
Ride video: The amazing Travertson V-Rex...
Down memory lane: The Bimota V-Due
Turbocharged: The 2008 Canjamoto BMW R1200S Scorpion
Singularly sexy: The Ducati Supermono!
The Wunderlich WR2: A lighter, faster BMW HP2...

External links:
Ex-WSBK world champ, Scott Russell tests the Ducati 1098R
The most amazing Suzuki you've ever seen...

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Faster and Faster: We've moved...

Hello...! Just a quick note to tell you that Faster and Faster has moved from http://sameerkumar.blogspot.com to
Please update your bookmarks!

Update (18.04.2008):
Due to certain technical glitches, we've not been able to post any new content over the last few days. We're working on sorting out the problem though, and we'll be back to posting new stuff by the 21st or the 22nd of this month. So do check back then...

Portuguese MotoGP: Jorge Lorenzo takes his first MotoGP victory at Estoril!

Rossi tried hard, but Lorenzo was simply unstoppable today...

Stoner had problems with his bike, but still finished in sixth place

Dovizioso crashed out, Hopkins finished in fifth place, while West, in 16th place, finished last
Pics: Flickr

2008 Portuguese MotoGP race results:
1. Jorge Lorenzo SPA Fiat Yamaha Team (M) 45min 53.089 secs
2. Dani Pedrosa SPA Repsol Honda Team (M) 45min 54.906 secs
3. Valentino Rossi ITA Fiat Yamaha Team (B) 46min 5.812 secs
4. Colin Edwards USA Tech 3 Yamaha (M) 46min 10.312 secs
5. John Hopkins USA Kawasaki Racing Team (B) 46min 16.841 secs
6. Casey Stoner AUS Ducati Marlboro Team (B) 46min 19.777 secs
7. James Toseland GBR Tech 3 Yamaha (M) 46min 25.720 secs
8. Chris Vermeulen AUS Rizla Suzuki MotoGP (B) 46min 29.471 secs
9. Loris Capirossi ITA Rizla Suzuki MotoGP (B) 46min 31.357 secs
10. Shinya Nakano JPN San Carlo Honda Gresini (B) 46min 32.565 secs
11. Alex de Angelis RSM San Carlo Honda Gresini (B) 46min 54.395 secs
12. Toni Elias SPA Alice Team (B) 46min 56.956 secs
13. Marco Melandri ITA Ducati Marlboro Team (B) 47min 2.614 secs
14. Sylvain Guintoli FRA Alice Team (B) 47min 2.723 secs
15. Randy de Puniet FRA LCR Honda MotoGP (M) 47min 4.631 secs
16. Anthony West AUS Kawasaki Racing Team (B) 47min 16.718 secs

Nicky Hayden USA Repsol Honda Team (M) 26min 23.675 secs
Andrea Dovizioso ITA JiR Team Scot MotoGP (M) 24min 43.870 secs

Full race report here

The Rizla Suzuki team were on the job, as usual... :-)

Friday, April 11, 2008

Memorable: The Moriwaki Dream Fighter MD211VF

The Moriwaki Dream Fighter MD211VF in action...

In MotoGP, there’s probably no place left for privateers – not even those who are at least reasonably well-off and well-connected. Ilmor and Team Roberts are just two examples of privateer teams that worked hard to stay on in MotoGP, but were ultimately left with no option but to leave. Not that that stops people from trying – both teams hope to make a comeback in 2009!

One rather memorable privateer MotoGP effort that comes to mind is the Moriwaki Racing Team, which went MotoGP racing back in 2003. For those who aren’t familiar with the name, Moriwaki Engineering is a specialist motorcycle tuning company based near the Suzuka racing circuit – a two hour ride from Tokyo, on the Shinkansen Bullet Train.

Set up in 1972 by Mamoru Moriwaki (who once used to race for the Yoshimura team, and is married to one of Mr Yoshimura’s daughters), Moriwaki made its name designing and making camshafts for Kawasaki Z1 racers. Today, the company is known and respected for its expertise with motorcycle chassis, engine tuning, exhaust systems, and various racing-spec components.

But coming back to the Moriwaki Dream Fighter, Mr Moriwaki managed to convince Honda to lease their 2002-spec RC211V 990cc V5 engines to him, so he could go MotoGP racing. The result was the Moriwaki MD211VF project – a MotoGP bike with a Honda engine and a Moriwaki-designed chassis.

(Left) The legendary Mamoru Moriwaki and (right) Tohru Ukawa aboard the Dream Fighter in 2003

Ridden by Tamaki Serizawa, Tohru Ukawa, Andrew Pitt and Olivier Jacque in the 2003 and 2004 MotoGP seasons (not all races – just a few selected rounds), the MD211VF Dream Fighter was fitted with a Moriwaki-designed chrome-molybdenum steel tube chassis, Ohlins suspension, Moriwaki exhaust system, Nissin brakes and Marchesini forged magnesium wheels. The Honda RC211V engine was specially tuned by Moriwaki, and produced in excess of 220bhp. The chief engineer on this project was Koji Takahashi, who’s still the chief mechanic at Moriwaki’s superbike and 8-hour endurance racing teams.

The MD211VF Moriwaki Dream fighter never actually managed to finish in the top 10. The best which the Moriwaki bike could do was an 11th place finish in the 2004 Japanese MotoGP at the Motegi circuit. But speaking to Superbike magazine for one of their recent issues, Mamoru Moriwaki says ‘That class [MotoGP] is the pinnacle of racing. It’s prototype racing, so to score points in that class was very satisfying.’

And after so many years, what is it that still keeps him interested in motorcycle racing? ‘Humans are the only creatures who actually seek out challenges, who test themselves for no real reason – just for the challenge – and racing is a part of that. In fact, bike racing is quite dangerous and hard to do well, which is all part of the attraction for me,’ concludes Moriwaki san.

Also see:
Kenny Roberts'MotoGP-powered KRV5 Board-tracker replica...
Japan-only Konica Minolta-rep Honda CBR600RR!
Memorable: The Moto Guzzi 850 Le Mans
Mid-1980s Honda VF1000R: Wheee... four!
RS3 Cube: When Aprilia went MotoGP racing...
Heavy Hitter: The MV Agusta F4 Veltro Pista!
Britten V1000: The greatest racebike ever?
The 30bhp, US$39,000 Pi X Bonneville racer edition...
Fearsome: The 1975 Yamaha TZ750 dirt-tracker

External links:
Moriwaki MD250H: A Grand Prix bike that you can buy!
Honda CB1000R image gallery...

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Tokyo Joe's MotoGP-replica Suzuki GSX-R1000

Looks awesome, eh? We LOVE this K5 GSX-R...

Pics: London Bikers

Came across this MotoGP-replica Gixxer while browsing through some image galleries on London Bikers, and we think the bike looks absolutely superb! The owner of the bike, Tokyo Joe, says ‘I bought my K5 in May 2005. I had liked my K3, but never really fell for it in a big way. It was good, but not spectacular, and I would never consider throwing any serious money at it. Over the last 23 years I have had many bikes, all of them sportsbikes, and a very select few have had a chunk of money spent on them. Those that made the grade were my 1984 Yamaha 350LC, 1986 Yamaha 350 YPVS F1, 1987 Yamaha 500LC, 1992 Honda FireBlade RRP and 2000 Ducati 996 SPS.’

‘The next bike that I considered a worthy base for improvement was the K5 GSX-R1000. This was a bike that offered a huge performance envelope, wrapped up in a taught, sharp chassis, with excellent manners road or track. The mods that I have made are really to suit my personal riding style,’ says Joe. Ah, well, we love your bike, Joe, and we wish we had one just like yours…

And here's Mr Hopkins, in action on the real thing, back in 2005...

More GSX-Rs:
Kevin Schwantz talks about the GSX-R...
Larry McBride: "GSX-Rs are for moped riders!"
Fast past: Suzuki GSX-R1100...
GSX-R250s and GSX-R125s, by 2009?
Velocity Racing: 250bhp GSX-R1000 Turbo!
Dream Machine: K4 Rizla Suzuki GSX-R1000
Barry Sheene tribute: Chris Vermeulen-replica Suzuki GSX-R1000...

External links:
Motorcycle racing in Spain: La BaƱeza

More racy GSX-Rs from London Bikers...

Battle of the Twins: Ducati 1098 vs KTM 1190 RC8!

Yes indeed, this one's going to be tooth and nail all the way...
Pics: Bikewalls

With the 1190 RC8, KTM have upset a few equations. The v-twin superbike set – okay, Ducati – have been forced to sit up and take note of the new pretender that’s spoiling for a fight. And the guys at Motorbox, who had access to both the bikes during a Bridgestone BT-016 tyre test at the Jerez circuit, made full use of the opportunity and did the first ever KTM RC8 vs Ducati 1098 shootout. Here’s what they have to say…

First, the numbers. The RC8’s 1145cc 75-degree v-twin makes 155 horsepower and 12Kgm of torque, and the bike weighs 188kg dry. The 1098’s 90-degree v-twin makes 160bhp and 12.5Kgm of torque, and the bike weighs 173 kilo dry. Both bikes are fitted with steel-tube chassis, where the engine is used as a stressed member and also connected to the swingarm. Both bikes are fitted with Brembo brakes with monobloc calipers, but disc size is 330mm for the Ducati 1098, and 320mm for the KTM RC8.

Ducati vs KTM, Italy vs Austria. Next year, WSBK should be fun!
Pics: Motorbox

The 1098 has the more extreme riding position, while the RC8 has more relaxed ergonomics, which actually make the bike feel more controllable. On the track, the RC8 feels light, compact and incredibly agile and responsive. The bike feels almost like a 600, changing direction rapidly, yet remaining stable at all times, with accurate steering. The KTM’s longer swingarm also means very good traction while powering out of corners.

The 1098 is more ‘physical’ to ride, needing more effort to change direction. The Italian bike also did not provide as much feel, as much feedback as the KTM, which does nothing to improve rider confidence. The Ducati did brake harder than the KTM, though the forks dived a bit too much, unsettling the bike in the process.

Few would have imagined it, but the RC8 is indeed right up there with the 1098

Where the Ducati seems to have a clear advantage is the engine management system and the electronics – the 1098 responds better to small throttle inputs, making it easier to control in corners which require part-throttle application. On the other hand, the RC8’s engine delivers very strong mid-range power, while the 1098’s mill seems almost subdued in comparison.

In terms of improvements, Ducati need to work on the front fork diving too much and too suddenly under hard braking, while KTM need to work on reducing engine vibration. But overall, while the Ducati 1098 reigns supreme on the racetrack today, the KTM RC8 has indeed caught up with the Italian bike, and in some areas, it already performs better. Next year, Ducati had better watch out…!

We love the Ducati 1098, but don't be surprised if the RC8 kicks some Italian arse in 2009...

Also see:
Yamaha FZR750RR OW01 vs YZF R1!
Ducati 1098 vs Lamborghini Gallardo...
1974 MV Agusta 500 GP racer vs 2007 MotoGP Ducati!
2007 vs 2008 Kawasaki ZZR1400...
2008 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R vs Yamaha R1
Ducati 848 vs Ducati 1098!
BMW R1200GS Adventure vs KTM 990 Adventure
2008 Yamaha R1 vs KTM RC8...
War of the Ninjas: Kawasaki ZZR1100 vs ZZR1400

Malaguti MR250: Two-strokes once more?

The 250cc, two-stroke Malaguti MR250. Will they really make this machine...?
Going by the few pics and some bits of information available on the Web, Italian scooter-specialists Malaguti may soon be building a brand-new two-stroke motorcycle – the MR250. The bike is fitted with a two-stroke, liquid-cooled, single-cylinder 250cc engine, which is supposed to produce about 50 horsepower!

The Malaguti MR250 takes some styling cues from American flat-trackers and rides on 18-inch (front) and 17-inch (rear) wire-spoked wheels. Other bits include a tubular-steel chassis, 41mm USD front fork, cantilever-type rear shock, and 300mm (front) and 220m (rear) brake discs. The bike has a wheelbase of 1430mm, and weights 118 kilos dry.

We don’t know if Malaguti really intend to put this bike into production or whether the MR250 is merely a one-off prototype, but the little bike does look good. Stay tuned for more information on this one…

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Ducati SuperSport Turbo dragbike!

The Ducati SuperSport Turbo. Cool!
Pic: DucCutters

One of our readers has sent us a link to this rather interesting site – DucCutters – which Ducati fans should definitely visit. The site is dedicated to customized Ducatis and other Italian motorcycles, and has tons of pictures, information and resources for those looking for inspiration for starting their own Ducati project!

One machine that especially caught our attention was the Ducati SuperSport Turbo dragbike you see here. The bike is the work of one Wayne Patterson, of Ducati Bunbury, and is based on a 1997 Ducati 900SS. Developed over the last three years, it’s been transformed from a mild, 62bhp sportsbike, to a fire-breathing 200bhp dragster!

Chassis mods include a Yamaha TZR250 front end, an extended, custom-made swingarm, and fitment of wheelie bars. The fairing and bodywork have been modified and carbonfibre has been used to construct the Ducati 900 Superlite-style look. The transmission has also been suitably beefed up to deal with the increased horsepower. Gears are now changed via an air-shifter system, operated by a button mounted on the left handlebar. A lockup clutch is also used, which allows the bike to be launched at full throttle by simply ‘dumping’ the clutch, rather than the rider having to ‘slip’ the clutch.

Patterson’s SuperSport Turbo runs on methanol, and a MOTEC fuel-injection management system makes sure everything runs smoothly. At full throttle, the turbo runs 19lb boost and the engine makes more than 200 horsepower. Yes indeed, this is one Ducati we’d love to ride…

Ducati Bunbury have also been working on a Ducati 999R twin-turbo dragbike, as well as 916 and 1098 dragbikes, all of which you can see here. And while you’re at it, also visit DucCutters for this Durbahn 999 V2 and Ducati Monster Turbo!

Ducati Bunbury's 1098 and 916-based dragbikes...

Pics: Ducati Bunbury

Also see:
Ducati 1098R to go endurance racing...
Travertson V-Rex ride video and pics!
More pics and details: 2008 Moto Guzzi Stelvio 1200 4V
Precious metal: 1964 Bianchi Bicilindrica 500cc GP racer
Sheene tribute: Chris Vermeulen-replica Suzuki GSX-R1000
British bikers love Angelina Jolie...
Wild rides: MotoGP vs Bullfighting!

External links:
Motoclub Bologna image gallery...
Jamie James' 1984 Yamaha 'Yellow Demon' RZ350
Soaring petrol prices lead to more people buying motorcycles and scooters and that includes celebrities!
Phil Vincent Centenary and the great Vincent controversy...

Beautiful vintage Ducatis on Motociclismo here!

Random Ramblings