Tuesday, April 20, 2010
Ducati have now announced a new Monster – the 796 – which slots in between the 696 and the 1100. The bike weighs 167 kilos dry and packs 87 horsepower from its air-cooled V-twin. ABS is optional and the bike is priced at $10,000 in the US, £7,695 in the UK and around 9,000 euros in Europe. The Monster 796 will be in showrooms by May this year.
Thursday, April 15, 2010
There are probably two ways of adding an extra bit of oomph to a new Kawasaki Z1000. One is the Motorcycle-USA way, which we love. And the other is this, the Roaring Toyz method, which goes the way of fitting a host of aftermarket bits to the bike.
The Toyz Kwacker Z1000 gets a 240-section rear tyre, a custom-built braced swingarm, Brocks 4-2-1 exhaust, Performance Machine wheels (17-inch front, 18-inch rear) and a ton of billet this and anodized/chromed/painted that.
No, if it were our bike, we’d definitely go the M-USA way… :-)
Via Moto Caradisiac
Saturday, April 10, 2010
With its unique mix of strength, light weigh and exotic-cool factor, carbonfibre is increasingly being used by motorcycle manufacturers on their top-spec sportsbikes. For those looking to shed every superfluous kilogram from their motorcycle, carbonfibre has to be a good bet, since it offers a 50% weight reduction when compared to steel, and a 30% weight reduction compared to aluminium.
While carbonfibre has its advantages, using this material remains a complicated process. For bikes like the S1000RR and K1300R, BMW use high quality Polyacrylonitrile (PAN) based fibres in the spinning process to create the precursor monofilament yarn, which is then ‘carbonised’ under high temperature (above 1,000 degrees Celsius). This is done with the exclusion of oxygen, so that the fibre yarn carbonises rather than burns.
This precursor yarn is then passed through several ovens set at different temperatures and then runs through a ‘sizing bath,’ which assures the perfect fibre-matrix adhesion needed for the lamination process. The yarn is then wound onto carbonfibre spools for further textile processes such as weaving or multiaxial production. Yeah, well, producing something that’s lighter and stronger than steel wasn’t ever going to be simple…
In the end, carbonfibre is an incredibly strong, yet flexible and lightweight material that BMW use extensively on their sportscars and superbikes. Carbonfibre is also more customisable than either steel or aluminium – it can, for example, be engineered to remain flexible in one direction and very stiff in another.
BMW offer various carbonfibre parts for the S1000RR and K1300R, which come with a three-coat high-gloss paint finish, which is UV-resistant and offers outstanding impact resistance and protection against discolouration. ‘BMW Motorrad has several highly skilled experts for carbonfibre structures, who are involved in the development process right from the beginning of the design phase of the individual components. There is also a lot of synergy with the automotive division, which results in extremely high quality and engineering levels,’ says Johann Sievers-Paulsen, one of the BMW Group’s experts in the field of carbonfibre components development.
Half a century ago, motorcyclists had to make do with bits of steel tubing on their motorcycles. Modern-day bikers have machines like the S1000RR and carbonfibre parts to go with that!!
Master tuner Jeremy Burgess talks about five-time 500cc motorcycle GP racing world champ and fellow Australian, Mick Doohan...
Jeremy Burgess, who’s been Valentino Rossi’s crew chief for the last 10 years, has pretty much seen it all when it comes to motorcycle racing. He has, in the past, worked with Randy Mamola, Freddie Spencer, Wayne Gardner and Mick Doohan, so we guess if there’s one man who knows a thing or two about MotoGP and about MotoGP riders, it’s Burgess.
Superbike Planet recently did an extensive interview with Jeremy, where the master tuner talks about his experiences with various top riders over the last three decades. While the whole thing is incredibly interesting, what really makes us smile is what Burgess has to say about one of our all-time favourite riders – Mick Doohan. Here are a few excerpts:
‘Mick Doohan had confidence, and he crushed his opposition before he even got on the bike. I mean, he didn't talk to them in the paddock. He was awesome in that respect. And he had to qualify pole position. It didn't matter that he went into the first corner in sixth place, he had to be in pole position. We used to tell him, ‘Mick, if you're on the front row, it'll be okay.’ That wasn't anywhere near good enough.’
‘With Wayne Gardner, you would have to go and tell him ‘You can beat those guys. You beat them last week. You can do it. You can do it. You can do it.’ If you said anything like that to Mick Doohan, he'd look at you, and he'd look down at you, and he'd say, ‘What, don't you think I can do it?!’ That was it. Wayne needed to be pumped up. You mention that to Mick, it was like a negative. It wasn't a positive. Polar opposites in that respect.’
‘Mick always wanted to be two seconds faster than his ability allowed, and that caused a few crashes. But a person like myself cannot teach any rider how to ride a motorcycle. They have to learn that from their fellow competitors. And for Mick, 1994 was where it started…’
See the full interview on Superbike Planet
Friday, April 09, 2010
‘Avoid silence – the phrase perfectly describes the BMW S1000RR. With its loud roar, it has turned the superbike world inside out,’ says a blurb on the AC Schnitzer website. Umm… yeah, well, we love the S1000RR too! :-)
Anyway, the German tuning house has got its hands on BMW’s latest and the result is the AC Schnitzer S1000RR, which gets a Schnitzer exhaust system, black handlebars, new brake fluid reservoir, crash pads and Schnitzer brake and clutch levers (fully adjustable) that are made of aerospace-grade aluminium.
‘The S1000RR can also be fitted with adapters for larger mirrors to ensure good rearward visibility, but who would be coming from there?’ says Schnitzer. Who indeed… :-)
Wednesday, April 07, 2010
As recently as a year or two ago, who would have imagined that a German motorcycle - a BMW - would emerge as the hottest, fastest and most fashionable street-legal superbike in the world...!
We recently carried an interview with Leslie Porterfield, who’s now a Guinness record holder for being the fastest female motorcyclist in the world. There, we also featured some of Leslie’s pics with a BMW S1000RR, which were clicked by Markus Hofmann, one of Germany’s top photographers. Well, it seems Hofmann quite likes the S1000RR himself and has earlier taken more pics of the bike with various models, some of which we’ve featured here.
The BMW S1000RR is the hottest, sportiest motorcycle to ever emerge from Germany and combining the bike with haute couture can’t be a bad idea. With the S1000RR, Hofmann wanted to create a look that showed beautiful women wearing clothes that are desirable, yet still obtainable and entirely real world relevant.
‘There are so many motorcycle manufacturers that combine motorcycles and women in an artless and sleazy way, that I thought there just had to be a better way of doing it,’ says Hofmann. ‘I had no intention of putting a naked woman on a bike, and it was very clear to me that the bike had to be the S1000RR superbike in the same colour that people have seen on the racetrack in 2009. I didn’t want the bike to fade into the background either – showing the name of the manufacturer was also very important for me, because it made the feeling of a pit stop and racetrack environment much more authentic,’ he adds.
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