Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Agility Saietta R: Judge Dredd rides again

Agility Saietta R
Agility Saietta R Agility Saietta R Agility Saietta R
Yes, that's 1987 500cc MotoGP world champ, Wayne Gardner (on top) astride the Saietta. He finally knows how it feels to be Judge Dredd. No, really, this bike needs machine guns and laser beam shooters mounted on each side for maximum effect...

Based in London, Agility is led by Lawrence Marazzi, an aerospace engineer and ex-Royal Marine who’s now using his skills to build the Saietta (available in ‘R’ and ‘S’ versions), a cutting-edge electric motorcycle. The Saietta R is powered by a high-tech electric motor that produces 67kW (91bhp) and 127Nm of torque. The motor is fed by a 9.77kWh lithium-ion battery pack that takes 4-8 hours (depending on the power supply) for a full recharge. The Saietta R, which weighs a bit less than 200kg, can accelerate from zero to 100km/h in 4.1 seconds and depending on how you ride it, has a maximum range of 94-182km.

The Saietta R’s chassis seems to be particularly interesting – it’s a composite monocoque construction, rather than the usual steel tube trellis or aluminium beam frame. The front suspension is also similarly unusual – Agility have rejected the ubiquitous fork in favour of a double-wishbone setup, with variable steering geometry and adjustable damping and preload settings. At the back there is what the company calls a ‘Drive-Torque Geometry Control’ integrated transmission and suspension system, with adjustable damper and preload settings.

Brembo’s twin 320mm brake discs at the front, with radial-mount four-piston calipers and single 240mm disc at the back handle stopping duties and the Saietta R rolls on 17-inch alloy wheels shod with 100/70 (front) and 130/50 (rear) tyres. You also have the option of going for 120/70 (front) and 150/55 (rear) tyres. The instrument panel is a combination of classic analogue and digital LCD, and displays speed, odometer, energy consumption, battery status, estimated range and system status.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Michael Schumacher rides a Ducati Panigale

Michael Schumacher rides a Ducati 1199 Panigale
Michael Schumacher rides a Ducati 1199 Panigale Michael Schumacher rides a Ducati 1199 Panigale Michael Schumacher rides a Ducati 1199 Panigale
F1 legend, Michael Schumacher is also handy with fast bikes...

A legend in his own lifetime, seven-time F1 world champion, Michael Schumacher recently rode a Ducati 1199 Panigale at the Paul Ricard Circuit in the South of France. Alongside Michael, there was also 19-time Isle of Man TT race winner John McGuinness, riding a Honda Fireblade, and ex-500cc GP racer Randy Mamola (who has the ‘honour’ of having finished 2nd in the 500cc motorcycle grand prix road racing world championship no less than four times – in 1980, 1981, 1984 and 1987!), on a Yamaha R1.

“Riding with Michael was so good. What he’s achieved on four wheels makes him the Godfather of motorsport. I wasn’t expecting him to be anything less, but he’s fast! You can see his enthusiasm for motorcycles and it was a massive pleasure to spend the day with him,” said McGuinness. “Coming here today, I felt so proud to be able to turn my hand at riding a bike with guys I really admire. I can’t begin to explain how much fun it was to ride the track with the likes of John and Randy,” added Schumacher.

Ghezzi-Brian V-Twin Motard brings DDA to the game

Ghezzi-Brian V-Twin Motard Ghezzi-Brian V-Twin Motard
Ghezzi-Brian V-Twin Motard Ghezzi-Brian V-Twin Motard Ghezzi-Brian V-Twin Motard
The Ghezzi-Brian V-Twin Motard not only looks good, it's also more high-tech than you'd suspect. We'd certainly like to ride this bike on some twisty mountain roads in Italy...!

Unveiled at the EICMA last month, the Ghezzi-Brian V-Twin Motard is based on a Moto Guzzi Griso and actually has a bit more than fancy bodywork, windscreen and CNC-milled forged aluminium wheels. The bike has been fitted with a new ECU, a bigger airbox, higher-efficiency air-filter and a Titanium exhaust system, so its 1151cc 8-valve V-Twin now produces 115bhp and 111Nm of torque. With its 6-speed gearbox, fully adjustable 43mm fork, single-sided swingarm, electronically adjustable rear shock and radial-mount callipers for the twin 320mm front brake discs, the G-B V-Twin Motard is certainly a serious bit of kit. The bike rides on 17-inch wheels shod with 120/70 (front) and 180/55 (rear) tyres, fuel tank capacity is 17 litres and dry weight is 220 kilos.

But what is, perhaps, most notable about this Ghezzi-Brian creation is its ‘Dynamic Damping Action’ (DDA) system, which has been developed by Tractive Suspension. Like some other electronically-adjustable suspension systems that are currently available from BMW and Ducati, the Ghezzi-Brian Motoar’s DDA system allows riders to choose between comfort, road and sport modes, altering rear suspension behaviour accordingly, in real time. The smart sensor that controls this DDA system samples a host of variables at the rate of 25,000 samples per second, which means the system is able to continuously react to changes in riding conditions, without the rider actually noticing anything other than smooth, consistent suspension action at all times.

You can either buy the V-Twin Motard from Ghezzi-Brian or, if you have the skills, even get it in kit form and convert your own Griso. For more details, visit Ghezzi-Brian’s official website

Monday, December 10, 2012

Valentino Rossi: “Casey Stoner wasn’t man enough!”

Valentino Rossi vs Casey Stoner Valentino Rossi vs Casey Stoner
Valentino Rossi vs Casey Stoner Valentino Rossi vs Casey Stoner Valentino Rossi vs Casey Stoner
The gloves finally came off at Laguna Seca in 2008, and The Aussie bit the dust while The Italian went on to win. It should have ended there, but Casey never stopped bitching...

“There's a lot of adrenaline before the race, but it's a good feeling. But after the race starts, you are in another dimension. You get this high level of concentration and do what you have to do. Everything becomes clear,” says Valentino Rossi, in the December 2012 issue of Dainese’s magazine, Legends. Now 33 years old, the indomitable Italian rider dominated premier class motorcycle grand prix racings in the 2000s, winning no less than seven MotoGP world championships from 2001 to 2009. And with 105 race wins to date, he is second only to that other great Italian motorcycle racer, Giacomo Agostini, who won 122 races in his racing career.

Only Nicky Hayden, in 2006, and then Casey Stoner, in 2007, were able to stall The Doctor’s steamroller. And even then, Nicky’s 2006 MotoGP world championship win was possibly just a fluke, a freak happenstance, since the Kentucky Kid hasn’t been able to win a single race from 2007 onwards. But Stoner and Rossi have been going at it hammer and tongs for the last few years, each making no bones about the dislike they harbour for the other. In the end, Stoner decided to retire at the end of this year, having taken two MotoGP world championships (2007, with Ducati, and 2011, with Honda) in his career, while Rossi still seems to be in a different league altogether with his seven MotoGP world championships.

One race that MotoGP fans still remember is the 2008 race at Laguna Seca, where Stoner and Rossi had a ferocious battle, with the Italian finally winning the race and the Australian rider biting the dust. And as most followers of the sport already know, Casey could never stop whining about it. “Stoner started to hate me just because he lost. After that [the 2008 USGP at Laguna], he always seemed to talk about the past, this race, because he wasn't man enough to understand that at that time, he lost!” says Rossi.

Sunday, December 09, 2012

2013 KTM 990 Adventure Baja Edition is ready to travel to the ends of the Earth


2013 KTM 990 Adventure Baja Edition 2013 KTM 990 Adventure Baja Edition 2013 KTM 990 Adventure Baja Edition 2013 KTM 990 Adventure Baja Edition
If that doesn't inspire you to quit your day job and go off on the longest ride of your life, we don't know what will. Mr Baja is as hardcore as they come...

KTM have announced a new ‘Baja Edition’ 990 Adventure, which the Austrian company claims is “the most offroad-capable travel enduro in the world.” Built specifically for the North American market only, this limited edition model is, according to KTM, “a tribute to Baja, the land of the famous SCORE/Baja 1000 and also of multiple travel adventure rides and rallies.”

The 990 Adventure Baja Edition retains the regular bike’s 999cc, 113bhp liquid-cooled V-twin and six-speed gearbox, but gets special Baja graphics, an orange powder-coated frame, Dunlop 908 RR off-road tyres, orange crash guards, LED auxiliary lights, suede-style seat, aluminum radiator guard, GPS base mount and an aluminum-steel sprocket. There’s also a tank bag and rear waterproof luggage bag and fully adjustable front and rear WP suspension as standard equipment. Ground clearance is a suitably lofty 261mm, fuel tank capacity is 20 litres and the bike weighs 210kg, without fuel.

“We feel an obligation to motorcyclists around the world because they might rely on us to deliver something that they need. Our marketing, R&D and sales guys really have their eyes on the market and are riders themselves. We feel close to the community and we listen to what people say,” says KTM executive Hubert Trunkenpolz on the company blog. So, well, if you’ve always wanted a motorcycle with ‘Baja’ in its name, a bike on which it would perhaps be entirely appropriate to ride off into the sunset, KTM now have something for you. Or at least they do, if you live in the US… :-)

Share It