Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Cool Custom: Roel Scheffers’ BMW K100RS-based RS09

Roel Scheffers' BMW RS09
Roel Scheffers' BMW RS09 Roel Scheffers' BMW RS09 Roel Scheffers' BMW RS09
For a bike that's about as old as the man who's put it together, this BMW RS09 looks pretty damn good! And we're sure that Termignoni can sounds awesome...

Roel Scheffers, 28 years old and a resident of Tilburg, in The Netherlands, is a CAD/CAE engineer who has a passion for building his own bikes. And going by the 1985 BMW K100RS you see here, he’s not too bad at it either. ‘I bought this ’85 BMW K100RS for 500 euro. It wasn't running – the starter was broken – but with a little push, it ran great and that’s after spending five years standing in a shed. I wanted to do something new, I wanted to do something with a bike that isn’t really known for its potential for customization,’ says Roel. ‘My dad had a K100RS like this when I was young and we did a lot of touring on that one, with me on the back holding on with all my might! So I've always had a feel for the K100RS since I was little. I think there were around 70,000km on this one when I bought it, and it was very well preserved. My dad told me to fix the minor fairing damage and earn some money by selling it. I told him I was going to chop it up,’ he laughs.

Roel has spent a considerable amount of time and money towards modifying his ’85 K100RS (which he’s named RS09, since it’s his 9th custom build), adding bigger injectors to the 1000cc engine, a homemade stainless-steel intake-plenum, K&N filter, adjustable injection pressure valve, and homemade stainless steel exhaust with Termignoni silencer, a self-made sub-frame and K1100 ‘sports’ rear shocks from Koni. He’s used thicker oil on the standard BMW front forks, and lowered ride height at the front by 4cm by moving the forks up through the triple yoke. Both front and rear fenders have been removed, the stock aluminium fuel tank has been modified and made narrower (fuel tank capacity is still 20-litres, so not bad at all…), the front fairing has been modified, the seat has been shortened, and a Danmoto digital dashboard and new aluminium clip-on handlebars have replaced the original items. The light pearl-white paintjob with candy-blue striping was done by Kustombart and Roel estimates the cost for putting the whole bike together was about 3,000 euro.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Miguel Galluzzi, on designing the new Moto Guzzi California and California Custom

2013 Moto Guzzi California Custom
2013 Moto Guzzi California Custom 2013 Moto Guzzi California Custom 2013 Moto Guzzi California Custom
The Moto Guzzi California Custom is the Touring version's leaner, meaner brother. And we'd like it even better if it had a supercharger strapped on to that V-twin engine...

The new Moto Guzzi California 1400 is one touring bike that we actually quite like. It’s smart, stylish and very contemporary, and has an air of decadent luxury about it which adds to the bike’s charm. We also like the ‘naked’ version – the California Custom – which does away with the windscreen and side panniers for a more stripped-down, bare-basics look that flat out works. “This was a big project, the first completely new Guzzi for many, many years. We were not just doing a new Moto Guzzi, we were doing a new California, which is an icon not just for Guzzi but for the whole of motorcycling. So, it was a lot of pressure,” says Miguel Galluzzi, who heads the Piaggio Group Advanced Design Centre in Pasadena, California, in the US.

“The California 1400 is a balancing point between tradition and the future. The design was intended to be reminiscent of the traditional California design, with the sleek lines of the fuel tank, the curved handlebar, the chromium passenger grab handle on the Touring and the long mudguards. At the same time the new 1400 was to be more modern, more comfortable, more hospitable, richer and more sumptuous than the previous model. So a style was born which tends, I believe in a balanced way, towards tradition, which we did not want to forget on one hand, and on the other to the innovative and advanced spirit that a modern day Moto Guzzi must have if it wants to aim for the top,” says Galluzzi.

“We wanted to exploit the lines of its engine – an engine which is the only one of its kind in the world deserved to be left as visible as possible. The engine, which is so typical of Moto Guzzi, became a true aspect of the California’s design, which explains the choice to trim back the tank side fairings, in order not to cover the cylinder heads. The most attractive view is from behind – the two cylinders can be seen emerging, no, exploding from the fuel tank. This is a clear representation of the bike's character – an ultra-modern cruiser, splendid to ride at low speeds, but also ready for a bit of fun at a moment's notice. On a design level, it catches the eye with its powerful engine, which bulges from under the fuel tank. With its refined details and the style of some of its solutions, such as the light assemblies and the instrument panel, the California 1400 is one of the few bikes that manage to convey the impression of construction quality and truly exceptional attention to detail,” he adds.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Andrea Forni: “A sportsbike is still the best for me…”

When he was younger, Andrea Forni rode around Europe on bikes like the Ducati Pantah and F1. And his love for sportsbikes hasn't diminished with age...

For their February 2013 issue, Fast Bikes magazine spoke to Ducati’s technical director, Andrea Forni, who has some interesting things to say about how he thinks motorcycle technology will evolve in the near future, and about his own love for fast bikes. Here are some excerpts from what Forni said:

On active suspension

“The semi-active suspension on the new Multistrada is only a step towards what we are doing for the future. Technology never stops. Suspension one day will be fully active. For sure, to change the spring-rate and the preload is the next step. It is not so complicated with software, but much more energy and force is required to actually change the spring preload and spring rate, and probably the way we use current actuators is to make them faster, or stronger, or something like this, to change the principal of adjusting stiffness. This is under investigation and something we will see in the future for sure. Eventually, all our models will have something like this.” [Forni also adds that both Ohlins and Marzocchi have semi-active/active suspension systems under development, as do most other major suspension manufacturers…]

On letting the rider stay in control

“We don’t want to give the ECU too much control. We are already at the point where the ECU can determine everything for suspension, but a rider wants to personalize his bike, he wants to have a bike that is compliant to his feeling. So even though the algorithim and ECU try to do its best setting in every situation, the rider does not always like what the ECU is doing. That’s why we leave the possibility to personalize the overall behaviour of the algorithm. The ECU can do everything but this is not what the rider wants. Customers still want to have a feeling that is good for themselves.”

Valentino Rossi stars in Bridgestone Battlax promo

The Doctor goes tyre testing for Bridgestone and says he approves of the Battlax T30. It's a bit funny to see him ride a Yamaha FZ1 though...   :-)

Friday, January 11, 2013

2013 Triumph Tiger Sport 1050 gets a host of updates, is now a better sports-tourer

2013 Triumph Tiger Sport 1050 2013 Triumph Tiger Sport 1050
The 2013 Triumph Tiger Sport certainly looks sharper than its predecessor

For 2013, Triumph have added ‘Sport’ to the Tiger 1050’s name, and due to some engine and exhaust mods, the bike’s 1050cc triple now makes 123bhp (a 9bhp hike over the old model) and 104Nm of torque. There’s a new single-side swingarm at the back, suspension has been revised at both ends, ABS software has been updated and body panels (tail unit, side panels and screen) are all new. Gearing has been revised for better acceleration and the Tiger Sport’s ergonomics have also been revised for improved long-distance comfort.

Triumph claim that the Tiger Sport 1050’s updated fuel-injection system results in a 7% improvement in fuel economy, the single-sided exhaust system makes for more space for bigger side panniers and the new exhaust system has been tuned for a sportier, more voluble note. The old Tiger’s projector headlamps have been replaced with four reflector-type headlights that substantially improving lighting performance, and the seat is now narrower at the front, and lower, which makes it more comfortable for a wider range of riders. The Tiger Sport’s handlebars are also lower and closer to the rider, the windscreen has been designed for improved wind protection and the revised switchgear now allows the rider to operate all dashboard functions with the left hand.

Wednesday, January 09, 2013

2013 Honda MSX125 revives the ‘Monkey bike’ of the 1960s

Honda MSX125 Honda MSX125
Honda MSX125 Honda MSX125
The new Honda MSX125. Good things do indeed come in small packages...

Honda have announced an all-new 125 for 2013 – the MSX125 (‘Mini Street X-treme 125’) – which, according to the company, “carries on the tradition of the original, small-wheeled leisure motorcycle, defined by Honda in 1963 with the iconic Monkey, and continued with the Dax and Ape.” Manufactured in Thailand, the Honda MSX125 is powered by a 125cc air-cooled single-cylinder fuel-injected 4-stroke engine that produces 9.6bhp and 11Nm of torque. “It is part mini-bike, part motorcycle, with engaging performance matched to confident handling and styling that combines a sense of fun with a tough, urban edge,” claim Honda.

The Honda MSX125 has a 4-speed gearbox, projector headlight, LED tail-lamp, LCD digital dash, mono-backbone steel tube chassis, 31mm USD fork at the front, monoshock at the back and rides on 12-inch cast-alloy wheels shod with 120/70 (front) and 130/70 (rear) tyres. A single 220mm disc with dual-piston caliper (front) and single 190mm disc with single-piston caliper (rear) handle braking duties on the tiny Honda, which weighs just 102 kilos. Fuel tank capacity is 5.5 litres and colour choices include black, white, red and yellow.

We actually quite like the little Honda MSX125 – it looks a bit quirky and is way cooler than, say, a Honda CBR500R. Pricing and availability details coming soon…

DJ Carl Cox: “I have just bought bikes 47, 48 and 49…”

Carl Cox talks bikes Carl Cox talks bikes
Carl Cox talks bikes Carl Cox talks bikes Carl Cox talks bikes
Rock out with your Cox out! Carl talks about his love for motorcycles...

House music DJ and producer, the UK-based Carl Cox is a man of many talents. And the one thing he loves, apart from making dance music of course, is motorcycles. The 50-year-old, who has his own record label in the UK, has had his own radio show for 10 years (with a listenership of more than 15 million people every week!) and who still DJs live all over the world, collects motorcycles, loves to ride and even sponsors a team in the Ducati 848 Challenge series in the UK.

LCR Honda’s Inspire magazine caught up with Cox for a chat for their September issue last year. Here are some excerpts:

“Ah, the bikes! Yeah, I can’t tell you how much I love them. I have just bought bikes 47, 48 and 49. I’m just waiting for my Ducati Diavel AMG. That will be my 50th bike and I can’t wait for it to turn up. It’s addictive. My first real superbike was a Honda, though I didn’t pick that up until 2007. That was the bike that changed it all for me, in the sense of riding and what a bike can actually do. But also, I like the power of them. I mean, everybody likes the power, the controllability, how easy it is to ride.”

“Your top riders who have initial skills beyond these bikes say that these bikes are so easy to ride that they get bored. I don’t know how you can get bored with 1,000cc worth of superbike! The way these go are enough for me in terms of adrenaline!”

Friday, January 04, 2013

Evel Knievel: “You can’t practice it. It’s a one-shot deal…”

Evel Knievel Evel Knievel Evel Knievel Evel Knievel
Evel Knievel, possibly the maddest motorcycle stunt rider ever, wasn't an energy drink-sponsored 'athlete.' He was a hard-drinking, wild-living, old school showman...

“The water is very important because you’ve got to get the maximum amount of pressure and the maximum amount of thrust for the jump. A steam rocket needs the best there is. I heat it at 500 degrees and let it drop off at 420. I open the valve, let the water from the heater into the rocket and when it drops from 500 to 420, the engineer, Bob Truax, points at me. I’m looking right up the ramp over the Canyon,” said Evel Knievel, talking to Overdrive magazine for their February 1973 issue. Evel was talking to them about preparing for his Snake River Canyon jump, which he went on to perform in September 1974, aboard his custom-built steam rocket-powered Skycycle X2.

“I go at 350 miles an hour in 8 seconds and hope like hell I get there. If I do, I drop down to both knees, grab a handful of dirt and thank God Almighty that I’m still alive. If I splat against the wall, I just get somewhere quicker where you’re going someday, and I’ll wait for you. Dying is part of living,” said Knievel back then, every bit the swaggering American motorcycle daredevil that he was. “You can’t practice it. It’s a one-shot deal. The Skycycle must go up 1,000 feet up at 350 miles an hour in eight seconds, or it’s all over for me,” he added.

Even in this day and age of various Red Bull-sponsored ‘athletes’ who pull off unbelievably spectacular stunts on an assortment of motorcycles, the late, great, Evel Knievel stands in a league of his own. In an era when motorcycles were still very simple and Photoshop and computer graphics hadn’t been invented, Evel jumped across cars and buses and Canyons on his bikes, often with little or no regard for his own personal well-being. Oh, sure, he earned big money and enjoyed spending it too. “I spend it all. I don’t believe in saving it. I’m risking my life for it and I’m going to blow every goddamn dime of it! You know, I love this life I lead. I play golf every day and I bet big money on it. I bet three or four thousand a day on a golf game. These guys I play with think that there’s a lot of pressure on me when I play a golf game because of the money. Hell, they don’t know what pressure is. They should see me face those 16 semis off of that takeoff ramp,” he said in that interview that he gave to Overdrive.

Thursday, January 03, 2013

Lucio Cecchinello: “In the middle of the night, I feel the desire to go mad for a while…”

Lucio Cecchinello rides a Honda Fireblade in Monte Carlo
Lucio Cecchinello rides a Honda Fireblade in Monte Carlo Lucio Cecchinello rides a Honda Fireblade in Monte Carlo Lucio Cecchinello rides a Honda Fireblade in Monte Carlo Lucio Cecchinello rides a Honda Fireblade in Monte Carlo
LCR Honda team owner Lucio Cecchinello takes his Honda Fireblade out for a midnight ride around the streets of Monte Carlo, during the F1 GP week...

Former 125cc GP racer, Lucio Cecchinello set up Team LCR back in 1996 and, of course, LCR Honda are in MotoGP today, with their talented rider Stefan Bradl finishing the 2012 season in 8th place aboard his LCR Honda RC213V. And while team boss Lucio, now 43 years old, doesn’t actually race anymore, he’s still pretty handy on a motorcycle. Last year, he rode a Honda Fireblade at the Circuit de Monaco on the night before the F1 race there. And as it were, a charismatic Italian race team owner riding a Fireblade around the streets of Monte Carlo in the dead of the night, during the F1 GP week, made for an interesting story. Cecchinello wrote about the experience for the July 2012 issue of Inspire magazine. Here are some excerpts:

“It’s a very particular atmosphere that you experience in Monte Carlo during the F1 Grand Prix. A unique event, full of history, great challenges, glamour, VIPs and many celebrations. A small city that in a few weeks becomes a majestic Colosseum. A racetrack of 3.5km made up of curves, chicanes, tunnels, down-hills, hairpins and straights where an F1 car can reach 300km/h amongst the footpaths, in between the buildings and the zebra crossings! The week before the GP, tens of mega yachts land at the port, thousands of tourists crowd the hotels, the restaurants are fully booked and the traffic is heavier than usual. I still feel a strong emotion, admiring all the arrangements that must be done to create such a great scenario… leaving aside the shivers that overrun your body every time you hear the sound of an F1 engine that peals in between the buildings.”

It's amazing, what you can do with a motorcycle

We don't suppose it can get any better than this!

Wednesday, January 02, 2013

Yamaha R1 vs BMW M3, BMW S1000RR vs Porsche 911 GT3 RS

A good way to start 2013, right? Happy New Year indeed!

Monday, December 31, 2012

Jay Leno's Garage: 1981 Honda CBX

Jay Leno talks about the 1980s Honda CBX, one of our absolute all-time favourite motorcycles. Also see Cycle magazine's Phil Schilling's CBX review and read about what Shoichiro Irimajiri, the engineer primarily responsible for developing, has to say about this brilliant machine...

Friday, December 28, 2012

2013 Moto Guzzi V7 Racer vs Triumph Thruxton

It's British parallel-twin vs Italian V-twin in a battle of sporty retros. The Guzzi looks the part and has some really nice details, while the Triumph has the bigger engine and is a bit more powerful. Which one would you ride...?
Via Motorcycle.com

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Nicky Hayden: “Valentino didn’t take the easy way out…”

Nicky Hayden
Nicky Hayden Nicky Hayden Nicky Hayden
'Racing bikes beats working in a field,' says Nicky Hayden...

2006 MotoGP world champion, Nicky Hayden is a likeable man. He’s an old school racer who can, on a good day, hang with the best in the world, doesn’t believe in talking trash and generally steers clear of controversy. Nicky won the AMA Superbike Championship in 2002, when he was just 21 years old – making him the youngest ever champ in that US series. In a MotoGP career that now spans a decade, the Kentucky Kid has only taken 3 race wins (1 in 2005, 2 in 2006, both with the 990cc Honda RC211V), but does also have 28 podium finishes, 5 pole positions and 7 fastest laps to his name. We don’t think he’s going to win any more championships, but the American remains one of the most affable men in racing.

In a recent interview that he gave to Cycle World magazine, Nicky Hayden had some interesting things to say. Here are some excerpts from what the Kentucky Kid said:

On Ducati’s last two years in MotoGP

Ducati tried everything. They’ve rolled out new bikes, stuff that was unheard of last year. If anything, we’ve tried too many new parts. With the aluminium chassis, marketing went out the window. Once Rossi came to Ducati, it was ‘get results – do whatever it takes.’ Everybody’s done as much as they could. We just haven’t done enough.

On Valentino Rossi’s time with Ducati

Valentino Rossi gave a lot of effort. It was impressive to see how he stayed motivated. Valentino didn’t take the easy way out going back to Yamaha; he’s got a lot of pressure on him. It’s not going to be easy. Jorge Lorenzo hasn’t gotten any slower since the last time they were teammates, but Valentino doesn’t seem scared of the challenge. I’m not into making predictions [but] I’ve been really competitive with Valentino for the past two years, so I’m anxious to see how he does.

10 Go-Faster Tips from Colin 'The Texas Tornado' Edwards

Colin Edwards
Colin Edwards Colin Edwards Colin Edwards
After two decades as a professional motorcycle racer, Colin Edwards can certainly teach us a few things about going faster on a motorcycle...

Need to figure out how to go faster on your motorcycle? How about getting a bit of tuition from a MotoGP racer? How about learning a thing or two from Colin Edwards, who started racing in 1992 in the AMA 250cc national series, won the World Superbike Championship twice (in 2000 and 2002), won the Suzuki 8 Hours thrice (1996, 2001 and 2002) and who’s been racing in MotoGP since 2003. Edwards has raced a wide variety of machines – the mid-1990s Yamaha YZF750, the Honda RC45 and RC51, the Aprilia RS3 Cube, the Honda RC211V, the Yamaha YZR-M1 and, currently, the Suter-BMW CRT MotoGP bike. Admittedly, he hasn’t actually won a single race in MotoGP, ever. Then again, he has lined up on the grid in no less than 168 MotoGP races and finished on the podium in 12 of those, so the man probably knows something about going fast on a bike.

In a bid to give something back to the sport that’s given him so much, Edwards has set up the Texas Tornado Boot Camp on a 20-acre facility, 65km north of Houston, in Texas. ‘This camp is a one-stop shop for all ages and skill levels to learn, practice and build your motorcycle skills, with top of the line equipment at the finest facility around. This camp is where you will learn the fundamentals that will transfer to any motorcycle, dirt or street. We use Yamaha TTR 110s, 125s and 230s with semi-slick rear tyres on clay tracks. This will help you with balance, body position, where your eyes should be looking, and most important of all – feel. My instructors and I have done exactly this for years and I wouldn’t be where I am today without this experience,’ says Colin, on the TTBC website.

Among other things, Colin’s facility includes a 1/8th mile clay oval, a lighted 300ft x 150ft covered clay riding arena, a mini supercross track, a paintball course and an obstacle course. ‘For those of you out there saying “110s and 125s and 230s? What can riding a kid’s bike teach me about going faster on my 450F or 1000 Twin?” Well, I make my living going 200mph on some of the fastest and most exotic bikes known to mankind, and I'm telling you that I honed my skills and built my fundamentals riding small bikes on dirt tracks right here in Texas. Everything we will teach you here at the Texas Tornado Boot Camp will translate directly to whatever bike you are riding today, or plan to throw a leg over in the future,’ says Colin.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

National Geographic Megafactories: MV Agusta

National Geographic's Megafactories visits Varese, Italy, to take a look inside the MV Agusta factory. A must-watch for all MV fans...

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Backing it in: Should you even try?

backing it in backing it in backing it in
Spectacular. Very impressive. But does it help you go faster?

it We’ve all seen our MotoGP and WSBK heroes ‘backing it in’ in fast bends, rear wheel skipping and sliding sideways, smoke coming off the rear tyre, exhaust spitting flames. Yes it looks spectacular and yes we all wish we could do the same on our own bikes. Most of the time, of course, it remains just that – a wish. Slinging a 180bhp motorcycle sideways, at very high speeds, is best left to riding gods – mere mortals would probably be well-advised to not try such things at all.

But apart from whether or not most riders have the talent to back it in, does it even work? Should you be trying to get sideways while approaching a fast bend? Richard ‘Badger’ Browne, of the California Superbike School (UK), has something to say about it in the January 2013 issue of Fast Bikes magazine:

“Backing it in is a result of several things; the rear wheel rotating at a slower speed than the front due to engine braking, hardly any weight on the back wheel and a small amount of steering input through the bars. It all sounds simple, but add to that the fact we’re approaching a corner, with all the distractions this has to offer, as well. When riding, we only have so much attention to share on everything we have to do,” says Browne. “How much attention would you give to the back of the bike when the rear wheel starts stepping out on the way into a corner? If you attention goes to the back wheel, some other part of your riding will suffer. Your turn point, for example, which would be compromised, and therefore the rest of the corner as well,” he adds.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Supercharged, 193bhp Benelli TNT Tornado 1130 blows us away

supercharged Benelli TNT Tornado 1130
supercharged Benelli TNT Tornado 1130 supercharged Benelli TNT Tornado 1130 supercharged Benelli TNT Tornado 1130
With 193bhp from its supercharged 1131cc triple, this Benelli TNT should certainly be a handful. Low- and mid-range acceleration should be spectacular...!

Based in Italy, Evotech have prepared a supercharged Benelli TNT 1130, which has been fitted with a Rotrex C15-16 centrifugal-type compressor that spins up to 12,500rpm. With redesigned air-intake trumpets, a pressurized airbox made of carbonfibre and billet aluminium, high-pressure fuel pump from Yoshimura and Motec M84 ECU, the supercharged TNT’s 1131cc three-cylinder, 12-valve, DOHC engine now produces a massive 193 horsepower (the stock motor produces 141bhp) and 145Nm of torque. A new Motec digital instrument panel has been fitted to the bike and allows the rider to control various parameters of the supercharger/engine management system.

The bike uses the limited edition Benelli TNT Tornado’s chassis – a hybrid unit that’s a mix of chrome-molybdenum tubing and die-cast aluminium sections. Brakes are from Brembo, with twin 330mm discs and radial-mount calipers at the front, 17-inch magnesium wheels are from OZ, the rear monoshock is a fully adjustable AB1 Mupo unit and an adjustable Ohlins fork is used at the front.

Visit Evotech for more details

Pierobon X60R is pure-bred Italian exotica

Pierobon X60R
Pierobon X60R Pierobon X60R Pierobon X60R
With 120bhp from its Ducati 1100 V-twin, fully adjustable chassis and suspension and 134kg weight, the Pierobon X60R is totally race-focused. You know you want one...

Headed by Riccardo Pierobon, Italian outfit Pierobon works closely with factory teams in World Superbikes and MotoGP. Last month, at the EICMA motorcycle show in Milan, Pierobon celebrated their 60 years in racebike chassis development and exhibited the X60R custom-built superbike. The bike is powered by a modified version of Ducati’s 1168cc air-cooled ‘Desmodue Evoluzione’ V-twin, which now produces 120bhp and 116Nm of torque (the stock engine makes 100bhp and 103Nm). On the X60R, the engine is cooled by a bigger radiator, and there are new air ducts that allow the engine to ‘breathe’ better by delivering a larger volume of air to the bike’s pressurized airbox.

Apart from the engine mods, the X60R also gets a custom-built trellis frame and a massive aluminium swingarm, fully adjustable Öhlins fork and shock, Brembo brakes with radial-mount calipers, a Termignoni exhaust system, OZ wheels, carbonfibre bodywork, digital instrumentation and a new ECU for the fuel-injection system. The best part is the weight – the X60R weighs just 134kg, dry. What a pity, then, that it's not street-legal...

Various permutations and combinations of the chassis, bodywork and exhaust system are available but prices start at around 27,300 euros for the complete bike, or 9,155 euros for the kit. Visit Pierobon for more details.

Jay Leno's Garage: 1971 Velocette Thruxton

Mr Leno talks about his 1971 Velocette Thruxton, a bike that's still inexplicably cool, despite (or maybe because of?) its single-cylinder 500cc engine and 45 horsepower

Monday, December 17, 2012

Suzuki GT750: The kettle is still steaming

Suzuki GT750
Suzuki GT750 Suzuki GT750 Suzuki GT750
An original, stock, 1970s Suzuki GT750 (top) and heavily modified GT750s (above) with a Rizla paintjob and modern chassis, suspension, wheels, brakes and tyres. Awesome! 

We like the Suzuki GT750. A lot. A three-cylinder two-stroke 750 from the 1970s – a machine that was fairly prosaic when it was launched – the GT750 is now near-exotic. Or at least it would be, with a bit of tuning, chassis and suspension updates, and modern wheels and tyres. Like the Rizla GT750s you see here. Richard Lindoe and Kev Brooke, owners of these fabulous bikes, have done an excellent job in updating the GT750 – both the Rizla bikes look awesome, and we can only imagine what they’d look like, screaming down streets and, better still, around a racetrack.

“There can’t be many things that say 1970s louder than a three-cylinder, two-stroke motorcycle. The chrome, the paint, the noise and the cocky swagger put the GT somewhere between Ziggy Stardust and Confessions of a Window Cleaner. With all the derisive names (teapot, kettle, water buffalo etc.), it’s easy to forget how special this bike was in 1971,” says Steve Rose, in the November 2012 issue of Classic Bike Guide. “By the late-1960s, Suzuki had gained a lot of race experience with water-cooled strokers. A a beneficiary of Walter Kaaden’s two-stroke expertise when Ernst Degner defected, it had already built four-cylinder, 10-speed 125s and 14-speed twin-cylinder 50s. So a low-revving, lazy tourer was a piece of cake. And that’s what Suzuki built – the GT750 was never supposed to be a road rocket. It as built for cruising the American highways,” he adds.



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