Sunday, July 26, 2015

2016 Honda CRF1000L Africa Twin: Official high-res pic, specs and details



The 2016 Honda CRF1000L Africa Twin is a proper litre-class adventure-touring bike, with genuine off-road capability. Dual-clutch automatic transmission is optional. It's light, slim and fast. We like it!

Honda have released technical details and a full set of official high-res pics of their new adventure-touring motorcycle, the CRF1000L Africa Twin, which is powered by an all-new parallel-twin that produces 94bhp and 98Nm of torque. For a litre-class dual-purpose bike, the new Africa Twin looks impressively slim and compact, so those power and torque figures should be quite adequate on the street and for off-road use. There is, of course, a full set of electronics, including ABS, traction-control and optional DCT dual-clutch automatic transmission. In their press release, Honda claim that the new CRF1000L is, "like its celebrated forerunners, ready to cover continents on or off-road."

The 2016 Africa Twin's twin-cylinder engine draws on Honda’s experience with off-road bikes like the CRF250R and CRF450R, using the same four-valve Unicam head design for compact overall dimensions. "A 270° phased crankshaft gives the power delivery a distinct character as well delivering excellent feel for rear wheel traction," claim Honda. "Strong and linear power and torque deliver instant response anywhere in the rev-range – accompanied by a satisfying, characterful deep growl as rpm rises," adds the press release. The engine is mated to a 6-speed gearbox that is equipped with an assist slipper clutch. (A DCT automatic is optional.)

Thursday, July 23, 2015

2016 Yamaha XSR700 unveiled




The all-new Yamaha XSR700, a sporty retro-yet-modern streebike aimed at bearded young gentlemen and stylish young women. Hipsters everywhere should love this one...

Yamaha are taking their "Sport Heritage" bike building philosophy, which they've latched on to in a big way over the last few months, pretty seriously. According to Yamaha, this is all about "respecting the iconic styles and designs of Yamaha motorcycles of the past, whilst intending to push the boundaries of motorcycle technology to create amazing bikes with real character that never compromise on riding ability." In keeping with this philosophy, Yamaha have now unveiled the new XSR700, which is supposedly a "faster son" of the erstwhile Yamaha XS650. Faster son? Yeah, well, the term "shows respect to the bikes that came before, whilst also showing pride in the faster sons of today and tomorrow, because above all, we love to ride."

For the new XSR700, Yamaha worked closely with the Los Angeles-based bike builder Shinya Kimura. The brief was to build a casual, retro styled streetbike that pays tribute to the iconic Yamaha XS650 - simple, 1970s/1980s inspired styling, with a modern engine, suspension and brakes etc. The XSR700 is powered by a 700cc parallel twin that, according to Yamaha, "kicks out a linear, deep torque for not just outstanding acceleration, but smiles in every gear. The uneven firing interval and 270-degree crank ensures a strong sensation of acceleration and outstanding traction, while maintaining continuous smooth and exciting power delivery till high rpm." However, no actual power or torque figures are quoted.

Monday, July 06, 2015

Freddie Spencer: The Secrets of Speed

Freddie Spencer, who won both the 250cc and the 500cc motorcycle grand prix roadracing world championships in 1985, definitely knows a thing or two about going very, very fast on a motorcycle. Here's his 3-part masterclass for you



Friday, July 03, 2015

2016 BMW S1000RR and other BMW motorcycles get minor updates



New paintjobs, ABS Pro and dynamic brake lights for 2016 BMW motorcycles. Yaayyy!!!

The 2016-spec BMW S1000RR gets a major update this year - it will be available with a new black storm metallic / racing red non-metallic paintjob. Which actually looks terrible, quite frankly. Whatever happened to this fabulous paintjob that BMW were offering on the HP4?!

Moving on, the 2016 BMW F800GT also gets new colours - monolith metallic matt / sapphire black metallic, and we're told that dark graphite metallic will no longer be available, so if you were holding out for that, hard luck mate. Also, if you don't know what the hell is "monolith" metallic matt, you're on your own brother...

The 2016 BMW R1200GS gets new colours - light white non-metallic replaces the existing Alpine white 3 non-metallic, while black storm metallic will no longer be available. Damn. But, okay, changes on the R1200GS are not limited to new colours, the bike also gets the banking-optimised ABS Pro and a dynamic brake light, which works in conjunction with the Riding Modes Pro option. What the f@*$ is that, you ask. Yeah, well. If you're not happy with that, you could buy the new R1200GS TripleBlack, which BMW claim is a "special" model that gets an all-black paintjob, cross-spoke wheels and a new black-grey seat with the GS logo on the passenger seat. You've got to love them Germans!

The R1200GS Adventure also gets the ABS Pro and dynamic brake light along with new colours, including racing red non-metallic matt and ocean blue metallic matt. Light white non-metallic replaces the earlier Alpine white 3 non-metallic, while olive non-metallic matt and racing blue metallic matt will no longer be available. Sob.

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