Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Ducati draXter concept bike unveiled at the Motor Bike Expo in Verona

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Unveiled at the EICMA last year, the standard Ducati XDiavel was already gorgeous. And now here's the super-sports version, the draXter

Ducati have unveiled an all-new concept bike at the recent Motor Bike Expo held in Verona, Italy. Based on the stunningly beautiful XDiavel, the new draXter is, according to Ducati, a "sports interpretation" of the XDiavel, with the suspension and brakes coming from the Ducati Panigale. The number 90 emblazoned on the side of the bike is in homage to Ducati's 90th anniversary, which is being celebrated this year.



Tuesday, January 19, 2016

2016 Triumph Speed Triple R, Speed Triple S now pack a 140bhp punch

2016 Triumph Speed Triple R 2016 Triumph Speed Triple R
2016 Triumph Speed Triple R 2016 Triumph Speed Triple R
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With its new 140bhp inline-three, fully adjustable Ohlins suspension (R model only) and full suite of electronics, the 2016 Triumph Speed Triple is now ready to take on all streetfighters from Europe and Japan

The all-new, 2016 Triumph Speed Triple R and Speed Triple S were unveiled at EICMA, in November last year. Now, Triumph have released more details and technical specifications of both the bikes, which will hit showrooms in March this year. Prices for the new Speed Triple S will start at £10,200 while the Speed Triple R will cost £11,500. Both bikes are fitted with Triumph's new 1050cc three-cylinder engine that produces 140 horsepower at 9,500rpm, and 112Nm of torque at 7,850rpm. This new engine features a host of updates, including revised piston and crankshaft design, a new ECU, new combustion chamber and cylinder head design, revised ports for increased flow, new exhaust header design, new airbox, new fuel-injection system and more efficient radiator for improved cooling.

Other significant updates on the 2016 Speed Triple include a new slipper clutch, a lighter, more free-flowing exhaust system (the bike is now Euro IV emissions compliant, without compromising on power), and a new ride-by-wire throttle, which along with the new ECU provides improved feel and responsiveness, while also delivering better fuel economy. There's ABS, multi-stage traction control and five selectable riding modes, including rain, road, sport, track and a rider-configurable mode that allows all settings to be customised independently.

Both the new Speed Triple models, which weigh in at 192 kilos (dry weight), get Brembo M4.32 radial monobloc brakes and fully-adjustable suspension as standard, while the Speed Triple R also gets Öhlins NIX30 USD forks, Öhlins TTX36 rear monoshock, billet machined handlebar clamp and risers, and machined swingarm spindle finishers and rear wheel finisher. Styling has been given only a mild makeover and Triumph make some noises about the new Speed Triple looking more "hunkered down" and "aggressive." Hmmm... we think they could have done a bit more in the styling department - maybe this was the right time to mark a radical departure from the old Speed Triple's design. That said, the 2016-spec Speed Triple doesn't look bad at all. The R model's carbonfibre front mudguard and tank infills, bellypan, red rear subframe, red wheel pinstripes and red seat stitching also help the bike stand out a bit more. Overall, a big thumbs up...

Friday, January 15, 2016

Praëm SP3 shows what a Honda RC51 can become with a bit of French engineering



A Praëm SP3 6A Praëm SP3 9G Praëm SP3 1G Praëm SP3 2wG Praëm SP3 3wG Praëm SP3 4wG Praëm SP3 5wG Praëm SP3 6G Praëm SP3 9T Praëm SP3 3
Based on the Honda VTR1000 RC51 SP2, The Praëm SP3 is a work of art and could fetch as much as €145,000 when it goes up for auction in Paris later this year

Based in Saint-Rémy-lès-Chevreuse (about 40km from Paris), Praëm was set up in 2014 by two brothers, Sylvain, a former BMW Motorrad designer, and Florent, a prototypist and former aeronautical mechanic in the French army. With Praëm, the brothers aim to create hand-built motorcycles using chassis and engines from legendary sportsbikes of the past, but with styling updates and extensive technical and mechanical improvements. Their first project is the Praëm SP3, which is based on a Honda VTR1000 RC51 SP2, the bike with which Colin Edwards won the World Superbikes championship back in the year 2000.

'All the HRC expertise is there, but as a stock bike, the RC51 SP2 had downsides compared to the factory racebike. The brakes and suspension were not as good as the rest of the machine, and with the fuel tank covering the rear cylinder, there were overheating problems,' say Sylvain and Florent. 'The Praëm philosophy requires to not damage the original performances of the machine, therefore we kept the stock RC51's racing geometry and improved everything around it. In order to solve braking and suspension problems, the SP3 powertrain has been assembled from the best parts available on the market, like ultra-light carbon wheels, radial brakes with carbon-ceramic discs, as well as the best Öhlins suspension,' they add.

The brothers Praëm wanted to make a high-performance GT out of the RC51 and the SP3 has been designed accordingly. 'The goal is not to make a pure race bike or a confortable touring bike, but a vehicle that can live in between this two worlds. It could be an Aston Martin DB9 for example, fast and powerful, but timeless and elegant as well,' the brothers say. 'Each surface is treated depending on its type of use, and all the mechanical and structural elements are blacked out. Brushed aluminium or stainless steel define the ergonomic and aerodynamic surfaces, whereas the coloured bits are ornamental features. Unlike its RC51 SP2 ancestor, the cutout in the SP3 tank prevents the rear cylinder from overheating,' they add.

Wednesday, January 06, 2016

BMW Motorrad presents helmet with head-up display, laser lights



With helmets equipped with BMW's head-up display, motorcycle riders will no longer need to look away from the road to access vehicle information and that will hopefully provide a boost to rider safety

In a step aimed at boosting rider safety, BMW are developing a head-up display for their helmets, which will be presented today at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas. The BMW head-up display projects necessary traffic and/or vehicle information directly into the rider's field of view, allowing the rider to maintain constant observation of the traffic on the road, without needing to look away and peer at the instrument panel every once in a while. The display is fully programmable, allowing riders to choose what information is projected into their FOV. Information available includes things like tyre pressure, oil level, fuel level, travel speed, selected gear, speed limit, road sign recognition, and even warnings related to impending/potential danger.

BMW's helmets with head-up display are fitted with an integrated mini-computer and display parameters can be controlled from the left-hand handlebar, using BMW Motorrad's multicontroller. The best part is, this display technology can also be integrated into existing helmets, without affecting wearer comfort or rider safety. The technology is still in the development phase though, and is expected to be production ready within the next few years.

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