Wednesday, July 30, 2014

173bhp Polaris Slingshot three-wheeled superbike unleashed

Polaris Slingshot Polaris Slingshot
Polaris Slingshot Polaris Slingshot Polaris Slingshot
The Campagna T-Rex finally has a worthy competitor in this, the 173-horsepower Polaris Slingshot. Yes, do be afraid. Very afraid.  

Up until now, there was barely anything in the world of high-performance three-wheelers that could challenge the mighty Campagna T-Rex. That might just have changed though, with Polaris having unveiled the badass Slingshot, which is powered by a DOHC, 16-valve, 2.4-litre four-cylinder engine (an 'EcoTec' engine, sourced from General Motors) that produces 173 horsepower at 6200rpm, and 225Nm of torque at 4700 revs. With a kerb weight of 790 kilos, the Slingshot's power-to-weight ratio is definitely not comparable to that of a contemporary litre-class superbike. But if nothing else, the Slingshot should at least be able to corner harder and faster than almost any two-wheeled motorcycle...

Noteworthy bits on the new Polaris Slingshot include its light and stiff steel spaceframe, aluminum swingarm, carbonfibre-reinforced drive belt, forged aluminum roll hoops, electronic stability and traction control, ABS (on all three wheels) and 3-point seatbelts. "The Slingshot was designed to deliver head turning exhilaration on two dimensions. First is the exhilaration that you can see, hear, and feel while riding in it. And second is the exhilaration you feel when people turn their heads to stare at the Slingshot's unique and exotic styling," says Mike Jonikas, a Vice President at Polaris.

With side-by-side seating for two, including the driver (rider?), the US$19,999 Slingshot rolls on 17-inch (front) and 18-inch (rear) wheels, while the more expensive (US$23,999) Slingshot SL gets 18-inch forged aluminium wheels at the front, a 20-inch rear wheel, a windscreen for some wind protection, a 'media console' with a 4.3-inch LCD screen, back-up camera, Bluetooth integration, and a 6-speaker audio system.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

2015 Ducati Hypermotard SP unveiled at World Ducati Week

2015 Ducati Hypermotard SP 2015 Ducati Hypermotard SP 2015 Ducati Hypermotard SP 2015 Ducati Hypermotard SP
The 2015 Ducati Hypermotard SP. Same as ever before, just a bit more flashy with its new red-and-white paintjob

Ducati have unveiled the 2015 Hypermotard SP at the currently ongoing World Ducati Week, and according to the Italian company, the bike's Ducati Corse-inspired "new racy red-white colour scheme gives the Hypermotard SP a harder-hitting look." The new Hypermotard SP was unveiled by three-time (2001, 2006, 2008) World Superbikes Champ, Troy Bayliss, and 2011 WSBK Champ, Carlos Checa.

The 2015 Ducati Hypermotard SP features the latest-generation 110-horsepower Testastretta 11° 821cc engine and Ducati's standard steel-tube trellis frame. The SP model also Race, Sport and Wet riding modes, which alter power delivery to suit riding conditions. There's 3-level ABS and 8-level traction control here, and if you're brave/talented enough, the Hypermotard SP can lean at an angle of up to 47.5°.

Running gear on the new Hypermotard SP is top-notch; a pressurized, fully adjustable 50mm Marzocchi USD fork, fully adjustable Öhlins monoshock, 17-inch Marchesini 3-spoke forged aluminium wheels, and Pirelli Diablo Supercorsa SP tyres (120/70 front, 180/55 rear). The front mudguard and engine covers are all carbonfibre and the bike weighs 171 kilos dry.

The new Ducati Hypermotard SP will be available from September this year. Prices remain unchanged over the previous model.

Friday, July 18, 2014

BMW HP4 gets ‘ABS Pro’ cornering ABS

With ABS Pro on your BMW HP4, you can brake harder than ever before in fast corners, though don't expect the system to help you defy the basic laws of physics

Back in November 2012, KTM announced that the 1190 Adventure and Adventure R would be fitted with a Bosch-developed lean angle sensor, which would work in tandem with the bikes’ ABS and traction control systems. Now, BMW are following suit with their own ‘cornering ABS,’ which is being offered on the madly powerful, insanely fast S1000RR-based HP4.

BMW debuted what they call ‘race ABS’ on the S1000RR in 2009, which was ABS optimized for all-out sportsbikes. The latest iteration is ‘ABS Pro,’ which offers up ABS-supported braking while cornering at high speeds. Already available at BMW Motorrad dealerships, ABS Pro can be retrofitted to existing HP4s.

“While the Race ABS on the HP4 already provides a very high degree of safety when braking in a straight line, ABS Pro now goes a step further to offer increased safety when braking in the bends as well. Here, ABS Pro prevents the wheels from locking even when the brakes are applied quickly. This reduces abrupt changes in steering force on shock-braking manoeuvres and stops the motorcycle from rearing up unintentionally,” says a press note from BMW.

According to BMW, ABS Pro adapts ABS control to the motorcycle's banking angle, drawing on signals for roll rate, yaw rate and transverse acceleration, as provided by the sensor cluster which is already used for the HP4’s traction control and electronically adjustable suspension system.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Joey Dunlop 1985 limited edition Arai RX7-GP helmet to be launched at this year's Classic TT

Joey Dunlop 1985 limited edition Arai RX7-GP helmet
Joey Dunlop Joey Dunlop Joey Dunlop
Joey Dunlop Joey Dunlop Joey Dunlop
If you always wanted a helmet that looked like the one worn by Yer Maun, Arai are now giving you a chance to buy one

Arai UK have announced a new Limited Edition RX7-GP Joey Dunlop 1985 replica helmet as part of this year’s celebration of Joey’s distinguished career at the Isle of Man. Only 300 of these LE helmets will be produced, and each will be signed by Joey's wife, Linda Dunlop. The helments will be available at

Arai say that this is the most authentic limited edition Joey Dunlop replica helmet ever produced, using the actual design and sponsor decals from 1985. The design features Northern Ireland radio station DownTown Radio, which sponsored Joey during 1985, hence the radio station logo on the side of his iconic yellow and black helmet.

The helmet will also be on display at this year's Classic TT races at the Isle of Man, which will feature a display of 25 authentic machines raced by Joey Dunlop in his 24-year-career, including a number of his Isle of Man TT winning machines. Among the bikes on display, you can expect to see Honda RC45s, RC30s, RS250s, RS125s, CBR 600's and Joey's 1986 Senior TT winning RS500.

Apart from Hondas, the exhibition will also feature other machines from earlier in Joey's career, including Yamahas and Suzukis, along with the 350cc Aermacchi he rode in the Classic MGP Races. The 80s themed Classic TT Festival will also include a parade lap, 'Joey Dunlop Road Racing Legend - The Rivals,’ featuring many of his closest competitors.

Limited Edition 2015 Kawasaki ZX-14R Ninja now available in the US and Latin America

Limited Edition 2015 Kawasaki ZX-14R Ninja
Limited Edition 2015 Kawasaki ZX-14R Ninja Limited Edition 2015 Kawasaki ZX-14R Ninja Limited Edition 2015 Kawasaki ZX-14R Ninja
The 2015 Kawasaki ZX-14R remains the fastest production motorcycle on the planet and now gets a red and gray paintjob that's reminiscent of the 1980s GPZ900R. Perfect!

Kawasaki have announced a limited edition 30th Anniversary ZX-14R Ninja, only 300 units of which will be produced. The bike's red-and-gray paintjob is based on the one used on the 1984 GPZ900R and the 14 also gets gold pinstriping, gold-painted brake calipers and 30th Anniversary badges on the fairing. The bike is only available in the US and in Latin American markets.

With its 1441cc inline-four that pumps out 200 horsepower, the Kawasaki ZX-14R remains out most favourite superbike in the world. As before, the Limited Edition ZX-14R gets a three-level traction control system, high and low power modes, slipper clutch and ABS as standard. The big Ninja's unique monocoque chassis and fully adjustable suspension (43mm USD fork at the front, aluminium swingarm and monoshock at the rear) provide excellent handing characteristics, which go very well with the engine's brain-numbing power output. And with ergonomics perfectly suited to all-day flat-out-fast riding, this is one motorcycle that lets you enjoy stratospheric levels of performance, without destroying your wrists and/or back.

The 2015 Kawasaki ZX-14R is priced at US$15,899 and we believe this is one motorcycle that's worth every single penny of its price. If only we could rush out and buy one right now.

Limited Edition 2015 Kawasaki ZX-14R Ninja Limited Edition 2015 Kawasaki ZX-14R Ninja Limited Edition 2015 Kawasaki ZX-14R Ninja Limited Edition 2015 Kawasaki ZX-14R Ninja Limited Edition 2015 Kawasaki ZX-14R Ninja 2015 Kawasaki ZX-14R
That's 200 horsepower you're looking at. In a motorcycle, that's a fair bit. It really is a firekwacker!

Monday, July 07, 2014

2015 BMW K1300S Motorsport unveiled

2015 BMW K1300S Motorsport 2015 BMW K1300S Motorsport
2015 BMW K1300S Motorsport 2015 BMW K1300S Motorsport
2015 BMW K1300S Motorsport 2015 BMW K1300S Motorsport 2015 BMW K1300S Motorsport
The special edition 2015 BMW K1300S Motorsport. Not cutting-edge stuff, but 175bhp is 175bhp... should be plenty fast for most people...

For those who want a big, mega-fast sports-tourer but do not, for some reason, want the magical Kawasaki ZX-14R, there's the quirky-but-capable BMW K1300S. And for 2015, BMW have announced a new special edition K1300S - the K1300S Motorsport. The bike remains unchanged mechanically, but does get red and blue paint accents on its black and white bodywork, a tinted windshield, HP wheels and footpegs and an Akrapovic exhaust system. ABS is standard, of course. The bike is available in Europe from 1st August this year. Yours, for a mere 19,950 euros, including 19% VAT.

More high-res pics of the 2015 BMW K1300S Motorsport, and many high-res pics of the entire 2015 BMW motorcycle line-up, after the jump...

Thursday, July 03, 2014

Ariel Ace: Official high-res pics, tech specs, details

Ariel Ace: Official high-res pics Ariel Ace: Official high-res pics
Ariel Ace: Official high-res pics Ariel Ace: Official high-res pics
Ariel Ace: Official high-res pics Ariel Ace: Official high-res pics
Ariel Ace: Official high-res pics Ariel Ace: Official high-res pics Ariel Ace: Official high-res pics
The all-new Ariel Ace is powered by a 173bhp, 1200cc Honda V4, and is fully customisable. The bike is priced at £20,000 and just 100-150 units will be produced each year

Exactly a month ago, we told you that Ariel are ready to launch their new motorcycle. And now, they have. It's the first all-new Ariel motorcycle in more than 50 years, it's called the Ace and starting early next year, it will be produced in low volumes (only about 100-150 units per year) at the Ariel factory near Crewkerne, Somerset, in the UK.

The new Ariel Ace is powered by the Honda VFR1200's 1,237cc V4, uses the VFR's shaft drive system and even has the VFR's dual-clutch automatic (DCT) transmission available as an option. However, the Ace uses a bespoke, machined-aluminium perimeter-type chassis and has been designed to be fully customisable - depending on how you want your motorcycle to look and feel, the Ace can be made into a low-riding cruiser, naked streetfighter or supersports machine. Adjustable footrests, brake and gear levers, and different seat heights and handlebar configurations allow the Ace to be personally fitted for each rider, to provide the perfect riding position for each individual. And not just that, buyers will even be able to choose from variants of the front and rear suspension, different sizes of fuel tank, wheels, exhaust systems, bodywork and more.

"The usual route is to buy a standard bike and then add various aftermarket components to change the bike into what they want. However, with the Ace, the uniqueness is built in as the bike is produced and each one will be as individual as its owner," says Ariel's Director, Simon Saunders. "The first photos show just two different possibilities of specification for the bike, but the combinations are nearly endless and we plan to continue to add further options in the future. At Ariel once we understand what a customer wants, whatever it is, we can build the bike they need," he adds.



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