Thursday, February 25, 2016

BMW Motorrad UK launches the Iconic 100 Collection

The Iconic 100 Collection includes the BMW R1200GS and GS Adventure, the R1200RT and the R1200RS. We'd have the R1200GS - that Paris-Dakar Rally paintjob looks the business...!

To mark BMW's 100th anniversary, BMW Motorrad UK has created four special edition models, each limited to 100 units only. The bikes include the BMW R1200GS, R1200GS Adventure, R1200RS and R1200RT. The bikes were unveiled at the recent London Motorcycle Show and can now be ordered from Motorrad dealers in the UK, with deliveries starting from April this year.

The R1200GS Iconic includes a rally-style custom paintjob that's inspired by BMW's 1980s Paris-Dakar racers, red leather seat with diamond-type stitching pattern, gear shift assist pro and cross-spoke wheels. The bike is priced at £16,800 OTR. The R1200GS Adventure Iconic has all of this, plus black powder coated crash bars, luggage carrier and heel plates, and is priced at £18,050 OTR.

The R1200RS Iconic comes with a black/silver/red/champagne custom paintjob that's inspired by the 1976 BMW R90S, red stitched black leather seat and gold-painted forks and brake calipers. The bike is priced at £15,195 OTR. And finally, there's the R1200RT Iconic, which gets a candy burgundy paintjob inspired by the the "Lava Rot" BMW R100RT from the 1970s, red stitched black seat, high-end audio system, a top box, and a dynamic package that includes hill start control, hadlight pro, riding mode pro and DRLs. The bike is priced at £20,665 OTR.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Yamaha MT-10 to deliver 160bhp thrills

Yamaha MT-10 Yamaha MT-10
Yamaha MT-10
Yamaha MT-10
Lighter and more powerful than the Z1000 and GSX-S1000, the Yamaha MT-10 looks all set to deliver a hard punch to the nose to its European rivals. The S1000R and Tuono V4R had better watch out!

We were impressed with the MT-10 when Yamaha first unveiled the bike back in November last year. Back then, however, Yamaha had not revealed the MT-10's power output and we had quoted an estimated figure of 140-150bhp. Well, Yamaha have now released full tech specs of the 10 and it turns out that we were wrong - the MT-10 actually packs a 160-horsepower wallop from its R1-based inline-four! Yes, 160bhp and 111Nm of torque, in a naked streetfighter that weighs 210 kilos fully fuelled up and ready to ride. (Dry weight is 190kg.)

Other notable bits on the Yamaha MT-10 include ride-by-wire throttle, three-level traction control, three riding modes, Deltabox aluminium beam frame, fully adjustable suspension on both ends, twin 320mm brake discs at front, with radial-mount 4-piston callipers, standard ABS, multi-function LCD instrument panel, dual LED headlights, 17-litre fuel tank, 5-spoke cast-aluminium 17-inch wheels and specially-developed Bridgestone Battlax Hypersport tyres. Should be a crazy ride. Yours, for a mere £9,999 in the UK.

Saturday, February 20, 2016

2017 Victory Octane unveiled

2017 Victory Octane 2017 Victory Octane
2017 Victory Octane 2017 Victory Octane
It's definitely not as powerful or high-tech as the other musclebikes available in the market, but the 2017 Victory Octane looks cool and offers fairly decent straightline performance. Should do well in the American market

Victory have unveiled their new American musclebike, the Octane, and we have to admit it looks rather good. "Every high-octane horsepower enthusiast is familiar with the muscle car formula: take a big motor, insert it into a lightweight chassis, then delete any creature comforts or other unnecessary accessories. What’s left is just what you need to go very fast, and nothing else. The all-new 2017 Victory Octane is the two-wheeled expression of that concept," says a press release from the Company.

The Victory Octane is powered by a 1200cc DOHC 8-valve liquid-cooled 60-degree V-twin that produces 104 horsepower and 103Nm of torque. That's not too bad on its own, but compares poorly with other 'musclebikes,' with the Ducati Diavel bringing 162bhp and 130Nm of torque from its 1200cc V-twin, the Triumph Rocket III boasting 148bhp and 221Nm of torque from its 2300cc triple, and the Yamaha VMAX being on top with 200bhp and 167Nm of torque from its 1700cc V4! Even the Harley-Davidson V-Rod Muscle kicks in with 119bhp and 115Nm of torque from its 1250cc V-twin. Still, while the Octane loses out in the battle for power and torque figures, its straightline performance is fairly decent, with Victory claiming a 12-second time for the quarter-mile run a 0-60mph time of 3.6 seconds. Some of it may be down to the fact that the Octane, with its cast-aluminium chassis, weighs in at just 239kg.

"We wanted to bring the American motorcycle into the 21st century. Victory doesn’t have any long history or legacy — we are a new brand and we can go wherever we want to go. We want to be modern, and bold, and set our own trends," says Mike Song, Victory Motorcycle's senior industrial designer. The bike's engine has been developed "to allow higher rpm, more horsepower and quick-revving response that's more like a sportbike than any traditional American V-Twin," claim Victory. "With the heart of a racer, the Octane has power to burn," they add. Cool, eh?

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Triumph Tiger Explorer range gets updated for 2016
The 2016 Triumph Explorer XR and XC (along with half a dozen higher-end variants...) get engine and electronics updates, more power, better fuel economy, semi-active suspension and an electrically-adjustable windscreen

Triumph used to have a nice, capable, dual-purpose motorcycle called the Explorer, which was powered by a 1200cc inline-three and which you could ride pretty much anywhere you wanted. Then suddenly one day, Triumph decided to go mad with acronyms, so then there was the Explorer XR, which is optimised for on-road riding, and the Explorer XC, which is better suited to off-road riding. Now, more variants have been added to the line-up and while the XR and XC continue to be the base model Explorers, the Explorer XRt, XRx, XCa and XCx live further up the range, and we're no longer sure about which bike does what! What's good, however, is that they've all been updated for 2016. All variants of the Explorer are powered by the same 1215cc three-cylinder engine, which produces 139bhp at 9,300rpm and 123Nm of torque at 6,200rpm. Triumph claim that this is now the most powerful shaft-driven motorcycle in the adventure bike segment and fuel economy has also improved by 5%.

These days, an adventure-touring bike is nothing if it doesn't have more computers and electronics than a 1980s space shuttle, so the 2016 Triumph Explorer range does. It has multi-stage traction control, cornering ABS, a hill hold function and five riding modes, including one that is rider-programmable. There's also WP semi-active suspension with auto-levelling rear preload, an easier to operate hydraulic torque-assist clutch, revised styling and low-seat options for the XRx and XCx models. With its new exhaust system, the 2016 Explorer models are fully Euro 4 emissions compliant.

Other notable bits on the new Explorer models include fully adjustable 48mm WP USD front forks, twin 305mm floating brake discs at front with Brembo 4-piston monobloc calipers, electrically adjustable screen and five riding modes that include road, rain, off-road, sport and one that's fully rider configureable. All models can be fitted with aluminium rails (already standard on the top-of-the-range Explorer XRt and XCa), which can then take the dedicated 'Expedition' panniers and everything else a rider could want for cross-continent journeys. The bikes' dry weight ranges from 244-258kg, depending on the version you choose.

The 2016 Triumph Explorer range will be available in Triumph dealerships from April this year, with prices ranging from £11,800 (base model XR) to £15,800 (top-end XCa).

Suter MMX 500 to make its racing debut at the 2016 Isle of Man TT

Suter MMX 500 Suter MMX 500
Suter MMX 500 Suter MMX 500
With close to 200bhp and a top speed of more than 300kph, the Suter MMX 500 could be a force to reckon with around the formidable Isle of Man mountain circuit. IoM TT fans really have something spectacular to look forward to this year

Suter Racing have confirmed that the MMX500, which is powered by a 576cc, 195bhp two-stroke V4, will race for the first time at the Isle of Man TT races this year. The bike, named as 'the most desirable motorcycle' at the EICMA show in Milan last year, will participate in the Superbike and Senior TT Races. "The fact that the Suter MMX has a 580cc two-stroke engine evokes almost hysterical emotion with the association of the wild days of 500cc Grand Prix racing, where legends like Kenny Roberts, Eddie Lawson and Wayne Gardner, to name just a few, regularly fought for podiums. The furious, explosive power of the former two-stroke bikes is still memorable for real fans and is considered the golden age of motorcycle racing," says Suter CEO, Eskil Suter.

"Suter has awakened the charismatic two-stroke 500s era with the MMX 500, bringing those GP bikes back to life in a modern context. We are equipping the MMX 500 engine with high-end components, of which one could only dream of back in the days of 500cc racing, including an electronic fuel injection, for example, and counter-rotating crankshafts," says Eskil. "Suter has built up knowledge and understanding on the specifications in recent years, by constructing modules, complete motorcycles, or as supplier to all Grand Prix classes. We have a phenomenal good power to weight ratio - the MMX 500 rides like a bike with rocket propulsion. For us, this is the perfect testing ground and that's the reason why we want to go to the toughest road race in the world. The Senior TT, over six laps of the 60km long Snaefell Mountain Course, is just something for the toughest guys among the racers," he adds.

Suter will soon announce the names of the two former TT winners who will race the MMX 500 at the IoM TT this year. The Swiss company is building 99 units of the MMX 500, each priced at CHF 120,000 / £85,000 / US$125,000 / €109,000. For more information, visit the Suter website.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

2016 Triumph Tiger Sport: First official pictures, specs, details
2016 Triumph Tiger Sport 2016 Triumph Tiger Sport 2016 Triumph Tiger Sport
The 2016 Triumph Tiger Sport should be an excellent long-distance sports-tourer

Triumph have released the first official pictures of the new, 2016-spec Triumph Tiger Sport, which is fitted with the British company's 'next-generation' 1050cc three-cylinder engine (claimed to deliver better fuel economy and increased torque), ride-by-wire throttle, multiple riding modes, multi-level traction control, cruise control and ABS as standard. There's also a slipper clutch, revised free-flow exhaust system, adjustable windscreen, grippier footpegs, redesigned rear-view mirrors and new matt-black or aluminium-silver paintjobs on the new Triumph Tiger Sport, which will be officially unveiled at the MCN London ExCel Motorcycle Show on Friday this week.

"Designed to tackle every journey, from a trip to the office to a lap of your favourite Sunday afternoon ride, the new Tiger Sport isn’t just an everyday motorcycle – it’s a motorcycle you will want to ride every day," say Triumph, about the new Tiger Sport. With a new combustion chamber, the bike's updated 1050cc triple will, supposedly, deliver "seamless power, waves of immediate torque [and] instant throttle response, thanks to the new ride-by-wire throttle." Furthermore, the bike's new exhaust system is said to sound better and contributes to the improved fuel economy.

With new-age electronics finally making their way to the Triumph Tiger Sport, you can now choose between three riding modes - rain road and sport. An all-new instrument panel now includes two trip computers and a live fuel gauge, provides clear access to all the information a rider requires, and is easy to navigate. New colour options on the Tiger Sport include matt black with neon yellow detailing, and an aluminium silver with red details.

We suppose this new Triumph Tiger Sport will make a brilliant long-distance sports-touring bike, though we'd still much rather have the 2016 Speed Triple, which we simply love!

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Portuguese duo build the Yamaha VMAX CS_07 Gasoline
Portuguese duo, Alexandre and Osvaldo (top, left) have created this fully faired custom-built Yamaha VMAX, the CS_07 Gasoline. The rear wheel is shod with a drag racing-spec slick, which should tell you something about the bike...

Ever fancied having a Yamaha VMAX with a full fairing, wire-spoked wheels and a yellow headlamp. If you have, the it roCkS! duo from Portugal, Alexandre Santos and Osvaldo Coutinho, have built a bike just for you. The newest addition to Yamaha's Yard Built line-up, the new VMAX CS_07 Gasoline gets a handmade single-piece monocoque fuel tank and tail unit, with a full fairing bolted on for good measure. The bike rides on 18-inch wire-spoked wheels, with the rear hoop shod with a massive Mickey Thomson slick tyre. How is that useful/streetlegal, we don't know...

The stock VMAX exhaust has been replaced with handmade stainless steel 4-2 headers that connect to a custom-made free-flow SC Project exhaust system with carbon silencers. The stock tacho gets an aluminium housing and there are a lot of aftermarkets parts from the likes of Rizoma, LSL, K&N and Brembo. The high-quality leather seat is handmade and with Yamaha's 60th anniversary colours, the VMAX Gasoline is all set to rock the ¼ mile drag run...

Monday, February 08, 2016

TVS Akula 310 concept provides a glimpse of BMW's first small sportsbike for Europe

The TVS Akula 310 is BMW's first small-bore superbike for Europe and Asia. And, boy, does it look good!

Remember the BMW G310R, which was unveiled in November last year? Developed in collaboration with the India-based TVS Motor, the G310R is BMW's first small-capacity single-cylinder machine in recent times. With this, BMW aim to take on companies like KTM, Benelli, Ducati and the Japanese Big Four, all of whom are aggressively pushing into fast-evolving Asian markets with their 250-400cc sportsbikes. With its 313cc, 34bhp single-cylinder engine, steel-tube chassis and modern braking and suspension components, the BMW G310R will be sold in Europe as well as various Asian markets, and is likely to find an enthusiastic audience among new riders everywhere.

Of course, the G310R isn't where the TVS-BMW partnership stops -- the two fully intend to continue developing new motorcycles together. Last week, at the Auto Expo in Delhi, India, TVS unveiled the Akula 310 concept, which has also been designed and developed in collaboration with BMW Motorrad. This bike is likely to go on sale in India, other parts of Asia and, we're sure, Europe, by the end of this year. Europe will get the BMW-branded version, though styling, engine, chassis and other bits will remain unchanged. As you can see, the TVS Akula 310 takes various styling cues from the BMW S1000RR superbike, while the name 'Akula' is a reference to the Akula-class nuclear-powered submarines made in Russia.

TVS-BMW haven't really made any technical details available, but if you look closely, the Akula seems to have a different steel-tube trellis-type chassis (with an aluminium sub-frame at the rear), which is not the same as the one used on the G310R. The wheels, rear monoshock and the USD front fork seem to have been borrowed from the G310R, and the bodywork is quite clearly inspired by the S1000RR. The Akula 310 is just a concept for now, hence there's extensive use of carbonfibre here, which may not be the case on the actual production bike. There's also a fully digital instrument panel, on-board gyro cameras and we're sure the production-spec machine will have the latest Bosch ABS.



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