Motus Motorcycles takes A Step Towards Reality

I mentioned back in April that a new US Sport Touring motorcycle was being created by a new company called Motus Motorcycles, with Brian Case as the chief designer.  After that, absolutely nothing seemed to happen.  The web page was a single landing page with the company logo, and a message saying that they were working on a really neat sport touring motorcycle.

Well, that has now changed.  The web site is now three pages, and the front page shows this:

Motus Motorcycle Artist Concept
Motus Motorcycle Artist Concept

Obviously, this is some sort of artist’s concept of the Motus.  It must be.  Clearly, those exhaust pipes can’t actually brush the ground like that.  This is the most information about what the thing is supposed to look like since the initial announcement.

I’m not seeing a pillion seat there, so this looks like a sport tourer for the moody loner.  Come to think of it, I don’t see any saddlebags there, either, so now we’re looking at a sport tourer for the homeless moody loner.

So, let’s take the picture with a grain of salt.  We’ll probably all be happier that way.

In any event, there seems to be some movement, because the Motus web site’s “News” page now links to a press release from motorsports pros Pratt & Miller, which says:

Motus Motorcycles’ decision to partner with Pratt & Miller Engineering for development and manufacturing of their new motorcycles further confirms their commitment to delivering highly engineered and reliable machines.

Pratt & Miller Engineering’s 20 year history of success in motorsports was a determining factor in this partnership with Motus Motorcycles. Pratt & Miller Engineering has won numerous championships in the American Le Mans Series, Rolex Grand-Am series, NASCAR and six 24 hours of Le Mans victories in the GT1 category. In addition to motorsports, Pratt and Miller Engineering has played a prominent role in automotive, commercial, aerospace, and defense projects such as unmanned vehicles and the new Joint Light Tactical Vehicle.

“With their vast experience developing high performance, lightweight vehicles, we quickly identified Pratt & Miller as the perfect partner to engineer our lightweight, high-performance motorcycle,” said Brian Case, VP and Design Director of Motus Motorcycles.

Motus MST series motorcycles will incorporate many of Pratt & Miller’s race proven technologies such as a balanced and optimized 4130 chromoly space frame and lightweight carbon composite bodywork. A combination of computer aided engineering tools such as CAD, finite element analysis, and multi-body simulation will be implemented throughout the design process. All prototypes will be developed in house using the latest rapid prototyping techniques and many proprietary processes that Pratt & Miller has developed.

“These advanced engineering tools integrated with our advanced manufacturing capabilities will help set Motus apart in terms of performance, safety and durability,” said Pratt & Miller spokesman Brandon Widmer.

Long story made short: Motus seems serious about producing a top-notch motorcycle.  Whether they can do so at a price that competes with the FJR1300 or Concours14–or even the BMW RT or GT bikes–is a question that is still unanswered.  If they end up with a $50k price tag like the Roehr 1250, then I’m pretty much uninterested.

Author: Dale Franks

Dale Franks is the former host of The Business Day, ”a daily, four-hour business and financial news program on KMNY Radio in Los Angeles. From 2002-2004, he was a contributor on military and international affairs for Currently, he a publisher and editor of the monthly political journal The New Libertarian, as well as an editor of the popular web log, Q and O. Dale served as a military police officer in the United States Air Force from 1984 to 1993, in variety of assignments both in the United States and Europe, where he also was assigned to the staff of the Headquarters of Allied Forces Central Europe. In addition to broadcasting, writing, and speaking on various topics, Dale has also been a long-time technical training instructor on a variety of computer software and technology subjects. Dale has also long been involved with information technology as an accomplished web designer, programmer, and technologist, serving as the corporate knowledge specialist for Microsoft Outlook at SAIC, the nation's largest employee-owned corporation. Additionally, he is the author of a number of software user guides used for classroom training by one of Southern California’'s premier computer training and consulting firms. His book, SLACKERNOMICS: Basic Economics for People Who Find Economics Boring, is available from Barnes & Noble.