Progress on Motus Motorcycles

It’s been a while since there’s been any real news of substance about Motus Motorcycles, but the Feb 2010 issue of motorcyclist has a feature article (PDF) on the new sport-tourer, that reveals some of the specs of the new machine.

The MST-01 sport tourer is expected to weigh 545 lbs–substantially less than the current generation FJR or Connie, and will be powered by a 90° V -4 with an expected output of 140HP at 7,800 RPM and 120 lb-ft of torque at 4,500RPM.  That torque figure seems…high.  Tire-shreddingly so.  That power will be channeled through a 6-speed gearbox to a chain final drive…and that last bit is where they lose me.  It’s 2010.  I’m not gonna spend my Saturdays lubing a chain like some kind of animal.

The MST-01 will have integrated luggage, including an interestingly-designed two-position trunk.  The price point for this is supposed to be competitive with a fully-equipped BMW K1300GT, so let’s call it $25k out the door.

Working prototypes are supposed to be hitting the test track later this year, with 2011 production models available as early as this December.

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.

3 thoughts on “Progress on Motus Motorcycles”

  1. This is off topic, because $25,000 motorcycles are always off topic for me, but it was the comment about lubing a chain that caught my attention. I have to ask: have you actually had a chain-driven motorcycle recently?
    Over the years, I’ve owned chain-, shaft- and belt-drive bikes, and all have their pros and cons. The type of final drive wouldn’t be a deal-killer for any bike I otherwise wanted to buy, though I slightly prefer chains these days. With modern, O-ring chains, I haven’t lubed a chain in years (animalistically or otherwise). I just clean it and wipe it down with a little WD40 while I’m washing the bike. Takes a lot less time than a full Saturday. I routinely get 20,000 miles out of a chain. Meanwhile, my friend with a R1150GS replaces bearings in his shaft drive every 18,000 miles and considers it necessary routine maintenance because of past failure, and it takes a lot longer than changing a chain. And while I realize it was a rare anomaly, the only final-drive failure I’ve had in decades of riding was a belt.
    I guess it was the “like some kind of animal” phrase that set me off. I’ve never seen an animal lube a chain, either.

  2. Dale,   This may be off-topic here, but certainly related to the motorcycle micro-manufacturers, (and I could not find a place to inquire directly about it).     I worked in the industry and as a result of knowing some of these manufacturers from the inside I wondered if there was a reliable source of company information on these micro-manufacturers .   Just in the USA, there are many custom bike builders and small (<50 bikes / yr) manufacturers.   Is there some place that reviews these manufacturers and custom builders?   For example, Does the company carry Manufacturers Insurance?  Are they financially viable?  Is their warranty realistic?  How is their record for customer support?  Are they a licensed  dealer (for retail sales)?  Do they have their own World Manufacturer code?  Is their product street legal (as in a valid VIN sticker w/ EPA certification)?  Or are they a strict Custom bike that the buyer has to register as a “build bike”.   What type of corporation are they?  Can the motorcycle be insured?  What is their business track record?  Who owns the company?   ETC…   Granted people who spend $50-$100k on a bike may not care and can get around most of these concerns, but others may be very concerned if they just spent $20-$50k on a bike and you can’t register it or the headlights are illegal, or the exhaust is illegal etc…     Thx -Brian

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