I hope all of you have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
Motorcycle Daily reports that the BMW S1000RR appears to be a real superbike.
Apparently, our Brit cousins at MCN strapped the S1000RR to a dyno, and got the HP/Torque results shown over at the right (click to enlarge). The results show 183HP at the rear wheel with stock exhaust, and 185.5 with an Akraprovic setup.
Oh, and about 81 lb-ft of torque, if anyone cares.
So, if they’re putting out 185 at the wheel, then they’ve got to be pushing 200+ HP at the crank, which is…a lot. A lot more, in fact, than BMW even admits to.
As Gabe Ets-Hokin notes:
Used to be 180 hp at the back wheel was the result of tens of thousands of dollars of soup-up work: a turbo or nitrous, or just getting your hands on a megabucks works racebike.
Back when I was a kid in the 70s, we thought a 70HP bike was wicked fast. 200HP would have been seen as…insane.
BTW, the nearest competitor–according to the dyno-tested models, at least–to the S1000RR was the Suzuki Hayabusa at 179.5 HP.
Yet, with all that horsepower on tap, Troy Corser is being beaten like an egg-sucking dog in WSBK by guys riding 170.6 HP Fireblades.
I have an update to the post on Mesa, Arizona ‘s police department switching to the new Connie for duty motorcycles, thanks to a reader. Apparently Kawasaki has nothing to do with kitting out a police version of the bike. Instead, Wattco/Whelan is offering a ZG1400 kit for police work. Click on the image below to enlarge it.
Wattco has lots more info here, including a video of drop-testing the crash bars.
Honda USA has announced the pricing for the manual-transmission version of the VFR1200F as $15,999. Still no pricing for the dual-clutch model, but we can expect it to be significantly higher, I suppose.
I guess I still don’t get it. Who is this bike for? Certainly not touring people, who will hate its “fuel-suckery +_small tank = limited range/no standard luggage” equation. Not sport-bikers, who’ll hate dragging around it’s lardy bulk. Honda had the chance to bring out a really game-changing sport-tourer or hyperbike. People who’ve rode it say it’s nice, but not spectacular.
Even the old VFR fans I’ve talked to seem disappointed by the specs for the 1200.
And, for 16 grand–probably 17 grand for the duel clutch version…well, that’s almost in BMW territory.
Somehow, I don’t see K13GT riders making a switch to the VFR any time soon.
The Norton Commando is one of the iconic bikes of motorcycling. Back when I was a kid, and the average rider was tooling around on a 500cc BSA, the Norton Commando was the bike to have if you wanted a big, hellishly fast–in 1970 terms–motorcycle. Sadly, when Nortun went TU several years ago, the Commando disappeared…until now.
Stuart Garner’s revived Norton Motocycles is now offering the 961cc Commando for the 2010 model year.
The 961 Commando will come in three models: the SE, Cafe racer, and Sport models shown here.
The differences are mainly stylistic, as all three models come with a 961cc parallel-twin, dry sump, pushrod engine, much like the venerable original, which is rated at 80HP at 6,500RPM, and 59 lb-ft of torque at 5,200 RPM.
They all sport Öhlins suspension with full adjustment. Stopping power is provided by twin Brembo 320mm semi-floating hi-carbon stainless steel discs & Brembo 4 piston radial calipers up front, and a single Brembo 220mm disc, with Brembo 2 piston “Gold Line” calipers out back. A 5-speed gearbox sends the power to the rear wheel via a 525 O-ring chain drive.
The three models have minor weight differences, but the ball park is 415lbs dry, although oil, hydraulic fluid, and enough gas to fill the 4.5 gallon tank will add another 50 pounds or so.
I hope everyone has a happy and safe Thanksgiving holiday. And remember, motorcycle riding is definitely contra-indicated after eating large amounts of turkey. Triptophan comas are a killer, second only to excessive consumption of alcohol!
For the 2010 model year, KTM announced a while ago that they would undertake a “strategic price realignment” to make their bikes more competitive in the US marketplace. That’s probably a wise move, considering that KTMs, while nice bikes, have always been very pricey. But the announcement didn’t give us much of an idea of what “strategic price realignment” meant to the Austrians. Now we know.
First up is theKTM RC8, the base-model superbike with the 1190cc V-Twin engine. The price for this bike has been slashed by $3,000, with a new MSRP of $16,498.
The RC8’s 1148cc V-Twin mill pumps out 155HP at 10,000RPM and 88.5 lb-ft of torque at 8,000RPM. Without fuel, the ready-to-race weight is 405 lbs.
But, maybe you’re one of those lusty, gusty fellows who needs a bit more power. If so, the RC8 R, with it’s 170HP , 1195cc V-Twin, and upgraded components, has also been priced significantly lower, at 19,998. They’ve got red Bull and Akraprovic special edition models, at slightly north of $23k, but the R model is now superbike ready, at a bit less of a superbike price.
All of the other KTM models, including the popular–but agonizingly ugly–990 Adventure also see similar price cuts.
Aaaaaugh! My eyes! My eyes! The pain!
I’m sure uglier motorcycles have been seen out on the road. But not by reliable observers.
I hear it’s quite popular among the well-to-do adventure biker set, though.
Moto Guzzi has announced the newest generation of their Norge sport-tourer, the Norge 8V. New for 2010 is a new 1200cc L-twin with 4 valves per cylinder, as well as a redesigned fairing for better heat management and weather protection, and some more comfort features.
The Italian Eagle’s press release describes the new generation of the Norge in glowing terms, but that’s all PR stuff, so, if you want to read it, it’s below the fold.
There are few spoecs available yet, but MG claims 83lb-ft of torque at 5,800RPM, and “more than 100HPin power, all at a maximum rpm nearly that of an automobile”, whatever that means. The gearbox has six speeds, and seat height is 31.5 inches.
It’s certainly a pretty bike–all the MGs are–but at 100HP, it’s the least sporty of the sport-tourers. And, of course, here in the US, dealer network support is even sparser than BMW’s.
Practically no one saw this coming, or were even in the ballpark of predicting it, and I’m interested to see what the motorcycle press will make of it, since I’m sure that some of them, like me, have been aware of this for at least several weeks now, although the news has been embargoed, so no one could report on it.
As of today, the embargo has been lifted, and we are now free to speak about it.
First, the press release from S&T/ATK, makes the bare bones facts available. S&T motorcycles, the Korean manufacturer of the Hyosung brand motorcycles will be working directly with ATK motorcycles, the US manufacturer of dirt bikes. Together they will produce a motorcycle that will be largely produced in Korea by Hyosung and assembled in the USA by ATK. These ATK-badged motorcycles will be smaller displacement motorcycles that will be sold in selected Harley-Davidson dealerships.
Sources close to the deal tell me that ATK may also begin selling their off-road motorcycles in some Harley dealerships as well. It is not yet entirely clear which of the ATK-badged Hyosungs will be made available to the Harley Dealers, although the new 700cc Aquila is a likely candidate.
Sources also tell me that it is possible–although exactly how possible is still unclear–for modified versions of the 250cc and 650cc cruisers and sportbikes, with new bodywork created by ATK, are candidates for those dealers who desire them, to help bring in the younger riders that Harley so desperately needs, as their current rider community is aging rapidly.
This is a coup for both ATK and S&T. ATK now has a chance to substantially increase their penetration into the Harley-Davidson dealer network. S&T has a chance to get deeper into the US Market–which has regarded their products with some suspicion due to confusing Hyosung with a Chinese, rather than South Korean company–by having their bikes branded with an American manufacturer’s badge.
It’s a bit of a coup for Harley dealerships, and possibly for Harley-Davidson itself–as well. They will–or at least selected dealers will–have access to new lines of motorcycles to bring in younger customers. This is especially true if the ATK dirt bikes can also make an appearance on dealer showrooms.
The hope is that everyone can win by making the dealerships places where a number of different product lines can be found, in order to bring in a wider, and one hopes, younger, group of riders through the door.
The full text of the press release is below the fold.
The new bikes are now being officially unveiled at the EICMA show in Milan, and it’s a nice crop so far. Ducati and MV Agusta have made the big splashes today, with MV showing off the 2010 F4, and Ducati releasing the long-awaited Multistrada, as well as the Hypermotard 1100 EVO.
Click on any of the pics below to enlarge.
Let’s start with the 2010 MV Agusta F4. MV Agusta says that they’ve updated the Tamburini design to a more modern look. If by modern, you mean “acutely angled and sort of ugly”, well, I guess they did. There’s lots of improvements under the fairing though, getting an additional 3 HP out of a 3cc smaller 998cc engine, and shedding 22lbs of dead weight. It also comes with a 8-level traction control system, a new chassis, swingarm, and 4-1 exhaust system.
The 2010 Ducati Multistrada has a new 150HP engine pushing 417lbs down the road. The new powerplant is called the Testastretta 11° engine, and comes with a nice slipper clutch, because while a slipper clutch might not be a usual requirement for an on-road enduro bike, it should be for a Ducati.
There will be three variants of the Multistrada:
- The 1200 base model with ABS brakes,
- The 1200S with the new Ducati Electronic Suspension (DES) system and Öhlins suspension components,
- And, the 1200S Touring with all the above and hard bags.
“Hypermotard” always seems like some sort of non-PC epithet you’d call a developmentally disabled dirt-biker, But the Europeans seem to disagree, so we’ll use their unflattering word for the Ducati Hypermotard 1100 EVO. It’s got 95HP and weighs 379lbs, which is 15.5 less than last year. There’s also an EVO SP model. It’s got an upgraded suspension, with an Öhlins setup in back and Marzocchi forks up front.
Finally, Ducati released a poor man’s 848, called the 848 Dark. It should retail for about $1,000 less than the base model of the 848. Nobody seems sure yet how they’ve downgraded it from the “base” model. But if you want a cheap, black Ducati 848, here you go.
Somehow, official photos of new motorcycles have been leaking out prior to the officially scheduled release at the EICMA motorcycle show in Milan.
Here’s a photo gallery of what we’ve gotten so far