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News

Motorcycle Thefts Drop

This seems like good news: The National Insurance Crime Bureau reported today that motorcycle thefts declined by 13% in 2009, with a total of 56,093 stolen last year, compared to 64,492 the previous year.  The most popular bikes for thieves were Hondas, with 13,688 reported thefts, or 24.4% of… Continue reading

California gets some company

Via Motorcycle Daily, it looks like California will no longer stand alone in the US in allowing lane-splitting.

So kudos to the Arizona legislature for honoring the Goldwater legacy of personal liberty tempered by individual responsibility with Arizona House Bill 2475. Introduced by Harley-Davidson-riding Representative Jerry Weiers (say “wires,”… Continue reading

Harley-Davidson Racing

Vance & Hines and the AMA Pro Racing series have teamed up to create a brand new racing series for the Harley-Davidson XR1200.  Granted, the XR is the only Harley that can be said to have any pretensions to being a racing bike…of some kind.  A&R has… Continue reading

2010 Yamaha XT1200Z Super Ténéré (UPDATED)

After months of speculation and teasers, Yamaha has finally revealed the new XT1200Z Super Ténéré.  It seems like quite a bike.  The 1200cc parallel-twin powerplant puts out…well…we don’t know.  Yamaha hasn’t released HP or torque figures.  But with a compression ratio of 11:1, I’m thinking we’re probably somewhere in the vicinity of 110HP and 80-ish lb-ft of torque.

Like the R1200GS, it sports a full set of aluminum panniers, and other goodies for going on the road–or perhaps off it.

The full specs for the shaft-driven, 574lb, adventure bike are below the fold.

The only question is, will this bike be released in the US, or will it only be available to our cousins in the Old Country?

UPDATE: The folks at Asphalt & Rubber come through in the clinch with the output of the ST’s engine:

With 1,199cc under the hoood, the XT1200Z Super Ténéré is aiming its sights on the class-leading BMW R1200GS and new-comer Ducati Multistrada 1200. The powerplant features a parallel twin motor with four valves per cylinder, and makes 108hp @ 7,250 RPM and 84lbs•ft @ 6,000 RPM.

Pretty much what I thought it’d be.

Continue reading

Aprilia Recalls RSV4s

The Aprilia RSV4 has been one of this year’s most eagerly awaited motorcycles.  It seems like it’s only just hit the showroom, however, and Aprilia is already issuing a serious recall.  Apparently, the problem–which hasn’t yet actually occurred in any of their motorcycles–requires replacing the entire… Continue reading

Kawasaki Police C-14?

I wasn’t aware that Kawasaki made the Concours 14 in a police version, but I stumbled across this story tonigh, which says the city of Mesa, AZ will be shelling out a cool half-million to completely replace its current fleet of 1000Ps with C-14s.

Historically, the department has used a… Continue reading

Try This with your Road Glide

Kain Saul has converted a Harley-Davidson Xr1200 to Dirt use–including a heavily modified suspension–taken it out into the Australian countryside…and done a back-flip on it.

Pretty cool.

And, yes, I do know that Chuck Carothers did the same stunt in Czechoslovakia.  Or the Czech Republic, or whatever the… Continue reading

Times Are Tough All Over

The US isn’t the only place where motorcycle sales have been dismal this year.  ACEM, the Motorcycle Industry Association in Europe, is reporting that, as of September, year-over-year motorcycle sales in Europe are down by 27%.  Here’s the ugly, ugly chart:

ACEM Sales 2002-2009 (September)

ACEM Sales 2002-2009 (September)

That’s definitely… Continue reading

No 2010 Suzukis in the US

Hell for Leather is reporting that Suzuki will not be importing any of their 2010 model motorcycles to the USA.  Due to the slowness of US motorcycle sales, Suzuki has seen their sales decline to 434k motorcycles for the first three quarters of this year, compared to 772k… Continue reading

Free Erik? Done.

As of this afternoon, Harley Davidson announced that Erik Buell has left the MoCo, and is opening a race shop.  His new venture, Erik Buell Racing LLC, will specialize in creating race-use only 1125r motorcycles under a lciense from Harley-Davidson.

As such, he will no longer be an employee of Harley-Davidson, and will once again be directly involved in the motorcycle racing world.

The fascinating question is whether or not this is just a stop-gap venture to take up his time until February 2011, when his no-compete contract with H-D expires, and he is free to join up with another motorcycle company to begin building bikes for the rest of us again.

The full press release from Harley-Davidson is below the fold.

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Continue reading

Pass the Popcorn

The big difference between current MotoGP and WSB racing is that MotoGP racing is limited to 800cc bikes, while World Superbike runs literbikes.  The reason for the MotoGP switch to 800cc bikes was that the literbikes were just too powerful and dangerous…or some such nonsense…for MotoGP racing.

Well,… Continue reading

Motorcycle Sales: Dismal

The most recent sales figures for motorcycles don’t look good at all.  The industry is taking a shellacking unlike anything I’ve seen since ’81-82.  As of the third quarter of this year…

…motorcycle sales totaled just 434,370 so far this year, down from 771,950 in the first… Continue reading

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