A 2WD Hybrid-Electric Motorcycle for the US Military?

In the coming years, US special forces may be riding a tw0-wheel drive, hybrid-electric, multi-fuel motorcycle co-developed by BRD Motorcycles and Logos Technologies. Helping make this project possible is a Small Business Innovation Research grant from DARPA. The goal is to make a single-track vehicle for US expeditionary and special forces that will be nearly silent in operation, yet also capable of traveling long distances. Details on the proposed machine are light, of course, but it sounds like the 2WD dirt bike will be based off the BRD RedShift MX (shown above), and use an electric drivetrain, as well as a multi-fuel internal combustion engine to achieve its goals.

Colin Edwards Will Retire from Racing after 2014 Season

Announcing his decision during the pre-event press conference for the Red Bull Grand Prix of the Americas, Colin Edwards told the assembled press that 2014 would be the Texan’s last season racing a motorcycle. Citing a lack of improvement on his performance in pre-season testing and at the Qatar GP, Edwards decision perhaps answers the lingering question in the paddock of when the American rider would hang-up his spurs after an illustrious career in AMA, WSBK and MotoGP. Talking about his inability to come to terms with the Forward Yamaha, which Aleix Espargaro was able to take to the front of the pack in Qatar, Edwards was at a loss when it came to understanding the Open Class machine and his lack of results.

MSF Updates Its Basic RiderCourse Curriculum

It is no surprise that statistics from the NHTSA show that motorcycle accidents and injuries are on the rise. According to the 2012 Motor Vehicle Crash report published by the NHTSA, motorcycle fatalities for that year rose to 4,957, up seven percent from 2011, while injuries increased 15% to 93,000. While the NHTSA statistics are misleading because the motorcycle category includes mopeds, scooters, three-wheelers, pocket bikes, mini bikes, and off-road vehicles, new riders need every advantage they can afford. The Motorcycle Safety Foundation has taken notice of these statistics and has revised the curriculum for its Basic RiderCourse to include a new Basic eCourse, which students will take prior to in-person instruction.

Yamaha Trademarks “R1S” & “R1M” at USPTO – “YZF-R1M” Trademarked Abroad – But Why?

Are new Yamaha YZF-R1 models coming down the pipe? That’s the question being asked after trademark filings in the US and abroad tipped off Yamaha Motor’s intention to use “R1S”, “R1M”, and “YZF-R1M” for motorcycle, scooter, and three-wheeled purposes. The filings are being taken as hints towards a possible multiple trim levels of the Yamaha YZF-R1 superbike, with the “S” and “M” designations being different spec machines than the current base model. The “S” nomenclature is a popular one in the two and four-wheeled world, though “M” would certainly be a novel designation, outside of say…BMW.

Bell & COTA Create Texas-Themed Limited-Edition Helmet

Continuing its theme of making limited-edition helmets for premier-class US rounds, Bell Helmets has teamed up with the Circuit of the Americas and Chris Wood, of Airtrix, to create a Texas-themed Bell Star Carbon helmet, just in time for COTA’s MotoGP race next weekend. Available only until April 13th, the Bell/COTA helmet features a red, white, and blue flag motif on the front, with both the American and State of Texas flags visible, which then wrap around the rear to merge with a hardwood design, reminiscent of the floorboards in a Western saloon. The helmet is also crowned with a Longhorn cattle skull, which adds to the Texan motif. The specially designed helmet also features a horseshoe, the COTA logo, and the 2014 Red Bull MotoGP of The Americas logo.

Aprilia Mounting a Return to MotoGP in 2016

Towards the end of the 800cc era, MotoGP looked to be in dire condition. Grids were dwindling, factories were reducing their participation, and teams were in difficult financial straits indeed. By the end of 2011, there were just 17 full time entries, Suzuki was down to a single rider, and were about to pull out entirely for 2012. How different the situation looks today. In a recent interview with the official MotoGP.com website, Aprilia Corse’s new boss Romano Albesiano gave a brief outline of their plans. The Italian factory will continue to work with the IODA Racing team for 2014 to collect data on the electronics and tires, which they will use as input on an entirely new project being worked on for 2016.

This Is Pretty Much What the Monster 800 Will Look Like

With the advent of the Ducati Monster 1200, it was only a matter of time before Ducati’s middleweight liquid-cooled “Monster 800″ would be spotted, and unsurprisingly the machines have a great deal in common. The one big difference seems to be that the 821cc Monster gets a double-sided swingarm, which has become Ducati’s new way of differentiating between its big and medium displacement models of the same machine, see entry for Ducati 899 Panigale. With the spied Ducati Monster 800 looking ready for primetime, and a pre-fall launch isn’t out of the question. Giving us an excellent glimpse into what the Ducati Monster 800 would look like, Luca Bar has again used his Photoshop skills to render up images of the still unreleased “baby” Monster.

Photos of the Mugen Shinden Ni sans Fairings

Given the competitive nature of the electric racing realm, its rare to see the big high-power bikes without their fairings, as teams are reluctant to reveal their secret sauce. Debuting the Mugen Shinden San this past weekend in Tokyo though, Team Mugen did just that, giving us a glimpse into the inner workings of the team’s 2013 race bike, the Mugen Shinden Ni. You don’t have to be an electron-head to get excited by these photos, as any race bike with a carbon fiber frame and swingarm is pretty drool-worthy, though the Shinden Ni’s carbon fiber battery enclosure does hide a great deal of the electric superbike’s geek factor. While the sheer size of the battery bike is impressive, it was expected when the Shinden was first announced.

Mugen Shinden San (神電 参) Electric Superbike Revealed

Mugen’s third purpose-built electric superbike for the Isle of Man TT, the Mugen Shinden San, has been revealed in Japan. Campaigning two machines for this year’s TT Zero race, Mugen has John McGuiness and Bruce Anstey at the helm of its “Shinden San” bikes, as the duo looks for a one-two finish in this year’s race. With MotoCzysz not racing at the Isle of Man this year, Mugen is a hot favorite to take the top podium spots, as well as crack the 110 mph barrier for electrics on the historic Snaefell Mountain Course (Mugen is targeting a 115 mph lap). An evolution on the company’s previous designs, the Shinden San fits 134hp — 10hp more than last year, thanks to a new smaller three-phase brushless motor provided by Mission Motors — into its 529lbs bulk.

Trackside Tuesday: The Winning Personality of Jack Miller

Chatting with a couple of NASCAR fans recently, I was reminded that any competition is boring if you don’t care who wins. But if you do care, then even cars driving around in circles can be very compelling entertainment. Those NASCAR fans really cared about how their favorite drivers finished, and not only how they finished in the latest race, but what and how those drivers were doing off the track as well. Those fans had been captured by the personalities of those drivers. One of the things NASCAR does well is sell personalities. All major sports-related businesses do this to some extent, but some organizations do it better than others.

Video: Got Brakes?

06/12/2012 @ 2:49 pm, by Jensen Beeler20 COMMENTS

Video: Got Brakes? Brazilian Superbike endo crash

Whether your Sunday mornings are spent watching the AMA, BSB, WSBK, or MotoGP Championships (bonus points if nodded for each one of those), the image of watching a motorcycle lift its rear-wheel off the ground under heavy braking is surely a common occurrence to you. For amateur racers, the experience can be a bit unnerving at first, and even the professionals sometimes miscalculate the available traction, braking distance, and entry speed associated with such a maneuverer.

Such was the case with one Brazilian Superbike racer, who found himself on the wrong side of an endo, and headed into slower traffic at a corner’s entry point. With his rear-wheel lifted well off the ground, our protagonist makes perhaps the worst decision for the situation: he grabs more front brake. The rest writes itself, and we again thank the proliferation of on-board cameras in modern motorcycle racing for bringing us another tasty clip. Video after the jump.

Source: Two Wheels Blog


  1. jackie says:

    Props to him, honestly. He did that last squeeze to keep from taking out the other rider.

    I think I’d be more than a little freaked to see, and feel, a bike going past me, in the air…upside down.

    Hope the bike was the only thing that was beat up.

  2. skadamo says:

    whoa! gotta agree with jackie. seemed like the best move given the previous 500 ms although I’m not sure he knew in advance the bike wouldn’t land on him.

  3. Grant Madden says:

    If I was the rider in front of him I would go visit the guy in the pits later and thank him for not crashing into me.If he had not hit that front brake a bit harder he would definately taken out the rider in front of him.Big ^^^s to the guy.Takes balls to crash on purpose instead of hitting your fellow racers.

  4. No ABS comments? Really??!

  5. I think that qualifies as being called “the highest side” on the scale of ending up in the dirt. Ouch.

  6. MikeD says:

    GOOD LORD ! That was Brutal ! This guy is truly a gentleman. He totally avoided plowing the guy in front of him.

    The best of wishes to The Endo Man…he surely got banged, no doubt…hope it was nothing serious but is hard to believe after seeing the footage.



    ABS and TC would have saved his Bacon, i want to believe that.
    Although i have a slight doubt that maybe, just maybe, he may have ran into the front rider because of the loose-grab-loose-grab ABS Game Pattern.
    Just my best guessing.

    Any one else with some real world xperience that could share some light into the matter ? (^_^)

  7. I’m totally arm-chair racing here, but it looks like if he was in more control of his bike, i.e. rear-wheel not 3′ in the air, he could have steered around the riders.

  8. Yeah, ABS might have enabled him to avoid the rider and run off track with some semblance of control. I’m thinking that maybe my next bike will have ABS, especially with the hindsight realization that most of my trips sliding down the pavement were the result of overestimating front-end grip under heavy braking. When braking turns into breaking, that’s always a bad thing.

  9. RJ says:

    Here is a better shot of the crash. Look’s eerily similar to Leon Cammier’s horror crash over the mountain at Cadwell Park…

    Seems like he just misjudged it to me.

    Roughly 23:45 of the video.

  10. Pat W says:

    You have to give the guy credit. It’s rare to see and endo
    at a road race. It very good of him not to crash into the
    other rider and his bike.

  11. kkkkkkkk

    this is common here in Brazil…

    Superbike are never thrilling, or demonstrate high level of skill.

  12. Tyler says:

    ABS would not have saved this… ABS would have stopped his braking force to a level which would have meant rear-ending the other guy quite hard…

  13. ABS alone would have netted the same result simply because he had traction. ABS comes into play to keep the tire from locking, and that wasn’t happening. Traction control with pitch control parameters would be required to keep the back wheel on the ground.

  14. Grant Madden says:

    Most racers turn the ABS off so they have real control.Sad thing is that the guy was just going too fast and breaking too late so nothing was going to save him from overshooting the corner.If the other bike had not been there he would have just gone straight ahead and been ok.Looked like plenty of runoff room.Oh well,never mind.These things happen in the heat of competition.Next time he might pay a bit more attention to his breaking points and save himself some embarrasment,pain and money!!

  15. paulus says:

    2 points
    1. The guy was too fast on his approach. Whichever way it could have ended nasty (credit to him for not taking out the other guy)
    2. ABS can take a longer distance to stop you. No skid, but a longer distance…. I would rather take the slide risk and stop in a shorter distance.

  16. Gerard says:

    As many of you have comment. It appears rider #20 was approaching faster than the rider in front of him. I think rider #20 crash may have been caused more by target fixation than anything. He had room to the inside which may cause him to run wide in the corner approaching but he could have made it…. Also with ABS since no wheel locked-up/skidded not sure if they would have prevented this crash.

  17. Grant Madden says:

    Gerard,true the guy could have gone up the inside but then either the rider in front would have had to go straight ahead or they both would have gone down and I,m pretty sure that he wouldn,t have see the approaching bike in time so CRASH !!

  18. Ben says:

    Absolutely brutal. Left leg broken badly, you can see it flopping around in the full video posted above. Don’t like seeing this kind of thing, you probably should learn more about a serious crash like this before posting it with a comic headline.