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.

2011 Triumph Tiger 800 XC Breaks Cover

10/14/2010 @ 7:53 am, by Jensen Beeler16 COMMENTS

2011 Triumph Tiger 800 XC Breaks Cover 2011 Triumph Tiger 800 XC leak 635x475

The first official photo of the much hyped 2011 Triumph Tiger 800 XC has hit the internet, finally showing us clearly what the off-road oriented adventure bike will look like in its final form. Clad with knobbie tires, tubes, and a 21″ front wheel, the Triumph Tiger 800 XC will differ from its road warrior cousin the Triumph Tiger 800, which will have a 19″ front tire, sans tubes. Triumph has already told us that the 2011 Triumph Tiger 800′s will have a steel frame, and you can expect the larger motor to have more horsepower and torque compared to the Triumph Daytona 675.

In the foreground of the photo we can see the stock Tiger 800 XC, but in the background we get a glimpse at some of the aftermarket parts for the adventure bike. A high-mounted Arrow exhaust could have been assumed available without these photos, and of course there will be the additional brush guards and belly pans. Expect to see a variety of luggage options from Triumph as well.

Noticeably absent from these shots is the sign of ABS pick-ups, although the angles and zoom of the photo makes confirmation of that absent feature incredibly difficult, and it could after all be an optional package. It would be peculiar if the 2011 Triumph Tiger came without ABS, as it seems every bike released this year comes with the budding technology, including the 2011 Triumph Speed Triple.

Source: HFL


  1. Keith says:

    Gee I’ve always been told ABS on a dirt road, fire trail was a STUPID idea and judging by the tests I’ve done with a GMC jimmy and a Grand AM it’s true! Oh it’s true! ABS sucks the south end of a north bound hippo and you stop WAY long. no thanks, no abs for this luddite EVER.

  2. Rolf says:

    From my experience, most people with “all road” bikes are running it on paved roads 90% of the time, so ABS might not be a very bad idea. Just switch it off when you do dirt, or deal with it. I have a Speed Triple (’09 model) and I really think it sucks that ABS is not available on my bike, because on tarmac, you want ABS.

    Triumph should at least make it available as an option to all bikes, so customers have a choice.

  3. MTGR says:

    ABS is for people who can’t work a brake lever properly.

    Traction Control is for people who can’t twist the throttle properly.

    People who can’t work a lever or twist a grip likely have issues with balance as well so they should stick to 4 wheeled cages anyway.

  4. Jake Fox says:

    Yeah, that must be why professional motorcycle racers at the highest level of their sport use both. They must not know how to ride a motorcycle.

  5. Keith says:

    +10 with what jake said. ABS has a time and place or so I’m told.

  6. irksome says:

    Traction and braking controls “at the highest levels of their sport” are contentious, depending on the racer; some like ‘em, some don’t. But using that as an argument for us mere mortals is irrelevant; MotoGP bikes would spit each and every one of us off and eat us with pancakes, with or without said controls.

    I’ve never had the opportunity to ride a bike with ABS; not sure I’d really want to either. I’ve managed to survive riding for 35 years without and have severe Luddite tendencies as well. But hey, to each his own.

  7. MikeD says:

    Watch out world, i(MTGR) have NO ABS and NO TC on my bike, im THE GREATEST rider EVAAAAR! OH, THE HUMANITY!

    Do u want me to stroke your ego some more, lube is aditional. lmao.

  8. Fredrik says:

    Looking at the following pictures:
    1) wireframe: http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4036/5079239421_6afbc7d29b_b.jpg
    2) spy shot: http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4039/5079240157_d8932bc220_b.jpg

    I am fairly certain that there will be an ABS option.

  9. Jenny Gun says:


    It’s interesting that both those photos are of the road-oriented model.

  10. Fredrik says:

    @Jenny: Regarding the wireframe picture you are of course correct – my mistake. However, I’m not so sure regarding the spy shot.

    Why? The bike on the photo seems to have the longer mud guard directly under the headlights (as opposed to the short one fitted on the road-oriented model). It also looks like it might have the spoke rims as opposed to the cast rims fitted on the road-oriented model (but it’s slightly hard to make out). What about the tire type on the spy shot? Well, either we’re seeing an XC with regular road tires fitted or maybe the exposure time of the photo makes the knobbie tires look like street tires.

  11. rick says:

    another triumph junker——the triumph dealer still cant fix my 06 scrambler, keeps stalling going down the highway–dealer says they dont know whats wrong, dealer cant get parts from england——forget it buy some other more reliable brand

  12. Rolf says:

    Did Triumph hire a new designer? The new Speed Triple looks like cheap plastic, and so does this new Tiger. Any news on when this guy is going to understand how a Triumph is supposed to look? Or is the finance/marketing involved in the *cough* design and discovered that plastics are cheaper to produce? It’s ugly and cheap looking (my personal opinion ofcourse)

  13. Fredrik says:

    As it turns out both models will be available with switchable ABS as an option. http://triumphadventure.com/ now has the full specifications for both models online.

  14. karl says:

    Just took delivery of my new 2010 tiger 1050 , no abs, great bike, but if these new 2011 tigers came with a 1050 motor I would be slitting my wrists right now as they look sweeeet! Good job Triumph .

  15. Bert says:

    Gotta have ABS for those situatons on road where the idiots pull out in front of you. It has to be switchable on a DS since is brutal off pavement. I want one of these bad…..

  16. Keith says:

    @bert if you need ABS when someone pulls out in front of you then you’ve already screwed up and WILL crash. Everyone else just uses one of the several escape points they have preselected. 8^) I’ve yet to have issue with the many morons that have LT’d me. Swerve and scoot, swerve and maintain or brake and swerve….abs never comes into the picture.