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.

2013 Honda CBR500R – Priced at $5,999 for the USA

11/12/2012 @ 12:49 am, by Jensen Beeler6 COMMENTS

2013 Honda CBR500R   Priced at $5,999 for the USA 2013 Honda CBR500R 635x476

More news on the 2013 Honda CBR500R, as details about Honda’s 498cc paralle-twin budget sport bike continue to unfold. A part of a larger effort to saturate the markets with 500cc-class motorcycles for the price sensitive, we can now confirm that the Honda CBR500R is one of three bikes (checkout the Honda CB500F & Honda CB500X) in the genre that will be coming to the USA next year.

Based around  a modest liquid-cooled, fuel-injected, DOHC, 180° crank, 54 rwhp, parallel-twin motor for the US market (tiered-license countries will see a 47hp machine), the Honda CBR500R is a sporty-styled no thrills sort of motorcycle. A graduation step from the Honda CBR250R, it makes sense then that the CBR500R has twice the cylinders, and thus twice the displacement — but it doesn’t come with twice the price tag.

At $5,999 for the American market, the 2013 Honda CBR500R commands less than a $2,000 premium over the $4,199 CBR250R. That price will go up to $6,499  though if you want the optional ABS package (and we know you do). Click after the jump for full tech specs.

Of note is the fact the the Honda CBR500R has the same cylinder bore size as the Honda CBR600RR (67mm), though features a much longer stroke (66.8mm), making for a very square cylinder architecture. This should mean that while the CBR500R won’t be blowing doors off with its peak power figures, the 428 lbs (curb with a full tank of fuel) bike should have some good drive out of the corners.

With Pro-Link rear suspension in the rear, hardcore riders will be disappointed with the 2013 Honda CBR500R’s preload-only rear shock, and sealed 41mm forks, but then again…this isn’t a motorcycle for the hardcore. A sole 320mm wave-style brake disc is up front, and is mated to a twin-piston Nissin caliper.

With a seat height of 30.9 inches, the Honda CBR500R should fit most sizes, and you can get it in Red, Black, or the HRC White/Blue/Red scheme — the ABS model is Honda Red only. Expect it at your Honda dealership in April of 2013.

2013 Honda CBR500R Technical Specifications:

ENGINE
Engine Type 500cc liquid-cooled parallel-twin
Bore And Stroke 67.0mm x 66.8mm
Induction PGM-FI with 34mm throttle bodies
Ignition Computer-controlled digital transistorized with electronic advance
Compression Ratio 10.7:1
Valve Train DOHC; four valves per cylinder
DRIVETRAIN
Transmission Six-speed
Final Drive O-ring-sealed chain
CHASSIS / SUSPENSION / BRAKES
Front Suspension 41mm fork; 4.8 inches travel
Rear Suspension Pro-Link single shock with nine-position spring preload adjustability; 4.1 inches travel
Front Brake Twin-piston caliper with single 320mm wave disc
Rear Brake Single-caliper 240mm wave disc
Front Tire 120/70-17
Rear Tire 160/60-17
DIMENSIONS
Rake 25.5 degrees
Trail 103mm (4.05 inches)
Wheelbase 55.5 inches
Seat Height 30.9 inches
Curb Weight 428 pounds (Includes all standard equipment, required fluids and full tank of fuel, & ready to ride)
Fuel Capacity 4.1 gallons including 0.7-gallon reserve
Miles Per Gallon TBD*
OTHER
Model Id CBR500R
Emissions Meets current EPA standards. California version meets current CARB standards and may differ slightly due to emissions equipment.
Available Colors Black, Pearl White/Blue/Red, Red
WARRANTY
One Year Transferable, unlimited-mileage limited warranty; extended coverage available with a Honda Protection Plan.

Source: American Honda

Comment:

  1. Tim says:

    Hello A&R,

    Any rumors of the 2013 Honda RC30/RCV1000 being unveiled at the 2012 EICMA on Thursday?

  2. Nothing gets unveiled on Thursdays…it’s like a zoo on the public days.

  3. Luke says:

    Anyone know the torque rating on this machine?

  4. Truehondafans says:

    Hi all you will be very disappointed with CBR500R as a sports bike. It have lousy front suspension (not inverted type) and useless digital display. The sub-frames looks very cheap. The CBR500R comes with a low compression cylinder and it comes with low horse power( I expect 60HP with a 500cc). After I seen the real CBR500R at the Thai expo I really feel very down because I am expecting more from Honda even it was manufacture in Thailand plant like the NSR150RR( nice 2-stroke small Cc). I myself have ridden NSR150RR, CBR400RR, NSR250 MC28 and RVF400 NC35. It was a true disappointment from Honda comparing the Bikes that I have ridden and it’s weight to power ratio! Get CBR600RR instead don’t waste time because when you ride a sports bike you will eventually go down to track CBR500R needs heavy modifications just to have some fun!

  5. Bernz says:

    Truehondafans

    Your missing the point with the CBR500R, it’s not designed as a sports bike or aimed at the sports bike market, thats why Honda have the CBR600RR and 1000RR Fireblade. This bikes aimed at people coming off of 250cc’s and stepping into the bigger bore for the first time. As a starter bike its a very nice machine and does what Honda intended it to do and NO no ones going to buy this bike for track day’s. Look at the handle bar’s to start with and you’ll also notice the lack of rebound and compression damping suspensions all that would be expected on a sports bike which this is not. I’ve owned both the 600RR and 1000RR and this bike is another very nice addition from Honda and aimed at a different market not the sports market.

  6. Bernz says:

    Truehondafans

    Your missing the point with the CBR500R, it’s not designed as a sports bike or aimed at the sports bike market, thats why Honda have the CBR600RR and 1000RR Fireblade. This bikes aimed at people coming off of 250cc’s and stepping into the bigger bore for the first time. As a starter bike its a very nice machine and does what Honda intended it to do and NO no ones going to buy this bike for track day’s. Look at the handle bar’s to start with and you’ll also notice the lack of rebound and compression damping suspensions all that would be expected on a sports bike which this is not. I’ve owned both the 600RR and 1000RR and this bike is another very nice addition from Honda.