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 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.

Living the Dream – A Photographer’s Story: Qatar

Imagine if just for once you didn’t have to stick to your usual nine-to-five job. Instead you were able to do the one job you’ve always wanted to do, but any number of things (it’s usually money) have stood in the way. This is exactly the situation I found myself in six months ago when the company I had worked at, for the last 14 years, decided to close, making everyone redundant. This decision did not come as a surprise; in fact, I had been hanging around for the last few years hoping that it would happen, as I had a plan. Fast-forward six months and I have just finished photographing the opening round of the 2014 MotoGP World Championship in Qatar. The plan is starting to unfold.

Fuel or Electronics? Where Are Nicky Hayden & Scott Redding Losing Out on the Honda RCV1000R?

The news that Honda would be building a production racer to compete in MotoGP aroused much excitement among fans. There was much speculation over just how quick it would be, and whether it would be possible for a talented rider to beat the satellite bikes on some tracks. In the hands of active MotoGP riders, the gap was around 2 seconds at the Sepang tests. Nicky Hayden – of whom much had been expected, not least by himself – had made significant improvements, especially on corner entry. The difference in performance and the big gap to the front has been cause for much speculation. Where are the Honda production racers losing out to the Factory Option bikes?

Three Moto Guzzi V7 Models Coming to America for 2013

09/26/2012 @ 9:16 am, by Jensen Beeler17 COMMENTS

Three Moto Guzzi V7 Models Coming to America for 2013 2013 Moto Guzzi V7 range 635x423

For the new model year, Moto Guzzi is bringing three variations of its V7 line to the United States with includes the 2013 Moto Guzzi V7 Stone, 2013 Moto Guzzi V7 Racer, and 2013 Moto Guzzi V7 Special. Based around the Italian company’s revised 750cc 90° longitudinally mounted v-twin motor, all three models also sport a cardan-shaft drive and double-cradle “Tonti” frame, for that classic Guzzi retro look.

The three Moto Guzzi V7 models should be popular with riders who are looking for a throw-back aesthetic, with a bit more modern engineering. That being said, Moto Guzzi has struggled for traction in the US market, due in part to an inadequate supply/support chain, but also because of some confusing marketing and segment placement.

While the Piaggio Group subsidiary struggles to find its identity, we think the company should further explore bikes like the V7, which provides a unique alternative to the standard modern-bike fare, and creates a bit of distance between Moto Guzzi and the rest of the Piaggio Group line-up.

2013 Moto Guzzi V7 Stone:

Three Moto Guzzi V7 Models Coming to America for 2013 2013 Moto Guzzi V7 Stone 635x536

A completely new version designed to appeal to younger riders, complete with a competitive price point; trendy, agile, easy to customize with an array of accessories. The V7 Stone features the new and more powerful, 750cc, 90-degree V-Twin motor and new lightweight, six split-spoke alloy wheels. The simple color scheme combined with the six split spoke wheels enhance the chrome accents and make the Stone the ideal foil for a wide variety of Moto Guzzi accessories. The matte black or pure white tank and the chrome accents make the V7 Stone a showstopper on the road or at any café, bike night or local hot spot. The 2013 V7 Stone is available in Matte Black and Pure White. MSRP is $8,390 and will be available in mid-October at Moto Guzzi dealerships across the United States.

2013 Moto Guzzi V7 Racer:

Three Moto Guzzi V7 Models Coming to America for 2013 2013 Moto Guzzi V7 Racer 635x471

The 2013 V7 Racer is an ode to café racer motorcycles from the ‘50s and ‘60s with the performance of a modern machine. The V7 Racer has a new 750cc, 90-degree V-Twin motor with increased torque, horsepower and throttle response for an enjoyable ride. The new V7 Racer features a myriad of unique style attributes—from a chrome fuel metal tank studded with red Moto Guzzi badges and finished with a handsome leather strap, to a suede leather seat with an aerodynamic seat cowl and ‘70s-style racer number plates. The V7 Racer is perfect for an adventurous rider with an eye for design and a wild streak. The 2013 V7 Racer is available in Chrome. MSRP is $9,990 and will be available at Moto Guzzi dealerships across the United States in early-October.

2013 Moto Guzzi V7 Special:

Three Moto Guzzi V7 Models Coming to America for 2013 2013 Moto Guzzi V7 635x573

This is the closest to the original 1969 V7 Special, not only because it shares its name with the first V7 signed by Lino Tonti, but because it faithfully cites the same riding philosophy – that of a touring bike with a sophisticated fit and finish and uniquely “Guzzi” engine character. The new engine, significantly stronger in driving torque and especially in maximum power, which is increased by 12%, is perfectly suited for medium range touring and contributes to low fuel consumption and greater tank capacity with 5.8 gallons for an average range of 310 miles.

Just like its predecessor, it is wrapped in a two-tone paint scheme and equipped with aluminum spoked wheels reducing unsprung weight and improving handling. The V7 Special proves a worthy touring machine with bags and windshield, accessories which go well with the overall design of the V7 Special. The V7 Special is available in White/Red Metallic and Yellow/Black Metallic. MSRP is $8,990 and will be available in quarter 1 of 2013 at Moto Guzzi dealerships across the United States.

Source: Moto Guzzi


  1. Gritboy says:

    Fun retro bikes. Love the 300+ mile range on the V7 Special.

  2. Franxou says:

    I really like the V7 racer but I would not live with it. From the other two, while I like the two-tone paint from the classic, it’s the stone that would win my heart. I’m absolutely sure the solid wheels will make it a better ride than the spoked wheels from the classic, but even then I absolutely love spoked wheels… The shaft drive is a real plus for me because I don’t like taking care of a chain. It’s not supposed to be long but I’m not good at it, it takes me a while, it’s messy, I must bring two cans of stuff and a little brush, I don’t like that.
    But I will not get anywhere near these bikes until I see a serious bonneville and V7 comparo. And not the T100 bonnie, the standard one or maybe the SE model.
    That and I’m still on the lookout on the used market for a good GT 1000 even though I don’t really have the money right now…

  3. Gary says:

    Come on Moto Guzzi, offer the darn thing in a 1200 alreeady!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. Iwan says:

    So, what’s 2013 about them? This is just the model as it’s already sold this tear, isn’t it?

  5. Johndo says:

    Just love the V7 Stone….

  6. Iwan, you Europeans have been having all the fun with the V7. The news item here isn’t something new with the bikes, it’s that they are coming to the USA.

  7. Richard Gozinya says:

    About damn time. Now if we could only get a V12 LeMans, but I won’t hold my breath.

  8. Johndo says:

    Yeah the V12 LeMans is one of the nicest concepts I’ve seen…At around 14000$ or less I’d pick one up for sure.

  9. Damo says:

    Kinda pricey for something that is much slower than any Bonneville model and it a bit more maintenance intensive. I mean the Bonnie is over a grand less (almost two grand less than the top model) and has about 30 more horsies.

    (Admittedly the Guzzi is MUCH better looking.)

  10. Franxou says:

    @Damo, Is it seriously that much less powerful?
    I know that the bonneville is fast enough to be fun but is still slow compared to a lot of bikes with its 67hp/53ft-lb… Right now I have an old vulcan750 that is dumb fast for a cruiser (weird, right?) and it’s spec’d less than the bonnie… But if the guzzi feels any less powerful than the bonnie, it’s going to be as slow as a royal enfield?
    Otherwise for looks it’s everyone’s guess, I prefer the bonnie and in fact I believe the GT1000 is leagues better than those two.

  11. “Is it seriously that much less powerful?”

    I think the V7 Racer pops out 48 ponies. That’s about as understressed as you can possibly make it.

    I want to like these. I really do. Alas, what I want is something that looks like a Daytona 1000 or MGS-01. A “Daytona V7″, even with 48 ponies, would be sorely tempting. Make it beautiful. Make it handle well on real-world roads.

    And, for the love of god, keep the word “trendy” out of the damn ad copy!

  12. Damo says:


    Here is the break down:

    Triumph Bonneville (Thruxton Trim): 60.7hp, 0-60 = 4.2 seconds, 1/4 mile = 12.94, 119mph top speed.

    Moto Guzzi V7 Racer: 38.7hp, 0-60 = 5.5 seconds, 1/4 mile = 14.35, 104mph top speed.

    That would put the Bonnie in the “way faster” range.

    (The GT1000 Duc is light years better looking I agree, it also leaves these two in the fuggin dust performance wise.)

  13. @Damo:

    Is that 38.7 hp measured at the wheel? The US specs out at 50 ponies @ 6200 rpm. The Canadian model runs 48.8 hp @ 6800 rpm. (Odd differences, aren’t they?)

    In any case, these aren’t 100+ hp/litre beasts by any stretch of the imagination.

  14. Damo says:


    That is actual tested wheel horsepower taken directly from Cycle World October 2012 issue.

  15. @Damo:

    Thanks for the clarification. Seems the drivetrain really soaks up a lot of the good stuff.

    It’s worth noting that 14.35 quarter matches what an RD400F Daytona Special did back in 1979. Progress! ROTFL

  16. Damo says:


    Yeah I know, right?

    At least on the Bonnie you can still out run a decent crop of cars in a straight drag.

    In terms of modern retro the Ducati GT1000 still takes the prize: 91Hp (at the crank), 0-60 in 4.0 seconds, 1/4 mile = 11.9

    I still have no idea why Ducati stopped making it, such hot little cycle.

  17. Franxou says:

    well Ducati doesn’t give a rat’s ass about heritage except for their L-twin configuration, so as soon as the bike didn’t sell well enough it was the end. It is sad because it really was a classic with modern performance, and a good example can still fetch “new bonnie” prices.

    So to sum it up, I like the bonnie (except the T100), I want to like the V7stone and V7racer but hhmmmmm no, and the GT1000 is the best in its class, though not in prod anymore…

    Any though about the Royal Enfield racer? I sat on one at the bike show last year and I really like it, it felt really small and I like a big single thumper, but the 50′s technology means the performance should be worse than the V7?