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.

2014 Aprilia Tuono V4 R APRC ABS – Now with Bosch 9MP ABS, 167 Horsepower, & More Letters in Its Name

07/17/2013 @ 6:15 pm, by Jensen Beeler20 COMMENTS

2014 Aprilia Tuono V4 R APRC ABS – Now with Bosch 9MP ABS, 167 Horsepower, & More Letters in Its Name 2014 Aprilia Tuono V4 R APRC ABS 19 635x536

Now 167 hp strong, those crazy Italians in Noale are upgrading there already stout Aprilia Tuono V4 R APRC for the 2014 model year, and for bonus points are adding an ABS package along with those extra ponies on the streetfighter’s peak horsepower figure.

Integrating the Bosch 9MP dual-channel ABS package, which is mated to Brembo M432 brake calipers up-front, Aprilia has made the 2014 Aprilia Tuono V4 R  a bit more stable while braking on questionable road conditions — keeping the bike inline with its competitors.

With a bevy of changes coming to the Tuono’s 999.6cc V4 power plant to boost power, we also see that Aprilia has included its second-generation APRC electronics package to the motorcycle, making it easily the most tech-savvy machine in its category.

Other changes include also a larger fuel tank (4.9 gallons), and a new seat for better street performance and ergonomics. It’s not clear if Aprilia USA will price the 2014 Aprilia Tuono V4 R at its previous $14,999 MSRP, or will continue its aggressive pricing at $13,999, like the company has done with the 2013 models.

Having ridden the 2013 model, we can attest to the class-leading performance of the Aprilia Tuono V4 R APRC, and seeing the updates given here by Aprilia for the 2014 model, we can only imagine the bar has been set even higher by the Italian company.

Easily the superior machine to the Ducati Streetfighter 1098 (and Ducati Streetfighter 848), it will be interesting to see what BMW can bring to the party with its often spied BMW S1000RR-derived naked bike.

Modifications to the 2014 Aprilia Tuono V4 R Engine:

  • Revised timing system
  • Fixed intake ducts now 20 mm longer.
  • Crankshaft flywheel with increased inertia for improved smoothness and overall balance.
  • Shorter ratios in the first three gears
  • Maximum power dropped to 11,500 rpm

2014 Aprilia Tuono V4 R APRC ABS – Now with Bosch 9MP ABS, 167 Horsepower, & More Letters in Its Name 2014 Aprilia Tuono V4 R APRC ABS 07 635x508

2014 Aprilia Tuono V4 R APRC ABS – Now with Bosch 9MP ABS, 167 Horsepower, & More Letters in Its Name 2014 Aprilia Tuono V4 R APRC ABS 11 635x437

2014 Aprilia Tuono V4 R APRC ABS – Now with Bosch 9MP ABS, 167 Horsepower, & More Letters in Its Name 2014 Aprilia Tuono V4 R APRC ABS 13 635x590

2014 Aprilia Tuono V4 R APRC ABS – Now with Bosch 9MP ABS, 167 Horsepower, & More Letters in Its Name 2014 Aprilia Tuono V4 R APRC ABS 14 635x477

2014 Aprilia Tuono V4 R APRC ABS – Now with Bosch 9MP ABS, 167 Horsepower, & More Letters in Its Name 2014 Aprilia Tuono V4 R APRC ABS 15 635x555

2014 Aprilia Tuono V4 R APRC ABS Technical Specifications:

Engine:

  • Engine type: Aprilia longitudinal 65° V-4 cylinder, 4-stroke, liquid cooling system, double overhead camshafts (DOHC), four valves per cylinder
  • Bore and stroke: 78 x 52.3 mm
  • Total engine capacity: 999.6 cc
  • Compression ratio: 13:1
  • Maximum power at crankshaft: 167 HP (125 kW) at 11,500 rpm
  • Maximum torque at crankshaft: 111.5 Nm at 9,500 rpm
  • Fuel system: Airbox with front dynamic air intakes; 4 Weber-Marelli 48-mm throttle bodies with 4 injectors and latest generation Ride-by-Wire engine management.
  • Choice of three different engine maps selectable by the rider with bike in motion: T (Track), S (Sport), R (Road)
  • Ignition: Magneti Marelli digital electronic ignition system integrated in engine control system, with one spark plug per cylinder and “stick-coil” type coils
  • Start up: Electric
  • Exhaust system: 4 into 2 into 1 layout, single oxygen sensor, lateral single silencer with ECU-controlled bypass valve and integrated trivalent catalytic converter (Euro 3)
  • Alternator: Flywheel mounted 450W alternator with rare earth magnets
  • Lubrication: Wet sump lubrication system with oil radiator and two oil pumps (lubrication and cooling)
  • Gearbox: 6-speed cassette type gearbox: 1st: 39/15 (2,600); 2nd: 33/16 (2.063); 3rd: 34/20 (1,700); 4th: 32/22 (1,455); 5th: 34/26 (1,308); 6th: 33/27 (1,222); Gear lever with Aprilia Quick Shift electronic system (aQS)
  • Clutch: Multiplate wet clutch
  • Primary drive: Straight cut gears and integrated flexible coupling, drive ratio: 73/44 (1,659)
  • Secondary drive: Chain: Drive ratio: 42/16 (2,625)
  • Traction management: APRC System (Aprilia Performance Ride Control), which includes Traction Control (aTC), Wheelie Control (aWC), Launch Control (aLC), all of which can be configured and deactivated independently.

Chassis:

  • Aluminum dual beam chassis with pressed and cast sheet elements.
  • Steering Damper: Sachs
  • Front suspension: Sachs upside-down “one by one” fork, stanchions 43 mm. Forged aluminum feet for radial calliper mounting; Completely adjustable spring preload and hydraulic compression and rebound damping; Wheel travel: 120 mm
  • Rear suspension: Double braced aluminum swingarm; mixed low thickness and sheet casting technology; Sachs piggy back monoshock with completely adjustable: spring preload and hydraulic compression and rebound damping. APS progressive linkage; Wheel travel: 130 mm
  • Front Brakes: Dual 320 mm floating stainless steel discs with lightweight stainless steel rotor with 6 studs. Brembo monobloc radial callipers M432 with 4 horizontally opposed 32 mm Ø pistons. Sintered pads. Axial pump master cylinder and metal braided brake hoses.
  • Rear Brakes: 220 mm diameter disc; Brembo floating calliper with two 32-mm  isolated pistons. Sintered pads. Pump with integrated tank and metal braided hose.
  • ABS: Bosch 9MP, adjustable on 3 maps, featuring RLM strategy and disconnectable.
  • Wheel rims: Cast aluminum wheels with 3 split spoke design: Front.:3.5”X17”; Rear: 6.00”X17”
  • Tires: Radial tubeless, Front: 120/70 ZR 17; Rear: 190/55 ZR 17 (alternative: 190/50 ZR 17; 200/55 ZR 17)

Dimensions
:

  • Max. length: 81.2 inches
  • Max. width: 31.4 inches (at the handlebar)
  • Max. height: 42.9 inches
  • Min. height from the ground: 4.9 inches
  • Saddle height: 32.8 inches
  • Wheelbase: 56.8 inches
  • Trail: 4.2 inches
  • Steering angle: 25°
  • Dry weight: 408 lbs
  • Tank: 18.5 liters (4.88 gallons)

Source: Aprilia

Comment:

  1. TexusTim says:

    love it…man aprilla has got there act together when everyone else is fumbling around these guys are scoring big time. great pricing, awsome software and a hotted up motor why buy a ducatti….ooops

  2. Gutterslob says:

    So what does a 9 megapixel ABS do, exactly?

  3. kev71 says:

    Love it! Wish Aprilia had a decent dealer network in NE Ohio.

  4. TexusTim says:

    call AF1 big aprilla dealer here in central texas…great guys and known there stuff on these bikes..on craigs list here in austin there is a 2012 rsv4-r up for sale with like 800 miles and 2013 software update http://austin.craigslist.org/mcy/3872795775.html tempting right ?..Im so torn I could rub all my money together but then I couldnt even afford tires or a trackday so I would be out on the street learning to ride it ? alas I must waite a little longer

  5. Damo says:

    Love the Tuono, most beastly naked bike ever produced.

    The only thing that stopped me from getting one were the horrible fuel range, highly restrictive service intervals, lack of pillion ergos and the fact that aprilia still hasn’t sorted the expanding gas tank issues.

    Aprilia is really seems to be gaining ground in the market, I hope they continue to do so. They make such high performance and gorgeous bikes, they just need to sort some service issues and improve their dealer network.

    (I loved my old aprilia RSV Mille with every inch of my being, but those had Austrian Rotax engines in them, hence their relatively high reliability.)

  6. Alex says:

    This or the 1290 SuperDuke, or the S1000RR Naked….hmmmm 2014 will be quite the competitve year for nekkids….YAY!

  7. akatsuki says:

    Can’t get over the looks in front, would have to tear off that headlight immediately.

    I’d also like to see the nakeds actually not just be slightly detuned sportbikes, but frankly some changes in ergos back to standards.

  8. DC4GO says:

    Looks tons better in white than the yellow never liked the yellow Tuono.

  9. Faust says:

    The reliability horror stories, coupled with the dealer parts availability horror stories are the major reasons I’m hesitating. The price points are spot on, especially if you want a 2012 RSV4R, but I’m still uncertain if Aprilias are a good investment. Ducati is definitely safer. More dealers, more parts availability, lower cost to own. Some prolonged Internet searches through Aprilia owners forums have been enough to make me think twice.

  10. Andrey says:

    Fast but unattractive.
    How anyone could think this looks better than a Ducati StreetFighter is beyond me. Still, each to their own..

  11. MikeD says:

    Hey BMW, Aprilia called, they said to step up your game on the upcoming naked S1000RR or you won’t have a chance at being the FUGLIEST NAKED to have rolled on tarmac in the whole history of the Motorcycle and the lovely comments following.

    HOLLY %^&* MAN, THAT IS ONE UGLY BIT%# ! UGLY , UGLY, FUGLYYYYYYYYYYYYY !

    Ok, i think i got that out of my chest.
    Truly a real shame, besides look she’s one spanking piece of rolling art and machinery. . . and the sound , OH, THAT HEAVENLY ENGINE SOUND !

    @TexusTim:

    That’s one sweet deal. . . (>_<)'

    @Alex:

    SUPER DUKE FTW !

    @Akatsuki:

    LMAO. Yeah, that "Praying Mantis head" headlight must GO ! Kill it with fire !

    @Andrey:

    The StreetFigther is the current runner up for the tittle of " The Ugliest Naked in the History of Motorcycles".

    Guys, can someone with the skills @Photoshop perform a " Virtual Rhinoplasty " and slap a melting headlight from a Brutale, a regular round one from a Grizzo and the Bug Eye doubles from the Speed Triple to the front of this Beast ?

    I'm dying to see what something similar to a "decent" headlite would do for this "looks challenged" otherwise amazing motorcycle.

  12. Bruce says:

    Faust,

    Not sure what reliability horrors you refer to, but I was a long time owner of Hondas, and in more recent years have owned ten Aprilias. Including a ’10 RSV4 and a ’13 Tuono V4. I have had mo more issues with Aprilia reliability than with Honda. Troll any forum by brand and you will find the complainers, while the majority of happy owners are out riding. My bikes are ridden frequently, and tracked often. If they were going to break, I’d know it.

  13. Grimey Benson says:

    @Bruce

    No offense, but one data point does not make a trend. I love my aprilia, but the bike was fussy as hell.

    The new aprilias have absurd service intervals and I am not trying to call you out, but ten aprilias? Seriously? Either they are breaking fast, you are trading them in before they get mileage on them or you have a giant stable.

  14. Damo says:

    Can we please not compare Honda/Yamaha reliability to aprilia reliability in the same sentence? They are not even remotely close.

    I LOVE Italian bikes, but they have all types of oddities that you just wont run into with the big four from Japan. That being said I have no regrets owning my Ducati and didn’t when I had my aprilia (until I crashed it and couldn’t get parts, OEM or otherwise)

  15. Bruce says:

    Grimey,

    No offense taken, I understand your skepticism, but it is what it is. I have two Moto Guzzis, three Aprilias and a Husqvarna in the garage right now. All ’08 or later models. I enjoy touring, commuting, sport, track, and dual-sport riding. I ride practically every day, rain or shine, as long as the temperature is above 35 degrees. I am meticulous with service. But my bikes are not show pieces or trailer queens. They get ridden, and the Aprilias I track-ride get ridden hard. The only serious issues I’ve had with Aprilia reliability were with an ’07 SXV 550, which grenaded at a track day, after many hard miles, and last month with a broken valve spring on my ’10 RSV4 track bike, which also has many track miles on it.

    For comparison, a friend’s BMW S100oRR had the same issue with a broken valve spring recently. In fact they both broke at the same track event in the same session. Go figure. The only difference was that Aprilia got me my parts quicker and the problem sorted faster than his BMW dealer. My bike was back on the track two weeks later. He is still waiting for parts.

    Aprilia’s dealer network sucks. Their marketing department sucks. But their parts availability has improved immensely in recent years and their products are great. If you want to read why I switched from Honda to Aprilia, read Jensen’s article: http://www.asphaltandrubber.com/oped/honda-rc51-concept-nicolas-petit/

  16. Damo says:

    @Bruce

    I am sure you already know, but the only place I could regularly source aprilia parts from was AF1 Racing in Austin TX and I live in New England.

    Funny I am an RC51 ower as well (2005 Sp2, currently for sale btw) which I bought after I owned my RSV Mille. I love the RC51 to death and if Honda was still manufacturing V-twin sport bikes, I would have never ran into the open arms of Ducati.

  17. Hard pressed to think of another bike I would rather have as my daily rider. Just the sound of the engine would keep me happy in perpetuity.

  18. j.davis says:

    Aprilia’s 6,200 mile (10,000 kilometer) service intervals can hardly be considered “absurd.”

  19. MikeD says:

    @J.Davis:

    Whats are we talking about here ?

    Oil Changes ? I think is totally fine.

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