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?

Bimota BB3 — Italian Design, German Performance

11/06/2013 @ 7:53 am, by Jensen Beeler25 COMMENTS

Bimota BB3    Italian Design, German Performance Bimota BB3 EICMA 2 635x421

Today marks a formal new beginning for Bimota, as the boutique Italian firm has recently been acquired by Daniele Longoni and Marco Chiancianesi. Helping to commemortate that event, Bimota debuted at the 2013 EICMA show its new S1000RR-powered Bimota BB3 sport bike.

Using the 999cc four-cylinder superbike motor found on the BMW, the Italians quote 190hp for the Bimota BB3, the same as what the Germans have been able to coax from the S1000RR. Weight is 394 lbs dry, also the same as the BMW S1000RR, so on paper the two bikes appear to be quite similar. In person though, they are anything but.

Bimota has applied the same general design aesthetic to the BB3 that it has done with its current DB line of Ducati-powered motorcycles. A steel trellis frame is mated to alloy plates, which comprises the chassis, while choice bits from Brembo, Öhlins, and OZ abound.

The build is clean and efficient, with smooth lines running from the tidy tail piece all the way to the front of the BB3. From the rear, the Bimota BB3 is quite a sight to see, from the front though, the bike feels quite bland, and reminiscent of Suzuki’s current design direction.

Walking away from the unveiling, we were left with the feeling that the headlight feels vaguely familiar, though you will have a hard time pin-pointing which Japanese street bike has been lifted from. Meanwhile, the air intakes feel like a complete afterthought. Still an attractive machine, but it makes us long for Bimota’s of yore.

While the Bimota BB2 was a huge departure from Bimota’s previous work, and you either loved it or hated it, the BB3 is a very conservative journey down Bimota’s recent past — an interesting situation for a brand that has been anything but conservative since its inception. At least, that is our take on it. What’s yours?

Bimota BB3    Italian Design, German Performance Bimota BB3 EICMA 28 635x421

Bimota BB3    Italian Design, German Performance Bimota BB3 EICMA 1 635x421

Bimota BB3    Italian Design, German Performance Bimota BB3 EICMA 6 635x421

Bimota BB3    Italian Design, German Performance Bimota BB3 EICMA 8 635x421

Bimota BB3    Italian Design, German Performance Bimota BB3 EICMA 10 635x421

Bimota BB3    Italian Design, German Performance Bimota BB3 EICMA 13 635x421

Bimota BB3    Italian Design, German Performance Bimota BB3 EICMA 15 635x421

Bimota BB3    Italian Design, German Performance Bimota BB3 EICMA 21 635x421

Bimota BB3    Italian Design, German Performance Bimota BB3 EICMA 23 635x421

Bimota BB3    Italian Design, German Performance Bimota BB3 EICMA 27 635x421

Technical Specifications for the 2014 Bimota BB3:

Engine type: 4 cylinders, 4 stroke, 16 valves -Displacement: 999 cc
Bore x Stroke: 80 x 49.7 mm
Compression ratio: 13,0:1
Fuel System: Electronic injection
Battery: Li-Ion extra light battery
Driving assistant: Anti-wheeling, traction control, ABS, electronic shifter
Cooling system: Water-cooled
Emissions: Euro 3
Power: 193 CV / 142 kW at 13000rpm
Torque: 112 Nm / 11.42 kgm at 9750 rpm

Gearbox : 6 gear
Clutch: Multi-disc with antislip system
Final drive: Chain

Frame type: Steel trellis and light alloy side plate
Swingarm: Light alloy fully machined, adjustable pivot position
Rake fork angle: 25°
Front suspension: Telescopic fork Ø43mm, adjustable in pre-load, rebound and compression damping
Rear suspension : Monoshock, adjustable in pre-load, rebound and compression damping
Front rim: 3.50 x 17” aluminum forged
Rear rim : 6.00 x 17” aluminum forged
Front brake: Double disc Ø 320mm, Brembo calipers Freno posteriore – Rear brake: Single disc Ø 220mm
Front tyre: 120/70-17”
Rear tyre: 190/55-17” or 200/55-17”

Overall Length: 2075mm
Overall Width: 1130mm
Overall Height: 830mm
Seat Height: 820 mm
Wheelbase: 1430 mm
Dry Weight : 179 Kg
Fuel Tank Capacity: 17 liters

Source: Bimota; Photos: Jensen Beeler / Asphalt & Rubber – Creative Commons – Attribution 3.0


  1. SteaminSteven says:

    Me thinks the headlight is from a GXR from a few years back…. The machine sure doesn’t look like their typical uncommon design language….

  2. Bob says:

    “Walking away from the unveiling, we were left with the feeling that the headlight feels vaguely familiar, though you will have a hard time pin-pointing which Japanese street bike has been lifted from.”

    2004 Suzuki GSX-R 1000

    Bimota motorcycles were special at one point. Bimota, in the past, made a name for itself by taking reliable, proven motors and making them go around corners really quickly. Something the Japanese had a difficult time doing, long ago. Since the early 90′s, though, Japan has been producing some of the best handling bikes available. Bimota’s old formula is no longer relevant.

    The BB3 is an overpriced S1000RR, with the silhouette of an ’08 Fireblade, and the face of Gixxer. The BMW is a looker, it’s priced well, and no one can argue that is one of the most capable sport bikes every made. So, what’s the point?

  3. Paleochocolate says:

    The headlight is from a hayabusa. Sure looks like it.

  4. Paleochocolate says:

    oh, so 2004 gsx-r1000 it is.

  5. budspencer says:

    What a shame for such a bike to re-re-re use a headlight that we have seen for the first time almost 10 years ago..i believe the headlight is a quite expensive piece to engineer and produce, but they could have used something more modern..

  6. Nico says:

    A modern motor with 90s/early 00s design – a step backward. Disappointing for Bimota, disappointing for Italian design.

  7. Looter says:

    Bimota just phoned it in when designing that front end. You guys sure the new owners didn’t change the name to Bipolarmota? Like Jensen stated, nice arse but Oh…that butterface!

  8. budspencer says:

    @Paleochocolate, the headlight is not from Suzuki, but from the bimota Db5, produced in 2004..that’s typical italian practice, i believe ducati 900ss/888 headlight was from a fiat car.

  9. budspencer says:

    I’m not 100% sure but i think the guy behind the new bimota’s designs is this one

  10. Mr.X says:

    Design engineering for a headlight reflector can run into the hundreds of thousands of dollars, and someone has to write that check.
    And a Bimota with a fork? Still, though, nice aluminum pieces.

  11. Paleochocolate says:

    @budspencer, i personally believe the Db5 looks more elegant with that headlight than the BB3.

  12. Viceroy_Fizzlebottom says:

    “While the Bimota BB2 was a huge departure from Bimota’s previous work, and you either loved it or hated it”

    I actually thought the BB2 prototype looked really cool. For better or worse nothing else on the market looked even remotely close to it. All of Bimota’s designs are a bit of an acquired taste most of the work has a polarizing effect.

    I would say shut up and take me money, but I don’t have that much. I’m guessing this bike is going to start around $30K or more new.

  13. Hugo says:

    They should have let Sergio Robbiano design this bike because his Bimotas had a lot character regarding design (DB5, SB8, 500) this has nothing to do with the “old” Bimotas…it has the same power and weight so what is the point? Like Mr.X said, maybe with a FFE it would have been different…

  14. starmag says:

    I can understand the premium for bragging rights of having a visually unique Tesi, (if you can live with the turning radius), but how is this worth more than a stock S1000RR again? A trellis frame you mostly can’t see and isn’t highlighted? Bimota better think of something quick.

  15. Superlight says:

    Disappointing. I expect Bimota to push the design frontiers more than this, with a unique exhaust treatment, wild LED head/tail lights, unique wheels and maybe a rearview camera instead of conventional mirrors – something the big OEMs wouldn’t take the time to do.

  16. Norm G. says:

    re: “I actually thought the BB2 prototype looked really cool.”


  17. MikeD says:

    I liked the previous design better with the wierd headlights and it’s retro look.

    I would rather buy and ride a ” Bill The Cat ” faced S1000RR with the Motorrad Team Blue, White & Red paint scheme than this Italian Gixxer 1000.

  18. MikeD says:

    Upon closer inspection and blowing up the photos:

    We can call this bike all kinds of nicknames and make fun of it but it’s execution, level of hardware, fit and finish is very good.

    I would make sweet love to that swing arm, fork, calipers, side plates, OZ Wheels, (re-badged Akra Can ?) . . . (~_^)

  19. Norm G. says:

    re: “The BMW is a looker”

    well… it’s a good first effort, but lets not get crazy.

  20. Norm G. says:

    re: “it’s execution, level of hardware, fit and finish is very good.”

    solution: combine the 2 designs. that first design actually wasn’t finished. i believe it still used the stock frame and the swing arm was just a cover over the stocker.

  21. “….Weight is 394 lbs dry, also the same as the BMW S1000RR”

    How did Bimota not cut weight compared to the stocker considering their bike is a solo seat? Changing a sub frame is an easy way to loose weight, so is their chassis heavier?

  22. Norm G. says:

    alright, i’m just gonna come out and say it. bimota, this version SUCKS A$$. I don’t know who told you the BB2 wasn’t on point…? but they lied to you. you hear me…? they LIED to you. it was nearly perfect in the classic sense of bimota.

    I’m keen on it for two reasons. #1, I’ve never really warmed up to the s1000′s mk-1 mod-0 styling and since it’s a still a new model in the grand scheme, it’s perfect for a remake (“fan-summers” have only ever seen ONE version of it). #2, the BB2 reminds me of a modern YB7, a bike I still lust after. BB3…? keep the chassis, bin the fairings. they’re rubbish.

    the modern ducati stuff like the DB7 and the Tesi 3 were great, but to advance the brand you’ve gotta diversify and get back to producing kit from other manufacturers, and the s1000 is the way to go. however, making it look like the Moto2 racer is not.

    oh and speaking of Moto2 racer, stop screwing around and produce something nice and retail that as well. Moto2′s been around, what, almost 4 years now…? and nobody’s done it yet. hellloo…!? mcfly…!? YOU can be the first.

    end transmission.

  23. DFR says:

    Great power plant we all know! But, IMHO, an absolutely pathetic design. What were they thinking? Who are they designing for? Please don’t answer these questions. I don’t wanna know!

  24. NeilS says:

    New guys buy company, want to increase sales/turnover, dumb down brand? Sales fall. Onlookers unsurprised.
    All the really fast bikes are better than their owners and everyone knows it. Got one.
    Bimota need a Supermono alike or Moto2 otherwise they will just wither on the vine.

  25. Valendino says:

    Why would anyone buy this bike, its styling is horrible compared to other Bimota’s. If you want an ultimate Italian bike with ultimate Italian styling and the ultimate engine, just go and buy an Aprilia RSV4 Factory, it has more than proven itself in WSBK and MotoGP, it is a full Italian package engine and all!