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.

Brough Superior SS100 – Bringing Back a Legendary Brand

11/06/2013 @ 9:42 am, by Jensen Beeler21 COMMENTS

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The legendary brand of Brough Superior is making a resurgence, as the British marques debuted today at the 2013 EICMA show its first all-new street bike in decades, the Brough Superior SS100.

A bit of high-tech meets old school, the Brough Superior SS100 draws heavily from the classic lines of the original Brough Superior SS100 before it, though the modern-day machine incorporates some clever innovations and contemporary pieces.

Built in an astonishing 90 days, the Brough Superior SS100 project was able to meet such an incredibly short schedule due to the fact its 88° v-twin engine, which had been designed via a collaboration between Boxer Design and famed engine tuning house Akira, had been in development for several years and initially planned for the ill-fated Voxan company.

With the 997cc motor built to be a stressed member of a frame, Boxer Design was able to build the Brough Superior SS100 around the engine, and the result is quiet stunning.

At first glance, one might think that they are looking at a motorcycle from an older era — a 1925 Brough Superior SS100 with girder forks and drum brakes, for example.

But upon closer example though, one can see that Boxer Design cleverly built a Fior-style front-end, which BMW riders will know better a Hossack or Duolever setup. The modern front-end allows the braking forces and suspension travel to be separated, allowing a rider to push the brakes further into a turn than with a telescopic fork setup.

Using an magnesium alloy for the fork legs, and titanium for the suspension triangle, the reincarnation of Brough Superior is true to the original, and is using the most advanced engineering and materials available on the market for its work.

One of our more favorite elements along this vein is the Brough Superior SS100′s front disc brakes. Built with the intention of giving the appearance of drums brakes, but closer inspection reveals a four-disc Beringer braking setup. This allows the Brough Superior SS100 to have ample braking power, while still retaining a design that is close to the classic SS100.

The headlight is a full LED unit, which is a nice piece of tech, though it is probably our one issue with Boxer Design’s choices for the Brough Superior SS100. An aftermarket piece that has been around the block on everything from Harley-Davidson cruisers to Zero electric bikes, the LED headlight chosen doesn’t fit with the rest of the machine that drips exclusivity and premium refinement.

Still overall, the new Brough Superior SS100 is a true work of art. Fans of the brand can enjoy that the classic lines and aesthetic of the original SS100 remain, while the company is continuing to be true to the brand’s original reputation of smart and unique motorcycle designs, built the demands of each individual customer.

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Source: Brough Superior


  1. Ken C. says:

    Not my cup of tea, but I bet it will go over well with the steampunk crowd.

  2. AK says:

    Awesome bike, will consider if price is decent.

  3. IMO Looks very good. And since I haven’t seen this after market light before and have no previous association with it, I think it perfectly fits the overall design. Maybe such a part should be exclusive to the model, but if I didn’t know what you’ve written I would think it is.

    I can’t figure out the deal with the fuel tank though. Is that a backbone style trellis frame and two separate tanks on the side of it ?

  4. booska says:

    Great homage to the original and they didn’t muck it up with too much tech or hid it with the use of black. The headlight option doesn’t bug me as much as the wheel design and the front fork is very interesting. I wonder how it handles? I imagine, this thing isn’t going to be cheap with a Titanium frame and the vintage brand name.

    Kostadin – looks like it’s a dual tank unified by a top cover? See pict 11.

  5. Gutterslob says:

    After the recent barrage of insect/bug-faced nakeds, this is a breath of fresh air.
    Not on my radar, but good luck to them.

  6. Jimmyjohn says:

    Jay Leno will look good on his.

  7. Brian Z says:

    To me, this looks like something Shinya Kimura would have built if he had a hand in this.

  8. starmag says:

    Gutterslob says:
    November 6, 2013 at 11:27 AM

    After the recent barrage of insect/bug-faced nakeds, this is a breath of fresh air.

    Took the word right outta my mouth.

  9. Sean says:

    OK, someone here must know: does “Brough” rhyme with “through”, “though”, or “tough”?

  10. 2ndclass says:


  11. +5 points for 2ndclass.

  12. irksome says:

    Certified old guy here, reveling in a design that doesn’t remind me of a child’s Transformer toy.

  13. MikeD says:

    This thing looks SWEET ! Don’t know if it’s $100k sweet but sweet none the less.

    For some reason reminds of a steam locomotive, is it supposed to ? (o_O) ?

    The cylinder heads look very similar to the one on the Offenhauser race engines.

    I would dress myself like a WWI fighter pilot and just cruise on this baby ’til the wheels fall off.

    Where’s that Sugar Mama when u need her . . . lol.

    Very cool homage to the original article. Thank goodness it didn’t stray too far from the original.

    Like Irksome said:

    No Transformer here, lol.

    Those front brakes are really something. It took me a while but i was able to understand what someone mentioned about the “middle” pad not moving.
    I guess the rotors float quite a bit to be able to compensate for middle pad wear (wich i suppose is faster than the outer one for having 2 active faces ? ).
    Are these really as powerful as it’s design implies it to be ? or is it all for the sake of being different and “period look” similar ?

  14. paulus says:

    I really like it. It’s honours its heritage.

  15. Norcalboy says:

    The brakes look strikingly similar to the new Beringer 4 disc setup…….


  16. smiler says:

    Though the bike looks great it shares absolutely nothing with the original Brough and as such it is jsut a complete (Abercrombis & Fitch). It has no similar engioneering solutions, it is not even made or registered in the UK but Austria.
    Buy the rights and made a motorcycle. Sad they cannot establish their own name.

    Yet people highlight this as Brough brought back, in what world is this true.

  17. paulus says:

    It’s another model choice for motorcyclists. An alternative to the mainstream. Another brand with a pair of wheels on the road… surely that is a good thing.

  18. PD says:

    Mmm… Yummy…

  19. TwoWheelLoo says:

    YES!!! Something classic that looks good with heritage.

  20. Gary says:

    Give me a f’in break!

  21. Norm G. says:

    re: “Using an magnesium alloy for the fork legs”

    see bologna.