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.

Even More Leaked Photos of the Ducati 1199 SuperLeggera

10/19/2013 @ 5:35 am, by Jensen Beeler11 COMMENTS

Even More Leaked Photos of the Ducati 1199 SuperLeggera Ducati 1199 Superleggera photo leak 03

The upcoming Ducati 1199 Superleggera continues to leak onto the internet in photo form, though this time we’re getting a little help from Ducati Chile, with the distributor listing some key figures along with its images: 205+ hp in racing trim & 166 kg at the curb. Confirming what we saw in a previous photo, the Superleggera will come decked out in a very “Desmosedici” red and white Ducati Corse livery.

In addition to these studio-quality photos, we also dug up what looks to be the SuperLeggera’s weight reductions (after the jump), listed by part and in comparison to the Ducati 1199 Panigale R. In total, the figures show the Supperleggera tipping the scales at 342 lbs dry, roughly 22 lbs less than the Panigale R.

Depending on whether Ducati Chile’s 166 kg curb weight figure is with or without fuel, the Superleggera could be a far cry from the 40 lbs we heard earlier this month (not to mention a lower horsepower figure than we were told). Still, Ducati’s new dream machine lives up its name, and is super light when compared to its homologation-ready cousin. More photos are waiting for you after the jump.

Weight Reductions by Part:

  • Carbon Fiber Fairings and Assorted Pieces: -1.0kg / -2.2 lbs
  • Magnesium Alloy Monocoque Frame: -1.0kg / -2.2 lbs
  • Carbon Fiber Rear Subframe: -1.2 kg / -2.7 lbs
  • Titanium Exhaust System: -2.5kg / -5.5 lbs
  • Forged and Machined Magnesium Wheels: -1.0kg  / -2.2lbs
  • Lithium-Ion Battery: -2.0 kg / -4.4lbs
  • Custom Front Fork and Rear Shock: 1.4 Kg / -3.1 lbs
  • Superbike Pistons: -194 g / -.4 lbs
  • Tungsten-Balanced Crankshaft: -396 g / -.9 lbs
  • WSBK Chain and Rear Sprocket, and Various Carbon Fiber Parts, Fasteners, and Machined-from-Billet Components: -1.3 kg / -2.9 lbs

Even More Leaked Photos of the Ducati 1199 SuperLeggera Ducati 1199 Superleggera photo leak 05

Even More Leaked Photos of the Ducati 1199 SuperLeggera Ducati 1199 Superleggera photo leak 01

Even More Leaked Photos of the Ducati 1199 SuperLeggera Ducati 1199 Superleggera photo leak 02

Even More Leaked Photos of the Ducati 1199 SuperLeggera Ducati 1199 Superleggera photo leak 04

Even More Leaked Photos of the Ducati 1199 SuperLeggera Ducati 1199 Superleggera photo leak 06

Source: Ducati Chile (Facebook)


  1. JD says:


  2. Tim M says:

    @JD-LOL! Yeah, it’s the repulsion/compulsion thing. That could definitely enable some inappropriate behavior. Maybe I DO need some man cave decor.

  3. Norm G. says:

    clear fairings please, I need to show the world my GOLDEN FRONT BONE…! (crazy dutch accent) wait, what…?

  4. “I need to show the world my GOLDEN FRONT BONE…!”

    ROTFL – Man, that is just soooo wrong.

    I don’t think I’d ever buy one, but I think the Panigale (both the big and the baby) are collectively the most beautiful bikes I’ve ever seen.

    ‘Cept the Japanese release, with its hang-out-the-back stick-on exhaust. Thatsa ruin a good thing.

  5. ZootCadillac says:

    Personally I think it is a thing of absolute beauty. Sure, it’s a Panigale when all said and done and the colour scheme is 2006 factory colours but there is very little wrong with that in my book and I think it will compliment this http://bit.ly/18GBN5a in the garage very nicely.

    I hear that Bologna is a little disappointed ( read : furious ) about the amount of information that has become public ( mostly from America ) as it kind of puts a dampener on the official launch at Eicma. Personally I think it’s naive to expect that a model of this importance would not be widely discussed. But hey ho.

    So here’s how it has gone down. Certain Ducati owners and VIP-listed potential customers got letters direct from Bologna informing them of the model and the opportunity to purchase. At the same time the dealer network were advised and they also contacted potential customers or informed Italy of the same.
    These people then registered their interest via the dealer and italy received the details of all registered parties. Won’t go into detail but i know that this was well over-subscribed within days.

    Biologna will then be informing those invited to purchase a bike ( that process was delayed ) that their interest has been successful. The first tranche of invites going exclusively to D16RR owners who submitted an interest form.
    Once those are out of the way and deposits confirmed, the rest of the interested parties will be sorted and hand picked to receive an invite to purchase. It won’t be a lottery, people will be ‘vetted’ for suitability as Ducati want the owners to be a kind of ambassador for the brand.

    I’m not sure but I think that actual numbered bikes will be allocated once deposits are taken. Deposits will be expected in very short order and are 20% of retail purchase price ( a figure that’s still supposed to be in the bag so I won’t discuss it here ).

    Bikes will be made to order but don’t expect any to be still sat on the drawing board awaiting a buyer. As of yet no rolling bike exists with the one in the recent leaked picture being a display mock up.

    Bike will be launched officially at EICMA. I won’t be going but I have immediate family there with the company and I’ll be asking her to take a set of pictures for me. ( access will be both during and after public access hours ). If you don’t have anyone there Jensen I’ll send you a pack of pics.

    I will see the bike in person a little later at the MCN Motorcycle Live event at the NEC UK ( biggest bike show in the UK and probably second only to the Milan show in Europe ) as Ducati are having an after-hours VIP party to display the bike, much the same as they did a couple of years back with the Panigale.

    I’m told that it’s unlikely that we’ll be able to sit on the bike but they said that about the Tricolore too and look how that turned out ;) http://bit.ly/1gu8w50

    So I’ll also get you a full set from that, if you would like them, Jensen.

    Kerb weight. My understanding is that the 166kg figure is wet, no fuel. That’s 1kg off the WSBK entry. Given the amount of extra weight needed to make the bike road capable, I think that’s pretty impressive. Yes, it’s not the numbers previously spoken of but I think I said in a previous post that some of the details being bandied around were unsubstantiated rumour. The 40lbs number was one such rumour and I think I know where it came from.

    Seen a lot of discussion about the colours and I simply don’t comprehend it. Was discussing it with a dealer the other day. If you plan to ride this bike, and we were both of the same mind that it must be ridden, although I think he just wants it to turn up often at his showroom at weekends ;), then you will be taking off the carbon and putting on race plastics for track or maybe some after market carbon for the road. Then you can have it any colour you like. Even if you want to keep it bone-stock original but don’t like the paint job? Wrap it. It’s done all the time, is inexpensive and more importantly, it’s reversible.

    right, that’s enough for now. 4am here in Blighty. Good job I have the Moto2 race close to going off at Philip Island.

  6. ZootCadillac says:

    I do hope that my comment ( rather long and containing a couple of links so has gone into the mod bin ) comes out of moderation. I put a little effort into it ;)
    last and only time I had a comment go into moderation for similar reasons, it never made publication :(

  7. meatspin says:

    every year, or couple of years, a manufacturer always seems to put out an “it” bike. This is the one.

  8. Anvil says:

    Very, very nice. But not for $65K.

  9. Zoot, all those links angered the spam filter gods.

  10. ZootCadillac says:

    yes Jensen. Aware that was going to happen but felt it necessary to include them. Thanks for sorting it out. makes me feel a little better after the worst #motogp race experience ( outside of the obvious dark times ) I can recall in the modern era.

  11. Hans Dreuger says:

    12.500 deposit down… got confirmation of the delivery. (300 have been sold up to last monday, when I placed the order)