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.

Coming Soon: Honda Gold Wing F6C

11/08/2013 @ 2:02 pm, by Jensen Beeler14 COMMENTS

Coming Soon: Honda Gold Wing F6C honda evo 6 concept 635x444

The force is strong with the Bothan Spy network today, as we have received news that Honda is set to debut a naked-style power cruiser, named the Honda Gold Wing F6C – a noticeable nod to a similar Honda motorcycle, the Honda F6C Valkyrie.

Though we don’t know what the final form of the F6C will be like (the Honda EV 6 Concept is above), it is said to be the bridge between the Honda CTX1300 and Honda Gold Wing F6B, the 2014 Honda Gold Wing F6C is a light and low cruiser in style, similar to the CTX1300.

However Gold Wing F6C will also be like the Honda Gold Wing F6B in that it will be based around the Gold Wing’s 1,832cc six-cylinder engine, which will make and underwhelming 108hp at 5,500 rpm and an overwhelming 116 lbs•ft of torque at 4,000 rpm.

Despite being built off the Gold Wing platform, the Honda Gold Wing F6C is a whopping 154 lbs lighter than the Honda Gold Wing GL1800, which should bring it in around 750 lbs at the curb. This would mean that the F6C, with its naked approach, will also be 100 lbs lighter than its fully-faired sibling, the F6B.

The Honda Gold Wing F6C’s chassis is made from an aluminum mult-box twin-spar frame, with the GL1800 engine mounted as a stressed member. The subframe has also been made to make for a very low passenger seat height, all in an effort to maintain rider stability at low speeds, and to improve handling at higher velocities.

The aluminum swingarm is of a single-sided design, with the front-end of the Honda Gold Wing F6C dramatically stretched out with its 30.5° rake and 121.5mm trail. The F6C will be equipped with a dual-channel ABS braking system, with dual 310mm discs up front, and a single 316mm disc in the rear.

Expect to see the 2014 Honda Gold Wing F6C officially debut in a couple weeks’ time. Could the F6c look like the Honda EVO 6 Concept, pictured above, which debuted in the 2007? Only time will tell.

Source: Bothan Spies

Comment:

  1. Ian John says:

    Looks bad ass with the sportbike tail.
    More a reason it wont look like that in production form.
    Baah humbug….well they do it too us all the time.
    KTM you excused.

  2. DWolvin says:

    Reminds me of the BMW concept6, but with the bonus of maybe being made… ;)

  3. Paul McM says:

    Evo 6? Yeah baby. Me gusta mucho. I’m not into this category of bike, and I question the need for a flat six in a boulevarder like this, but DAM that’s a hot design. Nice theft of the up-angle “thrice pipes” exhaust tips from MV Augusta. The headlight module looks modern without being insect-like. I like the large v-shaped radiator “grill”. Rather than try to hide the water cooling make it a prominent styling feature — like on a classic hot rod. The elliptical mirrors and old-style grips add a nice retro touch. But the real deal-maker are those intake runners and sweetly curved headers. You got a six down there Pal? Let everyone know it!

    I hope the FC6 borrows as much as possible from this EVO 6 concept bike. Why mess with a good thing?

    I admit such a bike isn’t rational transport, nor will it go around a track as well as a 600cc sportbike. But I like the idea of a modern day Hot Rod bike — something with the bad-ass spirit of the V-Max.

  4. jkedsnake says:

    Could this be the answer to the diavel?

  5. Norm G. says:

    i remembered being floored when this bike concept first debuted.

    wait, is there an undercurrent of “renaissance” battling for control inside of Honda…? :)

  6. Norm G. says:

    re: “Could this be the answer to the diavel?”

    more like did this inspire ducati to create the diavel…?

  7. MikeD says:

    Always good too hear news like that BUT being that we are talking Honda “QUEEN OF BLAND AND SAFE” here i’m going to “severely check my feelings at the door” and not hold my breath at all ’til we see what they have coming.

    If said bike looks anything like the F6B or the MUTANT/Transvestite CTX1300 they can take it and SHOVE where the Sun don’t shine.

    If it does look A LOT similar to the EVO6 then we have something to look forward to own one day (pre-owned, of course, LOL).

    P.S: I’m still waiting for this to happen.

    http://image.motorcyclistonline.com/f/newsandupdates/motorcycle_news/122_1009_2011_honda_vfr1200t/34189914/122_1009_02_o%2B2011_honda_vfr1200t%2Bright_side_view.jpg

    Oh, BMW . . . GET THAT BROOM STICK OFF YOUR LOWEST BACK and build us a crazy looking K1600R or S variant, STOP wasting such superb engine ONLY on your NON-affordable sport tourers.
    Don’t forget to make standard that new fancy up and down quick shifter from the new 2014 R1200RT.

  8. Darel P says:

    I bought the 1998 Valkyrie and Corbinized it extensively, looked great but no whiplash at the throttle. In 2010 I moved to the Yamaha VMAX and dropped another $10k in modifications…… if Honda gets serious, there are many like me that would spend money for an EV6 badass muscle bike and continue to accessorize/modify for years. +1 on the beast!

  9. Leo fisher says:

    Wow! As an owner of three previous GL models through the years! this is! without a doubt! a stunning tour de force in design. Yes, the exhausts look a little like the MV but some say that imitation is the most sincere form of flattery. The flow, seen on the horizontal axis, between the intakes and exhaust is something to visually admire. Some have already commented about the radiator a la the old hot rods and I admit it looks ballsy and in your face. With a six speed transmission, this venerated six cylinder would almost be complete. This bike will not be towing a trailer or spending it’s hours cruising at 80 loaded down. It needs decent suspension, a bunch more ponies and the six speed box and then Honda would have some bragging rights. Take it up to two liters Honda and I’d buy one in a heartbeat since I have an affinity for the old gal!

  10. Kevin White says:

    I don’t understand why Honda wouldn’t show this at the Italian show, but would unveil it a couple of weeks later. Wasn’t the Italian show THE place and time for unveilings?

  11. MikeD says:

    @Kevin:

    Maybe they are shooting for an unveil at the Tokyo Motor Show or maybe the NEC Show on the U.K ?

    @Darel:

    How do u like that V4 hearted Gorilla of a motorcycle ? and i mean that in the nicest of ways. I have always been a power monger & fan of the VMAX, specially the last Gen (too bad it drinks gas like a blind well and doesn’t have overdrive or a 6th Gear) but still one heck of a Machine.
    I like the Valkyrie a lot too but i just can’t get pass that cartoonish looking front wheel/tire combo . . . same problem i have with the Rocket III.
    The small 120/70-R18 front tire is one of the reasons i like the VMAX so much. Makes it look like a PROPER Hot Rod.

    @Leo:

    Yes the individual intake runners and the headers makes wonders for the look’s department of an otherwise “FLAT” engine (pun intended). Let’s see if they make it to production.(fingers crossed).
    Punch it out to 2.0L ? ! 6 speeds ? ! You are a mad man, i like the way you think. (big grin).

  12. Bingo, the Tokyo Motor Show is in two weeks. The Japanese OEMs always keep something special for that, even if it’s just concept bikes.

  13. William Goodman says:

    Well I always been a fan of the wing. But I have to tell you the last time Honda come out with a bike like this that was suppost to be the fastest thing around Kawasaki came out with the KZ 1300 big 6 to answer the CBX 6 and it kick the CBX’x butt. The KZ1300 in 1979 had more hp. and power to the ground then most of your bike of today still. I know I own one of these bike and there is not much out there that will out horse it 34 years later. Honda if your going to go this way get it right this time and put enought power in the bike to out last every one for years to come.

  14. smokin'joe says:

    Far better than the current release. I kind-of like it.