Photos from 250+ Feet up COTA’s Petrolsaurus Rex

Standing 251 feet above Turns 16, 17, & 18, the COTA observation tower provides a bird’s eye view of just about every tun on the circuit, if you can stomach its subtle sway in the wind and clear-glass floor at the precipice. Officially called by COTA as the “Observation Tower” – it really needs a better name for casual conversation. We’ve heard COTA Cobra used a few times with some lovely alliteration, but the structure has always struck us as less snake-like, and more like a big dinosaur — we’re going to use the name “Petrolsaurus Rex” until I hear something better, or COTA sends me a cease and desist order. I climbed to the top of Petrolsaurus Rex (read: took the elevator) during the MotoGP Warm-Up session, and snapped a few photos in the process. Enjoy!

MV Agusta F3 800 Ago Now Officially Debuts

We already announced the bike last November, and brought you a bevy of hi-res images of the special edition machine. Although now that we think of it, MV Agusta never released anything on this Giacomo Agostini tribute motorcycle — better late than never, right? Back at the EICMA show launch, where the MV Agusta F3 800 Ago was first shown to the public (and Agostini himself), the Varese brand promised us two additional motorcycle launches in early 2014. MV Agsuta made good on half that promise with the Dragster 800 model, hopefully this Ago special edition isn’t the other half of that statement, and MV Agusta still has something waiting in the wings. That being said, the Tricolore & Gold paint scheme is gorgeous, and looks even better in person.

Isle of Man TT Gets TV Deal for Australia & USA

Want to watch the Isle of Man TT from the comfort of your non-British TV, but haven’t been able to in the past? A new TV from the Isle of Man’s Department of Economic Development will do just that. Inking a new TV contract with North One TV, the Isle of Man TT will be televised in the American, Australian, and of course British markets, making it easier than ever to watch the iconic road race. With a five-year contract with the Velocity Channel in the US, the American cable channel will show seven one-hour race shows. Each segment will air within 24hrs of each race, and be tailored for the American market.

Castiglioni Denies Fiat Buyout of MV Agusta Is in the Works

After reporting 22% growth in Q1 2014, Giovanni Castiglioni had some closing words about the rumors that Fiat could acquire MV Agusta — a popular rumor that has been swirling around in the press the last two months. Denying outright that MV Agusta had, or was in, talks with the Fiat-Chrysler group about an acquisition (some reports linked even MV Agusta to being bought by Fiat-owned Ferrari), Castiglioni said the Italian company solely was focused on building growth, and building motorcycles. “Moreover, I’d like to take this opportunity to deny rumours circulated by the media over the last few days concerning supposed negotiations vis-à-vis the sale of a share of MV Agusta to the Fiat-Chrysler Group,” said Giovanni Castiglioni, the President and CEO of MV Agusta.

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.

Honda MSX125 Will Make a Monkey Out of You

01/09/2013 @ 12:22 pm, by Jensen Beeler18 COMMENTS

Honda MSX125 Will Make a Monkey Out of You 2013 Honda MSX125 Monkey 04 635x539

If there ever was a motorcycle that earned the word “cute” is its best descriptor, the Honda Monkey might be it. A diminutive and fun motorcycle, it was hard to look good on Honda’s old Z-series bikes, though the machines themselves still carry their own unique flavor of cool to this day.

Fast-forward fifty-years later, and Honda is bringing the Monkey back, this time in the guise of the 2013 Honda MSX125. Manufactured in Thailand, the Honda MSX 125 (MSX = Mini Street X-treme 125), the 125cc, 9.7 hp, four-stroke, two-valve, single-cylinder, fuel-injected fun machine will be a Spring 2013 model in markets around the world (no word on North America though).

The ultimate pit bike for us Anglo-Saxons, the Honda MSX125 also serves as a practical and durable machine for markets where potholed asphalt is a luxury where roads rarely exist. With the seat just a touch above 30 inches off the ground (30.1″ to be exact), the new Honda Monkey is a friend to the short man (or woman) as well.

Twelve inch wheels, a four-speed gearbox, 1.45 gallon fuel tank, and USD forks complete the consumer feature package, though Honda engineers have done some fancy packaging to the MSX125 to get its PGM-FI  system and other electronics in place.

Available in Asteroid Black Metallic, Pearl Himalayas White, Pearl Queen Bee Yellow, and Pearl Valentine Red, if there was ever a 125cc machine we wanted to zip thru traffic in, this might be it. American Honda, are you reading this?

Honda MSX125 Will Make a Monkey Out of You 2013 Honda MSX125 Monkey 01 635x539

Honda MSX125 Will Make a Monkey Out of You 2013 Honda MSX125 Monkey 02 635x539

Honda MSX125 Will Make a Monkey Out of You 2013 Honda MSX125 Monkey 03 635x539

Source: Honda

Comment:

  1. 76 says:

    I want one

  2. meatspin says:

    me too. It looks like it uses the same engine as the CBR125 so the power wouldnt be too crazy.

    if it was my money, i’d just get a used TW200 with street tires.

  3. Paul McMenamin says:

    Interesting little machine. But strange video. If I ride this do I need to wear mascara, put my hair in a top knot, rock skinny jeans, and look androgynous (@ 00:26, 2:55). Pulling wheelies on a 9.7 hp, 125cc bike is also kind of a joke. But the video does make this little bike look more badass than it has any right to… Hope they punch it to 200cc. That would make it a good city bike in USA. As for “zipping through traffic” — first you have to keep up with traffic.

  4. paulus - Thailand says:

    At the official launch yesterday Honda had recruited Nick “Apex” Brocha to demonstrate the bike.
    Even with 9HP it wheelied, stoppied and did burnouts just great :)

  5. yooperbikemike says:

    Mikey like

    Now if only Honda brings it to the USA at a reasonable price.

  6. MikeD says:

    Looks like a RIOT. It would make an awesome learner. Plenty small…probably underpowered ? and i pressume light, (very flickable ?) and hopefully makes 80mpg or better ? The EFI is total WIN material…very very nice touch, Honda.

    I would totally hit that.

  7. Azmi K says:

    Unfortunately Honda is just a trend follower. It was kawasaki that introduced this monkey bike in ASEAN countries a few years back. It’s called KSR110, in second generation. Check it out here, http://www.kawasaki.com.my/productpage.php?do=product_detail&pro_id=138

  8. MikeD says:

    That Kawi looks very nice too.

  9. L2C says:

    Hmm, they probably would sell more of those if they had simply showed that cutie pie in the club riding pillion instead.

    More accurate vid title: “MSX125: Clutching Testosterone,” if you know what I mean.

    Also, lose the Dubstep and the burnouts. For a new product, that sure came across as being exceptionally tired, rather than vigorous and stimulating. Poor use of come-hither goo-goo eyes and fading sunsets … just bad ad porn through and through.

    I like the bike, however.

  10. ewganhoff says:

    “same engine as cbr 125″ WTF?!?! Are you blind? Do they have a mutant horizontal cylinder cbr 125 in America? The engine is clearly a development of the c90 engine. My ’88 semi-auto 3-speed c90 did about 50mph and its long stroke gave it lovely chugability. I also had the the same engine configuration in 70cc manual 4-speed Chinese monkey bike I got for £450 off ebay brand new. It did about 40mph and was loads of fun until it fell to bits. My work mates used to laugh their heads off and tooth their horns as I filtered past them in heavy traffic with just my helmet showing above their car door windows. This 110 would be great fun but wouldn’t be as good as my pcx for commuting, especially in winter.

  11. JD says:

    Little hooligan perfect for buzzing around town? I’m sold. Please bring it to the States!

  12. Sloan says:

    “Pit bike”. That’s EXACTLY what I thought!

  13. nori says:

    Watch. Kwak KSR stunt in Thailand. It’s a fun!

  14. Walter says:

    I NEED one, guess what I have my home in Thailand but they CAN NOT deliver a Yellow one…hope it changes SOON before i….do the red one…..
    For about 1700 Euro here….

  15. sundance says:

    CAN YOU BUY THIS NOE IN THE USA

  16. sundance says:

    THAT IS NOW/IN THE USA