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.

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