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 NSF250R Moto3 Race Bike Breaks Cover

02/18/2011 @ 10:05 am, by Jensen Beeler17 COMMENTS

Honda NSF250R Moto3 Race Bike Breaks Cover Honda NSF250R Moto3

Honda has finally given us an unshaded photo of its 250cc four-stroke Moto3 race bike, dubbed the Honda NSF250R. Despite the clearer view, there are no real surprises here (this actually looks like the same photo as used before, sans photoshopping), as the majority of the bike is still covered by the primer-painted fairing. Honda says the new NSF250R is designed to be like the RS125R it replaces: high-performaning, lightweight, and compact. This should make the switch from two to four-strokes easier for young riders, and limit the need to adjust riding styles for the new machine.

Honda hopes the NSF250R Moto3 race bike will be a springboard for young riders into the MotoGP racing series, which was exactly the reasoning Dorna had in dropping 125GP for Moto3. Honda was apparently so excited about launching the Honda NSF250R, they even got a little misty-eyed on us, closing its remarks with the following words: “We really look forward to this new ‘NSF250R’ being loved by more people around the world and helping them to realize their dreams in the world of motorsports, all the while being charmed by the machine.” Oh, we’ll love it Honda, we’ll love it so good.

Source: HRC


  1. BikePilot says:

    Well the swingarm is pretty cool looking.

  2. 76 says:

    Can I buy one? and how much?

  3. Will says:


    and, any bets as to how long before someone shoe-horns a 450 motor into that frame?

  4. flyboy2160 says:

    well,honda, maybe i’d love it and be charmed if your latest 250 street bike wasn’t a 359 lb porker. why can’t you build a 250 street bike under 300 lbs?

  5. Bob says:

    flyboy2160 says:

    “well,honda, maybe i’d love it and be charmed if your latest 250 street bike wasn’t a 359 lb porker. why can’t you build a 250 street bike under 300 lbs?”


    That bike shouldn’t be more than 300lbs curb weight. Sell a detuned version of this bike with some mirrors and lights. I’m not at all interested in that ugly cow called the CBR250R.

  6. BBQdog says:

    @flyboy2160: 125 kg for me is the max, wet but without fuel.

  7. MikeD says:

    HONDA…Just dump the CBR250R all togheter and use this as it’s direct replacement. Keep the ABS optional again.

  8. OK, dump the CB250R altogether, and sell these instead.

    Let’s see, chock full of race-spec HRC unobtanium parts, then make it street legal, and keep ABS. No problem, American Honda should sell a boatload of these at 25-30 grand a pop for a 250 that will get taken to the woodshed by a Triumph Bonneville. Did you hear about the maintenance schedule, and the HRC parts prices?

    OK, let me show you something in a nice, used RCV . . . .

  9. Isaac says:

    It looks like the out going RS250 only it’s heavier and slower. Still I wouldn’t mind having one.

  10. MikeD says:

    Ok,Ok…I realize is not Mix and Bake kind of easy but danm, is just that that P.O.S CBR250R is so dissapointing compared to something like this that i couldn’t help myself but to ask for the impossible…lol.

  11. BBQDog says:

    Well, the trend seems the industry has no trust in those lame 125 fourstrokes anymore and
    is defenitly going for 250cc fourstroke as a ‘beginners’ class. I am very curious what
    Yamaha and/or Aprilia are planning. Would love to have an Aprilia RSV 550 or
    RS4 250 ….

    Have had Aprilia RS 125′s and 250′ for over 15 years now, finally got bored with
    them and bought me a Kawasaki Ninja 250r as a temperary solution. The Ninja
    is 30 kg too heavy, the handlebars are too high and it is more like a sports-tourer.

  12. Simon says:

    I totally agree. An RS4 250 would be awesome. I think Aprilia would sell a lot more if it was a 250.

    The problem is that people would rather buy an average 250 (the Ninja 250 and CBR250) than a superb 125.

    Solution? Bring a RS4 250 to North America. Lighter, sportier, higher quality, better looking, exotic. People would pay a little more for that bike over the Japanese options, but hardly anyone would buy the 125 version.

    Announce the 250 version and i’ll put a deposit the next day.

  13. Bob says:

    Hey everybody i just set up a facebook page to get Aprilia to make a 250cc version of the RS4 125. Sign up :)


    That’s probably the closest thing you’ll get to a street legal moto3 bike.

  14. What I really think would hit just where you guys are thinking would be a 250 chassis / 450 motor piece along the lines of the proposed racing series that never got off the ground. Those 450 motocross motors are high output/ high maintenance, but way below what ‘street-ified’ pure race pieces would entail.

    Hell, I’d could see a 250Ninja with a Kawi motor transplant from the Ninja 400 . . . or what the hell, just sell the Kawasaki Nija 400 here, since it’s already in Canada !


  15. BBQDog says:

    “Announce the 250 version and i’ll put a deposit the next day.”

    Me too :-)

  16. BBQDog says:

    “or what the hell, just sell the Kawasaki Nija 400 here, since it’s already in Canada !”

    The 400 Ninja uses the much heavier frame of the 650 ….

  17. Motorpoint says:

    Look at the new Honda #bike in it's unshaded state. Looking a bit like something from the iRobot film http://tinyurl.com/6aqxnsr