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.

Frak Me: Starbuck’s Classified Moto KT600 Custom

08/27/2012 @ 2:45 pm, by Jensen Beeler38 COMMENTS

Frak Me: Starbucks Classified Moto KT600 Custom  Katee Sackhoff Classified Moto KT600 custom 17 635x504

Asphalt & Rubber may be known for the over-enjoyment of a certain sci-fi dynasty that started in 1977, but we are group of equal opportunity geeks/nerds/virgins here, and have just as much room in our hearts for the toaster-fraking good times that were provided by the re-imagined Battlestar Galactica series.

While we stayed up late at night, wondering if Kara “Starbuck” Thrace was in fact a Cylon, it turns out that Katee Sackhoff, who played the rebellious Viper pilot on the hit show, was instead probably dreaming of her next two-wheeled toy: Classified Moto’s KT600.

Using a Honda XL600R for its base, Classified Moto has incorporated a single-sided swingarm from a Triumph Sprint into the design, as well as some wheels from a Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R. Sackhoff apparently gave the Virginia-based shop full-reign over the design, and we have to say the boys from Richmond did right by her.

We’re not sure how closely Katee’s persona matches the role she is most famous for playing, but her KT600 (or is it Katee 600?) certainly seems to be the kind of motorcycle we would expect to see Starbuck romping around on while she finds the Arrow of Apollo (does our geekiness hurt yet?). Enjoy the photos below. We know we did.

Frak Me: Starbucks Classified Moto KT600 Custom  Katee Sackhoff Classified Moto KT600 custom 12 635x410

Frak Me: Starbucks Classified Moto KT600 Custom  Katee Sackhoff Classified Moto KT600 custom 13 635x410

Frak Me: Starbucks Classified Moto KT600 Custom  Katee Sackhoff Classified Moto KT600 custom 14 635x410

Frak Me: Starbucks Classified Moto KT600 Custom  Katee Sackhoff Classified Moto KT600 custom 15 635x410

Frak Me: Starbucks Classified Moto KT600 Custom  Katee Sackhoff Classified Moto KT600 custom 18 635x410

Frak Me: Starbucks Classified Moto KT600 Custom  Katee Sackhoff Classified Moto KT600 custom 11 635x793

Source: Classified Moto via AutoBlog


  1. The bike geek in me just blew my load. As did the sci-fi/comic book geek in me…

    Win/win scenario then!

  2. Kyle says:

    me gusta

  3. jackie says:

    She has good taste. That’s great looking thumper.

  4. Matt A says:

    She can be my wingman anytime. Or vice versa. That’d be OK too. :)

  5. Westward says:

    I thought she was use to riding Cylons, now it looks like she is riding Bender…

  6. Greg says:

    That is really cool. Bonus points that she’s still got it with the old-school kick starter and no electric-start conversion.

    Well done, Classified Moto.

  7. Bellini says:

    Gorgeous – in every way.

    The bike is aright too…

  8. Mickey says:

    It’s funny how big 17″ wheels look on a minimalist bike.
    That Kawsaki front end is an interesting choice. I would have liked the overall look better with some black or gray fork tubes. I wonder if that was a design choice or a “we had it laying around” choice.

  9. bemer2six says:

    really dont give a rats ass if the fork tubes were shit color blue they both look awesome I’ll take em both!! Lol

  10. old yeller says:

    ok, who is guilty of the ham fisting the post crop vignetting? it is so over done it is hard to even look at the cover photo. the last photo shows more restraint and a better eye.

  11. MikeD says:


    P.S: Bike is alrigth too.

  12. I wish we would hear some feedback on how such bikes actually perform. Given the sheer number of custom motorcycles and ‘Café racers’ being produced it seems odd that we never seemed here about how they ride, or ever see anyone actually riding them. Personally I’ve never heard one word about how a bike like this actually rides.

    Are these really motorcycles, for RIDING, or are they just works of art, to be parked in people’s living rooms as topics of conversation, expensive coffee tables, or perhaps the current substitute for the coffee table book in today’s culture.

    I don’t know anything about Ms. Sackhoff’s riding experience or background, other than that she rides a Harley, and I saw a video of her getting off a BMW, so I don’t know if she’s capable of evaluating a real motorcycle’s performance, given the kind of riding experience the average Harley offers. But I posed the question to Katee on twitter, and I’ll pose it again here, how does this bike ride?

  13. Paul McM says:

    Love it. So simple and “open” it makes a Hypermotard look like a full-dresser by comparison. I wish Honda and BMW would take a good look at customs like this to understand the appeal of bikes stripped down to the basics.

    That said, I’m way, way tired of the cafe-racer clip-on handlebars that force you to lay down on the tank. This bike, with its fat front tire, would handle much better with higher, wider bars. I also bet one front disc would be more than enough.

    I also question whether this bike will every be ridden much. No plate holder and no turn signals means this thing ain’t street legal in most jurisdictions. I’ve pretty much written off any “street bike” without signals as a mere design exercise. Still, I think the builder has done some nice things with the bike. The twin front lamps work from a looks standpoing — take note Triumph. You ruined the Speed Triple with the last set of headlights!

  14. Spektre76 says:

    I never wished so badly to be a bike seat. I LOVE YOU KATIE!

  15. MikeD says:

    @Paul McM:

    +100000000 on the stupid clip ons on this kind-o-bike. For me there’s no such a thing as too much brakes on a bike, im super cool with the double disc setup.

    Im also sick and tired of every Joe-Jane Schmoe that sees him/herself with an arc welder and a grinder thinks they can build a contraption=cafe racer on their spare time and backyard out of any P.O.S bike the can rape.
    Gotta love hipsters/builders…they r so full of ISH.

  16. MikeD says:



  17. Crashmanjay says:

    MikeD, you just summed up why I canceled my subscription to Hell For Leather last year. ‘Hipster doofus’ is an understatement for what those guys turned into after going paid along with the whole wanna-be 70′s biker scene that guys like the ‘Born Free’ supposedly ‘live’. So you can grow a beard, wear metalflake helmets and are stupid enough to think rigid framed 74′s are awesome handling bikes. I also blame horrid shows like that Cafe Racer one. The host/magazine editor whatever he is guy with the lisp can barely even can ride and flat out said in an episode that he never had worked on a bike before. Like every other group of tools like Goth’s, skaters, HD Pirates, Canyon jockies…. if you look and act exactly like every other moron you hang out with than none of you are individuals, you’re just another pathetic sheep following the herd.
    More Sanctuary type bikes, less Icon owned Bike Exif crap please.

  18. Paulo says:

    That bikes fit for a Sci-Fi show…….with her on the saddle. Merry me?!

  19. RT @johnryland: “@Asphalt_Rubber: Frak Me: Starbuck's Classified Moto KT600 Custom – http://t.co/ZfDymsh4 #motorcycle” @kateesackhoff

  20. David says:

    I’m betting it takes an extremely skilled rider to coax performance out of either of those rides.

    And that rider is ME.

  21. Damo says:

    As a whole I love a good cafe/minimalist custom bike and I think this is a good example.

    I agree clip-ons are overrated, but I would love to see more people use a generation one Speed Triple fork set up. The grips are high mount like full bars, BUT they mount to the top triple-clamp give a nice clean look, but you still get the comfort/control of a full bar setup.

    I am with the rest of you on the hipster bike movement. Some hipster choad in my neighborhood rides around on a chopped to crap Yamaha XS 650 that barely runs, complete with his metal flake helmet, denim jacket and diddler mustache. Wearing the hipster uniform for all to see.

    I want to ride by on my RC51 and clothesline him, Lex Luger style, every time I see him.

  22. Westward says:

    Why hate on a fellow rider, especially in the US, when it would be better to have more…

    Besides, the world could use more cafe racers and naked rides in my book…

  23. Crashmanjay says:

    Westward, I’m all for every American riding. The thing I’ve experienced with both the Hipsters and Born Free ‘bikers’ is they look down on ‘us’, the rest of the riding public. I hate to mention them again because they are such arrogant dicks, but the tools at Hell For Leather attack anyone that questions them about anything. They are such dolts that they did a review on a hunting knife they used while camping. Explaining that it is the best knife ever and was used to chop wood, etc. And when some guys that are also military veterans (and like me used a knife/bayonet as a tool daily) questioned their ‘expertise’ they attacked them personally. These are paying subscribers using the comments section available only to paying customers. Add in the attitude and fuck you-ness that dicks like JB Nesbitt (a contributor to the site) posted when guys expressed dislike towards him, his bike designs or his ball licking on Jay Leno and I wasn’t giving them cash ever again. Born Free is an admirable thing in that it is grass roots and free, but looking down on any bike that isn’t a Triumph, HD or ‘accepted’ Japanese bike (XS, kick start 3/4 cylinder ones) and it shows that it isn’t about bikes, it’s about fashion and the bikes are just part of the fashion statement.
    Again, everyone should ride. Shit, I did a paper in college about how traffic congestion would be reduced if more people rode daily.

  24. Spamtasticus says:

    I think I just hear Walowitz have a nergasm.

  25. MikeD says:

    Damo said:

    I want to ride by on my RC51 and clothesline him, Lex Luger style, every time I see him.


  26. justadude says:

    When I hit this page my heart stopped… Wow, just wow… :-)

  27. Westward says:

    @ justadude

    You weren’t just clotheslined Lex Luger style were you ?

    Not that I know what or who that is, I imagine some sort of local ruffian…

    @ Crashmanjay

    I don’t know about your neck of the woods, I have been to San Francisco for a bit of riding, and a bunch of local Ducatisti took me to a nice watering hole in the city where all manner of bikes were lined up and down the block on streets and sidewalks. There were cruisers, street bikes, mopeds, scooters, cafe racers, motards, Japanese, European, and American bikes alike. Everyone in the place seemed to having a great time drinking and carrying on.

    Don’t know if it was typical, but it was fun times had by all…

  28. Damo says:


    I am with you 100% on that. It is highly ironic when a “dedicated riding movement” becomes about fashion. This does seem true in any semi counterculture movement though (see punk, heavy metal, hip hop, etc.) If you don’t have the same uniform or same tastes you get ostracized.


    Lex Luger! Come on I can’t be the only 80′s child that grew up on pro-wrestling. All kidding aside, I noticed the bay are bikers I encountered on my last trip to California were some of the friendliest most dedicated group of people I had spoken with in awhile. It isn’t like that up here in the frigid North East.

    We have basically four types of bikers up here: The born free/hipster type, the dedicated all weather types, 200 mile a year harley guys and squids. People on cruisers don’t even wave at you when you roll by on a sport bike of any kind and the hipster cafe kids rarely travel outside their groups or they just pose on their bikes at the local coffee shops. I tend to do massive amounts of solo riding because of this.

    It is bad enough that bikers are rare bread up here in general.

  29. Faust says:

    Damo is not joking. In Texas the bike crowd is really friendly, but when I went up North to visit, I literally spent all day on Damo’s RC-51 waving to cruisers and getting stared at with utter contempt and disgust. It was absolutely bizarre. I can’t believe how absurd the riders are up there. I was shocked when he told me it’s always like that. If you aren’t “with them” then you are treated like you don’t exist. Sad.

  30. Damo says:


    The unfortunate truth is that people in the Northeast just aren’t terribly friendly in general, but you already know that.

    Hence why everyone calls us “Massholes”.

  31. justadude says:

    @ Westward
    I was clotheslined alright but it was by the incredible Ms. Sackhoff and her quite cool motorcycle. I’m still not breathing right… :-)

    @ Faust
    I live in the Northeast and every word you speak is true. The cruiser crowd up here treats all other motorcycles as non-entities. All they do is ride around in their little parades dressed like pirates and clog up the roads.

  32. justadude says:

    @ Faust

    What do you “Massholes” call us in Connecticut? Connholes? :-) It’s funny how each state thinks that no one from any other state can drive… :-)

  33. Crashmanjay says:

    Yup. I live in NY state and go to LA/SoCal a lot. “Bikers” here are douchebags. Here we have 2 kinds, legit 1% gangs that won’t even look at you unless you are patched and wannabe pirates on parade that suck up to the 1%’ers. Then there is the mostly minority ghetto extended swingarm crowd with chrome Nazi helmets and the suburban crotch rocket 18-30 year olds who wanna be ghetto swing arm idiots. We have a small hipster doofus scene too that follows the ‘if I cut the tail off and add clipons that makes it cool’ mantra. You guys should see prices here…… do a search of Craigslist in Buffalo/Rochester/Syracuse and you’ll gag at what people ask for hunks of shit here.
    I ride almost exclusively solo because I don’t wanna bar hop, I wanna ride. I don’t wanna get ‘dressed up’ to be seen, I want to ride. I don’t want to race, I want to ride.
    And in LA? Well it is LA so image is everything, but when you are 25-30 and wear a swastika patch and FUCK YOU vest on your hard tail you had better thank God you are living now because when I moved out west in 1988 bikers were not too fond of posers and the cops were not too fond of bikers. Vans, beards, sleeping bags, the 70′s are suddenly cool. They sucked when I was alive during them, but whatever. Every group has has a bike club now from cops to accountants to congresmen and every club seems to need a vest or patch or whatever. Again, I just want to ride. I tell people I’m a motorcyclist and if you saw the variety of bikes in my garage you’d see why. Fuck I’d ride a Vespa if someone gave me one. Beats being in a car any day.

  34. KeikeyaSpank says:

    To whomever was asking about Katee Sackhoff’s riding experience and whether or not the bike was for riding, the answer is YES. This is not a piece of art, she WILL be riding this bike. Ms. Sackhoff actually has a lot of riding experience. in 2010, she rode from Los Angeles to Louisiana to raise money for the Gulf oil spill. She has also gone on several rides for other charities and just for fun, of course. Most of her friends and family are bikers, too. Definitely not just a casual rider.

  35. justadude says:

    @ Crashmanjay

    I think you may have hit upon it. “Bikers” (not counting the real 1%’ers, who truly don’t give a crap what anybody thinks) are just image whores that exist to be seen. “Motorcyclists” just want to ride. I only ride with one guy because he and I think alike and just want to ride. Instead of bars we stop at bike shops. :-) I don’t and won’t belong to any clubs because, to quote the great Groucho, “I wouldn’t belong to any club that would have me for a member”.

  36. paulus says:

    Exactly… the thrill of the ride. Hyper bike or scooter…. no difference.
    Performance this, bling-bling that…. get on whatever you have and ride it!

    Ride hard.

  37. Gutterslob says:

    That’s just lovely.
    Very Deus in nature (the motor and frame), but with lotsa posh bits.