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.

Yamaha Super Ténéré Worldcrosser Becomes a Reality

12/01/2011 @ 3:10 am, by Jensen Beeler10 COMMENTS

Yamaha Super Ténéré Worldcrosser Becomes a Reality Yamaha Super Tenere Worldcrosser 02 635x476

We thoroughly enjoyed the 2012 Yamaha Super Ténéré when we rode it last year (yeah..do the math on those numbers). Properly thrashing the machine through the outskirts of Sedona, Arizona, the big-displacement Super T is fun adventure-tourer that balances Japanese bang-for-the-buck economics with a robust feature set normally reserved only for European machines.

So it is hard to imagine how Yamaha could improve on an already fine motorcycle (we guess the tuning fork brand could give the Super Ténéré away for free), but the Japanese manufacturer did so with its Yamaha Super Ténéré Worldcrosser concept.

A more rugged and off-road oriented variant of the Super T, the 2012 Yamaha Super Ténéré Worldcrosser seemed too-polished, and certainly too well received to avoid going into production, and sure enough, we have gotten word today that Yamaha has green-lit the Worldcrosser for production (we’ll take one in competition white, please).

Donned with protective covers, extra aluminum and carbon pieces, and of course knobby tires, the Yamaha Super Ténéré Worldcrosser is an imposing figure on the eyes. While we called the base Super Ténéré a motorcycle that leaned more to the on-road side of the adventure-touring equation, the Super Ténéré Worldcrosser seems to go the other way with its true-to-the-name raison d’être. Initially available in Europe starting March 2012, it’s not clear when/if the Worldcrosser will come to US soil (we’d be highly surprised if it didn’t though).

Starting MSRP in the EU will be €15,690, and for those that don’t find the 2012 Yamaha Super Ténéré Worldcrosser to be a robust enough package, Yamaha is also offering the Yamaha Super Ténéré Worldcrosser R, which incorporates some select aftermarket Yamaha parts (namely a titanium Akrapovic exhaust can and even more carbon fiber goodness) at a 20% discounted price.

Yamaha Super Ténéré Worldcrosser Becomes a Reality Yamaha Super Tenere Worldcrosser 11 635x476

Yamaha Super Ténéré Worldcrosser Becomes a Reality Yamaha Super Tenere Worldcrosser 10 635x476

Yamaha Super Ténéré Worldcrosser Becomes a Reality Yamaha Super Tenere Worldcrosser 05 635x476

Yamaha Super Ténéré Worldcrosser Becomes a Reality Yamaha Super Tenere Worldcrosser 04 635x423

Source: OmniMoto.it


  1. Craig says:

    I like this… but I know that picking up a bike after tipping it over is hard work… just watch the road racers picking there little 350lb bike off of the floor. Now make it weigh 500+ and throw sand / gravel in the mix. I can’t wait. :)

    But, all that said… I like it – just don’t fall, it’s easy!

  2. mark says:

    Why am I not surprised that Yamaha has decided to compete with the R1200GS Adventure as well as the basic R1200GS? I predict Triumph will respond with a Tiger Explorer XC in 3… 2… 1…

  3. Greg Hilchey says:

    World Crosser doesn’t exactly come to mind as with all the other large “Adventure” Bikes. To big. too heavy. At least it has adjustable front and rear suspension unlike BMW.

  4. Dahveed says:

    Well, the BMW Adventure model’s come with more suspension travel, larger fuel tanks, additional crash guards, and different gearing in the gear box. The World Crosser comes with different tires, pipe, and crash guards. At least BMW has some functional difference, the Super T only has some extra stuff bolted on. If its at a discount and you were planning to add that stuff on there anyway, I guess its a good deal, but its no “Adventure” model of the bike.

    Other than having knobbies on it, how is it any more dirt capable that the regular model?

    Super T owners, spoon on some knobbies, slap on some yellow decals and you’ll have made your own “World Crosser”

  5. Bruce Monighan says:

    As Dahveed said not a whole lot there and definately not the “Worldcrosser” prototype as shown a year ago. It was distinguished by the rear large capacity aux gas tank. My Tenere already looks like this one, Alt rider/Touratech stamped metal guards, Givi crash bars and Heideneau semi knobby tires. The Super Tenere forum already has instructions on how to make the exhaust guard modifications to look like the one in the pictures and there are several aftermarked exhausts. I would venture to say a lot of us have made more modificaiotns to the bikes we got late July/early August than are on this “new” model.

    By the way for Craig, manyof us have had our Teneres on their sides and actually because the weight is so low (mass centralization) they are really pretty easy to pick up. I too read the weight specs in 2010 and thought it was way too heavy. Riding it it feels more than 100 lbs lighter, really pretty amazing

  6. Bob says:

    Well, it looks the part with all the crash protectors and such. But as others have said, if they didn’t increase the fuel tank size and add more suspension travel and ground clearance, simply spooning on knobbies does not an adventure model make. The GSA has 8.9 gallons and an extra 1 1/4 inches of travel (though only 3/4 inches more ground clearance).

    If Yamaha really wanted to do something to set themselves apart from the others, they would have contacted OHlins about the 2WD setup they used on the R1, TT600R and WR450. The 2WD was used in the Dakar by David Fretigne 6 or 7 years ago, I think.

    I tried a 2WD Christini and really liked how it worked in the sand and mud, keeping the front end going straight and not washing out. Would be invaluable on a 600+ lb Adv bike.

  7. BikePilot says:

    That’s right on Bob, I’ve been saying for years the 2wd folks are missing the mark by pushing on competition machines (where its of dubious value) rather than big adv bikes (where it would be much more useful due to their weight/lack of traction).

  8. MikeD says:

    NOTHING TRULY NEW to see here, move along folks.
    Don’t pay more for this version…buy a base model and do your own mods.

  9. Round the World w Yamaha's new Super Tenere Worldcrosser dual sport motorcycle only available in Europe now http://t.co/578e25uT

  10. Guido says:

    What is this thing about? They added a couple aftermarket parts, exchanged some pieces with more expensive and useless carbon / aluminum parts, but they forgot to make it actually better …

    This thing is missing at least

    - Better luggage to go RTW – the Yamaha luggage is too fragile
    - A larger primary or a secondary fuel tank
    - A better windshield
    - Real tip over protection
    - and so on, quite a long list …

    This thing doesn’t do a single thing better for “world crossing” than the standard Super Tenere 1200. It’s typical marketing BS and marketed at the same people that would buy spray on mud for their clothes so they look cool at Starbucks …