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.

2012 Yamaha XT1200Z Super Ténéré

02/24/2010 @ 11:40 am, by Jensen Beeler19 COMMENTS

2012 Yamaha XT1200Z Super Ténéré 2010 yamaha super tenere official 19 635x423

UPDATE: Pricing abroad for the 2010 Yamaha XT1200Z Super Ténéré looks to be £13,500 & €15,000, with some variation because of individual country tariffs.

With its latest bike the Yamaha XT1200Z Super Ténéré, Yamaha is stepping up its game and getting serious about the adventure-tourer motorcycling segment. The Dakar inspired Super Ténéré is a ground-up production for Yamaha, making it the first Japanese manufacturer to get serious about this emerging (and very profitable) market segment.

With 1,199cc under the hoood, the XT1200Z Super Ténéré is aiming its sights on the class-leading BMW R1200GS and new-comer Ducati Multistrada 1200. The powerplant features a parallel twin motor with four valves per cylinder, and makes 108hp @ 7,250 RPM and 84lbs•ft @ 6,000 RPM. Read more about the Yamaha XT1200Z Super Ténéré after the jump.

For a wiz-bang factor, the Super Ténéré features a bevy of techno-goodies like ride-by-wire throttle control, three-mode linked & ABS brakes, dual-riding modes (street and touring), and Yamaha’s traction control system (YCC-T). Ensuring that the fun doesn’t stop is the bike’s 6.07 gallon gas tank, which should make all the die-hard adventure/touring folks very happy. However, the bike’s 575lb wet weight is likely to turn a few upside down frowns the wrong way around.

As was done on the YZF-R1, Yamaha seems to be taking the lessons learned on the MotoGP race track, and is applying their cross-plane crankshaft design (if you can call it that on a two cylinder motor) to the Super Ténéré. The 270° crank allows the Super Ténéré to deliver its power pulses in a manner that allows for better traction between the tire and road, which has a huge benefit in off-road situations.

No price has been announced yet, but expect it to undercut the KTM, BMW, and Ducati’s of the world…and for real bad news, the Super Ténéré has not been confirmed for the US market.

Technical Specifications of the 2012 Yamaha XT1200Z Super Ténéré:

Type: Liquid-cooled, 4-stroke, DOHC, inline 2-cylinder, 4-valve, fuel injected, twin spark engine
Displacement: 1199cc
Bore x stroke: 98 x 79.5 mm
Compression ratio: 11.0:1
Firing intervals: 270- and 450-degree points
Max. Power: 80.9kW (110PS) @7,250rpm
Max. Torque: 114.1 Nm (11.6kgf・m) @6,000 rpm
Lubrication system: Dry sump
Fuel supply system: Fuel Injection
Clutch type: Wet, multiple-disc diaphragm spring
Ignition system: Twin spark
Starter system: Electric
Transmission system: Constant mesh, 6-speed
Final transmission: Shaft
Throttle system: Yamaha Chip-Controlled Throttle (YCC-T)
Yamaha D-MODE: 2 modes, Sport (S) and Touring (T)
Traction control: 3 modes, TCS1, TCS2 and OFF
Exhaust System: 2-into-1

Frame: Steel tube backbone
Front suspension: Upside-down telescopic fork, 43 mm inner tube, adjustable preload, compression and rebound damping
Front wheel travel: 190 mm
Rear suspension: Monoshock, adjustable preload and rebound damping
Rear wheel travel: 190 mm
Front brake: Hydraulic Twin 310 mm wave discs, ABS/Unified Brake System
Rear brake: Hydraulic Single 282 mm wave disc
Front tyre: 110/80/19
Rear tyre: 150/70/17

Overall length: 2,250 mm
Overall width: 980 mm
Overall height: 1,410 mm
Seat height: Adjustable 845-870 mm
Wheelbase: 1,540 mm
Min. ground clearance: 205 mm
Wet weight: 261 kg (includes full oil and fuel tank):
Fuel capacity: 23 litres
Oil capacity: 4.2 litres


  1. akatsuki says:

    Sounds good, but the styling should have gotten a bit more attention from Yamaha. The Multistrada is almost gorgeous (minus the beak). Better looking than the R1200GS anyway. And that weight? Ouch.

  2. Peter says:

    “With 1,999cc under the hoood”
    That’s one big engine..

  3. Dave says:

    1,999cc? Sounds 700cc too high. Still rather have a regular tenere. Those at least seemed more capable for the weight…

  4. Jenny Gun says:

    My bad, I got distracted by the 575lb weight quote, and goofed on the displacement. It’s 1,199cc’s.

  5. i personally like the styling, it’s rugged and that looks like something i would ride through anything and not give a damn haha.

    agreed on the Multistrada, yeah, minus the inescapable beak, is sexy, but i’d feel horrible if i ever got a ding, dent, or scratch. with this Yamaha, i feel as it would give it just that much more appeal.

    the weight does scare the crap out of me though.

  6. I was perfectly happy with my FZ1 until I saw the Yamaha XT1200Z http://bit.ly/bXPw6I #motorcycle (via @Asphalt_Rubber )

  7. Eric says:

    I don’t know about this thing, it looks like a pig. The KTM990 Adventure has all the power you need for a huge adventure tourer, but it “only” weighs 430lbs or so. 575lbs is absolutely absurd. Why won’t they just sell the Tenere 660 in the USA? I see KLR’s all over the place, is there some reason why they think the 660 won’t sell over here?

  8. Ted Dorsey says:

    RT @Asphalt_Rubber: 2010 Yamaha XT1200Z Super Ténéré http://bit.ly/bXPw6I

  9. Ferd says:

    The weight seems high at 575lbs but I think Yamaha should import the Tenere 660 to the USA. I think BMW has the 1200cc class wrapped up with the R1200GS and GSA. The BMW will be a tough bike to take on as it is established and has a very loyal following. The BMW’s have tons of aftermarket company’s making add-ons for the GS line-up. Still I guess I really don’t have to worry because the USA will not get these anyway. If Yamaha would import the 660 I would buy one tomorrow.

  10. 2010 Yamaha XT1200Z Super Ténéré – http://bit.ly/bXPw6I #motorcycle

  11. RT @Asphalt_Rubber: 2010 Yamaha XT1200Z Super Ténéré http://bit.ly/bXPw6I

  12. timmy-bear says:

    Yamaha better damn well bring this thing to the US. I used to be a big Honda fan, but I really thing Yamaha is where it’s at (they got Rossi didn’t they?). The new Tenere is a direct competitor to the Multistrada 1200, and the BMW GS. So long as Yamaha keeps the pricing down, this thing will sell like hotcakes. Otherwise, it’ss suffer the same fate as the TDM 850 of ’92-’93

  13. Hayabrusa says:

    I agree with timmy-bear, but alas, I fear the US will get the shaft again – I find it interesting (and frustrating) that some ya-hoo in a foreign country ‘decides’ that a bike won’t be good for the US market! Gee, I wouldn’t bother trying it, on the off-chance it could be a huge success! D’oh!! Anyway, the bike is cool, and I bet you won’t notice the weight once you’re underway, unless you do a lot of slow-speed off-roading.

  14. Hayabrusa says:

    . . . which you really shouldn’t be doing with those tires anyway! Nice ‘fake’ off-road picture, Yamaha!

  15. tc says:

    Wow, Heavier than my 02 Bandit 1200 by over 50lbs, radiator to get damaged if dropped, Higher compression motor but similar power curves. Guess I don’t get it???
    My husky 610 covers the dirt riding that the Bandit can’t complete.

  16. pwr says:

    I like adventure touring bikes for sport touring, but I hate chains. There aren’t any shaft-drive adventure tourers besides the Stelvio and the R1200GS, and who’s going to take a Guzzi into the boonies? This is bound to be a good bit cheaper, if it ever gets here. I’ll watch with interest.

  17. Serge says:

    C’mon YAMAHA!! please bring that bike in North America PLEASE Listen….We want one here in Canada…We need one to explore James Bay, Labrador, Abitibi….We are going to kick the ass of the GS this the SuperTénéré!!!! PLEASE YAMAHA….Listen

  18. Mondo Endo says:

    You would think that because of how well the BMW GS series sell they would at least give us a shot at it. Look at the chance that BMW took with the new 1000rr going against the status quo in the super sport market and from all Ive read its a great bike and doing well sales wise. I would love to have the new 1200, I cant count how many times Ive gone on a( lets see where this road leads me ride) only to have to turn around because of a dirt road or trail. I dont want a full on dual sport I want a street bike with off road as an option. Ive ridden a 990 KTM adventure and wasnt impressed on the street, Im sure its way better off road than the Yam or BMW but since I spend more time on road thats more important to me. I guess I could always convert my Bandit 1250 into a adv tourer, hell it weighs about the same. Where can I get high pipes for it? lol

  19. I dont really read blogs or even comment on blogs but I did find your pretty intresting toread through, Do you mind if I ask what skin you are using for this blog, Im guessing its a wordpress website?