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.

Aprilia USA Makes You Re-Think Your Next Sport Bike Purchase – Gets Serious with 2013 Pricing Too

02/06/2013 @ 4:25 pm, by Jensen Beeler16 COMMENTS

Aprilia USA Makes You Re Think Your Next Sport Bike Purchase   Gets Serious with 2013 Pricing Too Aprilia Tuono V4 R headlight wink 635x422

We already told you that Aprilia USA was getting very aggressive with its pricing on the leftover 2012 stock, and now that the Italian brand has released its 2013 price list, we can see that the trend continues on. Adding ABS to its RSV4 sport bikes for 2013, Aprilia has drastically undercut its main rival Ducati on pricing with the 2013 Aprilia RSV4 Factory APRC ABS (previously known as the Aprilia RSV4 Factory APRC ABS SBK), which is $3,000 cheaper than the similarly spec’d Ducati 1199 Panigale S.

Additionally the 2013 Aprilia RSV4 R ABS gets an aggressive MSRP of $14,999, which puts it also $3,000 under the base-model $17,995 Ducati 1199 Panigale, and into a price category that was previously only open to the Japanese OEMs (though recently joined by BMW). At only $500 more than say a 2013 Yamaha YZF-R1, Aprilia is going to make some price-sensitive sport bike buyers think twice about their purchases. We like it.

With the trend continuing throughout the 2013 model range for street bikes, Aprilia is hoping to get more riders engaged with the Italian brand, which has struggled in the US market considerably.

Pricing on the 2013 Aprilia Street Bike Models for the USA:
RSV4 Factory APRC ABS – $19,999
RSV4 R APRC ABS – $14,999
Tuono V4 R – $13,999
Shiver 750 – $9,499
Mana 850 GT ABS – $11,199
Dorsoduro 750 ABS – $9,999
Dorsoduro 1200 – $11,999

Pricing on the 2012 Aprilia Street Bike Models for the USA:
2012 RSV4 Factory APRC – $18,999
2012 RSV4 R APRC – $13,999
2012 Tuono V4 R – $12,999

Source: Aprilia USA; Photo: © 2012 Scott Jones / Scott Jones Photography – All Rights Reserved

Comment:

  1. Jake F. says:

    I wish I wasn’t too tall for a RSV4. Damn.

  2. MeatyBeard says:

    Add ABS and another 50 miles of range to the Tuono!

  3. Chaz Michael Michaels says:

    Ironically I was looking at an Aprilia RVS4R today.

    On a 2012 model priced at 13,999 what would be considered an aggressive out the door price in CA that I shouldn’t walk away from? Anyone know?

  4. paulus - Thailand says:

    Thanks for being a loyal buyer…. Thanks for buying at premium price whilst they are still less than perfectly developed. Why don’t the brands make a gesture to the loyal that have already bought. Free service, some apparel or something.

    Try trading your 12 month old bike in on a new one. Sorry sir, we recommend you sell privately and come back and pay cash… sure they do.

    Watching your resale value instantly lowered by the brand you supported.
    This hurts the most … Aprilia are not alone in doing this.

  5. TexusTim says:

    I think I could buy a new r1 for less than 14.500 if that is what you mean in this post…it list on there website for 14.200 but this is not the price a smart buyer would pay..it is the list or asking price and only first time buyers would let them charge you that much, truth be known you can get a new r1 for undr 13.500 if you deal smartly with your salesperson….if your a repeat well known buyer at a dealership you can probably get one for a little less than that…having a good trade in can reduce your taxes as well cuz you will only pay tax on the difference not the whole amount.
    but getting a rsv4 for that price now that is a deal and i would buy one over a duc or ktm any day…if I had the coin for a new bike.

  6. TexusTim says:

    by the way i’m not too tall and only weigh 145 lbs…only in motorsport racing is my size an advantage…..used to be they would say…”your too small to play middlel inebacker anymore have you thought about the tennis team?” now they say who was that little guy that just passed me on the inside in big bend ….lol

  7. Damo says:

    Deals to be had all around!

  8. jobie says:

    Good job Aprilia, now how about a price drop on the Shiver….

  9. Viceroy_Fizzlebottom says:

    What’s a guy gotta do to get an Aprilia dealer in his state? Seriously, how is there not a single Aprilia dealer in the Chicago-land area?

  10. ruben says:

    The Factory is actually $4k less than the Panigale S if you include the $1k option cost for ABS on the Panigale…

    Pretty compelling pricing indeed. It’s making me rethink my purchase plans…

  11. jesze says:

    lower the $$$$ in Australia in ’13… Seriously.. 24k here.. Joke

  12. Steve says:

    The Tuono gets a bigger tank as well. And a few of the updates. At least, that’s what I’ve been told.

    The Factory also got a lower seat, so …

    Anyway, the larger tank, ABS etc. of the special edition factory sold me, I put down some money yesterday. You can’t argue with the package… and now you are getting a bike that debuted at $26K with less power, no traction control, some early bike bugs, less tire, heavier wheels, lower-spec calipers, no ABS… etc.. for much less.

    Had to do it.

  13. tyler says:

    I own an 2010 RSV4 Factory and the RSV4 package is in my opinion the best out of the box “pure sportbike” in any sportbike class.

    Aprilia develops the best performance-focused “how a bike superbike should be made” motorcycle. Now with the price drops… you simply cannot buy another motorcycle that will outperform the RSV4 in any category aside from RWHP (which honestly means nothing for 99% of riders) for the money.

    If you want a bike with the most balanced power delivery, largely usable power band, top-end hit, incredible chassis, handling of a race-bike, and superior build quality, choose Aprilia.

    Get on an RSV4 and experience one for yourself.. you will be pleasantly intrigued.

  14. Much as I appreciate Japanese bikes, the service and support offered by good dealerships, which is really essential for maintaining a high performance sport bike and getting the most out of it, at least for those without a technical background, I buy the RSV4 R APRC over any rice rocket currently on the market. I’m mechanically inclined, so the prospect of having to do everything myself is only slightly daunting. Likely you have to buy some special tools which are probably ridiculously expensive, but that’s the price you pay for thoroughbred ownership. I might change my mind if Honda comes out with an affordable V4 with +180 hp, but at the moment the Aprilia is my top choice.

    Back in 1999 I was lucky enough to get to ride a RSV Mille R, Aprilia had a dealership next door to Fort Lauderdale Honda, the only one I’ve ever seen. I’d buy my leather there, still have a pair of Held kangaroo gloves that have held up for 15 years with only a few minor repairs. But a rider their swap bikes with me one afternoon, Italian guy. I just jokingly suggested it as we were sitting there outside the dealership on our bikes and to my disbelief he agreed, next thing I knew we’re on 95 south.

    And it was amazing, felt small like a 600, tightest feeling best mass centralization, most responsive bike I’d ever been on, several notches above any Ducati I’d ridden up to that point. The quickest thing back then was the new R1, which I’d ridden, and raced against some well tuned examples. But that tuned and tricked Mille R would embarrass any of those Yamahas in every way except at the very top end. The brakes, modified with the best parts, had ungodly power amazing feel and grip, suspension beautifully compliant and nearly unshakable, and that engine… good Lord, love at first twist. That showed me how good a street liter bike could really be. When I got back on my Honda, which was no slouch with Ohlins suspension and heads from Erion Racing, felt like I was riding a fat dog by comparison.

    I’ve always been surprised that the Italians haven’t gone after the US market harder, Aprilia are currently making the best outright open road speed bike on the market period. Let’s hope they start opening dealerships to back up this push. They sell enough bikes and their prices will pull dead even with the Japanese, which no longer have the economic advantages they once did. Then the support will get there.

  15. JD says:

    this maybe apples and oranges but ive owned a RGV250, NSR250, TZR250 but the aprilia RS250 I owned made all of them seem cumbersome and SLOW!!! I am certain that the RSV4 would feel the same compared to japanese bikes because of aprilias razor sharp chassis and perfectly balanced suspension that they are known for. I never ridden a RSV4 but it sure resembles a RS250 so I have no doubt it handles sweet.

  16. Dima says:

    can’t beat that price! Put a deposit on a factory ABS model today in San Jose BMW (California). ETA: 60 days.