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.

Husqvarna to Unveil New Prototype Motorcycle at EICMA

11/01/2013 @ 4:55 am, by Jensen Beeler11 COMMENTS

Husqvarna to Unveil New Prototype Motorcycle at EICMA husqvarna prototype teaser

The future of Husqvarna is an interesting one to mull over right now as we gear-up for the EICMA show in Milan, Italy next week. Recently acquired by KTM’s Stefan Pierer, through is Pierer Industrie AG company, Husqvarna finds itself now merged into Husaberg, as KTM has consolidated its splintered dirt bike brands back into one cohesive effort.

That move alone in an interesting one, as Husqvarna had begun tackling the on-road world while still under the stewardship of BMW Motorrad — releasing models like the Husqvarna Nuda 900 and concepts like the Husqvarna Moab. The brand now seems destined to stay in the dirt though, but that isn’t keeping Husqvarna away from releasing prototypes and concepts at EICMA, as it seems to do every year.

Husqvarna says “the prototype will offer a visual incite [sic] into the future evolution of the brand,” which should be interesting since that is the biggest question on everyone’s mind at the moment when it comes to the Husqvarna brand.

How will Pierer differentiate Husqvarna from his KTM line of dirt bikes? Will any of the company’s previous “explorations” come to fruition? And, how will the Austrians make Husqvarna profitable again? Hopefully some insight to those questions is coming forth in a few days’ time.

Source: Husqvarna

Comment:

  1. RD350 says:

    My proposal for Husqvarna is to be the first company to offer a premium retro styled street scrambler. Vintage Husky looks with upscale suspension and brakes, light weight and utilizing both the KTM twin and excellent 690 singles.

    Steve McQueen would have bought one … and so will lots of older riders. Well heeled urban hipsters will also appreciate it.

  2. Phil says:

    I can dig that.

  3. Tyler M says:

    Just give us a damn proper supermoto… with balls. That I don’t have to service all the time. SOMEBODY.

  4. kww says:

    minor typo, its HUSABERG, not Husabarg
    anyway, the new company will be called Husqvarna + Husabarg = Qvarberg

  5. Halfie30 says:

    Ummmm… Triumph Scrambler… Been done

  6. RD350 says:

    Well Halfie30 .. I think not.

    My suggestion is for a “premium” street scrambler .. ie something that performs well right off the show room floor.

    The Triumph Scrambler, while kinda pretty, sports low rent suspension and brakes and is kinda heavy. The Triumph motor is soft and requires a good bit of money to make it perform. All told, its a “finish it yourself” bike imo. Guys like Mule make really cool specials out of them, but they cost a bloody fortune.

    The Husqvarna Moab concept bike was the right direction I feel. With KTM power, low weight and top shelf parts (KTM’s usual WP suspension) they would have a winner. And it would be in a completely different class than the mild, budget-component retros that we have seen thus far. It would blow the Triumph Scrambler away.

  7. MikeD says:

    Unless they’re talking about introducing a D.I 2 Stroke to replace their KTM Carbureted engines, they can keep their shitty concept and the pump up noise/propaganda to make themselves look relevant again.
    All i can make off that rear left side profile is what looks like regular Jane dirt bike.

  8. paulus says:

    KTM/Husqvarna will make kick arse MX and Enduro weapons.
    I, for one, am looking forward to seeing their new offers.

    Their ‘standard’ models are so much better than anything else offered from the other manufacturers.

  9. RD350 says:

    Another thought:
    Why not dust off the Massimo Tamburini designed Husqvarna CRC Street Supermoto concept .. although penned in 2005 or 2006 it still looks great to me (like all Tamburini designs). A KTM
    690 would slot right in …

  10. MikeD says:

    @RD350:

    {Blue’s Voice from “Dick Figures”} (Episode 23, Modern Flame War) ———————–>OHHHH ! . . . THE BEAUTY !

    Yeah, that thing is like a honey trap, for anyone’s bank account or check book.

    2006, HAaaa . . . been a while, too bad we lost this one too.

    If my senile brain doesn’t betray me i could swear i heard the KTM Boss saying that Husqvarna would be keeping themselves to DIRT, NO STREET machines.
    Anyone care to chime in with the Facts ?