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.

Made in Thailand: Kawasaki

08/24/2009 @ 2:45 pm, by Jensen Beeler12 COMMENTS

Made in Thailand: Kawasaki Kawasaki logo 560x369

In an effort to reduce production costs, Kawasaki is about to become the first Japanese motorcycle manufacturer to have its motorcycles built in a developing country. Starting in 2010, Kawasaki will transfer the production of its medium and large-sized motorcycles from Japan to Thailand.

According to financial experts at Bloomberg, Kawasaki’s motives are based on reducing costs by taking advantage of the cheap labor found in Thailand. Rumor has it that Honda is also considering moving its production to Thailand, presumably for similar reasons.

Source: Bloomberg

Comment:

  1. Billy B says:

    I’m in the o/s manufacturing field and i can tell you, you get what you pay for, pay peanuts, get monkeys! The labour is cheap for a reason in developing countries, and after seeing why, would like to mention it’s a bad move by Kawasaki…standards are lowered to accommodate for pressures of deadlines and cheap hourly rates, there is no care….and in some instances costs more, due to higher than normal amounts of Quality Control issues picked up at the end of production. (talking amongst modestly priced items – not high end, as you’re a monkey if you pay some of those prices for the quality you get. You’re paying additional for the royalty charges for the brand logo on the product – of course there is some high end technology on some products – but the costs don’t add up)

  2. Made in Thailand: Kawasaki – http://bit.ly/4nw07E #motorcycle

  3. stoner27 says:

    @Billy B
    why.. aren’t you a racist?
    Does it ever occur to you that they win the contract because they are good but ALSO cheap?
    Kawasaki is a Japanese bike, so they must be made by Japanese ‘humans’?
    If you considered Thais as monkeys, what about Americans? Gorillas?

  4. Billy B says:

    stoner27….wow, talk about taking a comment out of context…are you serious??? & calling americans gorillas?? or just completely in the wrong forum???
    developing countries factories, have you ever been to them? do you know the conditions some of your budget products are made in? what does racism have to do with anything? we’re talking high quality production capabilities here buddy, stop trying to make an argument about nothing.
    And contracts of this kind by the sounds of it are won on price…quality is a long term project, specially when dealing with some countries…and looking into my crystal ball, there will be issues with the Thailand production models! get ready for the recalls…furthermore, let’s see if they release photos of their new factory (and their staff’s living conditions just to give you a better understanding), i guarantee you, you would not by a motorcycle from there and potentially risk your life…

  5. meatspin says:

    the thais ability to manufacture complex, high level (if you can call motorbikes high level) wares should not be questioned. I’ve bought and sold precision made medical and photographic equipment all made in thailand.

    getting new factories up to scratch should not be a problem for kawasaki. Honda and suzuki have been making bikes their for years.

  6. I have Kawasaki ke-100 cc 82 model Tail, i want its silencer, please provide me or find for me i will be thankful.
    Replay me at my email

  7. i want kawasaki 100cc trial silencer please contact me when you find one for me

  8. faez says:

    i want to get an adress of kawasaki factory thanks

  9. M. A. says:

    I am looking for the manufacture of production KAWASAKI Single-Cylinder Gasoline Engines inTHAILAND.

    I know there is a manufacture in THAILNAD which products KAWASAKI Single-Cylinder Gasoline Engines but I don’t know its name and its contact information.

    The models of KAWASAKI Single-Cylinder Gasoline Engines are FG-230 and FG-150.
    They are used in agricultural machinery.

    Please reply to my email.

    is.firm@yahoo.com

    Tankx.

  10. M&M says:

    Hey all,

    I’m looking for thailand producer of KAWASAKI Fg230 & 201 , can you help me to find a source?

    thankssssssss

  11. hi Dears, I am looking for the manufacture of production KAWASAKI Single-Cylinder Gasoline Engines inTHAILAND.

    I know there is a manufacture in THAILNAD which products KAWASAKI Single-Cylinder Gasoline Engines but I don’t know its name and its contact information.

    The models of KAWASAKI Single-Cylinder Gasoline Engines are FG-230 and FG-201 They are used in agricultural machinery.

    Please reply to my email
    mrgh0261@yahoo.com

  12. ThaiGuy says:

    @ Billy B…

    I am Thai guy who will say “YOU SUCK and FUCK YOU!!” I don’t think American people are better than the other..just thinking about this..Does America has anything your own whatever language,letter,land,people,culture and more, all of this they got from the other..Wow stupid America!! Gorillas!!!!