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.

Newspeak: Oxford English Dictionary Redefines “Biker”

02/26/2013 @ 3:02 pm, by Jensen Beeler22 COMMENTS

Newspeak: Oxford English Dictionary Redefines Biker sons of anarchy 635x357

Before today, if you had looked up the word “biker” in the Oxford English Dictionary, you would have found the following definition: “a motorcyclist, especially one who is a member of a gang: a long-haired biker in dirty denims.” With statical studies showing that only 9% of Britain’s bikers fit the long long-hair and “dirty denims” stereotype, 74% of all British motorcyclists felt the definition was inaccurate.

Bowing to pressure from Great Britain’s motorcycling community though, Oxford University Press (the publisher of the Oxford English Dictionary) has redefined “biker” to fit with slightly more modern perceptions. Accordingly, the Oxford English Dictionary now defines a biker as, “a motorcyclist, especially one who is a member of a gang or group: a biker was involved in a collision with a car.”

While the Oxford University Press scoffs at any mentioning of an Orwellian exercise in how language controls perception, the publisher says it only made the changes after it became clear that the term “biker” was aligning itself more closely with the word “motorcyclist,” while distancing itself from associations with motorcycle gangs like the Hells Angels.

Motorcyclists, or bikers as it were, will likely take issue with the usage example though, which for reasons beyond our imagination uses the term “biker” in reference to a collision with an automobile. Perhaps, this usage is meant to show how “biker” can be linked more closely to those individuals who commute on their motorcycles, and thus are more likely to be involved in a collision with a car.

Or, considering how aggressive the British insurance industry is with motorcyclists, we can’t help but raise an eyebrow on the new wording for the OED’s “biker” definition, especially when the the main article covering the story, written by the The Telegraph, opts to include an lengthy background and opinion on the change from Bennetts Insurance Director of Marketing.

With that whole issue aside, the question remains though, do you make a distinction between the use of the word “biker” and “motorcyclist” when describing particular two-wheeled enthusiasts?

Source: The Telegraph

Comment:

  1. Prich says:

    what a comical situation. The rider-lobby was strong enough to get the OED to change the definition, but even after going that far, they still have us in gangs and crashing on public roads. We bikers, should start a group and change the……. oh wait. We can’t form groups now. They’ll have us in greasy pants agin.

    Funny thing is I’m working on my bike today in the garage and, as such, my denim is dirty. I hate when they’re right.

  2. Robert Smith says:

    Motorcyclist = person who rides a motorcycle
    Biker = person who rides a “lifestyle”

  3. L2C says:

    @ Prich

    LOL!

    To me, there is a difference in perception when it comes to bikers and motorcyclists, but I do understand that bikers can also be motorcyclists, and that motorcyclists can be bikers. I use the term biker like most people, and that’s generally to refer to those motorcyclists who are in gangs and clubs that prefer the typical outlaw-biker look. Though, in some instances, such as when a parade of Harley’s go burbling by, I’ll refer to those riders as bikers, too. Even though they may just be regular old dudes showing off their classic customs.

    OED should have given the term “biker” a secondary definition that was a word for word match with the definition of “motorcyclist,” and vice versa. They could have also attached to either word a reference to the other word. Problem solved.

    But maybe what OED really wants to do is paste a picture of Daniel Craig next to the word “motorcyclist,” and a picture of Ozzy Osbourne or Rob Halford next the word “biker”. That would really help to make their point.

  4. Superfish says:

    Here in Australia biker is someone who rides a motorcycle
    Bikie is someone in an outlaw mc

  5. proudAmerican says:

    bi-ker (noun)

    def: A middle-aged middle-class male, often a lawyer, banker, school teacher, etc., who dresses-up in layers of dead black cowhide scraps each weekend, mounts his excessively chrome-laden v-twin motorcycle, and rides from his house to the local watering hole, not to exceed a distance of 5 miles round trip: The biker successfully “laid ‘er down” by mashing his back brake pedal, avoiding the evil front brake lever at all costs, when he overshot the corner because he was distracted by the biker at the other intersection who was revving his engine at the stop light, for no reason whatsoever.

    See also: pirate, wanna-be, poser, 1 percenter, loser, erectile dysfunction sufferer

    Not to be confused with;

    mo-tor-cy-clist (noun)

    def: One who actually rides for extended distances, knows how to properly/safely operate his motorcycle, sees no value in expensive chrome doo-dads, and chuckles at anyone wearing a black leather vest with a “gang” name affixed to the upper back: The motorcyclist wore the rubber of his rear tire to its’ edge while improving his skills at an advanced riding school.

    :)

  6. MotoBell says:

    I am a MOTORCYCLIST.

  7. TexusTim says:

    we dont need any type of moniker..that’s for realty shows…I never use the word biker…we seem to use the word “rider” around here…like is he a rider” …..what does he ride ?…are you going on the ride to the hill country ?….so for me the word biker is for those that have cruiser’s..sportbike guys are riders were not bikers and the only gang I belong to is the CMRA…….there are some ganster types around ……there called experts….lol

  8. pooch says:

    I live here and that’s not true about Australia and the term Bikie belonging to Outlaw MC’s.. It’s just different terms people use. Bikie is the old term, Biker is the newer cooler term. In exactly the same way Star Trek fans don’t like to be known as ‘Trekkies’ instead they want to be known as ‘Trekkers’ – people who ride motorcycles (and actually give two f*cks about what they’re called) prefer to be called ‘Bikers’ than ‘Bikies’.

    Silly – aint it.

  9. Sam Noah says:

    I’m a Malaysian(British based education) and love MotoGP,WSBK, IOM TT and i am totally disappointed with Oxford!!!
    I don’t do any “rituals ” to join any MC because that is bullshit. If we love motorcycle, we ride it PROPERLY(safety gear etc) and make new friends.end of story.
    outlaw in Malaysia refer to MAT REMPIT. (Mat = guy and REMPIT = love to rev the bike ) they will use 2stroke bike and “superman” while racing on the street wearing a tshirt(sweater too), open helmet and normal sneaker. They are instantly recognizable as their fashion is very vibrant don’t really follow racing and don’t have the guts to race at proper track. When i was smaller, they would race in front of my house until my father didn’t get a proper sleep.
    I hate them because they give bad image to other people who use 2 stroke bike and go to track to ride, Sepang International circuit.
    So in this article i felt like i am the mat rempit which i hate them to death.

    OKBYETHANKS

  10. Tom says:

    Should we push for the F_G word in the South Park episode? I ask that as a serious question as language influences perception and SP showed how to take an insult off of people who have done nothing to deserve derision and place it rightfully on those who work oh so hard to deserve it.

  11. JoeD says:

    It really shows how non-riding folks define/perceive us. I have always called out any one who refers to me as a Biker. I RIDE MOTOCRYCLES. For a living. OCC catered to Bikers.

  12. mudgun says:

    I’m not sure I think it matters much. On the other hand, when I pass a group pedaling themselves along a scenic mountain road I call them bikers.

  13. Richard Gozinya says:

    I like the term Velociphile, though Moto-Caballero is also acceptable.

  14. John says:

    In the words of Clay Morrow: “I’m just a mechanic and a motorcycle enthusiast”.

  15. cvgsp75 says:

    How about Ass Haulers or Lane Splitters lol cause you cant do either on a Harley !!!

  16. Jeff says:

    Of course. Biker is the 1%er and motorcyclist is the 99% others. The OED is right and whingey little twerps that think differently are wrong. btw, I’m a motorcyclist!

  17. Gutterslob says:

    Such discrimination. This is an outrage!!
    Can’t a man marry his motorcycle in peace?!!

  18. Dan says:

    I cannot believe this is even up for debate!!! I mean who really gives a &@#$!!! I think people should use that brain storming for something a little more useful like how many rocks or loose gravel was in that last S-CURVE or maybe which apartment that Blonde came out of with those khaki hiking shorts on!! And those of you i lost there, just remember to turn your blinker OFF! Just know living without ever experiencing two wheels, is not living at all! (NOTE: This in NO WAY pertains to people that choose to ride…………………………… SCOOTERS!)

    ALWAYS RIDE AGGRESSIVE!!!

  19. pooch says:

    Dan – are you high ?

  20. mudgun says:

    “Biker” …Motorcyclist who does not look or behave like the other 99% of motorcyclist.

  21. Biker in the US is the equivalent of saying you’re a Harley rider.

    Sport bike riders don’t call themselves bikers in these parts. They just say ‘I ride’ or refer to themselves as riders.

    Biker = never changes those stinky ass leathers… NEVER! :-)

  22. Mugget says:

    Oh man… they got it all wrong…

    Biker = a person who rides bikes.

    Bikie = a person who rides bikes in a gang.

    Then again, maybe that’s just an Aussie thing…