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.

Yamaha’s 180hp Adventure Bike is Our Kind of Crazy

03/25/2012 @ 6:18 pm, by Jensen Beeler19 COMMENTS

Yamahas 180hp Adventure Bike is Our Kind of Crazy Yamaha YZF R1 sand dunes 07 635x362

When you think of the ultimate adventure bike, your first thoughts probably lean more towards bikes like the class-leading BMW R1200GS. If we continue that thought, and said that the ultimate ADV machine was in fact a Yamaha, you would of course then expect to see the subsequent words to center around the Yamaha Super Ténéré (read our review of the Yamaha Super Ténéré here).

Well, someone in Yamaha’s French office is our flavor of crazy, as they let six-time Dakar Rally winner Stephane Peterhansel loose in the sand dunes of Merzouga, Morocco on a Yamaha YZF-R1. Shod with exquisitely hand-cut Michelin tires, Peterhansel flexes the 180bhp machine over the dunes with proper rallying style.

Truly gorgeous shots, if it is available in your area, you’ll want to pick up the latest copy of L’Intégral magazine to see them in the gloss and read Peterhansel’s thoughts on riding the R1 in its non-native habitat.

Yamahas 180hp Adventure Bike is Our Kind of Crazy Yamaha YZF R1 sand dunes 10 635x423

Yamahas 180hp Adventure Bike is Our Kind of Crazy Yamaha YZF R1 sand dunes 08 635x362

Yamahas 180hp Adventure Bike is Our Kind of Crazy Yamaha YZF R1 sand dunes 05 635x363

Yamahas 180hp Adventure Bike is Our Kind of Crazy Yamaha YZF R1 sand dunes 02 635x422

Yamahas 180hp Adventure Bike is Our Kind of Crazy Yamaha YZF R1 sand dunes 06 635x362

Source: Yamaha France; Photos: François Rophé & Alain Lecorre / L’Intégral

Comment:

  1. Stunning photos, it’s incredible that he was able to belt this bike around the dunes, I wouldn’t have thought it had the ground clearance!

  2. the man from T.A.N.T.E. says:

    As far as ground clearance….looks like the last photo tells that tale….buried it…..Good Stuff.

  3. Sjaak Lucassen thought this was a good idea a while back :-)

    http://www.r1goesextreme.com/

  4. Afletra says:

    I just saw a video of Special Edition R1 (like in this pics) using spiky wheels doing some race with car in the snow field, I’m still stunned…then I see this pics, just wow!

  5. MikeD says:

    Loving it. Just because IS SO WRONG IT MAKES IT RIGHT. HAAA! …..screw the Adventure Bikes…your SuperBike will do just fine.(^_^)

  6. Steve Lang says:

    This is HILARIOUS!

  7. Westward says:

    Video !!!

    Pictures are great, but where is the video..?

  8. Yamaha's 180hp Adventure Bike is Our Kind of Crazy – http://t.co/8qbTt3ae #motorcycle

  9. FeelgoodInc says:

    If you get excited about these photos you will possitively poop yourself in awe at the stuff Nick Sanders has been getting up to for years on his trust R1s!!

    Can I put a link up? Is that poor form? Hmm…googly woogly.

  10. FeelgoodInc says:

    I mean no disrespect to Peterhansel btw, the man is a legend. Just thought I’d mention Nick as he is a wee bit bonkers by all accounts.

  11. Sean in Oz says:

    Ive never gone as far as playing in the dunes, but my friends and I regularly take our sports bikes on dirt, sand and gravel roads to get to less travelled tar roads … and even do the occasional creek crossing.

    Ive seen photos somewhere of a guy doing a motocross race on a SV650/1000 trackbike including doing some jumps.

  12. Russ says:

    nice bike with running gear for that terrain – my adventure is going to be the stony desert (birdsville track Australia) what running gear for the “marble like” stones in that place?

  13. singletrack says:

    Great stuff, as long as it’s someone else’s bike.

  14. MikeD says:

    Westward says: March 26, 2012 at 12:12 AM

    Video !!!

    Pictures are great, but where is the video..?
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    +1.

  15. Junkie says:

    Sean in Oz: that was Dan Sewell and it was a supermoto race on an SV650 superbike. He removed the lower after realizing he’d break it otherwise, he had planned on keeping it on before that. Flatslide carbs and NO AIR FILTERS on it too.

  16. Hollywood says:

    Sean in Oz, Dan finished 2 spots behind me in that race it was cool to see it in person, couldn’t jump for shit tho

  17. Grant Madden says:

    Scrambled in an old shingle pit on my GSX1100 some years ago.Its a lot of fun.Everyone should have a go with a big roadie in the dirt,broadslides just happen!!

  18. luke says:

    wow. just wow.

  19. Susan Hess says:

    Yamaha痴 180hp Adventure Bike is Our Kind of Crazy #motorcycle #TTOT #travel For all of you R1 lovers – http://t.co/c6jypLW6