Jensen Beeler


One of the motorcycle launches that was swallowed by the coronavirus outbreak was the debut of the BMW R18 – the german company’s giant air-cooled cruiser model.

There is a bit of irony in that fact, considering how long the German brand teased the bike in its near final form, only to see it production debut overshadowed by a global pandemic, but that’s the tough reality.

As more quarterly reports come in, we continue to see the trend that the global motorcycle industry is down by double digits for the year, and today’s numbers from Ducati Motor Holding continue to show that trend.

Reporting a 24.2% drop in sales worldwide for the first half of 2020, we also learn that Ducati sales were down 24.6% for Q2 2020.

While those numbers are nearly identical, diving into the model segments and quarterly results provides some intriguing data.

Just two weeks ago, we were rounding up the rumors on the next Honda CBR600RR, with talk that the 600cc supersport would be making an August arrival, and sadly not be an all-new machine.

Those rumors seem to be spon-on, because Big Red is now teasing the 2021 Honda CBR600RR on its Japanese website as well as YouTube. As such, we now expect to see the new Honda CBR600RR debut on August 21st.

Ever since the demise of Alta Motors, the motorcycle industry has been in need of a proper electric dirt bike offering.

There is some hope that Honda’s electric CR prototype could come to fruition, and Yamaha’s electric trial bike certainly looks the business, but as of yet, there is surprisingly nothing on the market that looks like it would be at home on a motocross track.

That might change if the Dutch have anything to say about it, though. Here is the EMX Bike – a joint-project from SPIKE Technologies and Dohms Projects, with support by Yamaha Motor Europe and KNMV, which has been in the works for the last year and a half.

The official launch of the EMX Bike is set for the end of this year, but the team is already teasing their project, which promises 250cc performance, a swappable battery pack, and a potent off-road package.

Episode 156 of the Paddock Pass Podcast is out, and this one sees us finally talking again about some on-track World Superbike action, with Steve English and Gordon Ritchie on the mics after the Jerez round.

With plenty of action happening over the weekend’s three superbike races, there is no shortage of information to dissect and analyze, so you will definitely want to give it a listen.

A new road race is set to come to the motorsport stage: the Diamond Races at the Isle of Wight in England.

The races will use a time trial format, like the Isle of Man TT, with a 12.4-mile road course winding through several towns and down the island’s coast. 

But the real advantage of the Diamond Races is its location, as the Isle of Wight is located just southeast of Southampton, and sits just under three hours from London, making it an easy and approachable racing event for British and international fans.

With Marc Marquez going back into surgery yesterday, and being held for 48 hours in the hospital afterwards, the Spaniard’s participation in the upcoming Czech GP this weekend was certainly put into doubt.

And now, we know the reality, as Repsol Honda has announced that test rider Stefan Bradl will ride in the factory-backed MotoGP team for the race in Brno in Marquez’s place.

After withdrawing from the Andalucia GP, Marc Marquez was back under the surgeon’s knife today, tending to his right humerus bone that he broke during the race at the Spanish GP just two weeks ago.

After plating the humerus bone, Marquez had entered the Andalucia GP with the hopes of salvaging his title hopes, but the Repsol Honda rider failed to qualify, as he returned to the pits after his out-lap during the qualifying session.

Now, it has become clear that Marquez’s race weekend was hampered by the fact that titanium plate on his arm had been damaged, due to stress accumulation.

For sale: KTM RC16 MotoGP race bike, circa 2019. Single-owner, always garaged, in like-new condition. All service and maintenance done by factory-trained technicians. Never wheelied. Two bikes available: €288,000 each. Willing to trade for Honda RC213V or similar.

Though the Craigslist ad writes itself, KTM has taken the more tactful approach of offering two of its MotoGP race bikes from last season for purchase, and while the sticker price packs quite the shock, the Austrian brand is offering a notably exclusive opportunity.

MV Agusta is making an interesting move in its sport bike lineup, announcing this week that they will be adding the company’s “Smart Clutch System” (SCS) to its Brutale 800 RR and Dragster 800 RR models.

For those that don’t remember the debut of the Smart Clutch System, it was built in collaboration with Rekluse, and first debuted on the MV Agusta Turismo Veloce Lusso sport-tourer.

Effectively, the implementation of the Smart Clutch System means that an MV Agusta rider needs only to use the clutch when firing up the motorcycle, as the clutch will auto-engage when coming to a stop, and isn’t necessary when shifting because of the up/down quickshifter.